After several years of trying, Fulton Street Fair Entertainment Co-chair Rick Nickelson finally has been able to get Kansas City jazz standout Ida McBeth to come to Fulton to perform.
McBeth, who Nickelson said "can really belt it out," will be the Saturday night headliner for the fair, performing at 8:30 p.m. on June 16 on The Callaway Bank stage at the intersection of Fifth and Market streets.
"If you go to Kansas City looking for jazz, she's the one to go see," Nickelson said of McBeth. "I call it traditional jazz with a gospel feel to some of them - she can really belt it out like Aretha Franklin."
At the same time McBeth is on, Michael's Country Classic band will be performing on the Ameren Stage at Sixth Street.
Entertainment Co-chair Kelly Nickelson said the local group will include some new band members this year.
Friday night's headliner - playing at 8:30 p.m. on The Callaway Bank Stage - will be Planet Boogie out of St. Louis.
"They play a log of rock songs with a big band feel and they have a Fulton alumni as a member," Kelly Nickelson said. "They're pretty big on the waterfront down in St. Louis."
Many of the remaining acts - Project Hysteria, Clay Cumbie, Deep Water, Barefoot on Sunday, Callaway Christian Church Praise Team and The Great Romance, Liberty Jazz Band and Cedar Skyline - also are local acts or have some sort of local connection.
"I think we have a few that are young bands just getting started," Kelly Nickelson said. "We try to give them a stage and a chance to get their name out there and let people hear them.Cedar Skyline and Project Hysteria are two of those groups."
She noted that Clay Cumbie - who plays at 6:30 p.m. Friday on The Callaway Bank Stage - is an example of an act that has been popular with street fair attendees in the past.
"He does a little bit of blues, country and rock. He's a singer songwriter who has played Nashville and plays (now) in Columbia," Kelly Nickelson said. "We had him out last year and he drew a great crowd, so we're happy to have him back."