Artist Updates



Congratulations to Noah Wall and Tommy Norris of The Barefoot Movement on their April 2014 marriage.  Your fans at Chestnut House Concerts wish you joy and happiness.








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Laney Jones and the Lively Spirits were selected as the winners of the bluegrass genre of BELK’s Southern Musician Showcase in March 2014 and later that month performed at The Fillmore Charlotte.  You can read more in the Charlotte Business Journal.


The 2014 Spring issue of Mandolin Magazine features mandolin player Tim Connell.  Tim was at Chestnut ImageHouse Concerts in March 2014 with Jack Dwyer (Mando Planet).  The same issue of Mandolin Magazine gave a rave review of Tim’s new CD with musician Mike Burdette (Rio Con Brio) called Stumptown Swing.  We’ll keep our ear to the ground for any news of another East coast tour.


Telisha Williams mentioned her training for an upcoming marathon when she played at Chestnut House Concerts in January 2014 with her band, The Wild Ponies.  On April 26, 2014 Telisha completed two goals… she finished her marathon and raised money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Congrats to Chestnut House Concerts’ hero Telisha Williams!


Next in the series at Chestnut House Concerts:

Saturday, May 17, 2014:  The Bombadils.  Progressive Folk/Celtic/Bluegrass/Jazz  Potluck at 6:00 PM, Show at 7:00 PM.  Save a seat with a text/call to 717-940-9311 or email Tim at

A Healthier You? More Music!

Last night Wild Ponies gave us the perfect combination of original tunes, story telling, quality musicianship and humor.  In this morning’s paper Dr. Anthony Komaroff, in his column “Ask Dr. K”, responds to a reader who asks the question “Is there a connection between music and health?”  Of course we all can guess the answer is a resounding yes, but Dr. K provides some medical reasons.  Music can lower heart rate, lower blood pressure and reduce levels of stress hormones.   Research suggests that music may promote the brain’s ability to make new connections between nerve cells.  Music works its magic through its rhythms as the human brain can distinguish music from noise and responds to rhythm, repetition, tones and tunes.  Stroke and Parkinson’s patients who are struggling with balance and coordination that are exposed to music regularly make more improvements than patients without music.  Music helps us heal.


Jake Winebrenner, Telisha Williams, Doug Williams, Bella


Jake Winebrenner, Telisha Williams, Bella, Doug Williams

House concerts not only provide us with live music, but there’s the added advantage of community.  As Telisha Williams reminded us during The Wild Ponies’ show, it’s important for us to have human contact – to escape from technology for a few hours and be with others.  And Telisha would know, she’s the Wildest Pony.

Stay healthy – intentionally add music events to your schedule – preferably live music – whether it’s through your child’s school performances, church worship, music festivals, or Chestnut House Concerts.

Next up:  Laney Jones – February 21, 2014

Potluck at 6:00 pm, Show at 7:00 pm.

Beauty and the Bass

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charcoal of Telisha Williams by Candace Butler, Sugar Grove, Virginia

While traditional bluegrass bands were (some still are) limited to male musicians, female bass players are fairly common in contemporary bluegrass bands; 7 time IBMA bass player of the year award winner Missy Raines is probably the most well known.  In the world of string bands playing the wide assortment of folk/Americana/roots music, you’ll find that females are playing all instruments from the banjo to the upright bass.

HaseeIn May, 2013 The Barefoot Movement bassist Hasee Ciaccio demonstrated that height was not necessary to master the skill on the upright bass, and audience members were charmed by her personality, vocal quality and ability to add a complex bass line that enhanced the tunes.


In December we had the honor of having bass player Shelby Means of the all female band Della Mae. Shelby joined Cruz Contreras and Josh Oliver as the Tanasi Ramblers for a few shows over the 2013 holiday season. Her upright bass is named Buddha and the two adeptly moved together throughout the evening’s set list with Shelby demonstrating her finesse as an accomplished musician.

In upcoming shows we are excited to see bass player Vanessa McGowan of Tattletale Saints on April 4,2014 and Telisha Williams at this week’s show.


