Monique Josette Moshaty remembers Music on the Mall.
Born and raised in Auburn, the 1996 Auburn High grad used to see her friends play the State Street gazebo when Spirits Tavern and Cafe organized the summer music series. Music on the Mall would stop in 2006, when the city denied the series its permit, but its return to the rejuvenated downtown area was announced in May.
And Moshaty will be right there to serenade it.
The singer of Modus Operandi will be joined by the rest of the Auburn-area six-piece Friday for Music on the Mall's first installment in a decade. The band also includes Leon Miller on lead guitar and vocals, Josh Cook on bass, Chad Geelan on drums and vocals, Rob Modugno on keyboards and Ron Castaldo on percussion.
The last time a band played in the State Street Mall gazebo, the scenery was a little different.
The players, many of whom performed together in other area bands, first came together as Modus Operandi about a year ago, Moshaty said.
"We have this really nice family of people who are really talented, and everyone brings a certain eccentric element to the band," she said. "We're quite a motley crew to look at."
The band covers artists in the extended family of funk, rock, reggae, R&B and jazz, including Stevie Wonder, Alabama Shakes, Led Zeppelin, Adele, Michael Jackson and more. However, Moshaty said, it likes to mix them up with unfamiliar arrangements, such as a cha-cha version of Amy Winehouse, or reggae Pink Floyd. Modus Operandi will also work in some original instrumentals Friday, she said.
The band plans to bring a high-energy set to the State Street Mall, Moshaty said. If nothing else, she'll be fueled by nostalgia.
"Everyone would wait for that part of the summertime," she said of the series. "Now my kids can see me play Music on the Mall."