Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

July 4, 2013

Rainy day doesn’t curb riverfront enthusiasm as Summer Motion opens

ASHLAND — Even though the Fourth of July fireworks were a full day away, all eyes were on the skies during the first evening of Summer Motion 2013 as a slow-moving storm system threatened and dampened an otherwise enthusiastic crowd gathered for a headline performance by the band LoverBoy at the Port of Ashland on the Ohio River.

As the rains came in waves, crowds gathered at the entrances of Fat Patty’s as well as The Lamp Post Cafe in anticipation of the evening’s excitement. Building on that energy, guitarist Larry Whitt, accompanied by his band Blue Eyed Soul, warmed the semi-soaked crowd and infused high-energy blues and soul-laden vocals as the evening sun set on the riverfront.

Summer Motion President Cade Mahan welcomed the umbrella-shielded audience to this year’ event, citing the “outstanding talent,” lined up for the night as well as the days ahead. Summer Motion volunteers, many wearing “In Memory of Gary McKenzie” badges, helped late arrivals find seats in the VIP section. Kicking his band’s set off with Eric Clapton’s “Before You Accuse me,” Whitt and bandmates launched a an uptempo set which gave the audience full excuse to express their rock and roll mindset. As guitarist Bobby Burnett offered a slide guitar solo, audience member Angela Vinson said she had essentially lost control of her knees and pelvis, declaring her love for the band’s percussionist.

“If he weren’t married, I would marry Tom Berry,” Vinson said while dancing next to the sound technician’s tent, providing a perfect introduction to the band’s performance of Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home To Me.”

Whitt switched to an acoustic guitar for tha band’s next song, and dedicated his rendition of “Magnolia,” to his wife, Karen, who was seated at the front of the crowd in the VIP section.

Whitt, a 1977 graduate of Paul G. Blazer High School,  said the crowd’s enthusiasm was tangible from the stage, noting he felt the same energy as he remembered when the summer festival began 25 years ago.

As the ladies in the crowd displayed their 1980’s hair (and cleavage), Whitt and bandmates Bobby Burnett, Tom Berry, Dewey Frye and Jack Brent maintained their groove with the B.B. King classic “The Thrill is Gone,” which included an unforgettable dual-guitar exchange between Whitt and Burnett.

“This is all from right here. This is Ashland, Kentucky y’all,” Whitt said as he introduced his band and explained their local roots.

Watching the band from the edge of the sound table, Scott Martin, who will be the drummer when The Chase opens for the band Styx on Friday evening, said he was extremely pleased to be witnessing Whitt and band on stage.

“I love me some Dewey Frye ... and Tom Berry,” Martin said.

As Mayberry Deputy David Browning worked the crowd and handed out autographed photos, he also watched for chances to pop up in various video cameras he found pointed toward the stage by unsuspecting photographers.

Following a short break, members of the band LoverBoy took a commanding presence on the big stage, entering the spotlight as a 1980’s style keyboard intro roared through the massive speakers on each side of the stage, tearing into their hit “Notorious” as the audience welcomed them to the riverside.

“Y’all ready to party? I can feel it,” said lead singer Mike Reno, who appeared slightly more experienced and well rounded since the band’s string of video-friendly songs which aired on MTV and propelled the band to s string of hit songs.

As the evening’s rain picked back up, the band refused to lose momentum, bringing the audience along as they barrelled through fresh-sounding renditions of songs including “The Lucky Ones,” and “Queen of the Broken Hearts.”

Summer Motion 2013 continues today with performances by Southern Push, and headliner Sawyer Brown, followed by the annual fireworks display above the Ohio River.

TIM PRESTON can be reached at tpreston@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2651.

Text Only
Local News
  • 0419sciencehs.JPG Russell High School wins State Science Olympiad

    The long ride home from Bowling Green was tinged with disappointment for Russell High School students who believed they’d finished as also-rans in the state Science Olympiad last weekend.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0419sciencems.JPG Russell Middle School state Science Olympiad champions

    From identifying hundreds of insects to designing and operating mechanical contraptions that just look like insects, a team of Russell Middle School students took their research and technical skills to the Science Olympiad in Bowling Green last week and came back state champions.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0419melodies0114.jpg Kitchen jazzes up downtown lunch hour

    Some came to enjoy the relaxing sounds of cool jazz and traditional tunes at lunch, while others attended in hopes of picking up a few tricks from a master musician as guitarist Chris Kitchen kicked off the Melodies & Masterpieces concert series in downtown Ashland Friday afternoon.

    April 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • Sparks, Waddell in Carter Coronor’s race

    Incumbent George A. Sparks of Grayson will face challenger William Waddell of Olive Hill in the Democratic primary election for the Carter County coroner’s seat.

    April 18, 2014

  • 04/18/2014 — What's Happening

    Local news

    April 18, 2014

  • Bill3.jpg 'Dreams'

    It was in her own death that Donna Schoonover helped William Schoonover redefine his life.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • guyp-rodnew.jpg 'Uplifting people'

    The snow kept gospel singer Guy Penrod chilling a little longer than it should have this spring.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418star0024.jpg Raising the roof

    Leaks will soon be a thing of the past at Star Elementary School, where workers are busy putting up a new roof.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fire at Russell care facility

    A care facility for the elderly in Russell was temporarily evacuated following a fire in the kitchen Wednesday night.

    April 18, 2014

  • Incumbent, newcomer vie for PVA position

    A longtime office-holder is facing a rare primary challenge in the Greenup County property valuation administrator race.

    April 18, 2014

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP basketball
SEC Zone