Mar 212016
 

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Join us at the Nelson Town Hall on Mother’s Day (Sunday, May 8th) for an evening of traditional and original Gypsy Jazz with the Rhythm Future Quartet. The concert will begin at 7:00 PM. Admission is $15/$12(Sr/Jr).

The acoustic jazz ensemble, Rhythm Future Quartet has a straightforward agenda: to keep the spirit of Gypsy jazz alive and expanding in today’s musical universe. The virtuosic foursome, named for a Django Reinhardt tune, offers up a newly minted sound, influenced by the classic Hot Club of France, yet wholly contemporary. Led by violinist Jason Anick and guitarist Olli Soikkeli, the quartet performs dynamic and lyrical arrangements of both Gypsy jazz standards and original compositions that draw upon diverse international rhythms and musical idioms. With Max O’Rourke on second guitar and Greg Loughman on bass, Rhythm Future is dedicated to expanding the boundaries of a vital musical genre.

Where the band’s self-titled debut album re-visited classic jazz and Gypsy jazz favorites, Travels, the quartet’s current release, concentrates on group originals that make captivating use of musical sources from outside the conventional Gypsy jazz terrain. Travels reflects both the accumulated knowledge garnered from the groups world wide touring as well as the international influences that inspired new rhythmic and harmonic possibilities within their compositions and arrangements.

Jason Anick, an award-winning composer and one of the youngest professors at the esteemed Berklee College of Music in Boston, has shared the stage with an array of artists including Grammy award winning guitarist John Jorgenson, Stevie Wonder, The Jim Kweskin Jug Band, and Tommy Emmanuel. Olli Soikkeli (coined “the Finnish boy wonder”) recently made the move from Scandinavia to New York City, where he quickly became a top call guitarist in the bustling Brooklyn jazz scene. He has performed alongside rising star Cyrille Aimee, world-renowned Gypsy guitarist Stochelo Rosenberg, Bucky Pizzarelli and many others.

Max O’Rourke was the winner of the 2015 Saga Award from DjangoFest Northwest, and at 19 has already toured/recorded with many of the top American Gypsy Jazz musicians including John Jorgenson and Gonzalo Bergara. Greg Loughman is a top call bassist in Boston and has been heard with such luminaries as Sheila Jordan, Curtis Fuller and George Garzone.

 Posted by on March 21, 2016 at 7:31 pm
Feb 062016
 

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-NOTE VENUE CHANGE!!-

Michael Roberts and Wooden Dinosaur return to our stages on Friday, March 4 at 8:00 PM at the Fountain Arts Building on the Dublin School campus. We’ve been trying to get together on this concert for over a year and now it’s finally happening! Yahoo! Admission is $12/$9 (Sr/Jr).

Wooden Dinosaur is the songwriting project of Vermont singer, guitarist and bandleader Michael Roberts. Roberts is currently working on a new album that will be released in spring 2016.

Throughout the project’s 10+-year career, Roberts and his collaborators have explored the back roads of American music from throughout the last century, creating a fearless blend of old time fiddle music, country soul, rock n roll, Dixieland jazz, and delta blues. Roberts has produced five solo albums under the name, and with his band, two EPs and two full-length albums.

Wooden Dinosaur’s upcoming release will be its most cohesive and fully realized to date. The songs were inspired by the rural writing of Wendell Berry, John Berger, and Wallace Stegner, as well as early “Americana” albums by Ry Cooder, The Band and Jackson Browne.

For our Monadnock Folklore Society concert, Roberts, along with hometown boy Jeffrey Murphy on bass and Frank Roberts on drums will preview songs from their upcoming release, in addition to songs from their growing catalog of original works.

“Wooden Dinosaur makes the kind of simple, stripped-down music that leaves you feeling nostalgic and longing for more.”

NPR’s All Songs Considered

 Posted by on February 6, 2016 at 10:04 am
Jul 262015
 

pic-bio-1pressphoto-AndreaBeaton2012Troy MacGillivray returns to the Nelson Town Hall with acclaimed Cape Breton fiddler Andrea Beaton on Thursday, September 3 for a 7:30 PM show. Admission is $15/$12(Sr/Jr).

 

Troy MacGillivray was raised in Lanark, Nova Scotia; his musical prowess can be attributed to an especially rare combination of commitment and bloodline. By the age of six, Troy was already impressing audiences with his step dancing skills. By 13 he was teaching piano at the renowned Gaelic College of Celtic Arts and Crafts in St. Anne’s, Cape Breton. He has completed grade seven of the Toronto Conservatory of Music for classical piano, has spent four years in a stringed orchestra and has earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in music from St. Francis Xavier University.

