Mercer University alumnus Chris Albrecht is working to bring live music back to Georgia with a socially distant concert series.
The Georgia Grown Summer Concert Series, presented by Double A Productions, kicks off June 19 at the Jesup Drive-In Theatre with performances by rapper and country musician Colt Ford and special guests.
As the state reopens following a shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the concert series will “allow Georgians to get out and see a live show and help Georgians get back to work,” said Albrecht, a partner with Double A Productions.
The idea for the concert series really took hold when drive-in movie theaters started to reopen, spacing out the cars, so people could watch a movie.
“What’s the difference between that and setting up a stage for a concert?” Albrecht recalled thinking.
Within a few weeks, the initial artists and venues were secured. Because of the limited number of drive-in theaters in the state, future concerts are expected to be held in large venues’ parking lots as well, Albrecht said.
All the artists in the series have Georgia connections. Ford is from Athens. Future shows will feature country musicians Craig Campbell of Lyons, Lance Stinson of Lumber City and Justin Dukes of Vidalia.
“I am truly looking forward to being back together with my fans. The band and I have missed them all so much,” Ford said in a news release. “We are all excited to play. It’s gonna be different, and it’s gonna be good for me and the boys in my band and for our fans’ souls.”
Other artists are expected to include the winner and some runners-up from the 478 Sings United contest. 478 Sings United is a partnership between the United Way of Central Georgia and Mercer, along with Visit Macon and 100.9 The Creek, to recognize local talent and raise money for COVID-19 relief in the region.
“We’re going to incorporate them into the Georgia Grown series and let them be some of the openers on the series,” said Albrecht, who also helped start Mercer Athletics’ Ford Concert Series, live musical performances held before home football games.
Albrecht is a member of the Georgia Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Commission, which supports the effort. The concert series also is supported by Georgia Grown, a division of the Georgia Department of Agriculture.
Tickets, which cost $125 and cover admission for up to eight people, can be purchased online only at gagrownconcertseries.com to minimize contact.