ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 4 * * All Arts News On the Web * * June 1, 2000


      ArtBits always features a calendar of the goings on of Franklin County artists. Check out these events around Franklin County. Each issue includes the entire text of our weekly newspaper column.

      There is a free AAC Networking Meeting/Coffee House at 7 p.m. on the first Thursday of every month. These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, and workshops every month at Simple Pleasures in St Albans.


      Thanks to Simple Pleasures Cafe, the homeless Arts Council has found a home. Singer-Songwriter Kate Barclay will perform Thursday, June 1, from 7 to 8 p.m. and the original art of Franklin County artist Alic Astleford will be on exhibit. The artwork will remain at Simple Pleasures through June 30.
      Our CoffeeHouse always has music, networking time, and "show-and-tell" and is held at 7 p.m. on the first Thursday of every month. Watch the newspapers, check here, and look for posters for the performers and the art on exhibit.
      Directions to downtown St Albans: Interstate 89 to St Albans (exit 19). Follow the exit ramp through a 4-way stop to a T intersection with U.S. Route 7. Turn right onto Route 7, heading north toward St Albans City. Simple Pleasures is on the left, a few doors before City Hall.


      The AAC begins a "Summer of Milk and Music" with a free, continuous, statewide showcase of popular Vermont and New York performers starting tonight at the 44th annual Vermont Dairy Festival in downtown Enosburg Falls. Dairy Festival entertainers will perform on two stages. The Lincoln Park bandstand will alternate hosting bands with a covered Main Street stage at the Reviewing Stand.
      Tonight, the Vermont Dairy Festival Scholarship Pageant is held in the Opera House at 7 p.m.
      Friday evening features the EFHS Jazz Band, family favorite Jon Gailmor, and the country music of the Rabideau Brothers.
      The EFHS Jazz Band (on the Band Stand) is a superb jazz band playing the classics to modern masters at 5 p.m.
      Vermont's favorite singer, songwriter, teacher, performer, and optimist, Jon Gailmor asked us for a "prenatal through prehistoric audience" in Enosburg. We can expect an eclectic, emotional, exhilarating, optimistic, and provocative concert from an entertainer equally at home fronting a flagpole in the village park or fronting the Vermont Symphony in the Flynn. Listen for original music, children's songs, ballads, witty ditties, and more from Lake Elmore's favorite family performer. 6 and 8 p.m. on the Main Street Stage.
      The Rabideau Brothers, a country duo from Morrisonville, NY, formed early last year to play lyrics and music they have written since 1995. Starting with their grandparents, their parents, aunts and uncles the Rabideau family has loved and performed country music for over fifty years. Chad plays Lead Guitar and Todd plays bass. The band has grown since then and they recorded their first demo in May of 1999. Chad and Todd Rabideau won the True Value Showdown here last year. 7 and 9 p.m. on the Band Stand.
      On Saturday, the famed Fernald Lumber Yankee Hitch Show completes the Parade. Marching Bands compete on Main Street, then the True Value Country Showdown, a two-set Fiddling Variety Show, three sets of country music band Dark Horse, and the fireworks keep the music going all day.
      With over 400 radio stations staging local competitions, the 19th annual True Value Country Showdown (on the Band Stand) is the largest country music talent search in the nation. Performers here compete to perform at the State Championship held in Manchester, NH, on their way to a $50,000 prize in the national showdown at Universal City Florida.
      The Showdown features 10 competitors on Saturday starting at 1 p.m. on the Bandstand. The competition lineup includes Amy Barbour of Richford, Pat Murphy and Chris Conti of Blue Sky, duo Crystal Clear from Mooers, Bonnie Drake of Williston, Ducham award winner Lindsey Larivee, Sharyl Lariviere of Winooski, Candace Myers from St Albans Bay, Rabideau Brothers of Morrisonville, South Junction from Peru NY, and 1999 runner up David White of St Albans. Host band Dark Horse will supply backup and technical support for ten finalists and will perform Saturday evening as well.
      The True Value Country Showdown is sponsored and operated by Matt Henry and WLFE.
      Dark Horse is a country band with two guitars, bass, drums, and keyboards for a mix of six string lead, double lead, rhythm, slide, and acoustic twelve string, keyboards and multi-layered string sections, brass samples, Hammond organs, grand pianos, and more. All five members sing lead and the band is unique in its complex, five part harmony. And the keyboardist wails on sax and flute.
      Dark Horse is full of music majors. Bob Berger of Swanton, lead guitar, always has a fresh joke to share. He is an INS agent and Berkeley School of Music graduate. Tom Berrings of Troy, NY, keyboards and a great sax and flute player, is a team leader at Chaplain Vocational Services. Mark Hutchinson of Barre, bass, plays country, rock, jazz, and all out funk. is the class clown with the very smooth clean voice. He is owner/operator of the Green Mountain Cobble Shop. Jeff Hutchinson of Barre, drums, is just too darn young and good looking. Jeff is St. Michaels College Computer Hardware Specialist. Rick Leggett of Winooski, acoustic and electric guitar, slide, lead, and rhythm. Rick sings lead on many of the ballads. He probably is The Dark Horse or the Walrus (koo koo ka choo) and is St. Michaels College's Senior Media Specialist. 4, 6, and 8 p.m. on the Band Stand. They will play right into the Fireworks.
      The Fiddling Variety Show, a favorite showcase of Canadian and American talent, returns to the Dairy Festival with fiddlers, callers, dancers, pickers, comedy, and more. 5 and 7 p.m. on the Main Street Stage.
      The Sunday lineup begins at 10 a.m. with Truant, new age string jazz trio XB2000, the rock and roll of Tin Pan Alley, and award winning singer/songwriter Kate Barclay.
      The classic rock band Truant plays its debut performance at the Dairy Festival, but this band has over 100 years of music between them. Evelyn Kwaanza, vocals, Bob Corey, guitar, Eric Bushey, guitar, Justin Bedell, bass, and Brian Fredette, drums, are popular Franklin County musicians and performers. 10 a.m. on the Band Stand.
      The new age jazz/rock string trio XB2000-Excessive Behaviour has headlined or opened for Them Jazzbeards, 10,00 Maniacs, and Anita Bryant. In 1997, Mayor Anthony Masiello proclaimed June 2 Excessive Behaviour Day for the city of Buffalo. Corey Cranston of WWSR/WLFE fame, guitars, percussion and Hurdy Gurdy; Bruce Tambs, cello, cellitar, bass, banjo, balalaika, classical and folk guitars, piano and kazoo; and Jon Schuleit drums, have written about 100 songs including The Doldrums, The Danse, and Money God. 11 a.m. on the Main Street Stage.
      Tin Pan Alley back their pulsating guitar/hard driving rock with original lyrics and sound from Duane Carleton, guitar and vocals, Steve Mulholland, bass and vocals, and Jim Parvis, drums. This high energy trio has toured with Gov't Mule, opened for Ghost Riders of the Purple Sage, and play about 275 shows in New England each year. Their current CD is "Vegas." 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. on the Band Stand.
      Acoustic alternative singer/songwriter, AAC member, and Vermont Arts Council Artist Kate Barclay can stir your inner being with a voice that hits the heart. Her percussive 12-string underscores the dynamic poetry in her songs about relationships. She will do one solo set and one backed up by Eric Clifford, bass, and David Yandow, drums. 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on the Main Street Stage.
      Kate was recently chosen to perform at the Ben & Jerry's One-World Festival in July.


