It’s the music you hear on Livingston County’s local radio station WHMI-FM 93.5 every day – but in a way you’ve never heard it before.
“Classic Hits (with a twist)” is a live music series presented by 2 Stones Events, the Brighton-based company that books the musicians for numerous local festivals.
“We partnered with Cleary University to present live music in the Arthur Secunda Museum
under the name Secunda Sounds,” said Whitney McClellan-Stone, president of 2 Stones Events.
She provided a pianist for a reception at the gallery this past December and immediately recognized the room’s potential for more live music. And, she said, the series is a great way to bring attention to the facility, which houses a staggering collection of artist Arthur Secunda’s work – paintings, mixed media, polyester assemblage, ceramics and welded sculptures.
Those who have attended Brighton events like Smokin’ Jazz & Barbecue Blues Festival, Taste of Brighton, and Fine Arts & Acoustic Music Festival have heard the wide variety of musicians 2 Stones books. The company also handles all the live music for Howell Rocks the Block; the Brighton Bar & Grill; Northville’s Arts & Acts; a new festival, The Main Event Novi; and has presented international artists like Wynton Marsalis, Ramsey Lewis and George Winston at the Brighton Center for the Performing Arts.
“This new series is fun, intimate and a little different for us because we tend to really promote original music,” said McClellan-Stone. “We have four solo musicians who each play one cover song and one original. We take a short break, repeat, and then bring them all up for one final cover song.”
The series’ three events, on the last Saturday of the months, started off with Van Halen followed by The Cars in March. The finale on April 29 will have four local musicians – Beth Stalker, Brett Lucas, Karley Davidson and Jarrod Champion — covering songs by The Who.
“We ask the musicians to challenge themselves and interpret their cover choices as differently from the original as possible,” said McClellan-Stone. “Of course, we also want the audience to discover the deep talent pool in southeast Michigan, hence the players offering their originals too.”
Helping to fund the series is Mike Hall, of Cobb-Hall Insurance in downtown Howell. His business’ courtyard serves as one of the four stage areas for Rock the Block during the summer.
“We’ve been a supporter of Cleary University,” said Hall, who was honored by the school with its Friedt Medal, which recognizes a successful businessperson who has exhibited innovation, dedication, hard work and ethical business principles.