Whether playing piano or fiddle, or showcasing his stepdancing capabilities, Troy MacGillivray  displays a unique sense of pride and commitment to his Celtic heritage and his music continues to add to the history and development of the traditional music that is the epitome of the Maritimes, the place he calls home!

One of Cape Breton’s most promising young fiddlers, Andrea Beaton comes by her music honestly. Listen to her play, the power of her bow, the drive and swing of her timing, the crispness of her attack. She’s making a name for herself in dance halls, concerts, ceilidhs, and festivals. Like the compelling tradition she represents, her reputation is growing, spreading beyond the island. Andrea Beaton seems destined for great things.

She’s the youngest of generations of Beaton musicians. Her father, Kinnon, is one of today’s most influential Cape Breton fiddlers, and you can hear some of his timing in Andrea’s playing. Her mother, Betty Beaton, is one of the great piano accompanists of her generation, contributing to that remarkable Beaton timing.

Her paternal grandfather, Donald Angus Beaton, was one of the strongest and most popular players of his generation, and you can hear some of his power in her playing. Her paternal grandmother, Elizabeth Beaton, is a strongly rhythmic piano player, with a great love of the music.

Her uncle, Buddy MacMaster, is the most revered fiddler on Cape Breton island. Her cousin, Natalie MacMaster, is an enormously popular entertainer. And so it goes, back and across the generations. Cape Breton is an extraordinarily musical place, and Andrea is increasingly in the forefront of her generation. Her music is at once her own and deeply rooted in the tradition associated with the Mabou Coal Mines. And, like her father and grandfather, she is a composer in the tradition, adding fine new music to the island’s repertoire.

Born in 1979, Andrea grew up surrounded by music and dance. She was playing a little at ten; at thirteen she took lessons from Stephanie Wills, a very fine traditional player. But it was some years later, when, missing home while doing a two-year course on Prince Edward Island, that she began playing in earnest. And it seems she never looked back.

Please join us for an exhilarating evening of traditional music presented by some of the best young talent around!

 Posted by on July 26, 2015 at 7:15 pm
May 132015
 

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Join us for a special evening of traditional New Orleans jazz with Aurora Nealand and the Royal Roses at the Dublin School in Dublin, NH. This will be an outdoor event, weather permitting, Friday, July 3, 7:00 pm at the Fountain Arts Building on the Dublin School campus. The concert is co-sponsored by The Walden School, the Monadnock Folklore Society and the Dublin School and is free and open to the public.

The New Orleans Moonshiners, Meschiya Lake’s Little Big Horns, Panorama Jazz Band, Rory Danger and the Danger Dangers, Why Are We Building Such a Big Ship?—just a partial list of groups to which Aurora Nealand claims membership. But the Royal Roses, whom Nealand fronted at new Orleans’ French Quarter Fest, are a first. “This is the first group that has my name on it, which I feel funny about,” she says.

The Royal Roses grew out of the rich resurgence that traditional jazz is seeing in New Orleans amongst the younger generation of musicians today. Saxophonist/vocalist Aurora Nealand has been playing in various groups in New Orleans since 2005, and the Royal Roses, founded in 2010, is her first venture as a bandleader. The Royal Roses draw their repertoire heavily from Sidney Bechet, Django Reinhart and traditional jazz of New Orleans. Comprised of some of the finest young players on the New Orleans music scene today, the Royal Roses are seeking to breath new energy, arrangements and compositions into this genre of music while exploring and learning from its rich history and tradition. They’ve performed in New Orleans at the French Quarter Festival, Satchmo Festival and Preservation Hall, as well as in NYC at Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival. Their first album “A Tribute to Sydney Bechet: Live at Preservation Hall” was released in 2011 to national acclaim. Their second album “The LookBack Transmission” was released in 2014 and includes original and traditional compositions including one Ms. Nealand wrote for the HBO series “Treme”.

The Royal Roses rotating cast of characters fronted by Aurora Nealand on vocals and saxophone has included many of NOLA’s finest musicians, you won’t want to miss this concert!

