The much anticipated MidPoint Music Festival (MPMF) is less than a month away, and the industry conference/showcase is well on its way to pulling off its biggest year yet (something organizers have succeeded in doing every year so far). For its fourth year, MPMF will present an unprecedented 300 acts and organizers hope to attract 50,000 attendees (last year's event drew 40,000, nearly double the attendance of the year before). Performers have been chosen and venues booked: see Fox Trots Out Latest
For many, it is a dream to break away from the cover band monotony known as the Cincinnati club scene. Few have found a way to escape this sometimes oppressive local music landscape. The Kevin Fox Band is among the local acts that have prevailed, yet have stayed true to their own roots within the city. Formed in 2002 by local singer/songwriter Kevin Fox, drummer Eric Betts and bassist Marc Burkhardt, the trio creates a style of Acoustic Power Pop and Roots Rock that stirs itself into something as beautiful as that first cup of coffee in the morning. With influences from Nirvana to James Taylor and a sound comparable to Barenaked Ladies and The Dave Matthews Band, there's something for everyone. The trio's latest, All Over The Place, is a virtual melting pot of sing-along refrains aimed at live audience participation, as in the ode to departure "Got to Go," with blistering guitar solos pounding forth from Fox's hollow body acoustic guitar, as well as slow-motion, haunting ballads like "Skin." Fox's ability to relate his own love, loss and life motif to his audience is brilliantly accomplished with his style of songwriting, which combines simple terms and notions into something fairly intense and emotionally complex. The band's sense of humor is apparent on the fast-paced tribute to listening to what a woman needs, "She Likes It." The trio exudes an unadulterated quirkiness and sincerity that is accompanied by incredible instrumentation and pure Pop/Rock fun.
The Kevin Fox Band plays a CD release party Friday at the 20th Century Theater in Oakley. (Nathan Linville)