The Free Press, Mankato, MN


March 28, 2014

Briefs: Guentzel, Scruggs unite again; The Big Wu return to Mankato

Guentzel, Scruggs unite again

MANKATO — Two impressive Mankato performers are joining forces once again for a concert 7-10 p.m. today at the Wow! Zone.

Mary Guentzel is a talented jazz singer who leads her own combo, the Mary Guentzel Quintet, which performs throughout the region. Amy Scruggs is a seasoned community theatre actress who has been praised for her singing performances.

The pair occasionally perform together and their concerts feature jazz classics and old-time standards. For today's performance, they will be joined by percussionist Marv Topp and pianist Doc Merlot.

The Wow! Zone is following up with dueling piano duo Cindy Rupp and Garrett Steinberg from 7:30-10:30 p.m. on Saturday.

As for the Mary Guentzel Quintet, it is following up Friday's performance with a concert 6-8:30 p.m. at Indian Island Winery. This weekend represents Indian Island's season opener and live music will continue each Friday and Saturday evening through the spring, summer and fall.

The Big Wu return to Mankato

MANKATO — Minnesota jam band favorites The Big Wu are returning to Mankato for a performance today at Midtown Tavern.

Music begins at 8 p.m. and the lineup also includes Twin Cities jam bands Space Monster and Headband Jam in addition to Mankato four-piece Boardwalk Arcade. Tickets are $15; ages 21-plus only.

The Big Wu have a series of concert dates scheduled across the Midwest in the coming weeks. They culminate in a May 23 appearance at the Revival music festival at Harmony Park, a regular site of The Big Wu's legendary Family Reunion events.

Since its start in 1992 at St. Olaf College, The Big Wu made a national name for themselves with catchy songwriting, a talent for extended jamming and relentless touring. The band's Facebook page claims that in two decades of music-making, The Big Wu have played "1600 shows, driven over a half-million miles, performed in 49 states and two foreign countries."

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