Downtown music venue offers intimate experience for music and tea lovers

By Georgia Thelen
Review Writer
Upon walking into the newly opened music venue 20 Front Street on Dec. 16, one would see and hear Libby DeCamp filming a music video for her newest song.
DeCamp, a singer and songwriter out of Romeo plays her earthy folk music in the Metro-Detroit area, sharing her sultry voice and thick vibrato with listeners. Decamp recently released her newest song, “Last Stand”, inspired by General Custard and the recent happenings with the pipeline in the West.
“I was soothed by the grooves of epic etchings, I was a boy in blue,” sang Decamp in “Last Stand”.
Opening the show was Kimball, a three-piece alternative group comprised of Royal Oak and Ferndale natives Austin McCauley, Emily Barr and Brodie Glaza. Kimball was formed when the members played together at Kensington Church and decided to try out for Arts, Beats and Eats this past summer. After participating in that event, they have kept their group together and frequently jam and practice songs until late hours of the night.
The inspiration for 20 Front Street came to founder Allan Goetz in October 2015 at a retreat where he continuously had visions of the building as an acoustic music venue.
“This is such a treat for us to give these artists a place to play,” said Goetz. “It’s been so cool seeing all these artists using their different talents.”
After creating a plan for the space, finding partners and getting marketing together, 20 Front Street was well on its way to opening. The concept of 20 Front Street started as a café with specialty teas and a separate intimate music venue, but upon seeing the vast backyard that opens up to Children’s Park, they decided to create a walk-up creamery which they hope to open in April or May of 2017. After some research, it was discovered that the Middleton family in fact first opened the building as a creamery in 1940.
“We’ve had a phenomenal amount of support from the community. Everybody in Lake Orion seems to be rallying around the project and we’re excited that everybody is so engaged with us,” said Goetz.
The intimate listening space, vintage materials such as aged copper and 1893 church pews and shorter set times make for a very personal experience for both artist and audience. Since opening, 20 Front Street has already had dozens of talented acts come through its doors including Tony McManus, Jill Jack and Syd Burnham.
For the month of December, 20 Front Street is offering area student tickets for $5. “Like” 20 Front Street on Facebook and find show tickets and details at 20FrontStreet.com.

Libby Decamp performs for the first time at 20 Front Street in downtown Lake Orion.
Libby Decamp performs for the first time at 20 Front Street in downtown Lake Orion.
McCauly and Barr of Kimball perform their song, “Guns”. Photos by Jim Newell
McCauly and Barr of Kimball perform their song, “Guns”. Photos by Jim Newell

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