Guilford, Vt. -- Friends of Music at Guilford (FOMAG) is hosting its 7th annual Spring Recital & Holiday Cookoutbeginning at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 24, at Tree Frog Farm in idyllic rural Guilford. This year's Tracker Organ program focuses on music from the North German baroque, repertory for which the c. 1897 instrument is uniquely suited.
All the works on the program, except one, are concerted. The exception is Dietrich Buxtehude’s Toccata in F, played by the afternoon’s guest organist, Ken Olsson. It starts the show with some virtuosic fireworks.
The Vermont Jazz Center is delighted to welcome vocalist Alicia Olatuja and her quartet on May 16th at 8:00 PM. This sublime singer is best known for her soaring solo with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at President Obama’s second inauguration. But even though she grew up in the church, loves the music and draws inspiration from it, Alicia’s voice and persona are expansive. She uses her gospel roots as a springboard to investigate jazz, African music, classical and even well-crafted pop. In a recent interview, Alicia stated, “I blur the lines that some draw between genres.
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present contemporary folk singer/songwriter John Gorka at Next Stage on Saturday, May 9 at 7:30 pm.
John Gorka is perhaps the quintessential iconic singer/songwriter of the 1980’s folk scene. Hailing from New Jersey, he honed his craft and persona as a shy, wry and insightful singer/songwriter in the Greenwich Village “Fast Folk” and Boston music scenes. Gorka got his start at Godfrey Daniels, a neighborhood coffeehouse in eastern Pennsylvania which is one of the oldest and most venerable music institutions in the country.
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present an evening of cutting edge fiddle and cello explorations of Scottish, Celtic and global music by Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas at Next Stage on Thursday, May 7 at 7:30 pm. With a shared passion for improvising on the melody and the groove of traditional tunes, Alasdair and Natalie feature dazzling teamwork, swapping melodic and harmonic lines and trading driving rhythmic riffs.
The Friends of Brooks Memorial Library will present Montpelier musician-educator Mark Greenberg’s illustrated talk “Kitchen Tunks & Parlor Songs” on Thursday, May 14, at 7:30 PM at the Brooks Memorial Library on Main
Since the 1980s, Greenberg has been interviewing and recording musicians throughout Vermont, tracing the development of the state’s vernacular music from its roots in Anglo-Celtic traditions through the influences of French-Canadian emigrants and the arrival of radio and other electronic technologies.
Mole Hill Theatre presents contemporary bluegrass and folk music trio The Stockwell Brothers on Friday, April 24 at 7:30 pm.
Bruce, Barry and Alan Stockwell's music spans traditional and progressive styles, but their trademark acoustic
sound features new singer/songwriter material recast with banjo, alternative rhythms and three-part harmonies. They cover straight ahead bluegrass songs, finger picked acoustic guitar ballads, full tilt breakdowns and traditional mandolin tunes mixed in with more unusual fare - Americana melodies riding world beat grooves and Celtic, jazzy, even neo-classical instrumentals.
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present an evening of acoustic/electric indie-instrumental and folk-pop music by Brooklyn, NY-based guitar duo Threefifty, plus Vermont-based singer/songwriters Paul Siegel and Lizzy Mandell at Next Stage on Saturday, April 25 at 7:30 pm.
Formed at the Yale School of Music, and molded by the multi-faceted music scene of New York City, Threefifty incorporates elements of post-rock, folk, minimalism and Baroque classicism. Guitarists Brett Parnell and Geremy Schulick compose predominantly instrumental songs, which range from the epic to the intricate to the austerely beautiful. They have toured throughout the US as well as in the UK, Austria and Bosnia, released three albums and performed at TED Talks, BAM’s most recent Crossing Brooklyn Ferry Festival and NPR’s Soundcheck. "Outstanding guitar work... intelligent, deep and subtle" - Guitar Player Magazine
Set on Saturday, April 18, in an elegant Hillwinds home in Brattleboro, Friends of Music at Guilford's celebration of Women in Music is its signature annual fundraiser. Patrons will enjoy a generous buffet of hearty hors d'oeuvresand salads between 6 and 7 p.m. This year's concert then features vocalist Jessica Gelter and pianist Ken Olsson in a centennial tribute to legendary chanteuse Edith Piaf (1915-1963). An array of desserts prepared by area restaurant and bakery chefs follows.
