Here’s your chance to catch the music world’s next big band

If you love great music, circle Friday, Aug. 11, Friday, July 13, 2018, on your calendar, and make sure to be in downtown Howell before 7 p.m. It’s on that evening that you’ll have a rare opportunity akin to catching a shooting star as it streaks across the sky; you’ll see a band — a popular Michigan band, nonetheless — that’s poised on the cusp of big-time stardom. That’s the night you’ll get to see The Accidentals perform for free as part of the popular Concerts at the Courthouse program of the Livingston Arts Council.

If you haven’t already, you can hear the band’s paean to its home state: “Michigan, and Again”below:

The band’s story is a short and amazing one. Traverse City natives Savannah Buist and Katie Larson started making music together when they met in public high school before being accepted at the renowned Interlochen Arts Academy in 2012. They brought aboard Northville native Michael Dause, the band’s drummer, in 2014.

In the band’s short life, it’s been tearing up the music world, working hard (according to the band’s website, in the past five years it’s performed over a thousand shows), and collecting accolades and enthusiastic fans all along the way. Out of over 2,200 acts, The Accidentals was named Billboard’s Breakout Band at SXSW 2015. The band was also named part of Huffington Post’s Sweet Sixteen of 2016, and one of Yahoo Music’s Top 10 Bands to Watch in 2017. The band has opened for musical luminaries like Joan Baez, Brandi Carlile, Dar Williams and Rusted Root.

And the band is coming to downtown Howell.

If you’ve not heard a lot of The Accidentals’ music, here are a few videos for you. First up is the song “Memorial Day” from the band’s upcoming big-label album “Odyssey” from Sony Masterworks.

The Accidentals’ “Parking Lot” is my personal Album of Summer 2017. It’s a quick listen of just over a half hour that’s packed with a wide range of musical styles, expertly crafted songs, and the absolute sheer joy and exuberance of youth crossed with incredible talent.

Landing a performance by a band this amazing, with this much industry buzz and this soaring of a trajectory, is a feather in the cap of Roger Dresden of the Livingston Arts Council. Dresden — an accomplished musician in his own right who has played Concerts at the Courthouse with his own group — is thrilled about getting The Accidentals to Howell, calling them a “departure from the usual festival bands that come to every city in the state.”

His worry? While the weather is, of course, on his mind, Dresden said he is “worried about what to tell people who ask, ‘well, what kind of music do they play?’”

I agree with Dresden that it’s hard to peg the band’s style: Indie rock. Americana. Classical. Bluegrass. Jazz. Pop. The Accidentals are all of that and so much more. Myself? I’ll call their style Exuberantly Eclectic, and while I think everyone should use my description, you can decide for yourself.

So check out these videos and make sure you’re at the Courthouse on Aug. 11. Then you’ll be able to say you saw The Accidentals before they took over the music world.

This amazing version of The Beatles’ “Across the Universe” was recorded on Election Day 2016.

The Concerts at the Courthouse program runs every Friday night from June 30 – Aug. 25. In the event of inclement weather, concerts may be cancelled; listen to WHMI 93.5 for updates. No alcoholic beverages are permitted.

The Livingston Arts Council was founded in 1995 to encourage the development and support of the arts in Livingston County. This grass roots organization embarked on a mission to improve the quality of life in Livingston County through appreciation of the arts. To learn more about the organization, check out its website by clicking here. For ways to support the organization’s mission, click here.

Everything you want to know about The Accidentals is on the band’s official website. Click here.

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About Maria Stuart 122 Articles
Journalist Maria Stuart lives in Howell. She worked at The Livingston County Press/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus as reporter, editor and managing editor from 1990-2009. She is often spotted holding court at Uptown Coffeehouse.