Playing with Fire

FREE Summer Concert Series

building community through the power of music



Playing with Fire, Inc. (PwF) vision is to support Omaha’s national reputation as a ‘music city,’ and build community through the power of music. Started in 2004, PwF has presented more than 100 free summer concerts that have helped introduce Omaha’s metro residents to the highest quality of local, national, and international musical talent playing blues, rock, soul, funk, roots and R&B. Playing with Fire’s mission supports the local community, particularly the youth artist development program, BluesEd, which promotes music awareness and education for the children of our musical community. Playing with Fire is a 501(c)(3)  non-profit organization sustained through grants from the Nebraska Arts Council, Nebraska Cultural Endowment, Douglas County Visitor Improvement Fund, sponsorships, in-kind donations, and super volunteers.

Free Summer concerts 2021
@the Capitol District


July 17th, august 13th and 14th

July 17th

Ghost Town Blues Band

Memphis, Tennessee

Horns, harmonies and homegrown instruments combined with an energetic and roots rich festival set make Ghost Town Blues Band (GTBB) one of the must-see live bands.  “Not your grandpa’s blues band,” GTBB’s latest release Shine debuted at #1 on the 2019 Billboard Blues Chart. Their list of honors and awards for the last two years is too long to list here! Recently headlining the blues stage at The Montreal Jazz Festival and fresh off their European debut at the Grolsch Blues Festival in Germany, GBBT is Beale Street’s latest success story, 5-time Blues Blast Music Award Nominee and International Blues Challenge Runner-up. Living Blues Magazine proclaims, “This is 21st-century blues at its best. With a shoot-from-the-hip Memphis attitude and a STAX-busting explosion of modern blues vision, GTBB represents a welcome changing of the guard.”


August 13th


Amsterdam, Netherlands

“A psychedelic journey through space and time, hypnotic, tribal, voodoo” – not the usual terms to describe a band’s offerings. Fitting, since Amsterdam-based My Baby seems to defy all musical labels, genres, and definitions. The band describes its signature sound as “roots-driven hypnotic dance.” Formed in 2012, the trio consists of Cato van Dyck, Joost ‘Sheik’ van Dyck, and Daniel ‘Da Freez’ Johnston. Taking their inspiration from nearly everywhere, they fuse styles like blues, roots, and gospel with soulful sultry vocals and African beats that result in rave reviews for four albums. Their scorching performances touring in the UK, Germany, Denmark, New Zealand, South Africa, and The Netherlands UK captivate fans leaving them yelling for more. They’re coming to Omaha for the first time to spread their grooves. 

August 14th

Mike Zito

Somewhere in Texas

He may be one of the most lauded artists in the contemporary blues arena today, and rightfully so, but for Mike Zito, the thing that counts the most is maintaining his honesty, authenticity, and integrity. Those are the qualities that have steered Zito’s career since the beginning and continue to define every effort he’s offered since.

“I have nothing to hide; it seems my honesty is what people relate to most,” he once told Vintage Guitar magazine. “Anders (Osborne) told me early on, ‘If you don’t believe what you’re singing, you’ll never be a good singer.’ I try not to write fluff; I try to make every word count.”

That point became convincingly clear with his last record 2018’s First Class Life, a collection of songs that detailed his journey from addiction to sobriety and the subsequent success he achieved through his award-winning body of work. A multiple award winner and nominee, Zito has built his career on an ability to tap into tradition while maintaining contemporary credence all at the same time.

Zito’s upcoming album — his 16th — due this November on Ruf Records and descriptively titled Rock N Roll: A Tribute to Chuck Berry, finds him broadening his boundaries still further even as it marks a return to his roots. The album consists of 20 Chuck Berry classics performed by Zito and an impressive array of 21 guest guitarists, among them Joe Bonamassa, Walter Trout, Eric Gales, Robben Ford, Sonny Landreth, Luther Dickinson, Albert Castiglia, Anders Osborne, and, significantly, Chuck’s grandson, Charles Berry III. 

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and with funding from the Douglas County Visitor Improvement Fund.


Thanks to our sponsors for helping make this event FREE to attend!

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1022 Capitol Ave, Omaha, NE 68102

(402) 618-7734

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