PENROSE – Free outdoor concerts are the norm in the summer, but imagine the hustle and bustle of a concert behind one of the quietest settings you can think of: a library.
The St. Louis Public Library held its monthly Not So Quiet! concert on Thursday at the Julia Davis branch at 4415 Natural Bridge Ave.
The series of hour-long free concerts features various artists and cover bands from around each month’s chosen venue. For the month of August, local cover band All Stringz Attached headlined.
With groovy bass lines, fire raps and nostalgic covers of a multitude of tunes including a more mature version of the Little Rascals’ “I Have A Dollar” doowop, All Stringz Attached was chosen for this month’s concert by St. Louis Library’s program director, Joe Schwartz, after seeing their video “Dollar” on YouTube.
“I saw a video they had made. [It] was actually shot on Natural Bridge in front of the library,” Schwartz said. “I thought these guys would really try their hardest to bring an audience, and they’re a terrific-sounding band.”
It took some time for a few in the audience to open up to the content of the band’s music, but that changed after the musicians had gone into a few songs.
“There was a middle-aged woman who didn’t seem to take too kindly to our delivery at first. Others were enjoying it, but her lips were literally curled up,” said the band’s lead, Gregory Bowdry, also known as StringZ EmB. “By the fourth song, those lips turned into one of the biggest … and brightest smiles in the crowd. I feel like my performance last night was captivating.”
While All Stringz Attached kept the hundreds of residents dancing for the evening, food trucks kept them well nourished.
Pirtle’s Ice Cream and Wayno’s STL were present throughout the concert series, providing ice cream and food for dozens of attendees. The combination of the trucks and the band’s musical talent helped keep attendees at the library throughout the set.
“I’ve been here since 7, [and] I loved it,” said Shannon Gillespie, who lives in The Ville. “He’s passionate about what he’s doing and what he’s saying. I feel what he’s saying.”
The Not So Quiet! series has been a staple in the area for more than a decade, bringing people from various walks of life out to hear good music that may be right around the corner.
“It’s truly an honor to be chosen for this month’s Not So Quiet!” Bowdry said. “Historically speaking, August is the hottest month of the year, so ugh, yeah. I digs the symbolism.”
Not only did the evening made All Stringz Attached a band to look out for, but they’re appreciated for making an impact on the north side.
“They need more artists like him to teach the kids you can be whatever you want to be [and] make [women] feel beautiful,” Gillespie said.
The Not So Quiet! series offers the free concerts on the third Thursday of each month. Next month’s concert will be Sept. 19 with Javier Mendoza’s Hobo Cane at the library’s Carpenter Branch, 3309 South Grand Blvd.
The backyard mini-music festival series is one of many events that are attracting children and teens to the library for more than just things to read. For more information about the library and its events, go to slpl.bibliocommons.com/events