Festival on the Green 2018: The Welterweights

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:
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:
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.

For more info on the band, visit: https://www.thewelterweightsmusic.com/

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2018: The Stone Cold Roosters

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.
For more info on the band, visit: https://www.facebook.com/The-Stone-Cold-Roosters-190729767550/

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2018: The Mammals

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

For more info on the band, visit: http://www.themammals.love/

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2018: The Ballroom Thieves

“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.

For more info on the band, visit: http://www.ballroomthieves.com/media/

 Producer: MCTV

The Great Believers author Rebecca Makkai in conversation with Stephen Kiernan

Rebecca Makkai discusses her third novel, The Great Believers with author Stephen Kiernan, at Middlebury Marquis Theatre in an event co-sponsored by The Vermont Book Shop, Middlebury Marquis Theatre, and the Pride Center of Vermont.

The Great Believers is a dazzling new tale of friendship and redemption in the face of tragedy and loss during and after the AIDS crisis in 1980’s Chicago. In the New York Times Book Review, to be published in paper on Sunday, June 30, Michael Cunningham, author of The Hours, said The Great Believers is “an absorbing and emotionally riveting story about what it’s like to live during times of crisis. And who among us believes that, at any point in the near future, we’ll cease living in times of crisis, whatever form they may take?” And Becky Dayton, of The Vermont Book Shop, wrote, “it’s a vast fictional landscape of both time and location, but Makkai works magic with themes of art, illicit love, and family bonds to braid it all together into a rich, cohesive, and deeply affecting narrative.”

Rebecca Makkai, a graduate of Bread Loaf School of English, has taught at Iowa Writers’ Workshop and Northwestern University. She is the author of The Borrower, The Hundred-Year House, which won the Novel of the Year Award from the Chicago Writers Association, and Music for Wartime. Her work has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, Harper’s, and Tin House, among others. She lives outside Chicago with her husband and two daughters.

Stephen P. Kiernan is the critically acclaimed author of The Hummingbird, The Curiosity, and The Baker’s Secret. He has also written two nonfiction books, Last Rights and Authentic Patriotism. When not in his home of Charlotte, Vermont, he travels the country speaking and consulting on how to expand use of hospice, palliative care and advance directives.

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2018: The Barbra Lica Quintet

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

For more info on the band, visit: http://www.barbralicamusic.com/

 Producer: MCTV

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