Our 2018 line-up!
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MOKOOMBA Sunday July 8th 7:00 pm
Mokoomba is one of Africa’s most exciting young bands, dazzling audiences worldwide with their knockout live shows and potent blend of traditional Tonga, Luvale, & Nyanja sounds laced with international styles from soukous to soul.
Mokoomba is based in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. The band’s six members, Mathias Muzaza (lead vocals), Ndaba Coster Moyo (drums, backing vocals), Trustworth Samende (lead guitar, backing vocals), Donald Moyo, (keyboards, backing vocals), Miti Mugande, (percussion & backing vocals) and Abundance Mutori (bass, backing vocals) grew up as friends in the Chinotimba township.
Living in a border city that attracts tourists from all over the world gave Mokoomba’s music an international perspective from the beginning, incorporating everything from reggae to afropop to soul alongside their own local musical traditions.
The group’s members began playing together as teenagers in 2001, and Mokoomba was officially formed in 2008. Their first major success came that same year, when they won the Music Crossroads Inter-Regional Festival Competition in Malawi.
Since then, Mokoomba has become one of Zimbabwe’s most popular bands, playing with such icons as Hugh Masekela, Baba Maal and the Talking Head’s Tina Weymouth and Chris Franz. They’ve rocked legendary rooms and stages worldwide, from NYC’s Apollo Theater, and The Kennedy Center is Washington, D.C., to London’s 100 Club and Amsterdam’s Melkweg, to WOMEX and SXSW, sealing their reputation as one of Africa’s best young live bands.
“Mokoomba is quite simply the most impressive band Zimbabwe has produced in recent memory.” — Banning Eyre, Afropop Worldwide
“There’s an irrepressible energy, spectacular guitar work and a lot of soul” — Simon Broughton, London Evening Standard
“Mokoomba is quite simply the most impressive band Zimbabwe has produced in recent memory.” — Banning Eyre, Afropop Worldwide
“You have no choice but to dance when this Zimbabwe-based group performs their innovative mix of traditional Tonga and pan-African music with hints of rap, ska and Afro-Cuban music. Their infectious good vibes have long-lasting effects.” — Nancy Flores, Austin 360.com
Rik Palieri Monday July 9th Noon Brown Bag
Rik Palieri- is a talented singer, songwriter, multi instrumentalist, storyteller and member of "The Mythical Order of The Rose Tattoo", who lives the musical life to the fullest.
He is a very energetic performer who captivates audiences of all ages with his stories and songs. In a typical performance Rik will sing an old ballad with a fret less banjo, stomp out a Lead belly style blues on the 12 string guitar, squeeze an exotic instrumental on the Polish bagpipes, spin out a wild and wooly story of his travels, pluck out a tune on the Ozark mouth bow, blow a mournful melody on the Native American flute and end the evening with an original Yodel-sing-a-long.
James Hill and Anne Janelle Monday July 9th 7:00 pm
A ukulele and cello duo might seem like an odd combination, but only until you hear the music these two create. James Hill is widely regarded as one of the best ukulele players in the world and Anne Janelle is "a cellist of true beauty" (Ottawa Citizen) who has performed with Kanye West and Bruce Cockburn.
Together, James and Anne craft a sound that is intricate, enchanting and engaging: "a crystal clear sound filled with warmth" (Bob Mersereau, CBC).
Their album True Love Don't Weep won the 2008 Canadian Folk Music Award for Best Traditional Album of the Year.
They are accomplished instrumentalists and some of the finest songwriters of their generation. Their music has been
described as "inventive, entertaining, beautifully written and brilliantly performed" (R2 Magazine).
