08/19/15 – Join us Friday, August 19th at 7PM for a showcase of young artists from in & around the Portland area. Ranging in ages from 16-21 these artists are bringing together their unique mix of styles & genres to give you a great show. Featuring performances from Trele, Psycho Brahe, Zay Jones, THT, Melodious Monk and Mhon Griot. Not to be missed! All ages welcome!
Tickets -$10 (General seating). Doors open at 6:30PM and show kicks off promptly at 7PM!
Tickets -$10 (General seating). Doors open at 6:30PM and show kicks off promptly at 7PM!
06/25/16 – Join us on Sat. June 25th at 7PM as we host a special 75 Birthday Tribute showcase for the one and only Bob Dylan!
'Magic 8 Ball' is an intimate 4-piece band.Singer/songwriters Chris Moore, Ben Hunsberger, Ted DeMille and ace bassman Chris Dombrowski have combed through the catalogue and come together to arrange and interpret a variety of Dylan tunes, old and new. With reverent nods to The Band, The Rolling Thunder Review, and all the artists who've covered Dylan's material, Magic 8 Ball presents their collective take on Bob songs with loving sincerity, honestly, and good humor.
Magic 8 Ball - signs point to yes.
07/13/16 – New York singer-songwriter Heather Masse grew up in rural Maine and began singing at an early age. Trained at the New England Conservatory of Music as a jazz singer, she is steeped in the jazz tradition, which informs her distinct approach to singing folk, pop and bluegrass.
A member of the Billboard-charting folk group, The Wailin’ Jennys, she has performed at hundreds of venues across the world. She has been a frequent guest on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion, both as a solo performer and as a member of The Jennys. On the show, she has collaborated with artists such as Elvis Costello, Wynton Marsalis, Sheryl Crow, Renee Fleming, and Emmylou Harris.
Heather has performed with the contemporary bluegrass band The Wayfaring Strangers, fiddle virtuoso Mark O’Connor’s Hot Swing, and in 2006, recorded an album with Joy Kills Sorrow, a contemporary stringband. She also released Tell Me Tonight with the Brooklyn-based collaboration Heather & the Barbarians.
In 2008, Heather released Many Moons, an EP of jazz-inspired folk duets with pianist Jed Wilson. Releasing her first full-length album in 2009, she delivered Bird Song--her solo debut on Red House Records.
The Wailin Jenny’s newest recording, Bright Morning Stars released February 2011, won a Canadian Juno and features original songs from all 3 members of the band.
Heather's newest release on Red House Records, Lock My Heart is an album of jazz standards and originals with the legendary pianist, Dick Hyman. It has been on the Billboard charts since its release in February 2013.
07/15/16 – PORTopera Young Artists series - rising young professional opera singers who will present, The Medium.
One of Menotti's best known operas, The Medium premiered in 1945. It is a gripping story about Madam Flora, who, with her daughter Monica and a servant boy, Toby, stages séances for clients seeking contact with loved ones who have died. During one session, Madam Flora suddenly finds herself haunted and terrified. Her subsequent paranoia and loss of reason result in a tragic end - and leave the audience to question...what was reality? Menotti's riveting music ranges from the lyrically beautiful to the highly dramatic.
Join us on the third Monday of the month outside in the lot, weather permitting!
We are so excited to open our new Monday Night Jazz Series with a performance featuring Kate Campbell Strauss & Friends. KCS&F plays jazz and blues with a soulful flair.The band features Kate Campbell Strauss on saxophone, Bess Berg on piano, Scott Morrison on bass, and Per Hanson on drums.
Kate Campbell Strauss’s devotion to jazz saxophone began when she heard Sonny Rollins perform near her hometown of Shutesbury, MA at the age of 8. Kate’s musical family introduced her to tunes by the jazz greats and encouraged her to explore jazz on her own and through lessons. Currently, Kate nurtures her interest in the cultural power of music by teaching lessons and through community outreach projects. She is an integral part of the Southern Maine music scene, both as a founder of several groups and as a session musician in a variety of local bands.
Pianist and vocalist Bess Berg left behind a career in computer sciences to return to her home state of Maine in 2014 as a full-time musician. While piano and voice are her native instruments, she also plays fiddle (picked up while living abroad in Ireland on a music fellowship) and once played accordion in a tango band.
Drummer Per Hanson is a long-standing New England music icon, revered by musicians and audiences alike. While most widely recognized for his blues drumming, Per enjoys playing many styles, including R&B, country and jazz.He spent many years on the road and in recording studios as a founding member of Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters, with James Cotton, and David Maxwell to name a few.
Bassist Scott Morrison brings a soulful, funky sound and style with influences ranging from James Jamerson to Willie Dixon, from George Porter to Flea. Scott cut his teeth in the Boston-based blues/R&B scene of the mid-1980s, sharing the stage and backing local, regional and national acts including Watermelon Slim, Earring George Mayweather, Shirley Lewis, Tom Hambridge, Stovall Brown, Madeleine Hall and Sax Gordon Beadle.
07/29/16 – Vivid Motion presents- Tales From the End of The World
Before things go Bad, Everything looks Bright. Tension builds until The End happens. War, made worse by Science without Ethics. People pick up the Pieces and attempt to Continue On as best they can.
