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Hood Family will host the Mahomet Soda Fest

Hood Family will host the Mahomet Soda Fest


By Brett McMahon

When The Hood Family Group takes the stage at the Mahomet Soda Festival on Saturday June 10, it will be their first participation in the event.

While Jennifer Hood, the band’s main lead singer, played the event a few years ago with another band, she can’t wait to share the spotlight with her parents and sister.

We love these types of community events that bring people together and we’re thrilled to support a unique big city festival, she says, adding that she thinks we could all use a little more connection these days. .

The event will also feature vendors crafting and other items, while over 100 flavors of soda will be available for tasting and purchase.

As for what their show will provide at the festival, says Hood, we provide a family atmosphere that everyone can enjoy (and maybe even sing along to!). Our musical selections span decades, so we hope people can sit down and enjoy themselves with their loved ones, and maybe even bring back some great memories.

The band has been playing regularly for about 12 years but actually started long before that. Hoods’ father, Jim, played in bluegrass and folk bands for many years, along with Hood and his sister, Jerrica. She remembers trying to slip on stage a few times during her dad’s shows, so it was a natural fit. The family quartet, also made up of mom, Penny, also played in church for many years.

Things started to get more serious after Jennifer graduated from Millikin University and learned to play the guitar.

It’s such a gift to be able to make music with your family. It’s a unique bonding experience, and truly one of my favorite things in life, she says. Sometimes I watch my mom, dad and sister as they sing one of our favorite songs and a wave of gratitude washes over me.

“We were also lucky because we’re all a pretty laid back bunch. We don’t sweat the small stuff and just try to take every moment as it comes. If we were together and we made music, we know it will be a good day. And you really can’t beat the blood related harmonies. I still get chills at every concert, even after playing together all these years!

The Hood family play their own instruments, with Jennifer on rhythm guitar and dad, Jim, playing guitar, mandolin, harmonica and many other instruments. Their influences range from the Beatles to Emmylou Harris, John Prine to Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan, among others, with their blended harmonies presented in folk and bluegrass styles.

Hood says that although the band hasn’t recorded an album, they hope to get together in the studio to change that fact in the near future.

With a summer full of shows, the Mahomet Soda Festival is just one of many stops. The Hood Family Band will debut at the Rose Bowl in Champaign on July 1 and will hold concerts throughout central Illinois with stops in Paxton, Shelbyville and Decatur, to name a few.




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