In short, a night out with James Hill & Anne Janelle is "the perfect evening of tunes, stories and musical virtuosity"
“If you thought James Hill was simply the ukulele wunderkind, his latest album will convince you that he is also a great songwriter.” - Penguin Eggs
A fine songwriter and ukester par excellence." - Raffi
The Bengsons-Monday July 9th 8:30 pm
Husband and wife duo, The Bengsons, blend rousing, all-join-hands group choruses, spry melodies and energetic, frenetic rhythms to create rock/art/theater performances. The Bengsons have appeared at such venues as Joe’s Pub (NYC), NYU's Skirball Center (NYC), 92YTribeca (NYC), MASS MoCA (North Adams, MA), FlynnSpace (Burlington, VT), Z Space (San Francisco), On The Boards (Seattle), Pianos (NYC), Rockwood Music Hall (NYC), University of Southern California (LA), and the Market Theater (Johannesburg, South Africa). Their music has been featured for the past three years on So You Think You Can Dance (FOX). Abigail Bengson has also appeared as a member of tUnE-yArDs, including an appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
The Bengsons’ songs “have the foot-stomping, feel-good-folk vibe that has made groups like Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers, and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros so beloved…” TheaterDogs (SF)
Abigail Nessen Bengson possesses "not only a tremendous musical talent, but a raw honesty, a sincere righteousness.” - The New York Times
“The band has to rise to every music journalists list as a must see band soon, because it is unlike anything you have ever seen. Its as fast and furious as a punk show but as creative and clever as an Off-Broadway play. Boundaries for The Bengsons do not exist and their shows are a testament to this.” - The Huffington Post
“Quirky and radiantly emotive.” - Timeout New York
Jon Gailmor-Tuesday July 10th Noon Brown Bag
Songs to make people feel alive!. Music for humans prenatal through prehistoric, spanning the entire emotional spectrum. Humor and audience involvement are integral parts of any Jon Gailmor performance.“Jon's way with an audience is nothing short of genius. He had us in stitches and in tears, with a seamless array of humor, nostalgia, and especially wisdom. One comes away from Jon's house concert with a renewed dedication to the things we value. We are all encouraged to be a little more of who we are when we're with Jon.”
— Jean Eisele, Edmonds, WA
Night Tree-Tuesday July 10th 7:00 pm
Though each member of Night Tree originates from a different musical world, the six members have come together to a create a new sound that is unique to their instrumentation and musical voice, both attracting and bewildering enthusiastic crowds while connecting folk music lovers, café radio junkies, jazz enthusiasts, free-improvisers, and beyond.
These six conservatory-trained musicians have absorbed genres from across the globe. Night Tree is unique, not only for its abnormal instrumentation of two fiddles, cello, accordion, saxophone, percussion, and the occasional viola and mandolin, but for their collective representation and incorporation of traditions from Irish, Classical, Swedish, Jazz, Klezmer, and Afro-Cuban music. Each artist’s personality is given a spot to emerge with fiery improvisation, individual compositions, and a pristine ear. The band thrives on playing in darkness as to allow themselves the opportunity to solely listen with the absence of any possible visual distractions. They react to each other at any given time, in a matter of seconds. They have learned to get inside each other’s musical minds, creating one blossoming and unpredictable wave of sound that is Night Tree.
“I’m thrilled to have been part of this brilliant young band’s debut album. They play with such spark and musicality. Thoughtful compositions, precise, inventive arrangements. An absolute joy. Go hear them!” -Séamus Egan, founding member of SOLAS and Night Tree producer
Genticorum-Tuesday July 10th 8:30 pm
Over the past 15 years the trad Quebec group Genticorum has become a fixture on the international world, trad, folk and Celtic music circuit. The band’s five albums met with critical acclaim in Canada, the United States and Europe, assuring the band a brilliant future. Known for its energy and its stage presence, Genticorum has given more than 800 concerts in more than 15 countries.
Firmly rooted in the soil of their native land, the energetic and original traditional ‘power trio’ also incorporates the dynamism of today’s North American and European folk cultures in their music. They weave precise and intricate fiddle, flute and accordion work, gorgeous vocal harmonies, energetic foot percussion and guitar accompaniment into a big and jubilant musical feast. Their distinctive sound, sense of humour and stage presence makes them a supreme crowd pleaser.
"For a three piece, Genticorum makes a very full and glorious noise, both instrumentally and vocally… This is a band that’s going to go places."— SING OUT!
No Strings Marionette Company Wednesday July 12th Noon Brown Bag Show
The creativity of puppeteers Dan Baginski and Barbara Paulson reaches into every aspect of the production from script writing and puppetry to costumes, soundtracks and set production. They perform in full view of their audience, having found that children are as interested in how the puppets work as they are in the stories unfolding before them.
The No Strings Marionette Company invites you to enjoy the wonders of traditional puppet theatre. Come join these intriguing puppets as they journey through the lavish settings and enchanting stories into a world of imagination, enlightenment and laughter. This timeless art form engages young and old alike in virtual reality the old fashioned way....LIVE! With puppets! We spare no whimsy creating one-of-a-kind puppets sparkling with spirit. Masterful manipulation of rod, string and control animates these figures, channeling thought into gesture, transforming wood into being. Given our miniature actors' proven hold on audience attention, we avail ourselves of this golden opportunity to impart social awareness, environmental consciousness, scientific curiosity, respect for self and others, as well as zany humor to tickle the funny bone.
This year they will present "The Adventures of Sharp Ears".
