Perhaps Iowa's most popular pop touring band, The Nadas, will bring their unique sound to Odebolt Creek Days June 20-22, for an outdoor concert to begin at 9 p.m. Saturday near the Community Center.
With nearly 15 years of soulful sound behind them, the Nadas have marked new territory with a new album, "The Ghosts Inside These Halls."
The roots rockers' sixth studio release is their first produced by the band, their first recorded in their central Iowa home area, and their first as a fivesome. But perhaps most notably, it's their first time truly baring their souls.
"We have always been very honest in our music, but with this record we have allowed ourselves to be totally exposed," explains singer/guitarist Jason Walsmith, who co-founded the Nadas with fellow singer/guitarist Mike Butterworth as Iowa State University students in the early 1990s. "It's raw and open. We're also very comfortable with who we are as a band and as musicians and I think that comes through in the record. We aren't pretending to be anyone or act like a band we aren't."
This rawness is reflected in the album's title, which comes from the first line of the first song.
"I thought it symbolized where we are in our careers," Walsmith says. "We have reached a certain amount of success, but there are always those thoughts in the back of your head, 'What if I had just done this instead.' Those are the ghosts to me."
Like so many American bands, the Nadas started as a way for its members to pass the time between classes. Unlike so many American bands, the Nadas outlasted their educations and rode a growing fan base to a genuine, honest-to-goodness career.
While Butterworth is known for his rock 'n' roll intuitions (on perfect display in his live cover of the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage") and Walsmith for his alt-country roots, they work flawlessly as a songwriting unit, skillfully evoking the romance, introspection and uncertainty of living life on one's own terms in the 21st Century.
Altogether, the Nadas have sold more than 75,000 albums through their own Authentic Records, including 2003's Transceiver and 2005's Listen Through the Static. The Nadas have also been called the "Best College Band You've Never Heard Of" by Playboy, had one of their songs (Walk Away) become the official elimination song on Speed Channel's "Pinks" show, and were one of the final four bands for Bon Jovi's Have a Nice Day band competition - all the while steadily touring the country in Meatloaf's old tour bus, named Meatloaf (of course).
Creek Days will feature plenty of fun through the entire weekend.
Saturday the 21st offers a 1 p.m. parade, car/motorcycle/truck shows, sidewalk chalk art contest, National Guard rock climbing wall, sand volleyball tourney, coaster car races, carnival games a Rock, Paper, Scissors contest, and fireworks.
Sunday brings the Master's Voice Gospel Quartert concert at 10 a.m., garden tractor pull at 12:30, Bill Riley Talent Search at 1 p.m. and a demolition derby at 5 p.m.