Category Archives: Festival on the Green

Festival on the Green 2019: The Small Glories

Roots powerhouse duo The Small Glories are Cara Luft & JD Edwards, a musical tour-de-force partnership planted on the Canadian Prairies. Thrown together purely by accident for an anniversary show at Winnipeg’s venerable West End Cultural Centre, The Small Glories is a partnership that could almost make you believe in fate. With a stage banter striking a unique balance between slapstick and sermon, these veteran singer-songwriters have a way of making time disappear, rooms shrink, and audiences feel as they are right there on the stage with the band — writing the songs, living the songs, performing the songs. It’s not uncommon for listeners to find themselves laughing, dancing, crying, or caught up in a good ol’ fashioned sing-along. “We’re folk singers, we try to write stuff that people can relate to,” says the multi-instrumentalist Edwards, whose looming stage presence and penetrating eyes find him the yin to Luft’s petite, snort-laughing yang. The material of a Small Glories concert is rootsily welcoming in terms of subject, folk-pop melody and instrumentation — songs of love, loss, and environment, delivered with soaring, interwoven vocals on various combinations of stomping clawhammer banjo, guitar and harmonica.
Luft, an original member of harmony sweethearts The Wailin’ Jennys and whose parents were folksingers influenced by the great activist Pete Seeger, knows that sometimes a song is all you need to bring people together. But often, it is more. “(Seeger) was the king of uniting people through singing,” Luft says. “There’s so much animosity and divisiveness in our world these days… as artists, part of our job is to somehow create unity.”
“Some things just work together: the Lennon and McCartney syndrome – and to witness a performance by The Small Glories is a rare opportunity to experience that indefinable quality that creates perfection… ”— David Allen, Americana UK

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

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2019: Windborne

Internationally acclaimed vocal ensemble Windborne is a group of vocal chameleons who specialize in close harmony singing, shifting effortlessly between drastically different styles of traditional music within the same concert. Their musical knowledge spans many continents and cultures, but they remain deeply rooted in American folk singing traditions.
Praised for “the purity of their voices, strength of their material, and attention to detail in their arrangements,” Lynn Mahoney Rowan, Will Thomas Rowan, Lauren Breunig, and Jeremy Carter-Gordon share a vibrant energy onstage – their connection to each other and to the music clearly evident. They educate as they entertain, telling stories about the music and explaining the characteristics and stylistic elements of the traditions in which they sing.

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

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2019: Bon Débarras

Bon Débarras unites the worlds of music, dance and poetry through a collaboration between Montreal artists Dominic Desrochers, Jean-François Dumas and Véronique Plasse. The group brings together a fusion of Quebecois folk music, traditional step-dancing and global influences, for a show that is full of fun and inventive energy. On guitar, banjo, violin and harmonica, the trio opens a door to their recollections of America and their music is at the intersection of various traditions. Bon Débarras’ energy taps into the rhythms of today and ventures boldly on the multi-faceted road to tomorrow’s dreams, in an atmosphere that transcends boundaries and ages.

For more info on the band, visit: https://www.bondebarras.ca/en/

 Producer: MCTV

Festival on the Green 2019: Sam Reider and the Human Hands

Sam Reider is an American accordionist, pianist, composer, and singer-songwriter. He’s been featured at Lincoln Center and on NPR and collaborated with pop stars, jazz and folk musicians around the world. Reider is the leader of a “staggeringly virtuosic band” (RnR Magazine) of bluegrass and jazz musicians based in Brooklyn called The Human Hands.
Following the release of their critically-acclaimed record Too Hot to Sleep (2018), Sam and the Human Hands have appeared at major festivals and venues throughout the US and the UK and performed live on the BBC. Irresistible melodies, fiery improvisation and otherworldly sounds collide in what Songlines Magazine has dubbed “mash-up of the the Klezmatics, Quintette du Hot Club de France and the Punch Brothers.”
Too Hot To Sleep features Eddie Barbash (The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Jon Batiste and Stay Human), Alex Hargreaves (Turtle Island Quaret, Live From Here, Sarah Jarosz), Dominick Leslie (Hawktail, Ricky Skaggs Band, Deadly Gentlemen), Roy Williams (Stephane Wrembel), Grant Gordy (David Grisman Quintet) and Dave Speranza.
Reider grew up in San Francisco, the son of a musical theatre composer and klezmer musician. He began performing at a young age, and was interviewed on Marian McPartland’s “Piano Jazz” on NPR when he graduated high school. At Columbia University, he fell in love with American folk music. While writing his senior thesis comparing the songwriting of Woody Guthrie and Ira Gershwin, Sam began studying bluegrass and old-time, transcribing the fiddle melodies for the accordion and learning to sing the songs. This set him off on a journey that has taken him from back porches and dive bars to concert halls and major festivals in practically every state in the country.
Representing the U.S. Department of State as a musical ambassador, Sam has travelled to China, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Estonia, Turkey and Azerbaijan, carrying his accordion on his back everywhere he goes and collaborating at with international artists. Sounds and stories from these travels frequently serve as the inspiration for Reider’s compositions, which together form an ongoing musical travelogue.
As a side-man, collaborator and recording artist, Reider has worked with artists including Sierra Hull, Jorge Glem, Phoebe Hunt, Courtney Hartman, Jon Batiste and Stay Human, T-Pain, David Amram, Nellie McKay Ranger Doug, the Brother Brothers and more. A passionate educator, Reider leads ongoing performances for public school students throughout the New York City area in partnership with Jazz at Lincoln Center. He has designed curricula and taught courses at the Stanford Jazz Festival, San Francisco Jazz, and other private institutions around the country.

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

 Producer: MCTV

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