Southern rock icon Jaimoe Johanson headlines Second Sunday event

May 9, 2014 

An Allman Brothers Band original will headline this month’s Second Sunday concert, happening this weekend.

Jaimoe Johanson, who has drummed with the iconic Southern rock band since the beginning, will play the free show in Washington Park with his side group, Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band.

“His roots in Macon music go back further than (the Allman Brothers),” said Jessica Walden, director of communication for the College Hill Alliance, which runs Second Sunday. “He was actually working with my uncle in their R&B stable of artists even before he became the Southern rock icon that he now is. Macon is definitely familiar territory to him as well as Washington Park.”

Jaimoe has played with the likes of Otis Redding, Percy Sledge and Patti LaBelle. His band plays a blend of jazz, blues, rock and R&B that includes original songs and their take on some classics.

“This caliber of performer would not have been possible this early in the season without the help of the Big House museum,” Walden said about the local organization dedicated to preserving the Allman Brothers’ history. “They wanted to bring him back in town and tie him into some of the events going on at the museum.”

The concert runs from 6-8 p.m. Sunday and like other Second Sunday shows will include food and beverage vendors. The rain location for this show and the remaining concerts will be the Cox Capitol Theatre.

“This is Mother’s Day, and in the past the Mother’s Day show has been one of our biggest Second Sunday draws,” Walden said. “Everyone loves to bring their mother out to the park to enjoy the music and fellowship.”

The all-ages concerts will continue monthly through October. The June concert will be AJ Ghent, who is described as a cross between Jimi Hendrix and the Alabama Shakes.

“He’s going to be new to Macon,” Walden said. “Bragg Jam actually booked him this year for their concert crawl so this is a good way to introduce him to Macon crowds.”

Local favorites the Grapevine will play the July concert and August will be Same As It Ever Was, a Talking Heads cover band.

The September concert will be a special program in partnership with Jay’s Hope and the band has not been announced, Walden said.

“We’re going to welcome the students back to Macon with that show,” she said.

The season will end in October with another big name: R&B singer Clarence Carter. Carter is probably most known for his songs “Slip Away,” “Back Door Santa” and “Strokin.’”

A new addition to this year’s series will be a Makers Market behind the stage area. The market will feature local artisans who are registered at www.maconmaker.com.

“It is very similar to the buy local campaign,” Walden said. “Our role with this is to create a networking community of makers so they can help each other, grow their business ... and bring attention to this trend here in Macon.”

The Second Sunday series started in 2008 with a small group of volunteers and is currently organized by the College Hill Alliance.

“I think when we hit 75 people in the park we thought it was a big show,” Walden said. “Now, our average attendance is 1,200 people for any given Second Sunday. We’ve seen the attendance crest all the way up to 5,000 people with Percy Sledge last year. The Second Sunday has just grown into a regular and enduring community event where people come to picnic and hear live music.”

In April, the Bragg Jam Festival announced it would be taking over and sustaining the series with the help of a Knight Neighborhood Challenge grant.

“We’ve already started working in conjunction with them and they’ve handled all of the booking this year,” Walden said.

Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band

When: 6-8 p.m. May 11

Where: Washington Park, Magnolia Street, downtown Macon

Information: www.collegehillmacon.com

Cost: Free

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