EVANS: Sun thankfully goes down on popular Knoxville concert series

Jack H. Evans

One of Knoxville’s most popular concert series has decided to close for good – and perhaps it’s for the better. A couple of weeks ago, promoters AC Entertainment announced that Sundown in the City, Knoxville’s popular (and free) concert series, will not return this year. According to a report by wbir.com, AC Entertainment cited issues such as space limitations as major reasons for the cancellation. Last year, I attended one of the five Sundown concerts. As a massive music fan, I decided that I needed to attend one of Knoxville’s major artistic attractions that I’d never been able to really experience. Alternative pop group Better Than Ezra was performing, and although I’ve never been a big Better Than Ezra fan, I thought it would be an entertaining show at the least. I was wrong. Market Square was packed. Usually, that isn’t a big problem, as the people one finds on Market Square are often nice enough. But on this night, the drunkenness of the crowd was distracting and annoying, and one individual appeared to be rapidly pushing a baby stroller. As if that wasn’t bad enough, the sound of the concert was mediocre at best. The band wasn’t the problem; rather, the sound system was sketchy, and the plethora of inebriated dancers made it impossible to get close enough to the stage to hear clearly. That’s not to say Sundown in the City hasn’t been massively important for Knoxville’s culture. Though I’m too young to remember a downtown Knoxville without Sundown, from what I understand, life downtown has drastically improved over the past 12 years, thanks in large part to Sundown. While Sundown in the City has definitely served a purpose – it has increased downtown popularity, and it has exposed the people of Knoxville to good music – its time has come. There are more fun things to do downtown than stand in Market Square on a hot Thursday night surrounded by the drunken populous. It appears that AC Entertainment has realized this, and, though it may seem sad to some of Knoxville’s people, it’s probably for the best. Jack H. Evans is the entertainment editor for The Bark. Follow The Bark on Twitter @BeardenBARK and like The Bark (Bearden High School) on Facebook.