Revivalists return to Hamilton to headline music festival

HAMILTON — Hamilton, Ohio native David Shaw will be in concert at the RiversEdge Amphitheater Saturday, June 20.

He and his band, The Revivalists, will return to host and headline a newly created one-day music festival, “David Shaw’s Big River Get Down Presented by Miller Lite.” The event begins at 2 p.m. and features six bands, along with a special acoustic set by Shaw that will kick-off the day-long festival.

“Any time you can bring music to a city, and bring people together, it’s a good thing. It makes a community come alive, and I think Hamilton can benefit from that,” said David Shaw, the group’s frontman.

In partnering with the city, Shaw said he hopes this will become an annual event.

“There’s a certain pride that comes with doing an event that’s unique to your city. I wanted to start the ‘Big River Get Down,’ so that everyone in the city could have pride in this and say, ‘We do this once a year.’ It’s everyone coming together for a common cause. It’s really a win-win for everybody involved,” Shaw said.

Shaw, a 2001 Hamilton High School graduate, said it’s always amazing to come back home. It’s an opportunity to reconnect with family and friends.

“It’s everything you think it would be and more. The people are so welcoming, and inviting. They’ve always welcomed our band back with open arms. It’s like we’re Hamilton’s band. It’s really wild to have a city embrace you like that. It doesn’t happen every day. The last time we played at RiversEdge, over 3,000 people were there, and every single one of them had their fists in the air, singing the songs. It’s a beautiful thing when you have that much support,” Shaw said.

During The Revivalists set, the band will play some new songs from the band’s forthcoming album “Men Amongst Mountains,” which will release on July 17 from Wind-up Records. They will mix it up by playing some older songs, popular favorites, and a cover song, or two. Shaw’s acoustic set will be in a similar format, he said, with old to the new, to the unheard and some covers.

“We’ve been working on the new album for the past two years. The first single is called ‘Keep Going.’ It’s a hopeful song. It’s a song for people, who are going against the odds. It’s also a song about becoming aware of who you are, and being okay with that,” Shaw said.

The Revivalists are known for their energetic, lively stage shows, which Shaw said, has evolved organically.

“Playing live, we were constantly making check marks. We like trying to conjure up the emotion of each song. That’s something that’s not always easy all of the time, you have to put your heart into it,” he said.

Adam Helms, director of resident services for Hamilton, said half of the proceeds from the festival will be donated toward the 4th of July fireworks and the other half will be donated to the RiversEdge concert series fund.

“The Revivalists have played in Hamilton for three years in a row. This is going to be the fourth year in a row that they are going to be here, and it has always been our most popular concert by far,” Helms said. “The Revivalists keep getting more and more popular, and we want to keep bringing them back. David’s from Hamilton. After last year’s show, David asked me, ‘What do you think about doing a festival?”

It was really Shaw’s idea to do the festival, Helms said. He wanted to make sure he gave something back to the community. If the event sells out at around 3,000, it could potentially generate up to $30,000, according to Helms.

“Part of the city’s strategic plan is to bring people to the city of Hamilton for these types of special events. Especially, people that might not visit Hamilton otherwise. The Revivalists have a pretty big national following, especially here in the region, so we thought it would be good to bring them in, because they have such a big following,” Helms said.

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