City to welcome two-time Grammy award-winner this June – Voice Of Muscatine

(Submitted/City of Muscatine)

Two-time Grammy award winner Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience will bring their unique blend of New Orleans funk-reggae-world-blues-American roots music to Muscatine with two events on Friday, June 7, 2024. Leading his Zydeco Experience band, Simien has become one of the most respected and accomplished artists in American roots music. His extraordinary vocal talent and on-stage charisma beckon audience members to their feet and into the groove.

Simien will first interact with children and their families during a free program at the Musser Public Library and HNI Community Center at 1:30 p.m. on June 7. The “Creole for Kidz” session is a fun and engaging way to learn about Creole and zydeco while meeting Simien and his bandmembers.

This multicultural performing arts program has reached over 500,000 students, parents, and educators at 100s of schools, art centers, and festivals around the globe! Simien’s website,, is full of educational resources to support the “Creole for Kidz” program, and parents and educators are encouraged to download the study guide. There is no registration for this free program.

The afternoon “Creole for Kidz” program will be followed by the free public concert at 7 p.m. in the Old Barn in Discovery Park. Concertgoers will want to bring lawn chairs, blankets, and snacks to make the most of the experience. Free shuttle transportation will be provided by MuscaBus from the Muscatine Power & Water (MPW) parking lot starting at 6:15 p.m. MPW is located on the opposite side of Cedar Street across from Discovery Park.

Several organizations are collaborating to bring Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience to Muscatine. The Muscatine County Arts Council, Friends of the Muscatine Art Center, Muscatine Symphony Orchestra, and Friends of the Old Barn have been working on this series of events for months.

“When the opportunity to host Simien was presented, we felt this unique event would be something truly special to bring to Muscatine,” Ed Chamberlin, President of the Muscatine County Arts Council;, said. “Their music just makes you want to move. The infectious rhythms, the sounds of the accordion, and the blend of washboard, electric guitar, bass, keyboard, and drums make it hard not to have a great time.”

For Friends of the Old Barn, the evening concert was the perfect opportunity to invite the public to get up close to the former Muscatine County Farm Dairy Barn which was built in 1926 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2019. The barn, including the upper-level hayloft, will be open for tours. In addition, the Food Truck Emporium will be ready to serve food for purchase through its food truck.

Director of the Muscatine Art Center, Melanie Alexander, expects the concert to conclude by 8:30 p.m. and states that “performers of Simien’s caliber only pass-through Muscatine every so often, and we hope the area residents will take full advantage of this exceptional performance.” She continues, “anyone with kids will also want to participate in the afternoon session. That these experiences are free and accessible to all make Muscatine such an amazing place.”

Children, and perhaps their parents, may recognize Simien’s music from the Disney movie, The Princess and the Frog. Simien is the guest artist on the song, Gonna Take You There, which is part of the 2009 movie’s soundtrack. Families are invited to a free movie screening of The Princess and the Frog at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 30, at Musser Public Library. Reservations are not needed, and light snacks will be provided.

While the four non-profit organizations have worked together to plan the activities on June 7, financial support was provided by the MidAmerican Energy Foundation and through grant funding from the Greater Muscatine Chamber and Industry, the ArtsDollars program through Quad City Arts, and a private foundation.

In case of inclement weather, the Friday evening performance will be moved to an indoor location. Plans to move indoors, as well as location details, will be announced on June 5 on the Muscatine Art Center’s website (, and on the social media accounts of the Muscatine County Arts Council and the Muscatine Art Center.

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