Soul On The Square: Stuart’s Presents Wesley Bright & The Hi-Lites

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Wesley Bright & The Hi-Lites at the 2014 Nelsonville Music Festival (photo: Jasmine Beaubien/WOUB)

Stuart’s Opera House continues its Free Summer Concert Series on Friday, Aug. 29 with Akron soulsters Wesley Bright & The Hi-Lites.

Fresh off an amazing performance at this year's Nelsonville Music Festival, the band will perform at 7 p.m. in Stuart's parking lot as part of Nelsonville's Final Fridays event.

Wesley Bright & The Hi-Lites began as a joint collaboration between members Bob Basone and Nick Fritsch. The two came to know each other after touring together in other projects, sharing a passion for the soul sounds of the 1960s and early 1970s. Wesley Bright was working in sales when Fritsch discovered his raw talent and passion for soul music, and the two became close friends and musical partners.

After years of playing in various projects, Basone, Fritsch and Bright decided to put together a group of talented musicians that could produce the raw-yet-warm soul sounds of yesteryear, while having something new to add to the genre.

Wesley Bright & The Hi-Lites formed in Akron, Ohio, with the interest of being a part of the soul music revival happening in places like Brooklyn, N.Y. The band identifies with the Northern Soul genre, drawing from the 1960s era of soul from Motown, Tamla and various smaller record companies.

The band has released two singles, with their latest, "Tell Me," available on iTunes. The Hi-Lites are currently working on their first full-length album.

On the last Friday of each month from June to September, Stuart's Opera House hosts free concerts music in their parking lot, complete with a beer garden. This event is held in conjuction with Nelsonville’s Final Fridays, featuring art openings and more starting at 5:30 p.m.

This Friday, the Stuart’s Opera House 1879 Gallery will host the Piecelovers Quilt Guild of Athens County's annual quilt show.

In the event of bad weather, the concert will be moved inside the Opera House. For more information, call 740-753-1924 or visit www.stuartsoperahouse.org.

photo: Jasmine Beaubien/WOUB