 

 Posted by on May 13, 2015 at 7:15 pm
May 132015
 

get-attachment-9.aspxGary Sredzienski returns to the Nelson Town Hall on Sunday, June 14 for a 7:00 pm concert. The concert will feature the versatility of the accordion and tales of the creek presented as only Gary can. His passion for music, the accordion, swimming, and life is infectious! Bring the family to this entertaining and educational performance by a true master. Admission is $12/$9(Sr/Jr).

Gary Sredzienski is an exceptionally versatile accordion player whose repertoire encompasses music from a wide range of world traditions and American music of the 1920s to 1950s. He also plays 1960’s surf rock, traditional ethnic, and his accordion compositions with his Portsmouth based group, the “Serfs.”

Gary has performed extensively in the United States and abroad in concert settings, festivals, and schools. In May of 2000 Gary was nominated by Congressman John Sununu to represent NH in a performance at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage in Washington DC. In July of 2000 he performed throughout Romania on a tour sponsored by the Smithsonian Folklife Center, the State Department, and the Governor Jeanne Shaheen of NH. He represented NH at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington DC in 1999, performed at the American and National folk festivals and was sent to Quebec City for its 400th anniversary as a musical ambassador for NH by Governor Lynch  and recently played for the inauguration of Governor Maggie Hassan.

Gary has released a number of solo recordings on his own Bellows Music label. His compositions and music have been featured in a number of feature films and television sound tracks including, Paramount’s “Bad News Bears” and “A Team”, Eddie Murphy’s “Meet Dave,” and multiple major network television sitcoms.

Gary hosts a weekly 1950’s style ethnic radio show, “Polka Party,” on WUNH-FM and has a devoted following. In 1990, he was sponsored by the Edgewood Center of Portsmouth and his radio show listeners to undertake a national tour, performing for 93 nursing homes in 15 states over a five-week period. He was named a ‘Point of Light’ for his efforts. An avid swimmer, in 2008 Gary was the first to swim to the Isle of Shoals in winter and since has raised over $65,000 for 7 different charities in 7 winter swims. The NH charitibles Foundation gave a grant to write, produce, and perform a play on Gary’s musical life and swimming adventures through the Harborlight Stage Theater Company entitled ‘Creekman….. The Adventures of the Accordion Playing Merman.’

 Posted by on May 13, 2015 at 6:16 pm
Mar 012015
 

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Join us on Friday May 8 for the return of Liz Simmons, Flynn Cohen and Lissa Schneckenburger to the Nelson Town Hall for an 8:00 PM concert. Admission is $15/$12(Sr/Jr)

LOW LILY, formerly called Annalivia, is an American ‘roots and branches’ string trio which draws from tradition and today to create their own brand of new acoustic folk music. The members – Liz Simmons, Flynn Cohen, and Lissa Schneckenburger – are masterful players and have long histories with traditional music, ranging from bluegrass to Irish, Scottish, New England and Old Time Appalachian music. This background, combined with each member’s stellar compositional skills and cutting edge arranging chops, makes for music which sounds rooted yet contemporary. Folk and string-band enthusiasts alike will be drawn in by the expert vocals and songwriting, excellent musicianship, and innovative approach. The members of Low Lily are seasoned musicians and have individually toured and performed with the likes of Ruth Moody, Cathie Ryan, John Whelan, Aoife Clancy, Adrienne Young, Childsplay and Solas, among others.

 Posted by on March 1, 2015 at 2:10 pm
Feb 082015
 

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Fay Baird, Kate Seeger, and Kim Wallach…

have been singing and performing together since 1979. They return to the Nelson Town Hall on Sunday, March 15 for a 7:00 PM concert. Admission is $12/$9(Sr/Jr/Advance).

Though they are not really sisters, and not particularly short, they do sound like sisters and share a delight in harmony. The songs chosen by the trio tell stories and paint pictures, conveying strong visual images through music. They favor acapella arrangements but also accompany themselves with guitar, autoharp and banjo.

The Short Sisters challenge the audience’s imagination and invite their participation with compelling words, powerful melodies and elegant arrangements. Audiences comment on more than just the trio’s extraordinary harmonies and choice of material. Their playfulness and pleasure in each other’s company leave listeners energized and cheered. Their repertoire includes intricate rounds, songs from American, African-American and British traditions and material from contemporary songwriters. The Short Sisters’ favorite songs, funny or moving, thought-provoking or frivolous, traditional or newly written, convey optimism about tackling life’s challenges.

The trio’s performance list covers Folksong Societies and Coffeehouses in their home states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Florida, forays to Michigan and California, and regular appearances in New Jersey, New England and Washington D.C. They have recorded five albums, four of which are available on CD.

