Something for Everyone: 3 upcoming shows include soul, folk, roots, old-time and world music.

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Mando Planet (Jack Dywer and Tim Connell) played at Chestnut House Concerts in March 2014 and we’re excited to have them return on April 10, 2015 to play the world’s music on sixteen strings. Their set typically includes music from Ireland, Brazil, the Appalachians, Africa and the African Diaspora, Greece, The Jewish Diaspora, and the Balkans.

The Corn Potato String Band plays traditional American music and all three members are multi-instrumentalists. In addition to being champion fiddlers they play banjo, guitar, bass and mandolin and deftly handle many different antiquated styles including ballads, “ho-downs,” country “rags” and southern gospel, specializing in twin fiddling and double banjo tunes. The Corn Potatoes will be at Chestnut House Concerts on Saturday, March 28, 2015.

Birds of Chicago won the hearts of the Chestnut House Concert audience in September 2013 and they will return on Sunday, March 22, 2015 for another evening of music.  The Birds of Chicago just finished recording a new album Real Midnight with producer Joe Henry and they will share some of their new songs with us.

For all three shows the evening will start with a potluck at 6:00 p.m. followed by music at 7:00 p.m.  To save a seat contact Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com or call/text 717.940.9311.  Suggested donation of $15/20 per person.

Flynn Cohen of Low Lily

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photo by Andy Cambria

Flynn Cohen studied Music at Dartington College of Arts in Devon, England and at Mills College in Oakland, California. He now teaches in the Music Department at Keene State College in New Hampshire, as well as The Music Emporium in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Flynn will be in concert (vocals, mandolin, guitar) with the American folk band Low Lily (formerly known as Annalivia) at Chestnut House Concerts on Thursday, February 26, 2015.

Below is a video of Flynn Cohen performing one of his original tunes “Snag” (video by Andy Cambria). Note that the fiddle player in the video is Emerald Rae; Lissa Schneckenburger will be performing with Flynn Cohen and Liz Simmons as Low Lily at Chestnut House Concerts.

To RSVP contact Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com or text/call 717940-9311. $15/20 suggested donation.  Potluck at 6, Show at 7.

Low Lily: Preserving Tradition

Francis James Child, the son of a sail maker, was born in Boston on February 1,1825.  Child attended public school for his primary and secondary education during which time his potential and intelligence was apparent enabling him to continue his education at Harvard – graduating first in his class in 1846 and thus beginning his academic career at Harvard. Child was Harvard’s Boylston Professor of Oratory and Rhetoric until 1876 when he became the university’s first professor of English.

During his time at Harvard, Child’s deep passion was the collection and preservation of the ballad tradition.  He desired the most comprehensive collection of all known English and Scottish ballads, which by this time,  included their AmericanCover_of_Francis_James_Child's_''English_and_Scottish_Popular_Ballads'' and Canadian variants.  Child collected 305 ballads total, each one numbered and referenced as Child #7, Child #274, and so on.While Child’s collection was acknowledged by scholars, very few additions or changes were made for over half a century.  It wasn’t until the 1950’s that there was a renewed interest in ballads during the folk music revival.

John Burgess, author of Francis James Child -Brief life of a Victorian enthusiast: 1825-1896 states that since the 1950s, “new interpretations (of ballads) have appeared regularly, remarkably fresh and original given the ancient sources of the lyrics. Child passed on to subsequent generations of audiences and performers a legacy of scholarship that they have been able to enjoy on their own terms and express in their own fashion. In doing so, he preserved the continuing vitality of the ballad tradition that he loved so much” (Harvard Magazine, 2006).

A fine example of the preservation of ballads comes from the band Low Lily.  Vocalist and guitar player Liz Simmons heard a recording of “False Sir John” (aka May Colvin, the Elfknight, or Child#2) by Jean Ritchie and then changed the ballad from a major key to a minor key, modifying the melody and tempo. This ballad originated in Scotland, was modified by many including an Appalachian folk singer, and now by contemporary artist Liz Simmons.

