Folksoul Music Festival CANCELED

Canceled due to Hurricane Irene

Outdoor summer music festival– includes folk, bluegrass, and New Orleans music. Takes place Sunday, August 28, 2011 from 12 noon to 7 PM

Includes Leslie Vogel and Friends (Leslie’s own personal set list), Liz Simmons and Hannah Sanders (traditional and contemporary folk), Tony Watt and Southeast Expressway (hot bluegrass band from Boston featuring Flynn Cohen), Mottau, Drew and Clark (the legendary Eddie Mottau and his band), and The Folksoul Band (the #1 party band of the known universe!). $15 door donation, kids under $12 are free, half price students and seniors.

Musician’s Workshop | South Strafford, VT

Donna Hebert and Max Cohen will be offering a pre-concert musician’s workshop on
Aug. 3rd for interested fiddlers, guitarists and any other instrumentalists who
would like to learn some styling and history of
French-Canadian. The workshop is tentatively set for 5:00pm – please e-mail Robin Russell at
with your interest and she will confirm time and cost with you directly.

Concert info for Donna and Max can be found

Enthusiastic, energetic and
passionate, Donna and Max bring the French-Canadian heritage to life with song
and artful tune-playing. We’re delighted to have them return – please join us!

Robin Russell
(802) 333-9628

☼ ☼ ☼ Contra Dance | Nelson | Don Primrose ~ Caller | Music by Heathen Creek

Nelson Town Hall
Admission $8 / $6 seniors and students

Beginner’s Workshop 7:30

The amazing Heathen Creek returns to the Nelson Town Hall, with caller Don Primrose at the helm.

“Heathen Creek” is what happens when contra music has a head-on collision with Gen-X. Maia Rutman’s scorching fiddle soars while Pete Johannsen (guitar) and Mark Koyama (mandolin) lay down thunder and crunch that is equal parts Keith Murphy and Kurt Cobain. Blissfully tired contra dancers concur — the Heathens are all about rhythm, and they’re dead-on. But the trio plays lush too — sultry digressions full of lilt and peppered with caprice. From Pittsburgh to Peterborough, from Coeur D’Alene to Concord, Heathen Creek has been busting it up for seven years, filling the night with music and generally knocking the socks off all and sundry.

☼ ☼ ☼ Contra Dance | Nelson | Lisa Sieverts ~ Caller | Music by Rodney Miller, Richard Backes, Liz Backes, Gordon Peery

Nelson Town Hall
Admission $8 / $6 seniors and students

Beginner’s Workshop 7:30

Lisa Sieverts is well known throughout New England for her excellent teaching. Dancers don’t even realize their being told what to do – her understated style allows dancers to have a lot of fun, learning the dances easily,  without realizing they are even being instructed. She has graciously stepped in for Mary DesRosiers who is unable to call due to (temporary) illness.

Stratospheric music provided by the incredible Rodney Miller (fiddle), and the inimitable Gordon Peery (piano). Flautist/whistler Sarah Bauhan was originally on the bill as well, but has had to cancel at the last minute due to a delayed return from Scotland. Fortunately we’ve been able to add multi-stringed instrumentalist Richard Backes, and Liz Backes on flute and whistle. The result will be a lovely orchestration and highly energized flow of music that will travel smoothly under the dancer’s feet.

Puttin’ On the Dance: Northeast Dance Organizers Conference

Sponsored by the Country Dance and Song Society, More information at Puttin’ On The Dance

Join this conference if you…

  • organize a traditional dance series in the Northeast*
  • want to help your series thrive
  • have questions or concerns about dance series management
  • have things to share, from challenges to successes
  • enjoy opportunities for growth
  • want a really fun weekend adventure with other dance organizers

*The conference is especially for organizers of any English/American dance series in Northeastern United States and Canada, including contra, square, English Country Dance, gender role free, family, and community dances. Space permitting, others interested in dance series management, whether from other regions or not currently organizing dances, are also welcome to attend.

Good-bye Bill Morrissey

By Christopher Hislop
July 25, 2011 1:52 PM

When I heard that Bill Morrissey had died July 23, I was stricken with grief and felt a void in my heart. The idea that I’d never again be able to venture up that great hill in Newmarket, to the top of those stairs and through those burly wooden doors to see Bill on the Stone Church stage singing his songs was a feeling I couldn’t seem to digest. Probably never will.

