3rd Annual Ames Winter Classic

Clark Eilers

Ames’ sweatiest party folk-rock band, Mumfords, will be hosting its 3rd Annual Ames Winter Classic at the Maintenance Shop on 8 p.m. on Jan. 24.

This free annual show was originally created by Mumford’s frontman, Nate Logsdon, and the previous director for the M-Shop, Connor Nolan. Both wished to bring the local scene to the venue for students to enjoy.

“Connor really loved the local rock scene,” Logsdon said. “One thing he wanted to do was have Mumfords play a show at the M-Shop, and I wanted to have local artists open up for us.”

Bands and musicians from all over Iowa have been invited to open up for Mumford’s, playing to a sold-out crowd the past two years. Including this upcoming show, a variety of styles and genres have been represented including rockabilly, folk, blues-rock, power-pop and alternative.

“What I like is to get different bands from all over Iowa, so ISU and high school students can come hear all the great music there is,” Logsdon said.

Even when Nolan graduated after the first year of the show, current M-Shop director George Potter, was determined to keep the Winter Classic going for Iowa State students each year.

“When I became a director, it was important to me to make it a tradition, so we continued it last year,” Potter said. “It was a great success once again proving that the music scene in Ames and central Iowa is alive and well.”

Opening the show this year is Triggerfish, a band that is about as local as one can get. This Ames high school alt-rock band came into the scene in January 2011, and have gained the respect of musicians such as Logsdon. Lead singer and guitarist, Patrick Jasper, has also played alto sax with Mumfords for several occasions, including last year’s Winter Classic.

Next up is Twins, a British Invasion-influenced power-pop rock band also familiar with Ames, but hailing from Cedar Falls, Iowa. The band is signed to the Maximum Ames label, from which they are releasing an album this spring, while also playing with Mumfords several times. Singer/guitarist Joel Sires explains that there’s a lot for him and his band to look forward to with this show.

“Just to share the stage with Mumfords and play in such a great place like the M-Shop is exciting,” Sires said. “I’ve been to the venue a lot to see shows and love it. We want to entertain people and make their lives fun for that 30 minutes we’re playing.”

Those familiar with the Des Moines music scene will recognize the names of Ryan Stier from The River Monks, Phil Young and Chris Marshall from Tires, and the glue that is singer/songwriter Anna Gebhardt; collectively known as Annalibera. Though beginning as a two-piece acoustic folk band with Stier and Gebhardt, the later additions of Young and Marshall have added a layer of New Wave sound, making them the band they are today. Despite their short time together as a group, 2013 landed them gigs at the GDP music festival, as well as 80/35.

To close the night, Mumfords will deliver their signature combination of folk, storytelling, rock and horns at one of their favorite venues in Iowa. Formed in the summer of 2008 by Logsdon, a longtime Ames resident and ISU alumus, Mumfords has become a defining band in the Ames scene as well as advocates for the scene that made them the musical party to beat.

In December 2013, they released their LP, Immediate Family, which music news site, themilkcarton.com, raves is “an unforgettable album that is sure to strike a chord in anyone that gives it a fair shake. It’s raw, it’s honest, it’s fantastic.” Despite this praise and their success, Logsdon wants people to enjoy their Winter Classic experience, something that he promises will never change about the annual concert.

“Everyone is going to love it, dance to the music, have a great time,” Logsdon said. “ The M-Shop is always a great place to play. It’s a tradition you can be a part of.”