ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 9 * * All Arts News On the Web * * January 13, 2005


      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 or at the Overtime Saloon 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.


      170,000 dead. More than five million homeless.
      "I was alone in the house looking through the newspapers and I saw all the astronomical death totals and I was thinking that it's overwhelming. I felt kind of helpless," BFA freshman Jacques Boudreau said.
      Except Mr. Boudreau has a band and some "grown up" musician friends. Scratch that. Mr. Boudreau has a band and some adult musician friends. He and St. Albans area photographer Kris Jarrett have assembled an eclectic mix of bands and solo performers with roots in jazz, rock, blues, anc classical music.
      On Saturday evening, the Opera House at Enosburg Falls presents that deluge of Vermont bands playing music and raising money. The proceeds will go to the American Red Cross Tsunami Relief Fund [see the sidebar for more information about Red Cross Emergency Services].
      "There might be a few surprises," fiddler Jesse Potts said.
      The lineup includes Mr. Boudreau's band, Nothing Better to Do, fiddler Jesse Potts, concert flutist Nicole Rawding, Opera House favorite Meg Willey, and a famed-but-unnamed St. Michael's Band. There will be several surprise guests.
      "We're definitely mixing it up a little bit," Kris Jarrett said of the lighthearted concert, "a fun group with lots of guitar talent and great singers. Most of the musicians know each other so there will be plenty of intermingling and jamming on stage."
      Nothing Better to Do is the jam band duo of Jacques Boudreau and Tyler Smith. They play "jazz stuff, rock stuff and angry acoustic music," said Mr. Boudreau. "We play until it feels good. It has a very easy-going feel and that's what I like about it." They have played together almost three years. "That's counting back to those early rehearsals when we only knew two songs." Mr. Boudreau is a freshman and Mr. Smith a junior at BFA-St. Albans.
      "I think jazz is going to be our standard," he said.
      Jesse Potts, fiddler, drummer, and studio music teacher in St. Albans, said he tells students to "find the groove and play." He plays eclectic, original, acoustic music.
      "I'll play some of my swingy-folk stuff, bring back memories of the Floodstock Days, and sing people songs from Outer Space," he said.
      Solo flutist Nicole Rawding is a double major in musical education and voice at University of Southern Maine. She played in Vermont Youth Orchestra. She will play Image, a piece for flute alone by Eugene Bozza.
      St. Albans vocalist Meg Willey can light a torch in any concert. The Vermont singer-songwriter will surely offer some tracks from her 2004 album, Seemingly Collected as well as some jazz and pop favorites.
      Organizer Kris Jarrett runs a photography and multi-media production company. "We do studio and location photography, and also sound and lights for small theater events and bands," he said. He also does demo recording and photography for bands.
      The Opera House is donating the space. Tim-Kath Enterprises is donating all of the sound and production service. The Friends of the Opera House will handle refreshments.
      The Tsunami Relief Concert begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday January 15 at the Opera House at Enosburg Falls. Admission is by donation. The recommended donation is $10 for adults or $5 for children. Call the Opera House (802.933.6171) to reserve tickets.
      The funds are earmarked directly to Tsunami Relief.
      "My biggest hope for the concert is that we raise a lot of money," Mr. Boudreau said.
      "And we'll have some fun," Mr. Potts said.

Click here to pledge your
support for Tsunami Relief

or call the Northern Vermont
Chapter of the American
Red Cross at


DURHAM, NH--New England Folk Festival Association presents the Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend (contra dances, workshops, presentations, open mics, jam sessions) with Tony Parkes, Mary DesRosiers, Dudley Laufman, George Hodgson, and David Smukler (callers) and Bob McQuillen, Frank Ferrel, Peter Barnes, Sarah Bauhan, Randy Miller, the Don Roy Trio and others (musicians), all at the University of New Hampshire at Durham Friday through Sunday. Pre-registration is encouraged. click here for more info.

WATERVILLE--Caller Mark Sustic with musicians Frank Heyburn, Michele Lajoie, members of Fiddleheads and guests will host a community dance Saturday, 7-9 p.m., at the Town Hall. E-mail.

CLICK HERE: ART SITE OF THE WEEK is a free portal to a web search for sound effects and musical instrument samples. Each month and FindSounds Palette process more than 1,000,000 sound searches for more than 100,000 users.


      The American Red Cross reports about $151.3 million has been privately pledged for their tsunami relief efforts so far, about one-third of the estimated $400 million effort.
      Tsunami relief is not their only task.
      Each year, the American Red Cross responds immediately to more than 67,000 disasters, including earthquakes, floods, hazardous materials spills, home fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, and other natural and man-made disasters. They also provide Armed Forces emergency services, community services, health fairs, first aid stations, HIV/Aids education, a language bank, health services, youth services, and, of course, blood donations.
      Despite the stunning numbers, these events are very personal. "As far as the Red Cross is concerned, people are not a statistic," said Sanjay Sathe, Exective Director of the Northern Vermont Chapter.
      Last year, the four Florida hurricanes were the most memorable U.S. events, but the Northern Vermont chapter "averages 80 to 125 incidents per year," said Emergency Services Director Tim Stetson. "Most are fire related. The single family incident is just as much a disaster to that one family." This has been a busy couple of weeks here in Franklin County alone with several fires that destroyed people's homes.
      Most of the smaller incidents don't see the governmental response of a global disaster; no aircraft carrier group steams up Lake Champlain for an ice storm.
      "While the hurricanes were ongoing we also had flooding across eight counties in Vermont." The Northern Vermont chapter provided relief on the spot while federal resources were tied up in Florida.
      The individual Red Cross chapters have to be prepared to help here at home regardless of what is happening around the world.
      "We don't want to lessen the importance [of tsunami relief] but there is also an importance in my mind of being there to assist our neighbors as well," Mr. Stetson said. "Those neighbors support our ability to provide services. The reverse of that is we need to be ready to take care of those neighbors" during local crises. That means the local agencies still need continued financial support.
      Red Cross disaster relief meets people's immediate, basic needs with shelter, food, and health and mental health services. The relief teams feed emergency workers, handle inquiries from relatives outside the disaster area, provides blood and blood products to victims, and helps victims access other resources. The core mission helps people resume independent lives.
      "The Red Cross maintains the International Disaster Relief Fund but there are also national and local Disaster Relief Funds," Mr. Stetson said. Donations to those funds are down because everything is funneling to the International Disaster Relief Fund or to Tsunami Relief.
      "For example, many of the checks coming back in our Christmas mailing are directed to Tsunami Relief," he added. "Most folks have a desire right now to have [their contributions] go to south Asia." The Red Cross, like most major non-profit groups, maintains separate accounts for directed donations. They can earmark a contribution to be used exactly as the donor wishes.
      Events like the Tsunami Relief Concert help because they bring directed contributions from a "different pocket" than the traditional donations.


      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.


AAC dancing logo

All Arts Council of Franklin County

Support Free Speech on the Internet
Dick Harper, Chair
P.O. Box 1
Highgate Springs, VT 05460
email us

Go to [ Dick Harper | All Arts Index | ArtBits Archive ]

      This article was originally published in the St Albans Messenger and other traditional print media. It is Copyright © 2005 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.