Botanical Roots 2018 concert announcement

News release from Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation:

Botanical Roots 2018 Concert Announcement

(June 27, 2018) – The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department is excited to release the lineup for its thirteenth annual Botanical Roots outdoor concert series to take place at the Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory in downtown Fort Wayne. This season brings six headliners and openers will perform on the Terrace plaza every Friday night, beginning July 27 through August 31. Concerts feature national touring acts performing upbeat and soulful styles that find their roots in American musical traditions.


July 27: Jeffery Broussard and the Creole Cowboys
Opener: The Legendary Trainhoppers

Born in Lafayette, Louisiana, Jeffery Broussard is one of Zydeco’s most dynamic performers. Having started at the age of 8 he has continually been an innovator, beginning his career with traditional Creole Zydeco music playing drums in his father’s band, Delton Broussard & The Lawtell Playboys. It wasn’t until thirteen that Jeffery struck gold by picking up the accordion – and has since been dubbed as one of the world’s great accordion players.

Whether he is playing a festival stage in front of thousands of dancers, a small theater of seated patrons, giving an interview, teaching a lesson or playing at a trail ride, his warmth, love of the music, and talent shine. Jeffery Broussard is, well, the real deal.


August 3: Governor Davis
Opener: Swick & Jones

Governor Davis is no stranger to the Blues scene. He has played for more than 30 years with various bands. Governor is his real name and because of it, he has played for four Indiana Governors in the past! After all….he IS The Governor! Governor has opened for many notable artists such as K.C. and the Sunshine Band, Otis Clay, and Bobby Rush. He is also a graduate of both Ball State University and Vincennes University where each year he gives a scholarship awarded to a deserving music student. His current band consists of Tom Lindmar, Marty Weaver, Doug Wimer, and Brad Holmes.

Admiring eyes are fixed on him at every performance. The way he dons his signature hat and dresses in his neatly pressed suit, all in the style of the musicians Governor idolized in the 50’s and 60’s. Those who come to see him will be a part of the show… he makes sure of audience participation! He’s a showman as well as an unforgettable musician! Governor once said “I became a musician not because I wanted to, but because faith put me in that path…” Yes….life is good for The Governor!


August 10: Gangstagrass
Opener: Auld Mongrels

Bluegrass/Hip-Hop may sound like an odd combination, but don’t tell that to Rench, who conceived the sound of Gangstagrass in 2006 and is the group’s producer. Though it began as an isolated experiment, Gangstagrass has since grown into a critically acclaimed success celebrated by The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, TVGuide, Elmore Leonard,, and thousands of fans who have been entranced by one of the band’s hundreds of performances and have purchased the band’s four official LPs.

“There are a lot more people out there with Jay-Z and Johnny Cash on their iPod playlists than you think,” says Rench, who had previously made a name for himself as an in-demand Brooklyn country and hip-hop producer and solo artist.

Gangstagrass has been touring nationally and earning rave reviews of their incendiary live performances at everything from major festivals to highway rest stops. Expect the influence and stature of these pioneers of a new American sound to continue growing.


August 17: Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound
Opener: Calder the Band

Benefitting from years of unassuming and understated hipness, Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound brings forth a funky and lyrically charged racket that sits comfortably with soulful sounds the world over. This band is intricate but free-swinging, explosive yet intimate and fresh, and green as grass.

Drummer Reggie Bordeaux, casts his nets with a mystifying subtlety bringing his own fleet-footed refinement and grease. Multi-instrumentalist Bob Jennings, lends his bandleader the luxury of implying a much larger ensemble with his multi-hued contributions on keys and reeds. Percussionist Mac Perkins brings his New Orleans childhood and extensive diasporal studies to a whomping boil. Bassist Mike Fredrickson (a distinguished singer-songwriter in his own right) anchors and produces with the best of them Give this eclectic group a listen!


August 24: Indika
Opener: U.R.B.

For over 20 years Indika has been gifting listeners with a reggae sound not easily forgotten. Voted 2016 Best Reggae Band by the Martin International Music Awards, Indika brings both bold and addictive music to their fans during every performance. They never shy from giving their audience a full spectrum of Reggae flavor in the style of Jamaica’s Reggae Sunsplash.

The Indika Reggae Band has won several music awards in Chicago and in addition to their own high energy shows, have been honored to back international Reggae artists such as Jr Marvin, Sister Carol, Dennis Brown, Frankie Paul, and Sugar Minott. Between these talented band members, they have over 145 years of experience playing Reggae, Calypso and Soca music. The members of Indika developed skills from origins including Jamaica, Haiti and Belize giving them a true, authentic sound. They perform old Reggae favorites with a new feel from inspirational artists like Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, and Alpha Blondy along with new, original Reggae songs.


August 31: Flatfoot 56
Celtic Punk
Opener: Balrog

Playing a positive-natured brand of hardcore-tinged Celtic punk, Flatfoot 56 has been unleashing itself upon America and the rest of the world for over 16 years now. Forming in 2000, the Chicago natives achieved nationwide attention with their first two label-backed records, 2006’s Knuckles Up and 2007’s Jungle of the Midwest Sea. These releases built on a heavy dose of previously established regional notoriety, helping the band gain steam early on.

Front man Tobin Bawinkel (vocals/guitar) is now set to lead Flatfoot 56 on in their furious march forward. Armed with his brother Kyle (bass), along with Eric McMahon (bagpipes/guitar), Brandon Good (mandolin/guitar/vocals) and Conrad Allsworth (Drums), Flatfoot 56 is in the process of getting ready to release their 7th full length studio album.


The Botanical Conservatory invites the community to grab a lawn chair, settle in, and enjoy music that’s fun and funky, creative and upbeat. Bands are selected from regional and national touring acts with an emphasis on uniqueness, excellence, and representation of a specific musical style.

Shows are Friday nights July 27 through August 31. Local bands will warm up the scene. Food and beverage will be available for purchase from Mad Anthony Brewing Company; no outside food or beverage allowed. Admission is $6 at the gate. Youth ages 12 and under are admitted free with a parent or guardian. Gates open at 7:30 p.m.; shows start at 8:30 p.m. and the events take place outdoors. The Conservatory is located in downtown Fort Wayne at 1100 S. Calhoun Street.

Botanical Roots is sponsored by The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department, 96.3 XKE Fort Wayne’s Classic Rock, Whatzup Magazine, Fort Wayne CW, PBS39, Fort Wayne Metals Research, Mad Anthony Brewing Company, Don Halls Guesthouse Hotel, and the Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory. For more details, call (260) 427-6440 or visit

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