ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 8 * * All Arts News On the Web * * August 26, 2004


      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.

      Stop in for live music and more at the Fairfax Music Sessions at the Foothills Bakery in Fairfax most Saturday afternoons at 1 p.m., at ChowBella in St Albans 8-10 p.m. most Wednesday evenings, at the Kept Writer in St Albans mostly once each month, at the Bayside in St Albans Town most Sunday afternoons, and the Cambridge CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the first and third Wednesday of every month.
     These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. The booked performances and acoustic Open Mike Nights feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.


      The Vermont Maple Festival/Summer Sounds series plays Taylor Park on Sunday as Ben & Jerry's presents the Nobby Reed Project. The concert will feature legendary local blues man Nobby Reed smokin' that guitar.
      The best blues guitarist in Vermont fronts The Nobby Reed Project, now a power blues trio. Tim Comings, bass, and Eric Belrose, drums, will back up Nobby in the free St. Albans concert.
      They released Double Live last year, a double album recorded live at Middle Earth. "That's been selling well," Mr. Reed said. "It's a cross section of the four studio CDs with three new original songs. The live album was the first project I did on my 24-track digital and now we're working on a [new] album. I getting ready to do some final mixing, so that's exciting me." His CDs also include Guitar On My Back, It's All About the Blues, Cure for the Blues, and Every Mile. The albums are available at Pure Pop, Barnes and Noble, and online at .
      This summer they are averaging 11-12 concerts per month. They played the Albany Fleet Blues Festival, Glens Falls Blues Festival, the Harpoon New England BBQ Championship, and a boat cruise for Northern Lights. Last Saturday they played the Mountainview Grand Hotel in Whitefield, NH.
      "The Platters came in and ate and listened to us," he said. "Who would expect that in New Hampshire?"
      This weekend they will perform at the 13th Annual Colebrook Moose Festival on Friday, Breakwaters Saturday, and Summer Sounds on Sunday.
      Television producers have licensed several Nobby Reed songs this year. "VH1 licensed Fill Me Up a few times and Food Network has used a couple of songs," he said. A remade Crest toothpaste commercial that went to the Cannes Film Festival features Out the Bottle.
      Expect the St. Albans concert to include Fill Me Up and The Rev as well as I'm Crying plus "a conglomeration from my albums" including Satisfied Blues, Thick and Thin (that Texas rockabilly thing), and Blues Bug, plus some Stevie Ray Vaughn and Eric Clapton.
      Just before the concert, stop by for Dessert in the Park at the Foster Grandparents Summer Sounds social starting at 6:30 p.m. The social hour is a chance to visit with friends, and to eat finger foods and mapley delights.
      Summer Sounds concerts in Taylor Park are presented by the Vermont Maple Festival, the City of St. Albans, and the All Arts Council of Franklin County, and sponsored by Ben & Jerry's Homemade, the Handy Group of new car dealers, Key Bank, Merchant's Bank, Northwestern Medical Center, and St. Albans for the Future.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings at 7 p.m., always in a town park, and always free. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair as you settle in to enjoy outdoor family music and festivities. The rain site (if needed) is the Congregational Church on Church Street in St. Albans.


      Full Circle Recorder Consort returns for the Summer at Grace series at Grace Church on Friday with Music for a Summer Evening. The professional quintet specializes in medieval and Renaissance music from about 800 to 1600 A.D. They have added baroque, folk, Celtic, Appalachian, and 20th Century music to their repertoire. They perform on recorders, hammered dulcimer, voice, and percussion.
      Among royals, a consort may be the spouse of a monarch but in music it is an ensemble using instruments of the same family.
      "They were wonderful last year," said organizer Beth Crane.
      The members of Full Circle, Maeve Kim, Beth London, Susan Reit, Linda Rodd, and Mary Ann Samuels, have made music together since 1978. In addition to Summer at Grace, they have appeared at First Night Burlington, UVM Carol Dinners, the Fine Wine and Food Festival at Shelburne Farms, the Fleming Museum, the Lane Series and more. They are available for garden parties, church services, weddings, and schools in Vermont and New Hampshire.
      This is the seventh season of the Summer Music at Grace series, an exceptional pastiche of concerts that bring otherwise unknown and unheard music to Franklin County. The music is often surprising, regularly insightful, and always very good..
      Full Circle will come together tomorrow at 7 p.m. at Grace Church, 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon Creek. The suggested donation to the concert is $8; children get free admission. Call 802.326.4603 or click here for info.


      A "Dance for Mikaela" comes to the Sheldon Casino Saturday evening with a Dinner Dance Fundraiser at to benefit a 6 year old girl in need of a liver transplant. The dance and concert will feature Jumpin' Jim Branca & Friends with an All-Star Band. Along with the music, there will be great food, a silent auction, raffles, etc.
      The social hour is 6-7 p.m. with dinner and dancing from 8pm - midnight. Tickets are $35/person and are available by phone (802.527.5472) or by e-mail.


      The Vermont Hand Crafters will host its Fall jury session in September. Director Cynthia Humiston Weed has issued a call for Vermont craftspeople and fine artists.
      VHC promotes and sells hand made Vermont crafts and fine art. It offer professional development scholarships and promotional and marketing opportunities for its members. This year VHC will sponsor their 52nd Anniversary Holiday Craft and Fine Art Show, with over 180 members in November at the Sheraton Conference Center.
      Call Ms. Weed (800.373.5429) or e-mail VHC with your name and mailing address to receive a jury application. Requests for applications must be received by September 1.


      Helen M. Winslow wrote, "Women, poets, and especially artists, like cats; delicate natures only can realize their sensitive nervous systems."
      Jone Johnson Lewis includes her favorite quotes on the Wisdom Quotes site. She has a lot of favorites that range from Action to Writing/Writers with stops at Argument, Birth, Death, and Public Schools along the way.


      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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      This article was originally published in the St Albans Messenger and other traditional print media. It is Copyright © 2004 by Richard B. Harper. All rights reserved. Archival material is provided as-is. Links are not necessarily maintained (if a link in this article fails, try or your favorite search engine).
      Thanks to recent misuse of copyright material on the Internet by individuals and archival firms alike, we emphasize that your rights to this article are limited to viewing it and printing it for personal use only. You must receive explicit permission from the All Arts Council and the author before reprinting or redistributing this article in any medium.