BURLINGTON--Arts Alive invites Franklin County artists to participate in the street painting contest for the 13th annual Arts Festival on Saturday. The contest takes place in Burlington City Hall Park 8 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Categories include Best Reproduction (such as a copy of Monet, Renoir, or Wyeth), Most Creative/Original, and People's Choice. Prizes include $50 cash plus gift certificates. The event is free. Artists may bring their own chalk, but Arts Alive will have chalk pastels available along with Spray Fixative. e-mail Rob Fitzgerald for info.


JEFFERSONVILLE--The Opening Reception for the Northern Vermont Artist's Association June Juried Show will be held at the Mary Bryant Gallery on Tuesday, June 4 from 3-5pm. The Mary Bryant doubled in size last year and are now going national. Norma King had two continuous shows there this year. Artists in the June show include AAC and NVAA member Valerie Ugro.

ST ALBANS--Girl's Eye View teaches middle school-aged girls to explore life issues and express their feelings with camera and pen. This project of the Girl Scout Council of Vermont will open an exhibit of local work in an exhibit with a free opening reception at CCV in St Albans on Tuesday, June 6, from 5-7 p.m. The public is invited to attend the reception and to view the work of the girls during the month of June.
      Jo Berry, Paula Gallo, and Emily Stebbins of Burlington and Nini Worman of Franklin have guided two groups of girls in creativity, discussions, field trips and group dynamics. This year, each participant has chosen a photograph and a writing sample for the exhibit.
      Girl's Eye View is supported by grants from the Turrell Fund and from Girl Scouts of the USA. Call the Girl Scout Council of Vermont (800-639-3055) for more info.


      Some of the Vermont Dairy Festival performers have web sites.
      Kate Barclay
      Excessive Behavior
     Jon Gailmor
      True Value Country Showdown
      The complete rundown for the Dairy Festival, and for the Band Stand and Main Street entertainment can be found at the Dairy Festivalsite and here .


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at the bookshelf or night stand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site.


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