If anyone ever figures out what the music-buying public of southeast Iowa wants, they'll deserve a Grammy. Maybe even a Pulitzer.

There's a strange rumor going around about Steamboat Days, saying there aren't any good bands this year.

In the present day, Steamboat Days is in flux, but that's a good sign: You can't improve a thing without changing it. Sometimes that's painful, but as with all things human, pain leads to healing.

No one can do anything about the progress of The Wall being built on the waterfront for flood protection, but it won't drastically alter your Boatin' experience. Next year, it won't be an issue at all.

So knuckle down, folks, and plan on being down on the Burlington riverfront Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Why, you ask?

First, let's look at the past.

Burlington is quite likely the No. 1 town in America when it comes to getting great bands at ridiculously low prices. The number of halls-of-fame, Grammy-winning rock, country and jazz musicians who have been on our riverfront in the past 55 years, all of them for the price of dinner and movie or less, exceeds 60 — and that's just in the previous century.

A number of those artists repeated at Steamboat Days.

The lineup was pretty much all local until John Hartford made his first appearance in 1990.

Hartford won four Grammys out of 12 nominations — plus the Americana Music Association President's Award.

This year we've got three Grammy-winners returning: Charlie Daniels, Survivor and Jefferson Starship. Craig Morgan, who was here in 2013, hasn't won a Grammy — yet — but he's still young and has only seven Top Ten hits so far.

You Boatin' folks get those artists and 19 other bands for sixty bucks. That includes alt-rock Grammy nominee Soul Asylum, post-grunge Grammy nominee Fuel, southern rockers Sister Hazel — no strangers to the CMT red carpet — Bon Jovi's opening act The Howling Tongues, plus Christian rockers Shaman's Harvest.

Oh, and Iowa's Adam Cunningham, who narrowly missed taking it all home on "The Voice" last year.

Plus 11 more local and regional artists including GMA Dove Award winner Jordan Feliz.

It's going to be a stunning weekend of Boatin' this year. I'll see you down by the river.

But wait a minute: Why, you ask, should you show up after hearing all those goofy rumors?

Because you think for yourself and make your own decisions.

The Steamboat Days committee does not have their backs to The Wall — they have their eyes set on the future.

That future is you.

Bob Saar is a freelance music and entertainment reporter and reviewer for The Hawk Eye. Look for his reviews and previews daily in The Hawk Eye and at www.thehawkeye.com during Burlington Steamboat Days.