Billy Bright of Wood & Wire

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The 4 piece bluegrass band Wood & Wire’s  mandolinist is Billy Bright, a veteran player who has worked with legendary artists Peter Rowan, Tony Rice, and Vassar Clements. Bright attended Berklee College of Music and considers his unique style to be  influenced by  musicians such as Matt Mundy, David Grisman,  and Mike Compton.  Friday, June 17,  Billy will be on stage with the rest of Wood & Wire.  There’s a potluck at 6 pm and music starts at 7. You can RSVP by emailing Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com. Suggested donation of 15/20 at the door – all money goes to the musicians. 

 

Below is a video of Wood & Wire playing The Sea Wall from their album “The Coast”.  Billy’s breaks are at 1:15 and again at 4:25. 

 

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Things I Learned at the 2014 Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival

Having just returned from the 2014 Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival I would like to share some thoughts.

1. The Deadly Gentlemen continue to be deadly gentlemen and have a new bass player with an amazing voice.

2. If you can’t put down your phone while you’re in a PORT-A-POTTY …you might need therapy. I mean really, who wants to be in there one second longer than necessary?

3. The Barefoot Movement were ON FIRE! This 4 piece band played here at Chestnut House Concerts on Memorial Day 2013 and they’ve developed marvelously as writers, performers and have become a cohesive band. They played three times on three different stages during the festival including the main stage on Thursday afternoon. Of course Tim and I had tears in our eyes as the crowd of thousands gave a standing ovation.

4. James McIver (banjo player for Cold Chocolate) is on tour with the band while completing his dissertation for his PhD in Physics from MIT – meanwhile, after studying the schedule extensively, Tim and I couldn’t remember which stage we were headed to next for more than 5 minutes – let alone which band was playing there.

5. Awesome bands come out of Boston’s Berklee College of Music. We first saw Laney Jones & the Lively Spirits a year ago at Grey Fox and this year we were wowed by Twisted Pine.

6. The woman seated behind the sound booth who kept telling the sound engineers to sit down so she could see …just doesn’t have a clue.

7. Not to my surprise – the audience members either loved or hated Gangastagrass. I won’t say my preference…but Tim did find it curious that we accidentally ended up “Astrograss for Kids – The Colored Pencil Factory” CD instead of the “Broken Hearts and Stolen Money” Gangastagrass CD he wanted.

8. Cold Chocolate played at the Creekside Stage on Saturday. Before the band started the guy to the left of me told the woman he was with “Cold Chocolate is up next and I was told I’ve got to see them”. The woman on my right told her friend “I don’t want to leave until we’ve seen Cold Chocolate – I’ve heard great things about them”. They both were right, this band is a lot of fun. Ethan and Kirsten switch on taking the lead, they do mostly originals with a few covers in the mix.

I hope you can join us on Tuesday (July 22). It’s not bluegrass – Cold Chocolate is in what I call the progressive folk/string band genre. Ethan Robbins – guitar, vocals; Kirsten Lamb – upright bass, vocals; James McIver – banjo, vocals and Ariel Bernstein – drums. Potluck at 6, Show at 7. All donations go to the band.

I’ll even rustle up some cold dessert. I don’t know, perhaps chocolate?

 

 

 

In Good Company

1001230_10151785871362497_51346885_nChestnut House Concerts welcomes Laney Jones and the Lively Spirits on Friday, February 21st.  Laney and two of the Lively Spirits are students at Berklee College of Music in Boston.  Laney is studying voice, songwriting and American Roots Music. Most of the music she performs are original tunes and she accompanies herself on banjo or ukulele. Joining her on stage will be Lars Thorson on fiddle, Jacy Anderson on guitar (also students at Berklee) along with bass player Matthew Tonner.

Founded in 1945, the mission of Berklee College of Music is to educate, train, and develop students to excel in music as a career. Student population is just over 4,400 and about 30% if these students are female.  28% of the student population is international, representing 98 countries.

Some names of Berklee alumni that may be familiar to you?   Levon Helm, John Mayer, Branford Marsalis, Bruce Hornsby, Paula Cole, Melissa Etheridge, Roy Hargrove, Gillian Welch, Esperanza Spalding, and Diana Krall.

Laney’s video “Black Coffee” seems appropriate in a post about college life.  We have a few seats available for Friday night’s performance.  Text or call 717-940-9311 to rsvp.  Potluck at 6 pm, Show at 7 pm.  Donations at the door of $15/20.

One thing I know…

I’ve never been good with trivia questions.  I can remember my birthday, the first boy I kissed, how many quarts are in a gallon and that the notes on the bass clef between the lines from low to high are a|c|e|g because, indeed, all cows eat grass.

I have friends though, with an amazing propensity for recalling details, and on the occasion that I’ve accompanied them to trivia competitions, I’ve been duly impressed.  Even though I’m not a trivia junkie I’d have been living under a rock during the 90s in Lancaster to not know of the king of trivia, Curtis Earth.

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Laney sings “I Wish I Was a Zombie” on The Curtis Earth Show, WPRK 91.5 FM

I was surprised to see a post on Facebook by our next house concert guest, Laney Jones regarding a radio spot she did with Curtis Earth in January while home in Orlando from her studies at Berklee College of Music in Boston.  Below is a video clip of Laney singing “Devil Down” on the Curtis Earth Show, 91.5 FM.  

Curtis moved to Orlando, Florida in 2002 to host trivia shows for WTKS 104.1 FM and for Disney cruise lines. In addition to Florida and the Atlantic Ocean, Earth Trivia continues today in Lancaster as well as the DC area via associates in these regions. Curtis also hosts the Curtis Earth Show on WPRK, 91.5 FM, Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida.

I do know now that if asked this trivia question: “Who’s one of the top emerging artists in folk/Americana music?” – you’d want me on your team.

To hear Laney Jones, Matthew Tonner (bass), Jacy Anderson (guitar) and Lars Thorson (fiddle) in Lancaster, plan to attend Chestnut House Concerts on Friday, February 21, 2014.Potluck at 6 pm, show at 7:00 pm.  See the ‘about’ page for information to RSVP.

Laney Jones & the Lively Spirits

Tim and I were able to attend Grey Fox for the first time in 2013.  While we appreciated the High Meadow Stage with big names like Tim O’Brien, the Del McCoury Band and the Carolina Chocolate Drops, where we spent most of our time was at the Creekside Stage.  Creekside scheduled a few bands each day in their Emerging Artist Showcase sponsored by the Philadelphia Folk Festival and WFDU.

Laney Jones and her band played at the Creekside Stage on Friday and although the temperature was in the 90s with high humidity, we all forgot our discomfort as Laney built an immediate rapport with the audience. Laney has an infectious smile and obvious delight in sharing the music she’s written through her banjo, harmonica and vocals. There’s an ease she has on stage that comes from her years of performing musical theater.  Laney is currently studying songwriting, voice and American Roots Music at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Ma.

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Laney Jones at Grey Fox Music Festival – July 2013

We welcome Laney Jones & the Lively Spirits (Matthew Tonner, bass; Jacy Anderson, guitar; and Lars Thorson, fiddle) to Chestnut House Concerts on Friday, February 21, 2014.  Potluck at 6 pm, Show at 7 pm.  Suggested donations of $15-20 per person.  To RSVP, call/text 717-940-9311 or email Tim at tlehman9@gmail.com.