Kansas City will once again be roaring with live music this Spring thanks to Middle of the Map Fest.

The yearly event brings big bands together with local acts and puts them on stages across the Kansas City area. But there will be a couple of changes in store this year. The festival pushed the date back from the beginning of April to the beginning of May. The stages are also stretching into other venues beyond just Westport (such as The Midland, CrossoradsKC, and The Brick).

The bigger names on the lineup for all four days include Cold War Kids, Vince Staples, Aimee Mann, Charles Bradley, and more. We’re still seeing plenty of locals on the lineup, including several Lawrence acts such as Major Games and Dean Monkey and the Dropouts.

You can purchase tickets online at www.middleofthemapfest.com, and check out the list of bands and artists performing below

Cold War Kids, Manchester Orchestra, Aimee Mann, ZHU, Vince Staples, Charles Bradley, The Struts, The Good Life, Com Truise, STRFKR, San Fermin, Besnard Lakes, Son Little, Big Black Delta, Gallant, La Sera, Sales, Foxes in Fiction, Your Friend, BASSH, Krystle Warren, The Noise FM, Spirit is the Spirit, The Philistines, Westerners, Illphonics, Light Music, Max Justus, Kangaroo Knife Fight, The Free Years, Valley Hush, GGOOLLDD, Kississippi, LA Witch, Sharks In The Deep End, Al Scorch, The Rocketboys, Ford Theater Reunion, Altos, Santah, Me Like Bees, Ensemble Ibérica, SHEL, The Grisly Hand, The Conquerors, Shy Boys, Bonzo Madrid, Heartfelt Anarchy, Duncan Burnett & The RIOT, Yes You Are, Archie Powell & The Exports, Migrant Kids, Annie Ellicott, Baskery, The Sluts, The Phantastics, Rachel Mallin and The Wild Type, Various Blonde, Pink Royal, Ebony Tusks, BLK FLANL, Major Games, Real Adults, Second Hand King, Ivory Black, Berwanger, Red Kate, Heidi Lynn Gluck, The Roseline, The Widow’s Ride, Sisters of., LionMaker, Hipshot Killer, Not a Planet, The Author & The Illustrator, Dreamgirl, Ovaries-eez, Atlas, Jessica Paige, Nicholas St. James, Gracie Schram, Quirk & Ruckus, Cowgirl’s Train Set, Julian Davis, Spencer Mackenzie Brown, Toughies, Roosevelt Dime, Saharan Gazelle Boy, The Hollow Ends, Lauren Anderson, Tracy Huffman and The Walking Sticks, Sugar Britches, Levi Parham, Youth Pool, Amy Farrand & the Like, The Blackbird Revue, My Oh My, Be/Non, Monta at Odds, Jorge Arana Trio, Psychic Heat, Connor Leimer, The People’s Punk Band, Dean Monkey & the Dropouts, Thom Hoskins, Shadow Rabbits, Golden Groves, Theta Intellect, Brother, Tall Tales, Fake Drugs, John Velghe & the Prodigal Sons, Via Luna, Captiva, Fullbloods.

Additionally, as part of Middle of the Map Fest, I Heart Local Music will continue its showcase of local performers with a Saturday show at The Brick.

I Heart Local Music’s Middle of the Map Fest showcase on Saturday, May 7th, at The Brick is as follows:


2:00 p.m. – The People’s Punk Band

The People’s Punk Band is one of the wildest punk outfits in the area right now, and don’t be surprised if they thrash and lunge at you. Nobody has matched the tone or thrill of this perfect punk band, and it’ll be hard to take your eyes off of them.

3:00 p.m. – Dean Monkey and the Dropouts

Costumes, doo-wop, and a whole lot of attitude. These are just a few of the traits the have come to define the loveable scamps in Dean Monkey and the Dropouts. This band has spent much of the last year upping their game, and even released some new music. You can come for the coordinated costumes, but you’ll want to stay for the boogie.

4:00 p.m. – Toughies

Toughies are a band that won the scene over from the moment the doe-eyed performers stepped foot onstage. Their breezy and easy tunes, along with their high-pitched harmonies, will have you wishing summer lasted forever. You can’t label these charmers as gentle all the time, thanks to the powerful vocals behind their frontman. It’s an unexpected force that hits you in the middle of a song, and will always have you coming back for more.

5:00 p.m. – Major Games

We have no qualms about declaring Major Games’ self-titled 2015 release as album of the year. It is a gift to music fans from the rock gods, and now you can take part. These are songs saturated in emotion, layered with complicated vocals, intense guitars, and a an absolute beast behind the drum kit. This fuzz-fueled frenzy is one of the most sought after acts in Lawrence, and is not to be missed.

6:00 p.m. – Real Adults

Real Adults are a band that can freely wander between genres without any pretense. One moment, they’re crooning romantically over rich harmonious guitars. The next, they’re diving into experimental psych riffs. Real Adults are free of boundaries, and it only propels them further with an audience that likes to get down and get weird.



Fally Afani is an award-winning journalist with a career spanning more than 20 years in media. She has worked extensively in radio, television, newspapers, magazines, and more.

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