As in life, there's not one main character, but people flowing from one piece to the next, each person a main character in their own story. With Vivid Motion's unique mix of choreography and music, there's sure to be something everyone will enjoy.
Friday, July 29 - 8pm
Saturday, July 30 - 8pm
Sunday, July 31 - 5pm
Tickets: $13 adults/$6 kids under 13
TICKETS - http://talesend.brownpapertickets.com/
08/04/16 – Join us on Thursday, August 4th at 7:00PM as flamenco/multi-disciplinary artist Gregoíre de la Costa & special guests present a night of world music for the guitar.
Gregoíre Pearce is a multi-disciplinary guitarist, living and composing in Portland,Maine. On his most recent album Pluviophile (October, 2015) he composed, performed, and recorded all of the parts with the exception of hammond organ and tenor saxophone. Gregoíre also began collaborating with the exceptionally talented and artful bailaora Lindsey Bourassa in June, 2015.
Before taking up beautiful, industrial, coastal New England living, Gregoíre lived in Lowell, Massachusetts where he studied theory, arranging and composition with trombonist Paul Gay. Then, a stint in Connecticut for gainful employment as a recording engineer. On to Los Angeles to transcribe, a few years in Las Vegas to perform and teach, and back to Portland Maine to explore further endeavors and collaborations.
Joining De la Costa will be musicians Gerardo Nuñez, Pepe Habichuela, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Mangoré, Jaco Pastorius and more!
08/05/16 – "To have the passion to transcribe one piece of classical music for guitar is to be applauded, as it is more than a work of love, it is a work of passion, of understanding more than just the traditional aspects of the created piece. To have the desire to transcribe Bach’s Six Suites for ‘Cello is something more than just having a love and passion of the music contained within the Suites, it is a love affair coupled with a burning desire to share the magnificence of a Suite of music almost lost to mankind." -Janet Mawdesley, Blue Wolf Reviews
Steven Hancoff first heard the music of the ‘Cello Suites back in the 1980’s and fell in love, with not just the music, but also the story which accompanied the music; a story which Bach has used to create the music which weaves and entrances, as fresh today as it was when first written back in 1720. That the music survived at all was nothing short of a miracle. That it has been transcribed into modern format or metre suitable for acoustic guitar, thus reintroducing it to a wider audience, is indeed something very special, rare and beautiful.
When I was first smitten with the desire to transcribe and record the Six Suites for Cello Solos, the entire idea was to transform each of the 36 movements – six pieces of music in each of six suites – into music for the guitar. I had fallen in love with the music back in the 1980’s, and as I was approaching my 60th birthday, the timing felt right. That is to say, it was now or never!
Transcription is not merely the transferring of notes from one instrument to another. Transcription here is the art of creating a piece of guitar music out of a piece of cello music. One of the central issues that was necessary to confront was this: cello is a one-note-at-a-time instrument – you can't play separate, concurrent melodic lines and you can't play chords. In short, this means a cello soloist can play melody but not harmony.
A guitar, on the other hand, is idiomatically suited, or even designed, for the musician to do all these things. So, transcription here ultimately means harmonizing the Bach Cello Suites.Every day I practiced two suites – twelve pieces of music – by Johann Sebastian Bach. Normally, when a musician is working on a piece of music, he memorizes it, both mentally and muscularly. This practice was essentially different in that I had to struggle to not memorize because, whenever a new harmonic idea occurred to me, I kept on changing the transcriptions. And of course, the more I practiced the Suites, the more intimate I became with them, and so the more ideas came my way.
Early on, it dawned on me that familiarizing myself with the life of this man might deepen my understanding of who he was, and that understanding would serve me to better organize the music. So, I began to read biographies. And the more I read, the more I wrote. This man, "the miracle of Bach," as Pablo Casals once put it, led a life of unfathomable creativity and giftedness on the one hand and neglect and immense tragedy on the other.
08/06/16 – "Whitney Rose has been lighting up the touring venues ever since her breakout album, Heartbreaker of the Year, and standout performance at last year's AMA. She's been praised everywhere from ND to The New York Times. And like any serious heartbreaker, she's got a killer band" - No Depression
We're excited to welcome singer/songwriter Whitney Rose to Portland ME to perform with us at St. Lawrence Arts!
As the newest resident of Austin,TX and latest signing to Six Shooter Records, Rose started off 2016 by embarking on an extensive tour throughout the United States in February and March. The summer months will see her complete work on a follow up album, while holding up court at the Grandaddy of all music venues “The Continental Club” in Austin, TX with a weekly residency. She will say goodbye to summer with a month long North American headlining tour which starts August 1st.
2015 was a massive year for Whitney Rose. The vintage country pop specialist’s sophomore offering, Heartbreaker of the Year, converted critics’ double takes into palpable buzz with its beguiling blend of then and now.
Heartbreaker of the Year was produced by The Mavericks’ Raul Malo, who also performs on multiple tracks. Rose’s vocals convey both vulnerability and sharpness – a contrast that permeates her music as a whole – to enthralling results. The album’s success has impelled those in the know to include Rose’s name in any conversation about the future faces of Americana and Country music.
