Regional acts spotlighted for Sonic Springs showcase at The Brightside



The second annual Sonic Springs showcase, a benefit for WYSO featuring regional acts, will be held Friday, April 28 at The Brightside.

The inaugural Sonic Springs held last July featured national acts like rapper Talib Kweli and rockers Cloud Nothings. This year’s focus on regional artists will include a headlining set from hard-touring Cincinnati-based post-rock duo Lung along with indie rockers Speaking Suns, R&B group Heather Redman & the Reputation and hip-hop DJ Fatty Lumpkin.

“We’re trying different combinations of programming to find the best version of a bill we can put together to be a successful fundraiser,” said concert promoter Eric Mahoney. “When you bring in nationals, it is very expensive and there is a ton of overhead, which doesn’t leave as much to donate to the station. We wanted to try going with some really great regional and local acts this year to see if that would make it a more successful event all around.”

All-Ohio bill

For WYSO music director Juliet Fromholt, the move to a regional focus doesn’t diminish the quality of music on display at Sonic Springs.

“This is a really cool way to celebrate folks that are here,” said Fromholt. “All of these artists, especially the three bands, are all at this moment where they’re starting to get some larger recognition. In my opinion there’s potential for any one of these bands, if not all of them, to get even more of a national following. So, this is a cool moment to celebrate our community and WYSO’s role in that community too because we’ve been with all of these acts for a while now.”

Watch the music video for “Rag Doll” from Lung’s 2022 album, “Let It Be Gone”:

Keeping it eclectic

The diversity of local talent on display is also reflective of live music in Dayton.

“This bill is very emblematic of one of my favorite things about Dayton shows,” Fromholt said. “It’s kind of commonplace here to have really diverse bills and audiences are responsive and excited about that. I know that’s not the case in a lot of other communities around the country. You can have bands that don’t all sound alike on stage together and people here are psyched about it. Dayton is the home funk. We are the home of industrial strength bluegrass. We are a hub for indie rock and alt-rock. We are a place for soul. We’re all of those things and WYSO tries to reflect all those things and this bill tries to get at that too.”

Mahoney, the director of the Brainiac documentary, “Transmissions After Zero,” agrees.

“I like the way all three of these bands kind of play together well,” he said. “They all sort of mirror the style of music WYSO plays and for audiences, it offers slightly different versions of rock music and soul music. It’s a really strong bill so hopefully people will come out and absorb it as well.”

Kids are permitted

Friday’s show is an all-ages event. Fromholt is hopeful the concert will have an appeal for younger audiences.

“I actually ran into somebody at a show at Yellow Cab Tavern and they told me how excited they were for their teenagers to get to see Lung,” she said. “They’re planning to bring their kid and some friends. If folks are looking for that first local music experience as a family or have a younger person in their life they want to introduce to local music or have a concert experience with, this is a really great opportunity. Some of those kids are our future musicians. We want to get them out to see what is possible so they’re inspired to start their own bands and make their own stuff so we can see them up on those stages here in a few years.”

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or


What: Sonic Springs Benefit for WYSO featuring Lung, Speaking Suns, Heather Redman & the Reputation and DJ Fatty Lumpkin

Where: The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton

When: Friday, April 28 at 8:30 p.m. Doors open at 8 p.m.

Cost: $20

More info: 937-410-0450 or

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