Joplin Looks to Grow Music Scene

The music scene is growing in Joplin

“we don’t normally have weekday shows,” Blackthorn Concert Promoter Melanie Womble said. “And I’ve started booking shows every day of the week.”

To the point where Blackthorn Pizza had outgrown their (now former) main stage

And built a completely new area for concerts

“We really needed more more room so we could bring some bigger bands in and have more people that are able to come in and enjoy the bands,” Womble said.

And by bigger bands, Womble means nationally touring acts Joplin isn’t accustomed to.

“There’s so much potential for here in Joplin,” Womble said. “Being a touring musician, Joplin is the hub.”

“You know, we’re small but yet we’re in between a bunch of big cities,” said Jon Buck, owner of JB’s Downtown. Buck’s says he’s based much of his business model around the music scene.

“We re-directed our focus to do live music here in the past year and a half,” Buck said.

Buck and Womble says with Joplin’s geography — and the night life community starting to accommodate live music — it’s only a matter of time before large, national touring acts make Joplin a regular stop.

“The appetite for live music in this area is pretty big,” Buck said. “People travel through i-49 and 44-corridorI. and if we can play our cards right Joplin can become a small Austin, Texas.”

“I mean, you can’t get from the West coast to the East coast without coming through Joplin,” Womble said. “So I’m hoping we can get some bigger bands on tour and have them stop in Joplin on their way to somewhere else.”