Grant-Lee Phillips and Legion Arts release ‘Noah’s Flood’ on fifth anniversary

Grant-Lee Phillips
Grant-Lee Phillips performs his just-composed song “Noah’s Ark” May 15 at CSPS with a little help from audience member Mary Lyons. –photo by Charles Raianerastha Black

When singer-songwriter Grant-Lee Phillips performed at CSPS Hall last month in Cedar Rapids, he was so moved by the story of the 2008 floods that he wrote a song about the historic event and performed it that very night.

Today, exactly five years after the Cedar River crested at 31 feet in Cedar Rapids, Grant-Lee Phillips and Legion Arts are making that song, “Noah’s Flood,” available for free via stream and direct download.

According to Legion Arts, “The moving ballad also explores the singer’s earlier hopes of moving to Iowa after his band, Grant Lee Buffalo, opened for REM in Ames in 1995.”

The 2008 floods caused over $2 billion in damage, displaced 24,000 people and impacted 940 businesses around the Cedar Rapids area. CSPS Hall–where the non-profit Legion Arts is currently based–was one such business, taking in nearly 12 feet of water and suffering catastrophic damage as a result. In the five years since, Legion Arts raised over $8 million in funding, purchased CSPS hall, and has spent the last couple of years providing Eastern Iowa with eclectic opportunities to enjoy arts and entertainment.

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