Songs both traditional and new: unusual rounds, musical curiosities and chorus songs, Sacred Harp songs, ballads and much more. Whether acapella or with guitar, autoharp and banjo, the Short Sisters blend their voices in stunning and original harmonies.

 Posted by on February 8, 2015 at 1:50 pm
Jan 122015
 

Rodney Miller Trio Feb 20On Friday, February 20, at 8:00 PM the Monadnock Folklore Society presents the Rodney Miller Trio, in the Nelson Town Hall. The concert features Rodney Miller on fiddle, David Surette on guitar, mandolin and bouzouki, and Gordon Peery on piano. Admission is $15/$12(Sr/Jr).

Individually these musicians enjoy decades-long reputations as some of the finest contra dance musicians in the country. Their concert in Nelson is a rare opportunity to hear them playing in this trio configuration, and in a concert setting.

Rodney Miller has been at the forefront of traditional New England fiddling since the mid 1970’s. He was one of the first musicians to issue a recording of fiddle tunes. As early as 1983, he was designated a “Master Fiddler” in 1983 by the National Endowment for the Arts. He is widely considered to be the foremost exponent of New England style fiddling, a uniquely American blend of French Canadian and Celtic influences. Over the past 35 years, he has toured the U.S., British Isles, Australia and Denmark, performed and taught at hundreds of music and dance festivals, and recorded over ten fiddle albums.

In 1999, Rodney represented the state of New Hampshire, playing traditional fiddle music at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C. He has also appeared on Garrison Keillor’s National Public Radio show “A Prairie Home Companion,” performed live with the Twyla Tharp Modern Dance Company, performed at the Lincoln Center in New York, and was recorded on the album Songs and Sounds of the Sea for the National Geographic Society.

In March, 2014 Rodney Miller was appointment by NH Gov. Hassan and the Executive Council as the new Artist Laureate of NH.

David Surette is widely regarded as one of New England’s finest guitarists,  His solo albums “Back Roads” and “Trip to Kemper” have helped to establish him as a top player and arranger of Celtic fingerstyle guitar, yet his diverse repertoire also includes original compositions, blues and ragtime, traditional American roots music, and folk music from a variety of traditions, all played with finesse, taste, and virtuosity. He is equally at home on the mandolin and bouzouki, and is well-known as a top-notch accompanist in New England’s contra dance and Celtic music circles, and is also in demand as a studio musician and sideman. He has performed throughout the country at festivals, concerts, coffeehouses and contra dances, and in 1999 toured in Brittany, France. In addition to performing and recording, Surette maintains an active teaching schedule, and is head of the folk department at the Concord (NH) Community Music School.

Gordon Peery began playing piano for contra dances in the late 1970’s, mentored by Bob McQuillen, and influenced by the Cape Breton styling of fiddler Harvey Tolman. However his style quickly evolved to express influence from rock and roll and later, jazz, while style firmly rooted with the solid rhythmic requirements demanded of traditional contra dance pianists.  His playing has been variously described as “Barrelhouse Irish”, and having the dramatic qualities of a film score.

From 1985 – 95 Gordon played and toured extensively with the celebrated band, Fresh Fish, which included fiddler Kerry Elkin. In addition to a recording with that band, Gordon has contributed to many recordings, including several from fiddler Skip Gorman.

 Posted by on January 12, 2015 at 7:28 pm
Jan 072015
 

Rally Round the Flag:
The American Civil War Through Folksong
January 21, 2015 7:oo pm
Historical Society of Cheshire County
246 Main Street
Keene, NH

Woody Pringle and Marek Bennett present an overview of the American Civil War through the lens of period music. Audience members participate and sing along as the presenters explore lyrics, documents, and visual images from sources such as the Library of Congress. Through camp songs, parlor music, hymns, battlefield rallying cries, and fiddle tunes, Pringle and Bennett examine the folksong as a means to enact living history, share perspectives, influence public perceptions of events, and simultaneously fuse and conserve cultures in times of change. Showcasing numerous instruments and archival materials from the collection of the Historical Society of Cheshire County, the presenters challenge participants to find new connections between song, art, and politics in American history. This program is sponsored by the New Hampshire Humanities Council and is selected as one of their “Signature 40th Anniversary” programs.

http://hsccnh.org/event/presentation-rally-round-flag-american-civil-war-folksong/

 Posted by on January 7, 2015 at 1:32 pm