The Travelin' Man Band performed a free concert Wednesday at our Lake Branch. The good news: it was a great show and a lot of fun. The bad news: that performance closed out another concert season at Mentor Public Library.
Most people don't associate libraries with live music, though we've been hosting concerts at Mentor Public Library for a few years now.
We do it for a lot of reasons. Here are the five biggest.
1. We love music
Sometimes, it's really that simple. We love music—all kinds, from jazz to country to pop and back again—and this is one of the ways we share that love.
It's also one of the reasons we offer Freegal and Hoopla—digital services that let you download and stream music, respectively—and have stacks upon stacks of CDs for you to borrow.
2. Libraries aren't just places to borrow books. They're cultural centers
Don't get me wrong. We love books. Most people who work in a library are there, in part, because they love to read.
But libraries aren't just about books.
They're a place to engage with the culture, and culture doesn't end in the written word. It includes music, fashion, art -- pretty much any way a person expresses themselves.
3. It lets us promote local talent
Last year, we launched our Rock Roots Summer Concert Series.
We featured four local bands over the span of three free shows. All four bands—Altered Generation, Brendan Burt Band, Cheap Clone and Hedgehog's Dilemma—have roots in Mentor.
This not only gives these bands a chance to perform on their home turf, it also exposes them to a new audience who might not hear of them otherwise.
Mentor Public Library is all about lifelong learning. That's why we host computer classes and programs about the Mars Rover, Edgar Allan Poe and make rockets from Alka-Seltzer tablets and water. (And that was just this summer.)
That's also why we bring in an eclectic range of performers. We've hosted jazz, country, alternative, indie pop, oldies and Beatles tribute bands.
We hope you've enjoyed our myriad shows, and we hope you enjoy our concerts next summer too.
5. The concerts are a lot of fun
It really is that simple sometimes.