A! Magazine for the Arts

Ruby Velle

Ruby Velle

Thursday Night Jams begins

April 25, 2018

The Abingdon Music Experience, a program of the town’s tourism department, began in 2013. It organizes January Jams at Barter Theater, Abingdon Main Street Buskerfest in September and Thursday Night Jams from May through July.

Thursday Night Jam concerts are held at the Abingdon Market Pavilion, Abingdon, Va. A beer garden and food truck are available. No outside alcohol or coolers are allowed. Concertgoers are encouraged to bring a chair or blanket and enjoy the show. The concerts are free. Opening acts perform at 6:30 p.m. and the main event takes the stage at 7 p.m.

Thursday Jams starts May 17 with a concert by Sam Lewis. He’s collaborated with everyone from John Prine and Kacey Musgraves to The Wood Brothers. Chris Stapleton dubbed him “a modern Townes Van Zandt.” And while he’s often labeled with some form of the word soulful (some have even compared his voice to molasses), Lewis’ style meets at a juncture of many different genres.

Reverend Shawn Amos performs May 24 at 7 p.m. The Rev’s distinctive blend of black roots music, R & B, and stripped down rock n’ roll brings a bracing, soul-deep musical experience to audiences starved for authenticity, for connection. “I derive a lot of satisfaction bringing people joy,” he says.

Ruby Velle and The Soulphonics take to the stage May 31 at 7 p.m. The group has shared bills with megastars and indie press darlings alike, including The Temptations, Lee Fields & The Expressions, Iggy Pop, Erykah Badu, Goodie Mob, Gary Clark Jr., Animal Collective, Feist, Bush, The Wailers, Dumpstaphunk, Bombino, Peaches, The Internet and Kendrick Lamar.