Máire Ní Chathasaigh & Chris Newman July 11th 7:00 pm
The celebrated virtuoso partnership of “the doyenne of Irish harpers” (SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY) and “one of the UK’s most staggering and influential acoustic guitarists” (fROOTS), has by now brought its special musical vision to venues large and small - from the tiniest of historic churches in England, Germany and Italy to palaces in Kyoto and Istanbul, London’s Barbican, Sydney Town Hall and the Philharmonie in Cologne – in twenty-two countries on five continents. Their performances - described by The Irish Times as “music of fire and brilliance from the high-wire act in traditional music” - are rooted but eclectic, emotional but adventurous: a breathtaking blend of traditional Irish music, hot jazz, bluegrass and baroque, coupled with striking new compositions and Chris’s delightfully subversive wit. They've made many appearances on TV and radio and their busy touring schedule has brought them to twenty-one countries on five continents.
Music of fire and brilliance from the
high-wire act in traditional music”
- THE IRISH TIMES (Ireland)
“Did things I have never heard a harp do before... Astonishing... an extraordinary event”
- CLASSICAL GUITAR (UK)
“Their blinding technique, sizzling Irish reels and hot jazz improvisation brought an extended standing ovation... Newman has the great gift of being informative and hilarious simultaneously”
- THE WEST AUSTRALIAN
The Barbra Lica Quintet Wednesday July 11th 8:30 pm
Juno-nominated artist Barbra Lica is a fast-rising star in the Canadian music scene and has been receiving accolades for a unique vocal ability that stresses subtlety and grace. Based in Toronto, Canada, Barbra’s live show captivates audiences all over North America with her genuine warmth and confident stage presence.
A deep passion for the music of classic vocalists like Doris Day and Ella Fitzgerald led Barbra to pursue a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance at the University of Toronto. Shortly after graduating, Barbra was runner-up in the 2013 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition with judges Al Jarreau and Gretchen Parlato. Now a seasoned live act on the Canadian club and festival circuit, Barbra consistently performs in intimate spaces and prestigious theatres, such as Toronto’s Jazz Bistro and Koerner Hall.
“Barbra Lica is a dazzling performer who has talent to burn and vocals that will knock you over.”– Ross Porter (CEO & President, JAZZ.FM91)
“Lica smiles when she sings. You can heart it. When you see her in concert, you’ll see it too. In a word, refreshing”
– Tim Tamashiro, Host, CBC Radio
Robert & Gigi Thursday July 12th Noon Brown Bag
Festival on the Green veterans Robert Resnik and Gigi Weisman have been playing music together for kids young and old for almost 20 years, and during that time have released two CDs of children's songs to benefit the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. Many of the songs that they sing during performances were sung to them by their parents in the mid-1950s. Robert is a retired librarian and the host of All the Traditions, a popular folk and world music program on Vermont Public Radio. Gigi is a very special educator, a member of the Me2 Orchestra, and has taught many semesters of onstage quacking, braying, and mooing to students of the Royal Academy of Musical Animals. Please come prepared to oink and ribbit and, most importantly, to sing along!
The Ballroom Thieves -Thursday July 12th 7:00 pm
“A rock band in a folk suit,” The Ballroom Thieves – lead singer and guitarist Martin Earley, cellist Calin Peters and percussionist Devin Mauch - have been releasing their own fresh blend of spirited blues, folk and rock since 2012. With last year’s self-released album Deadeye, the band earned their own spot among celebrated music makers and is nominated for 5 Boston Music Awards, including Artist Of The Year, Album Of The Year, Live Artist Of The Year, Folk Artist Of The Year and Male Vocalist for Earley. Last year, the band took home three awards – Live Artist Of The Year, Americana Artist of the Year and Folk Artist of the Year.The band has spent the last three years in a sustained state of touring that took them across the country and to venerable stages like the Newport Folk Festival, Boston Calling, Calgary Folk Festival and Milwaukee’s Summerfest.
The Mammals Thursday July 12th 8:30 pm
Every time The Mammals take the stage there is something real at stake. Maybe it’s the risk-hungry spirit that the band’s songwriters Mike Merenda & Ruth Ungar adopted thru their youthful theater training, or maybe it’s that fiercely authentic, music-as-mission mindset learned from their elders. This folk music is not about suspenders and whiskey, although those are both beautiful things. The Mammals come to change the world, to connect timid generations, heal sore hearts, and enchant tired minds, one soulful, joyful show at a time.
In an era of disconnect, The Mammals work to re-connect thru their truth-telling lyrics, off-the-cuff storytelling and euphoric instrumentals. Their dynamic shows regularly bring a tear to the eye and hope to the hearts of listeners of all generations.
