Summertime is upon us. You know what that means—Ketch’em Alive is back!
Since the turn of the century, Ketch’em Alive has been one of the most iconic events in the Wood River Valley, a place where locals and tourists can co-exist and enjoy a superb soundtrack. Their 2022 lineup offers something for every flavor of music fan.
Tuesdays, June 28-Aug. 16, at 6:30 p.m., come check out live music free of charge in Ketchum’s Forest Service Park. Sway in the sunshine, enjoy a cold beer or tasty snack and catch up with some old friends.
Washington Avenue between River and First streets will shut down. Vendors include Sun Valley Brewery, Sawtooth Brewery, Roadbars, Warfield, KBs, La Parilla, Smoky Bone, Tater Trailer, Wood River Sustainability Center and SV Snow Shave and Pizza.
Before retiring, Will Caldwell produced Ketch’em Alive for 20 years. Back in 1999, he pitched the idea to the now defunct Ketchum Chamber of Commerce. They wanted something to enliven the community since Sun Valley had stopped hosting concerts at Trail Creek.
“Word on the street was that besides ‘dinner and a movie,’ Ketchum was boring,” Caldwell said.
Rock, reggae, country, bluegrass and world bands came from across the country to perform.
“All of which were intended to deliver a strong dancing beat because when the people were on their feet dancing the good energy of it all was magnified,” Caldwell said.
A Tuesday night can now see as many as 1,000 people attending the event.
“Over time the Ketch’em Alive crowds grew to include the entire valley, and it became clear that the event was less about music than about people connecting with people, family picnics, parents dancing with their children,” Caldwell said.
He has worked hard to keep these concerts free.
“It’s a spur-of-the-moment call to music and joining with friends and family,” Caldwell said. “The Wood River Valley has now found a strong identity in its numerous offerings of music of all kinds, and music has become an important element of the economic base along with outdoor recreation.
Here is the full 2022 schedule of Ketch’em Alive:
June 28 — Columbia Jones
Once upon a time, Columbia Jones was an army of one. However, he emerged from the pandemic bigger and bolder than ever. Now, he shares the stage with a drummer, bassist and horn player as he shreds guitar. They draw inspiration from the Marcus King Band, Tedeski Trucks Band, Kingfish, Gary Clark Jr. and The Black Keys. Join Columbia Jones for a gritty, bluesy, gnarly night of good, ol’ fashioned rock ‘n’ roll.
July 5 — Crosby & Golay
Crosby & Golay are like a match made in heaven, like Simon & Garfunkel or Peanut Butter & Jelly. They have sweet beards and even sweeter Americana tunes. Both of these genre-melting musicians call Idaho home. Although they have each played in their fair share of bands, when they come together, it’s truly magical. Join Crosby & Golay for some loud jams and some great vibes.
July 12 — Andrew Sheppard:
Born and raised right here in the Wood River Valley, Andrew Sheppard returns to the Sawtooth Mountains whenever he needs some quiet inspiration. You may have seen him on national television, representing Idaho in NBC’s “American Song Contest.” Originally, he moved out to Los Angeles to become a skateboarder. In time, he rediscovered his love of music and found his way back home. Join Andrew Sheppard for some folk singalongs.
July 19 — Brad Creel & the Reel Deal
Playing over 300 shows in the Northwest, these seasoned musicians are the definition of professional. Bob Hawkins plays drums, Mike Moore plays guitar and Ben Grosscup plays bass. The Oregonian once wrote, “Brad Creel specializes in droll observations and barbed sentiments served up with deft honky-tonk touches: a tear in your beer with a side of wry toast.” Join Brad Creel & the Real Deal for a honky tonk hoedown of a night.
July 26 — Sarkis Mikael
Get your dancing shoes on and your fist pumps ready. Sarkis Mikael is an electronic music producer, multi-instrumentalist and DJ. He founded Deep House LA and co-founded NCTRNL Records. Join Sarkis Mikael for a groovy, cathartic dance party, featuring rhythms and melodies from all over the world.
August 2 — Boot Juice
For Boot Juice, the rules were meant to be broken. Their music oscillates from progressive bluegrass to folk-country. They take inspiration from Railroad Earth and Creedence Clearwater Revival. The seven-piece band features electric and acoustic guitars, three vocalists, bass, drums, trumpet and alto saxophone. Join Boot Juice for a rousing, foot-stompin’ good time.
August 9 — Ethan Tucker:
This guitar virtuoso’s reggae-inflected music is as refreshing and as comforting as a summer breeze. Tucker has traveled the country with Jimmy Cliff, Buddy Guy and The Wailers. He has opened for Slightly Stoopid, G-Love and Michael Franti. Join Tucker for a soulful roots experience.
August 16 — Laney Lou & the Bird Dogs
What happens when you combine four-part harmonies, engaging songwriting, rock-n-roll drive and a modern approach to traditional folk music? That’s right: the delicious musical stew that is Laney Lou & the Bird Dogs. This band comes all the way from Bozeman, Montana, to bless us with their music. The five-piece ensemble is a sum of all their eclectic parts. Join Laney Lou & the Bird Dogs for campfire storytelling. ￼