Terrace Views

Making Bluegrass Waves at Lakefront Live: The Material Boys

It’s officially Summer by the Lake at the Terrace, and Outdoor UW and the Wisconsin Union Directorate (WUD) Music are collaborating to turn the UW Credit Union Terrace Stage towards Lake Mendota for Lakefront Live on July 11. This unique setup promises to be a “holiday” you won’t forget, with music resonating over the water, creating an incredible summer evening.

Meet the Band: The Material Boys

You may have heard of “Material Girl” performed by Madonna, but let us introduce The Material Boys: guitarist and lead vocalist Alex Hohlstein, banjoist and vocalist Glen Prescott, five-string fiddler Reid Gromnicki, mandolinist Paul Gorzlancyk, bassist Matt Douglas and percussionist Shane Gurno. This American Roots band is entirely local and got its name from performing Madonna songs with acoustic bluegrass instruments.

Living in a Bluegrass World

The Material Boys has been artfully blending blues and jazz to produce a unique Americana sound for more than a decade. The band specializes in Madonna classics but also performs covers of Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, Blondie and Miley Cyrus. The local band also writes original music and has released two CDs. Take a listen to the latest album here.

Custom Instruments

In typical bluegrass fashion, Shane makes all of his own percussion set-ups from a combination of a washboard, snare drum, cymbal, bass drum and more. The configuration – called a “Groov’nBoard” – is custom to each venue and fits perfectly in a bass drum case. Plus, Alex is an expert carpenter by day and guitar maker by night. We can’t wait to see their creations at Lakefront Live!

Strike a Dance Pose

When asked how the band feels about performing towards the water, Matt expressed that The Material Boys have never done a gig like this before, saying, “They’re [WUD Music] optimistic that it will be a very big success, that it’s been a success in the past.” 

Join the Party on the Water

To participate in this unique experience yourself, reserve a paddle craft from Outdoor UW at a special price of just $16 for this event. Or, feel free to float on by, and enjoy the concert from your own watercraft! Whether you’re on a kayak, paddleboard, or even a small boat, this is a chance to enjoy live music in a unique way.

Author: Amanda Stezenski

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