Cities 97 is excited to announce the Basilica Block Party After Party on Saturday, July 9th at Fine Line Music Cafe starring Matt Hires! Keep the party going with Cities 97’s Paul Fletcher from 11PM-1AM with drink specials, including $4 domestic beers. Plus, get in free with your Basilica Block Party ticket stub! 18+ with valid photo ID.

Matt Hires

Matt Hires is an American singer-songwriter from Tampa, Florida. Drawing inspiration from influences as disparate as The Band, Sufjan Stevens, Wilco and Ryan Adams, Matt became the first artist to sign with F-Stop Music, an imprint of Atlantic Records.

As a cabinet store worker by day and a musician by night, Hires always had a heroic passion for music.Matt’s father, also a musician, introduced him to music at a young age, giving him the handmade guitar that Matt continues to play. Initially drawn to the punk, Post-hardcore, and Emo scenes, Matt later developed an interest in artists like Tom Petty and Bob Dylan, which explains the uniqueness of his vocal and instrumental harmonies that dabble in both traditional and contemporary musical realms.n

Hires began his music career as frontman for Tampa, FL based band Brer. The band’s debut record, Microwavable, was produced by Will Denton, longtime drummer for Steven Curtis Chapman. Atlantic Records A&R executive, Gregg Nadel, fell in love with his sound. Soon Hires began working with producer Eric Rosse (Sara Bareilles, Tori Amos, David Archuleta), and together they recorded his first full-length record.

The Soft Light

The beginnings of The Soft Light date back to 2004 – the first time Matt Gustafson and Eric Bjornstad joined musical forces. A weekend session resulted in the first songs written and recorded together.  But, it wasn’t until 2011 that Matt made the move to quit his job and head to Minneapolis. The Soft Light was officially born and they went to work writing and recording.

Drawing influence from emo veterans like Sunny Day Real Estate and Jimmy Eat World, The Soft Light aim to navigate the narrow musical space between creativity and accessibility.  The songs combine thoughtful, self-reflective lyrics with beautiful melodies and raw, crushing emotion.

Highlights for the band so far have been opening spots for Hrvrd and Matt Pryor of The Get Up Kids at 7th Street Entry, 10 Years and Otherwise at POV’s, and featured spots at The Fine Line Music Cafe.  The band has recently undergone some changes with the addition of Gopi Paudyal on guitar and Scott Hersk on bass.  They are reenergized and currently booking shows for 2016.

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