Don’t miss vocalist and upright bass player Telisha Williams of the Wild Ponies when they perform at Chestnut House Concerts this coming Friday night, January 17.  It’s our usual schedule of potluck at 6:00 p.m. followed by the show at 7:00 p.m.  Call/text 717-940-9311 or email Tim at to sign up.

Things That Used to Shine

loveletter collage

On December 19, 1926 my grandmother Alice  wrote to her betrothed, “I don’t know of any boy that I would rather have had than you.  I really don’t believe we could have been any better satisfied if we had searched and waited for years. I know you and I will be happy”. The letter was simply addressed to my grandfather Mr. J Paul Sauder, New Holland, Penna. and was signed, ‘your Virginia lassie’.

As I listened to the Wild Ponies’ song, Things That Used to Shine I thought of these love letters, my dad’s pocket watch, the legacy of Hazel Dickens and my scuffed up cowboy boots.  I suppose I too like things that used to shine.  Below are the lyrics of the song from the 2013 album by the same name; followed by a video of Wild Ponies a couple months ago.

I like things that used to shine, polished smooth by the grains of time. Old and used and past their prime, I like things that used to shine.

Love letters in the drawer of a flea market find, laid away ring with two months behind. A grandfather clock with a mournful chime. I like things that used to shine

A scratchy old record that still goes round, on an old turntable makes a beautiful sound. A proud father’s eyes when he starts to cry. I like things that used to shine

The way that Hazel Dickens sings, too long unchanged guitar strings, a candle holder from a bottle of wine. like things that used to shine

A roughed up penny from the year I was born, old leather boots all scuffed and worn, an old pocket watch that still keeps time
And I like things that used to shine

The way you smiled when you were mine
That sparkle in your eyes when you were mine
Can’t turn back the hands of time
I like things that used to shine

Seats are still available to see the Wild Ponies at Chestnut House Concerts on Friday, January 17, 2014. Potluck at 6:00 pm, Show at 7:00 pm. Suggested donation of $15-20 at the door. Call/text 717-940-9311 or email Tim at for more information.

Music & Fashion…

In addition to showcasing songwriting & performing skills at Chestnut House Concerts, these Roots/Americana musicians bring style and fashion. 

Nora Jane Struthers and Joe Overton will be performing at Chestnut House Concerts on Wednesday, December 18, 2013. 

Vintage Dress


Nora Jane collects vintage dresses like this 40’s teal & brown cotton dress with white crisscross stripes.  

Nora Jane found this dress in Vinton, Va. Maybe she’ll have time to shop at Mommalicious or Hinesite while in Lancaster.  To read more about Nora Jane’s vintage collection check out her blog.

PerfumeThe Wild Ponies is a Nashville based band fronted by Doug & Telisha Williams.  Doug plays guitar, Telisha plays bass and Jake Winebrenner joins them on percussion.  Wild Ponies will be at Chestnut House Concerts on Friday, January 17, 2014.  Their 2012 album Ghost of the Knoxville Girl inspired Poison Apple Apothecary of Atlanta, Georgia to create a perfume by the same name. 


Vanessa McGowan, vocalist & double bass player for the New Zealand based duo Tattletale Saints is wearing a dress made by Papercup and sold at S’wonderful Boutique, a family owned clothing & gift store in Wellington, New Zealand.  The store was built from the ground up by mother & daughter Frances & Virginia McMullen and model/musician Vanessa remarked that “S’wonderful are amazing talented people, the clothes are all 100% sweatshop free, ethically and lovingly made in New Zealand and we feel really good about promoting them. This gorgeous dress is super comfortable and flattering and if you want one of your own, here’s where you head….” 
Swonderful Boutique, Tattletale Dress

Tattletale Saints (Vanessa along with guitarist/vocalist Cy Winstanley) will be at Chestnut House Concerts on April 4, 2014 along with 10 String Symphony.

The December 18th show is sold out, but if you’re interested in upcoming shows, check the calendar and contact us so we can add you to the reservation list.