The local band Naptown Hepcats will be performing at this year’s Spark!Fishers festival ignited by First Internet Bank on Saturday, June 26! You can find them on the Main Stage at the Nickel Plate District Amphitheater sponsored by Ed Martin Toyota and Nissan at 3 p.m.
I sat down with frontman and Fishers resident Spencer Mitchell, joined by drummer David Lafollette and bassist Mike Strauss, to talk about what we can expect to see (and hear) this Saturday. Naptown Hepcats is a Stray Cats/Brian Setzer tribute band that can be described as modern rock. Aside from the Stray Cats being a big influence on the band, you can hear a lot of early rockabilly sounds in their music, such as Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran, and a bit of Elvis Presley.
Spencer started the band due to his love of the Gretsch guitar and upright bass. With the purchase of a guitar and the phoning of a few musician friends, Naptown Hepcats originated.
“Naptown,” a longstanding nickname for Indianapolis, and “Hepcat,” a term used in the 1940s to describe someone who was into modern music and culture, created the cool, hip band name that Spencer was looking for. With Stray Cat’s modern throwback style and the rockabilly music of the ‘40s and ‘50s, it was the perfect fit for the band.
Due to the pandemic, Naptown Hepcats had to take a break from performing, but are slowly getting back into being on stage. They are always looking for fun and energetic places to play. One of their all-time favorite songs to perform is “Rock This Town” by the Stray Cats. “Even if you’re not a huge Stray Cats fan, most people can recognize that song and really get into it,” Spencer says.
The Spark!Fishers festival is one of the band’s favorite events to play at. The organization of the event, combined with the festival atmosphere, makes it a fun and unique experience. Spencer, David, and Mike are really looking forward to interacting with the lively crowd of local residents and playing at the Nickel Plate District Amphitheater.
In honor of Spark!Fishers being a 4th of July celebration, I asked Spencer what his favorite tradition is for the holiday. “I’m a pretty traditional guy,” he responds. “It just doesn’t feel right to have an Independence Day and not attend a parade and fireworks. Throw in a good cookout with friends and family and that’s about as good as it gets!”
Spark!Fishers ignited by First Internet Bank will return in 2021 with an expanded, weeklong celebration from Tuesday, June 22 to Saturday, June 26. The event will kick off with a concert on Tuesday, June 22, and the celebration will continue all week ending with a Street Fair festival, parade, and firework show on Saturday, June 26 at the Municipal Complex celebrating our vibrant community. Learn more at sparkfishers.com.
Addy Miller is a former college intern for the City of Fisher’s Public Relations department. She is originally from Claypool, Indiana. As a senior at Purdue University, Addy is majoring in PR & Strategic Communications and minoring in English and Art & Design. Outside of her internship, you can find Addy serving drinks at SunKing Brewery, going to the gym, getting coffee, or hanging out with her friends and family. She loves the communal feeling of Fishers and is excited to learn more about the city. Follow her on Instagram.