Read the rest of the article at Seacoast Online

A Dudley Laufman Poetry Reading

Dudley Laufman
Dudley Laufman, photo by Susanna Bolle
The Monadnock Folklore Society and the Olivia Rodham Memorial Library jointly present poet and contra dance caller Dudley Laufman on Thursday, August 18th at 7 PM at the Nelson Town Hall.

Dudley Laufman is the winner of both a National Heritage Fellowship Award and the NH Governor’s Folk Heritage Award for his contribution to preserving the traditional music and dance calling associated with New England Contra Dancing.

The poems in his latest book, She Plumb Ned, She More’n Plumb, are rooted in the stories told by certain colorful and eccentric characters who lived in the Monadnock Region of southwestern New Hampshire. Laufman was 16 years old when he began collecting these stories. His words capture the dry sense of humor typical of this breed of Yankee.

Rebecca Rule, in the Concord Monitor, said “This is hunting and fishing humor. It’s drinking and carousing humor. It’s colorful, earthy, and salty, too.”

For more information call the Nelson Library at 603-847-3214 or visit

Bob McQullen: Old Time Nelson Stories

Bob McQuillen shares stories from his many years of playing music, and knowing folks, in Nelson.

This is part of the Library Summer Forum, which features different speakers every Thursday night.

Everyone is invited, there is no admission charge (donations are welcome), and the talk is followed by socializing and refreshments in the library. Come early and here Apple Hill’s violinist Sarah Kim playing a selection of music.

☼ ☼ ☼ Lissa Schneckenburger | Nelson Town Hall

World class fiddler and local hero Lissa Schneckenburger with Boston based guitarist Bethany Waickman come to the Nelson Town Hall on Friday, October 7 for an 8 PM concert. Admission is $12/$9(Sr/Jr).

The traditional music of New England can be as warm and comforting as a winter fire or as potent and exhilarating as a summer thunderstorm. Fiddler and singer Lissa Schneckenburger is a master of both moods, a winsome, sweet-voiced singer who brings new life to old ballads and a skillful, dynamic fiddler who captures the driving rhythm and carefree joy of dance tunes old and new.

Raised in a small town in Maine and now living in Vermont, Lissa grew up with music. She began playing fiddle at the age of six, inspired by her mother’s interest in folk music and a family friend who was a professional violinist. Soon she was studying with influential Maine fiddler Greg Boardman and sitting in with the Maine Country Dance Orchestra. By the time she was in high school she was playing concerts on her own, specializing in the sprightly New England dance tunes that combine influences from the British Isles and Quebec with homegrown twists that have been evolving since Colonial days. Another of her major influences was the diverse musical community that she found at fiddle camps, where she had a chance to play with and learn from a wide variety of musicians including noted Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser. In 2001 she graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music with a degree in contemporary improvisation, and since then has been performing around the US and internationally for a growing audience of enthusiastic listeners. She has recorded seven CDs, (four solo and three with various groups).

Lissa’s fiddling is uplifting and lively, and her singing is gentle and evocative. Both in concert and in the studio she is regularly accompanied by some of New England’s best musicians, including guitarists Keith Murphy and Matt Heaton and double bassist Corey DiMario. Recently she has been closely studying the roots of the Downeast traditional music that she first heard as a young girl. Her latest project is a pair of CDs dedicated to reintroducing some wonderful but largely forgotten songs and tunes from New England that she uncovered through archival research at the University of Maine and elsewhere. “Song”, to be released in April 2008, contains ten timeless ballads that go back as far as the eighteenth century that she set to carefully crafted modern arrangements, while “Dance”, scheduled for 2009, will feature fiddle tunes. “There is currently a lot of focus on traditional American music from the South”, she explains, “and many bands are exploring and recording that repertoire, but no one is getting to hear the amazing repertoire of traditional music from the North. This is my first attempt at getting some of that music out there for people to enjoy.”

Whether playing for a folk club audience or a hall full of dancers, Lissa brings to the stage enthusiasm, energy, and the bright future of New England’s musical traditions.