January 22nd, 2021

Sidewalk Concerts keeping a positive vibe during social isolation

By Jensen, Randy on April 6, 2020.

Herald photo by Ian Martens Percussionists Matt and Jodi Groenheide give a sidewalk concert recently as the pair have been offering street performances to bring a little musical encouragement in the midst of social isolation. @IMartensHerald

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald


A local couple is taking their talents to the streets of Lethbridge to brighten the day of individuals and families throughout the city with their own Jamani Duo Sidewalk Concerts.

Jodi Groenheide and her husband Matt have gone out of their way to get out of isolation, while respecting social distancing, to reconnect with community members and play some music on local front lawns during this difficult time.

The Groeneides are skilled musicians and have been members of the famous University of Lethbridge Global Drums ensemble for many years. Jodi holds a master’s degree in percussion performance, and Matt has a master’s in music degree. They play an impressive collection of instruments from around the world including Caribbean steel pan, flute, vibraphone, hand drums and much more.

“I feel pretty fortunate to live in a time when technology can connect us the way it does, but at the same time it is pretty special to be face-to-face with people and especially as musicians, we enjoy playing in person,” says musician Jodi Groenheide.

“We put a video on Facebook advertising that we were going to be doing this on March 21, and we played our first concert on the 23rd. We have done around 16 shows. The weather hasn’t been co-operating with us too much this week so we have about another 24 shows to go so far.”

For a suggested donation of $35, the Groenheides will set up on the front sidewalk and play a personal 15-minute concert. From originally planning the new venture, Jodi says the response has been really positive, but different than what they originally expected.

“It has been wonderful, my favourite thing about the response has been how many people are booking the concert not for themselves, but for somebody else such as for someone’s birthday or to their parents who are in isolation,” says Groenheide.

“It was a bit of an afterthought when we were putting together the little marketing clip for this. We thought that people could send us somewhere else so we tacked that on, but that is what has really taken off.”

During this time of isolation, the Groenheides are enjoying their time with the community while bringing joy to families’ and individuals’ homes throughout the city.

“The reason we are doing this is we feel that it is very important to be able to connect with people and encourage people while still being careful to respect all of the recommendations going around this pandemic,” says Groenheide.

Jodi and Matt Groenheide are planning on doing their Jamani Duo Sidewalk Concerts in Lethbridge throughout the duration of quarantine. If you are interested in bringing music to yours or someone else’s sidewalk, visit jamanimusic.com for more information.

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