 

Low Lily is an “American roots and branches” vocal and string trio which draws from tradition and today to create their own brand of new acoustic folk music.  They will be appearing at Chestnut House Concerts on Thursday, February 26, 2015.  Potluck at 6 pm, show at 7 pm.  RSVP with Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com or text/call 717 9409311.

 

 

 

Low Lily

10603303_10152791484019491_5044194541377641372_nIn February we are excited to have Low Lily, a three member Americana-roots band.  Low Lily, formerly known as Annalivia, includes artists Liz Simmons, Flynn Cohen, and Lissa Schneckenburger. These musicians 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.

Many thanks to Lancaster Newspapers (LNP) for their article on Chestnut House Concerts published in the Entertainment section on Sunday, January 4, 2015.  Correspondent Scott Kreider took the time to interview us just prior to the holidays and wrote a very thorough article about our house concert series as well as the January 9th show with Harpeth Rising. The article generated a lot of interest and we  ‘sold out’ the show.

http://m.lancasteronline.com/features/entertainment/lancaster-city-house-is-home-to-concert-series/article_3c7748ce-911d-11e4-9982-77dae3d86636.html?mode=jqm

To RSVP for the Low Lily show on Thursday, February 26 email Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com or call/text 717-940-9311. Potluck at 6:00 pm, show at 7:00 pm.

 

 

Great Things in 2014; More to Come

As we enter 2015 one can’t help but take note of all the 2014 “best of” lists.

Several artists that performed here at Chestnut House Concerts were on some of the music related lists of 2014.

The Bluegrass Situation listed The Best Roots Songs of 2014 and named “The Skillet Blues” by Nora Jane Struthers – this song is one of 6 on the album Country EP #1. You can read the entire list on The Bluegrass Situation’s website. Congrats to Nora Jane and her band.

It’s not surprising to see that Dave McGraw and Mandy Fer’s 2014 album Maritime came in at #11(out of 24) on the Euro Americana 2014 chart; in September 2014 they were number one. Dave and Mandy share the list with folk veterans such as Lucinda Williams, John Hiatt, and Rosanne Cash. To see the full list visit www.eurhigh-res-best-medicineoamericanachart.eu.

Folk Alley has several annual lists including “Best of 2014 – Folk Alley Listener Poll” in which The Stray Birds’ 2014 album Best Medicine was voted #2.

Our very first house concert was with Jonathan Byrd back in 2012 and The Triangle’s (Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina) 25 Best Albums of 2014 marked Byrd’s recent album “You Can’t Outrun the Radio” as number 13.

Chestnut House Concerts wishes everyone who has passed through our doors – audience members and musicians – a wonderful 2015.

On January 9, 2015 a female trio, Harpeth Rising, will be performing at Chestnut House Concerts.  We still have some seats available so if you’d like to attend please contact Tim at 7179409311 or by email at tlehman9@gmail.com.  Potluck at 6, Show at 7.

A Cello in the House

Both Tim and I name the cello as our favorite stringed instrument. While we’ve heard masters such as Rushad Eggleston and Natalie Haas play at bluegrass/Celtic festivals over the years, it is not common for most Americana/folk bands to incorporate the cello.  But finally, our 27th house concert, Harpeth Rising, will feature banjo, violin aMariaAlonend….cello.

Cellist Maria Di Meglio is classically trained and as a youth participated in orchestral groups that helped her gain exposure to many types of music. Maria’s mother is from Montenegro which created in Maria an additional awareness of styles of folk music across cultures.

Maria likes the flexibility of the cello – that it can be two instruments in one.  The cello is bass-like but also can be lyrical and melodic.

All three members of Harpeth Rising met at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where they all earned performance degrees.  With Rebecca Reed-Lunn on banjo, Jordana Greenberg on violin and Maria playing cello, Harpeth Rising produces a fusion of folk, newgrass, rock and classical.

Harpeth Rising will be performing at 7:00 pm on Friday, January 9, 2015.  Prior to the show there is a potluck starting at 6:00 pm.  Suggested donations are $15/20 per person and an RSVP is required.  Contact Tim Lehman at tlehman9@gmail.com or by text/call to 717940 9311.  Come meet the cello.