LANSING, Mich. — The Brenke Fish Ladder in Lansing's Old Town will be the hot spot for all you music lovers this Thursday through Saturday. That's because The Dam Jam Music Festival is back and bigger than ever.
"This year, we are really excited to have the biggest and largest stage we've ever had, where we activate this really unique venue for three nights of incredible life music," said Executive Director Chris Sell.
Dam Jam is hosted every summer and is a way for Lansing 5:01 to showcase Michigan-based artists and Lansing's riverfront.
"We think performing art and music and showing off the creative sector in our community is really, really important," Sell said. "Not every region has 20-plus miles of river trail paid throughout the community connecting so many different parts of our region. And we have this really, really unique venue right here."
This year's festival will be a little different. They are building a bigger stage and bringing in nationally renowned artists from the music city, Nashville.
"It's the first time we've ever done that. And so to bring in three, three different artists, Reyna Roberts, Avery Anna and Shy Carter," Sell said. "All from Nashville to perform Thursday night, really, really excited about that."
Shy Carter is a country music artist and songwriter. He has written songs for Kane Brown, Billy Currington and Keith Urban.
"I'm super excited. Super excited to get back Michigan, while it's summertime and it's warm," Carter said.
He says those attending Dam Jam can expect a lot of fun from his performance this Thursday.
"A whole lot of fun baby. A whole lot of groove. I'm talking about groovy. Something you haven't experienced before at some of these country fest," Carter said. "One of my favorite things to do is just, you know, engage with the people because, you know, I like to freestyle and stuff too and get to talking with the audience and just seeing seeing what's going on with them and just really connecting with them."
Dam Jam will also feature artists from West Michigan all the way to Detroit on Friday and Saturday including Detroit-based rapper and TikTok sensation JayPitts.
FOX 47 News senior reporter Tianna Jenkins was able to sit down with him at Storehouse Studioz in Detroit to find out more about him as an artist.
"JayPitts is a warm, soulful, lyrical artists," he said. "I come from the cloth of Motown. But I have deep inspirations for like disruptors like Andre 3000, Lauryn Hill, Lupe Fiasco, Kanye West, real creative and lyrical individuals that tell the story, but also got something to say like to society."
He says music has always been a part of his life. His dad was a DJ on the east side of Detroit and moved to the state from Belize.
"Just growing up there was just a lot of musical influences from jazz to anything Motown," JayPitts said.
He's excited to be a part of Dam Jam and to showcase his talent in the state's capital.
"I'm gonna give people an experience, a cinematic experience, but I'm very expressive. I'm very energetic. And they also going to hear some songs that are out yet. Like, I like to test the crowd and see what we bout to have going and see if you know what we could be messing with in the future," JayPitts said.
A special guest during his performance will be rapper and influencer Tray Little.
"I make videos about what goes on in Detroit, the past of Detroit, the present and the future. So I document the change of the city, and what has happened in real time, and also make music and my music is a soundtrack of what I feel like goes on in inner cities and what needs to be shared," Little said.
Tray Little says music has always been a part of his life as well. At the age of 13, he had his first professional song. He's also excited to be showcasing his music and performing alongside his friend.
"It's gonna be a lot of energy with me and Jay, we got a good relationship," Little said. "So you're gonna see that during the performance, so it's gonna be a lot of good music, slash like that rockstar energy and then trap 808 drums. It's about to be crazy."
Dam Jam is normally a free three-day festival, but this year, you'll have to pay $10 for Thursday night's performances. Friday and Saturday will be free as usual, but you will want to register in advance so you don't have to wait in line too long.
"We think it's gonna be a huge draw for not just folks in the area, but from across the state," Sell said.
For more information on Dam Jam, click here.
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