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Homegrown holiday show heats up Hobgoblin

Folk singer Charlie Parr headlines the annual “Snow, Lights and Sounds” concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday Dec. 28 at Hobgoblin Music Loft in Red Wing.

He just wanted to bring people together through music. What he got was an annual music showcase, now in its seventh year of creation.

When Red Wing High School graduates Sam Brown and Joe Drotos put together a show with mostly their extensive group of musician friends and music lovers alike, they didn’t quite think it would turn into an annual homegrown tradition.

The year was 2005 and both were out of high school and used the holiday break to reunite with hometown friends.

“We did it to keep in touch with all our friends that were writing music after high school,” Brown said of the show’s creation.

The showcase was dubbed Snow, Lights and Sounds and has been held annually in the homey, cozy and acoustically calming loft at Hobgoblin Music.

Brown grew up in Red Wing and was one of the creators of the now-annual Loud and Local event.

“I was just one of those people that wanted to play music,” added Brown.

Now a resident of Winona, he continues to organize music festivals including the Midwest Music Fest – which has been gaining a momentous amount of attention since its 2010 origin.

“It’s about building community through music,” he explained. “I’ve been trying to do it all along.”

This year’s Snow, Lights and Sound begins at 7:30 p.m. Saturday Dec. 28. Performances include multi-talented artist Elliott Blaufuss; musician Dustin Dorsey; Brown as Bo.Monro and, closing the evening’s show, Minnesota folk legend Charlie Parr.

Parr was raised in the farming community of Austin, Minn. — with soybean fields right out his back door.

“As a kid I thought it was kind of boring, but now I go and visit my mom and think it’s the most beautiful landscape there is,” he said. 

Parr has 11 official albums and many vinyl releases. To learn more about Parr or to hear his music, check his website 

Read on to learn about his roots in music and his noteworthy beard.


Stacy Bengs-Silverberg

Stacy Bengs has been a photojournalist at the Red Wing Republican Eagle since 2010. She holds a bachelors degree in journalism and art from the University of Minnesota.

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