Schedule IV Draws Crowd for Ferndale Library’s First Stop Friday Concert
(Sam Gurwin, March 3, 2019)
Ferndale, MI- “First Stop Friday” is a monthly concert series that brings the world of music to local residents at a place one might not expect – the Ferndale Library. The tradition carried on March 1 with a performance by Schedule IV.
The creative leader of First Stop Friday is Circulation Manager Kelly Bennett, who sported a “Libraries Rock” shirt for the event. She definitely has a pulse on what’s happening in the Metro-Detroit Area. Since 2010 “First Stop Friday” has had acts from hip-hop to darkwave, “not the typical fare,” she said.
The crowd was one of the biggest ever according to Bennett. “We’re trying to draw in people who may have forgotten about libraries and probably think they have nothing to offer them,” she said. The Ferndale Area District Library offers many programs and services beyond the simple lending of books, including workshops to learn various skills, art exhibition, a computer lab, games, films, clubs, and of course music.
The First Stop Friday Program has grown from bands volunteering and using it as a venue to test out new songs, to a well-organized music machine. With support from the Friends of Ferndale Library the musicians get paid for their work, and the shows have a regular following.
Friday night’s band, Schedule IV, is a creature of the Goth Scene in Detroit with a penchant leaning toward rock & the siren songs similar to Depeche Mode & The Cure. Dark and sad but with the post-punk rally-call of self-worth and pulling oneself up by your own bootstraps, the Music touches all sides of your feelings while listening. This 5-piece goth rock band is also known as a reliable and talented Detroit-area opener for bands like Swedish-based “Covenant,” Canadian darkwave darlings “ACTORS,” and the New York’s Post-Punk group, “Bootblacks.”
Mike Phipps has been with the band since 2017, contributing on the guitar, keyboards, and with vocals. Also in Schedule IV are Steph Strange, Don Gransden, Joshua McAllister, Jervon Molloy
Phipps said Schedule IV has been playing the likes of Small’s, City Club and The Maidstone. When asked how Schedule IV got it’s start, he replied “We felt we were ready to kinda take on something a little different so we decided- yeah let’s do it.”
Schedule IV creates most of their music through what Phipps calls “Jam Sessions,” hanging out on Saturdays in Strange’s basement studio, they create by inspiration, and just go with it.
They then take “the best of the best” to develop into song.
McAllister, who plays bass, said the library concert “seemed like a cool thing to do.” He’s hoping Schedule IV will continue to grow their following in the Detroit area and beyond, with a dream of doing a show in Chicago someday.
The community room of the library was full of listeners of all ages. The lights were turned dim but for the ever-changing colors of the stage lighting that made the show even more fantastic. Outside the big glass window passing cars added light and a buzz of their own, making the space feel less like a library and more like some exclusive New York City club.
The next First Stop Friday concert takes place April 5 and features Chris DuPont. Learn more about the Ferndale Area District Library at www.ferndalepubliclibrary.org.