Edith Piaf, who was "discovered" as a street singer while still in her teens, took the Paris cabaret scene by storm and became regarded as France's national diva. She was also one of its greatest international stars and mentored many other aspiring performers. Piaf's music was often autobiographical: her singing reflected her life, a contemplation of femininity, love, and home, sprinkled liberally with loss and sorrow. The program will cover a mix of Piaf's iconic hits and less-familiar songs, among them La Vie en Rose, Rien de Rien, La Belle Histoire d'Amour, Mon Dieu, and more.
On April 18th, 2015, the Vermont Jazz Center welcomes the Holopohonor Sextet, a group of young musicians representing the future of jazz. The pianist of the ensemble, Miro Sprague is well-known in this area. Born and raised in Western Massachusetts, he has earned the deep respect and admiration of the entire jazz community. Since leaving the Pioneer Valley, he has lived in New York and Los Angeles where his talent, ability and humility have contributed to his rising star status. The great pianist and educator, Armen Donelian says “Miro Sprague is among the most talented young composer/pianists of his generation.” Other members of Holophonor include Josh Joshnson on alto saxophone, Eric Miller, trombone; Diego Urbano, vibraphone; Dave Robaire, bass and Jonathan Pinson on drums.
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present Americana/roots quartet Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem at Next Stage on Friday, April 10 at 7:30 pm. This album release concert celebrates the brand new CD “Violets Are Blue,” a collection of sugar-free love songs infused with the band’s signature lush vocals, supple grooves, and most of all, joyous and generous spirit.
Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem bring fiddle, guitar, bass and junk percussion to bear on 100 years of American music, from Appalachian ballads to Brue Springsteen covers, songs by contemporary writers, and their own incisive originals. Their sound is “tight, with stylish, unexpected choices” (Acoustic Guitar), a mix of New Orleans grooves, old-time gospel harmonies, bluesy swing fiddle, and fiery electric and acoustic guitars.
Melissa Aldana is the third generation in her family to follow the saxophone as her calling. Her father, Marcos Aldana, now considered one of the most important musicians in Chile, was her first teacher. She still performs on the Selmer Mark VI saxophone she received as a treasured gift from her grandfather, Enrique Aldana, who was her father’s teacher. Marcos Aldana’s teaching method was based on transcription: learn the sound quality and improvised solos of those you wish to emulate.
Melissa began her studies on the alto saxophone at the age of six. Melissa stated: “My dad would choose a song that he really liked, so the first person I learned from was Charlie Parker. We would take one phrase, and listen. Then, I would play it really slow, over and over, hundreds of times, until it sounded exactly like him. I think it’s one of the best ways to teach a little kid because I learned everything by listening to the masters.”
The Future Collective keep bringing us great music. Their latest show featured The Suitcase Junket, a one-man band led by Matt Lorenz, a Vermonter now living in Amherst who’s already getting airplay on The River. In addition to having an amazing voice and top notch songs, in a quirky folk vein, he also knows how to put on a show. Tuning his hugely beat-up dumpster guitar became part of the act, and everyone enjoyed meeting the band (“this box of assorted metalware is the high
hat…”). What intrigued me even more than his making random junk sound musical was his ability to do the equivalent of Tuvan throat singing which added an exotic touch. He has a new record, his third, entitled Make Time, which has been getting good reviews.
The Fiddler for roots music band Low Lily is from Brattleboro. Her name is Lissa Schneckenburger, and she lives on my street. More importantly, she plays fiddle, really, really, really, really well. I had her on my radio show when I was doing the Colonel Brattle's Music Hall, and I have seen her at play here in Brattleboro.
Now, Low Lily is raising money for their CD.
If you donate $15, you will get a copy of their CD which will have 4-7 tracks on it. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/low-lily-s-new-ep#home
Doubly cool, after they meet their goal, which will allow them to create this recording, they will donate 50% of all funds to the Drop In center. http://www.feedthethousands.org/brattleboro-area-drop-center.
