There will be some changes going forward in the wake of a controversial performer who kicked off the Lawn Chair Series concert Saturday evening, Aug. 21.
While the Farragut High School Marching Admirals band unofficially kicked off the first Lawn Chair Concert in nearly two years, the first promoted singer was Adeem the Artist, who has been part of the line up during every previous Lawn Chair Concerts.
The singer, who was promoting his new album, “Cast Iron Pansexual,” had acknowledged prior to the concert it would be his first time performing in “a romper, with my legs shaved and a full face of makeup.”
Several Lawn Chair audience members left during Adeem’s part of the concert, they stated on social media, while others who remained complained to organizers about what they described as his adult-centric content, and his set was cut short.
Justin Holcombe attended the event with his wife and children, and while he said he did not complain during the concert, he did express his concerns afterward on social media and agreed to share his comment with farragutpress.
“My complaint was not about (Adeem’s) orientation/background,” Holcombe said. “To me, it was a matter of playing appropriate content at a festival intended for an all-age audience consisting mainly of families with kids.
“I hope that the festival (and other events) improve as a result of the attention,” he added.
Mayor Ron Williams said he received phone call complaints the night of the concert, and in the days following, e-mails were sent to Williams, Vice Mayor Louise Povlin and Aldermen Ron Pinchok, Scott Meyer and Drew Burnette expressing further concern.
Adam Atherton was one who e-mailed BOMA, posted about the event on social media and spoke at the Aug. 26 Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting, although he acknowledged he had not attended the concert.
“I find it disturbing (Adeem) felt it necessary to share his new music, which was sexually explicit at a family-friendly event,” said Atherton, who took both the producers and the Town to task.
MamaJam Production, comprised of Farragut resident Shandy Dixon and Amy Boling, formerly of Farragut, have produced the show since 2015.
Dixon met with Farragut Parks & Recreation director Sue Stuhl Friday, Aug. 27, and Stuhl said going forward there will be a contract in place that “will be used for any event that is co-sponsored by Farragut if the Town has financially invested in the event or the event is on Town property.
“The contract will be between the Town and the organization that is sponsoring the event (i.e. MamaJam Productions, Farragut Business Alliance, etc.),” she said. “We are aiming to have the contract in place by mid-September.”
Stuhl also said while the Town has “many different contracts — for rentals, instructors, park use, athletic fields, etc. … this (would be) the first contract for an event co-sponsorship.”
While MamaJam is the event producer, Lawn Chair Concert Series presenting sponsor is MLILY, with additional support offered by Town of Farragut, First Baptist Concord, Knoxville TVA Employee’s Credit Union, Keller Williams Signature Real Estate, Southern Home Group, Master Services, SOS Audio Events, Beaty Chevrolet, ETP, TDS and Children’s Dentistry of Knoxville.
When approached Monday, Aug. 23 via e-mail, Shandy Dixon wrote the following: “Thank you for reaching out. This series is about bringing people together through music. Our goal is for Lawn Chair Concert Series to always be a welcoming and inclusive environment. Sometimes we get it right and sometimes we do not. If we keep on trying, communicating and having compassion for one another, we just might make the world a better place.”