08/13/16 – It's been 15 years since Rod Picott laid down his work belt, picked up an acoustic guitar and put a permanent end to his gig as a sheet rock hanger. He'd been writing music in private for years, but it was 2001's Tiger Tom Dixon's Blues — a debut album that bridged the gap between between folk and Americana — that officially introduced him as a singer/songwriter, kick starting one of the more acclaimed careers in modern-day roots music. Since then, he's focused on a different kind of construction: building a catalog of songs that spin stories of hard work, heartache and the human condition.
On Fortune, he turns his focus inward, using himself — not the people around him — as the album's main character. It's his seventh solo release, written and recorded after years of heavy touring. Looking to make a record that could serve as a raw, authentic document of his live show, Picott recorded Fortune quickly, cutting six songs during his first day in the studio and finishing the entire album within a week and a half.
"I wanted to make a record where we captured performances, as opposed to imitating performances," says Picott, who grew up in rural New England before relocating to Nashville. "Technology makes it so easy to do an imitation of what your best performance would sound like, but that's not a real performance. That's just what you would want yourself to sound like. I didn't want to do that. For better or worse, Fortune is what I actually sound like."
Musicians like Slaid Cleaves, Ray Wylie Hubbard, and Fred Eaglesmith would claim it's for the better. All three have recorded Picott's songs, showing their support for a self-sufficient songwriter who plays most of his shows alone, relying on his voice and acoustic guitar to pack a punch. Fortune gave him a chance to put together a small band, though, with Will Kimbrough (Steve Earle, Guy Clark) handling the electric guitar parts and producer Neilson Hubbard (The Apache Relay, Matthew Ryan) doubling as the group's drummer. With Lex Price joining in on bass, the group kept things as real and raw as possible. They just plugged in and played.
"A lot of these songs explore a sense of chance, of what might happen with your life,” Picott says. “Jeremiah” is the story of a soldier who doesn’t home from Iraq, “Uncle John” is a wry look at family dysfunction, and "Alicia" is a naked telling of a romantic break. The songs come from his life, and the details tell a vivid story. "There's a sense of luck, and how things might unfold for someone. I thought that calling it Fortune would put a positive spin on that idea of chance and circumstance. It helps wrap up the feeling that runs through the record."
08/20/16 – Putnam Smith, who hails from Portland, Maine, could be an old-world troubadour fresh from the 19th Century. After all, he lives in a log cabin, plays his Grandfather's banjo, and prints up the jackets of his CDs on an antique Letterpress. Yet this rootsy multi-instrumentalist songwriter (he also writes and performs on guitar, mandolin, fretless banjo, and piano), steeped as he is in old-time Appalachian traditions, is very much a storyteller for the modern age. Putnam first came to national attention with his 2009 release, "Goldrush," which went to #5 on the national Folk & Bluegrass DJ Charts (and made it on 6 "Favorite Albums of 2009" lists).
His next release, "We Could Be Beekeepers"shot right up to #2 the month it was released, charting 3 songs in the top ten (www.folkradio.org). Selected as an "Emerging Artist" at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival (2011), and noted as "One To Watch" (Rob Reinhart, Acoustic Cafe), Putnam has begun to establish himself as an acoustic tour-de-force not only in his hometown of Portland, but as a nationally touring musician as well. Engaging folks with humor, charm, and storytelling, Putnam has performed in over 35 states, from East Coast to West. His audiences have been known to howl like wolves, sing like moonshiners, and laugh and cry like, well, like human beings. As Maine's indie newspaper the Maine Edge says: "He's that rare breed of musician that manages to sound like a throwback without ever coming off as dated."
Joining Putname Smith will be special guest Ashley Storrow- Her songwriting remains rooted in the folk tradition and incorporates intricate harmonies, soulful melodies, and acoustic finger picking. Her lyrics have been described as catchy and confessional and dare listeners to question and to simplify life.
08/25/16 – Mile Twelve is a fresh, hard driving young band beautifully walking the line between original and traditional bluegrass. Based in Boston, Massachusetts and fast gaining recognition for their outstanding performances throughout bluegrass and folk circles, Evan Murphy, Bronwyn Keith-Hynes, Nate Sabat and BB Bowness create captivating songs and daring instrumental pieces from diverse influences. Banjo Luminary Tony Trischka says, "Mile Twelve is carrying the bluegrass tradition forward with creativity and integrity."
Since their formation in the fall of 2014, Mile Twelve has quickly been on rise. They released their debut 6-track self titled EP, performed extensively throughout the U.S. and Canada, including several major festivals; Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, Ossipee Valley Music Festival, Joe Val Bluegrass Festival and Baygrass Bluegrass Festival. A track from their debut EP was featured on Sirius XM Bluegrass Junction's "Hand Picked with Del McCoury", another track was featured on Spotify's "Fresh Bluegrass" 2015 playlist and they were selected as formal showcase artists at the 2015 North East Folk Alliance. Mile Twelve looks forward to hitting the road again in 2016 and continuing to connect with audiences around the world.