“A string band at the core, The Mammals augment their sound with drums and electric guitar to create a collectively harmonized howl as thrilling and rocking as any band currently subverting folk traditions” - No Depression
"Combining a modern pop sensibility with organic musical honesty, you hear everything from string sections to claw-hammer banjo. The band's ability to unite disparate forms to create fresh amalgamations makes them special among the young bands trying to create "World Music." Although the Mammals' style is musically inclusive, it still remains a personal and articulate edge." - Vintage Guitar
“Dear Mike + Ruthy, Your Hoot was one of the best song gatherings I've seen in all my 94 years. I hope next year I can be there for more than one day.” - Pete Seeger
Magician Tom Verner- Friday July 13th Noon Brown Bag 12:00 pm
Addison County based magician Tom Verner's Magicians Without Borders performs magic shows for children in refugee camps, orphanages and hospitals around the world–often in war torn places where love, laughter and magic are desperately needed. Tom says, “I like to think that the magic brings not only laughter and surprise, but on some deeper level perhaps, magic plants seeds of hope. Hope that the impossible is possible. Hope that after years of waiting in refugee camps, the waiting will end and the people will go home again.” Since 2002, Magicians Without Borders has traveled to over thirty countries using magic to entertain, educate and empower.
The Welterweights Friday July 13th 7:00 pm
The Welterweights are a favorite for music lovers of rock & roll and alt country. Their weekly shows at Hatch 31 in Bristol, VT have become legendary events, drawing fans from across the state to become part of their musical feasts featuring many of the states best musicians. Fronted by singer-songwriters Kelly Ravin and Lowell Thompson, they will be joined by Pat Melvin on bass and, Michael Chorney, acoustic guitar.
Kelly Ravin plays gritty rock and roll. Equally at home in backcountry bars & big city clubs, his skills as an instrumentalist are outshadowed only by his gifts as a songwriter. Raised in rural Maine and residing in Vermont, Ravin rose to prominence as a driving force behind Waylon Speed, an “underground outlaw dirt rock” band the Washington Post called “a cross between Metallica and the Lumineers, with an unnecessary dash of Prince showmanship.” Glide Magazine and Seven Days provided probably-better touchstones, comparing the band to My Morning Jacket, Waylon Jennings, and Motörhead. The band hit the road hard, sharing the stage with acts such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, My Morning Jacket, Junior Brown & Futurebirds.
As members of Waylon Speed shifted focus to other endeavors, Ravin focused on his solo work. His music finds itself squarely in the rock and roll tradition, with early influence from acts like The Drive By Truckers and Steve Earle; and modern resonance with the alt-country resurgence led by Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell and others.
Lowell Thompson is a musician who splits his time between Burlington, VT and Austin, TX. Dan Bolles of Seven Days calls him a “A young tunesmith transformed into a true artistic force.” Big Heavy World says Thompson is "The most genuine sort of musician out there.” Rolling Stone magazine calls his music “Inspired Alt-Country.” Any way you cut it, Thompson’s work speaks for itself and has been vetted by his fellow musicians—hand picked to share stages with the likes of Graham Parker, Justin Townes Earle, and Dawes. His latest effort entitled Stranger’s Advice was released in January 2015 and is being met with critical acclaim.
The Stone Cold Roosters Friday July 13th 8:30 pm
The Stone Cold Roosters strut, swing and rock across decades of American music with style. Classic country, swamp-rock, hillbilly-funk, blues, western swing and honky-tonk are just a few of the stops the Roosters make on their continental tour.
Ted Mortimer, Chuck Eller, Jim Pitman, Colin McCaffrey, Roy Cutler, Thal Aylward and Casey Dennis have been getting together for 12 years to make music and each other laugh.
Vermont Jazz Ensemble Street Dance Saturday July 14th 7:00 pm
With musicians hailing from all corners of the Green Mountain State, the 17-member Vermont Jazz Ensemble performs music in the jazz and “big band” styles, and also plays selections in rock, fusion, Latin and popular music styles. Its extensive library includes music by Count Basie, Stan Kenton, Duke Ellington, Woody Herman, Maynard Ferguson, Buddy Rich, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw and others. In 1996, VJE celebrated 20 years of jazz with several special artistic projects, including monthly performances live and on the air with Steve Young on Vermont Public Radio. Get out your dancing shoes, bring the entire family, and enjoy a special festival finale on New England’s most unique dance floor. Come right at 7 p.m. to learn a few dance steps with Jim Condon!