Here is the text of their indiegogo campaign.
Bill Holiday passed along the following "heads-up!"
"A local teen band, featuring 2 BUHS students, Dharma Ramirez (3rd from L) and Mavis Eaton (far R), will perform next week in Austin, Texas as part of the Southwest Music Festival. Incredible that they are a part of this popular, major, national event. Look at what is being said about them..."
Asian Cultural Center of Vermont (ACCVT) presents Nowrooz, A Persian New Year Celebration, Saturday, March 21 at 4:30 PM featuring traditional classical Persian music as well as original compositions presented by Eshagh Shaoul, violin with Jon Liechty on piano and Jack Shaoul on drum. The celebration is also a sharing of Persian, Bahá'í, and Sufi poetry. Following the music and poetry there will be a potluck (bring a dish to share). There will also be a hands-on henna decoration activity. The music and poetry will begin promptly at 4:30pm. Plan to arrive 10 to 20 minutes in advance to find parking along Western Avenue and walk up the driveway (about 100 yards) to Mahalo Art Center.
Eli Conley and his band will appear in concert at The Root Social Justice Center at 28 Williams St., First Floor, Brattleboro, VT on Wednesday, April 22nd at 7pm. The show is all ages. There is a $5-10 suggested donation at the door.
Eli Conley has a voice that shifts deftly from country choirboy to soulful croon at the turn of a phrase. Steeped in roots music and the singer-songwriter tradition, he crafts modern day folk songs for misfits, unafraid to push the themes and instrumentation of Americana music forward.
The Brattleboro Area Jewish Community (BAJC) is honored to present a concert featuring Spiritual Leader Kate Judd. A candidate for cantorial ordination in June, Kate is preparing her final recital for her degree and ordination. The recital, called “For My Teachers,” will receive its first performance here in West Brattleboro, Vermont, in the main hall of All Souls Church/ West Village Meeting House at 29 South Street on March 21st at 7:30 pm.
There is no admission charge but free-will donations will be greatly appreciated and anything beyond BAJC’s
costs will be donated to the needy. Light refreshments will be served.
In honor of St. Patrick's Day weekend, I was thinking it might be nice to listen to some Pogues.... The Pogues, for the uninitiated, were an Irish traditional punk rock band from London, led by the inimitable Shane MacGowan and his accomplice Spider Stacy. They’re best known for their Christmas ballad Fairy Tale of New York, featuring Kirsty MacColl, but MacGowan and the band wrote many memorable songs, dripping with authenticity and God knows what else, that make you think you’ve woken up in a rowdy Irish bar at the height of the party.
Next Stage Arts Project and Twilight Music present an evening of acoustic/electric Americana music from Sleepy Hollow, NY by The Slambovian Circus of Dreams (aka The Grand Slambovians) at Next Stage on Saturday, March 14 at 7:30 pm. Singer/songwriter Russell Kaback opens the concert.
The music of The Slambovian Circus of Dreams has been described as “hillbilly-Floyd,” “folk-pop,” “alt-country, roots-rock,” and “surreal Americana” - a clear indicator of its singularly indescribable uniqueness. The quartet taps a broad palette of styles ranging from dusty Americana ballads to huge Pink Floydesque cinematic anthems. Dancing freely between all existing religious and philosophical mythologies, featuring an exotic instrumental arsenal in addition to standard rock regalia, the music is uplifting, empowering and a lot of fun.
On Saturday, March 14th at 8:00 PM, the Vermont Jazz Center welcomes to its stage a piano trio that chooses to focus on the classic sounds of the Great American Songbook. The Bill Charlap Trio, with bassist Peter Washington and drummer Kenny Washington (no relation), represents the epitome of this particular style: elegant, lush, and swinging.
This trio is renowned throughout the world for its work interpreting the lesser-known but equally beautiful songs that were written for musical theater and film. Charlap and his trio pay homage to the great songs that were written when Broadway and Tin Pan Alley provided the soundtrack to popular, North American culture. Charlap states: “The music I’m attracted to – music theater and film music is a different blueprint of American music and popular music… I’m still in love with that beautiful aesthetic of those lyricists and composers of that period.”