ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 11 * * All Arts News On the Web * * June 28, 2007


      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 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.

      Find links to these events and more in our Spotlight!


      Bay Day 2007 kicks off a day with lots more than fireworks. The 28th annual summer festival is a multi-faceted family day with the Great Race, lakefront games, sports, fair food, fireworks, and continuous live music, all to celebrate Independence Day. This familiar Franklin County family festival has new surprises every year.
      Bay Day 2007 takes place in St. Albans Town Bay Park all day this Sunday.

SUMMER SOUNDS--St. Albans Bay Park welcomes a new mainstream band as Sticks & Stuff presents the Rumble Doll Independence Day tribute in the Summer Sounds series at Bay Day on Sunday evening. It's an evening of "a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll."
      The country-pop band Rumble Doll is centered on Ryan Malroux and McKenna Lee. The singer-songwriter duo came from two different worlds. Ms. Lee has small town Louisiana roots and Los Angeles drive. Mr. Malroux brings Burlington attitude to his wanderlust. That combination lets them bring a mix of first-hand experience and outside influence to all the music they write.
      Rumble Doll has signed with RCI Nashville. Their debut CD, Another Fine Undefined Life is tender, bold, angry, and sweet, with songs that evoke the familiarity and camaraderie of human feelings.
      The duo is backed by Gary Spaulding, drums, and Aram Bedrosian, bass.
      I found Rumble Doll through 8084 and West Street Digital's Andre Maquera. "They are exciting, high energy, and really good," he said. "If you can book them, you just have to." They were and I did. 7 p.m. on the Bathhouse patio.
      The Summer Sounds concerts are sponsored by the Town of St. Albans and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling, Desorcie's Market, O. C. McCuin & Sons, Pete Paquette Real Estate & Development, Ray's Extrusion Dies & Tubing, Scotty's Taxi, Sticks & Stuff, and The Tyler Place. Look for the red Sticks & Stuff SSR at the Park on Sunday.
      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.

LIVE MUSIC ALL DAY--the Town of St. Albans and the All Arts Council will offer live music for Bay Day starting about 2 p.m. on the back stage at St. Albans Town Park at the Bay.
      "This year we'd like to try something a little different," Scott Guptil of the St. Albans Town Recreation Committee said. The afternoon music lineup includes metal classics from a hard-rockin', faux 80s hair band and hard driving, muscular blues from
      Bone Cobra is a four-piece rock band with guitar, bass, drums and vocals that originally came together for giggles and to wear tight pants, but they stuck it out to rock hard in the sweet, dark, metal and leather wrapped sounds of 80s rock. They bring screaming instruments, high energy, and the wigs and spandex to the stage. 2 p.m. on the Bathhouse stage.
      East Coast Muscle, with Noble Francoeur hammering the bass, brings more power to the Bay than CVPS. The popular band explores every facet of blues music with slow blues, funky blues, instrumental blues, funny blues, and the fast, rocking blues that is their trademark. Listen for The Bottom," "Think of Me," "Call on My Baby," "Case Dismissed," "Them Ol' Bones," "Tough Luck, and Blues You Can Use. 4 p.m. on the Bathhouse stage.
      "The family events also include the great race, volleyball and horseshoe tournaments, food and games for all ages, and more" starting at 1 p.m. Mr. Guptil said. The Bay Day-Summer Sounds social, presented by St. Albans Town Recreation, will be an all day event with the Bay Day food vendors starting to serve at about 2 p.m.
      Fireworks will begin at dusk thanks to generous contributions from the community. The fireworks alone have a rain date, July 3.


HIGHGATE--The Franklin County Relay For Life begins at noon on Saturday and continues through 6 a.m. Sunday. This overnight event brings together people who have been touched by cancer and helps raise money for research and to empower individuals who are fighting back. It has theme laps, a pageant, a luminaria ceremony, costumes, and bands. Lots of bands. The Relay has moved to the Franklin County Field Days site.
      This year, the Main Stage entertainment includes the Jim Branca Trio with Greg Izor, Little Memphis, Keeghan Nolan, The Nobby Reed Project, RumbleDoll (also playing Sunday in Summer Sounds), Top Johnny!, Unstopher Rawls and the Miss Relay Pageant. All the entertainers donated their music to the cause.
      Click here for more info.

JEFFERSONVILLE--Cambridge Arts Council presents the honky-tonk music of the Starline Rhythm Boys in the Town of Cambridge Fourth of July festivities, starting at 11 a.m. following the parade. Other festivities include a teen Battle of the Bands with cash prizes. Call Ron (802.644.1118) or email for more info.

ESSEX JUNCTION----The Lincoln Inn presents the Jim Branca Band rippin' it up at blues night tonight at 7 p.m. The singer-songwriter-guitarist creates music that wraps the blues with classic soul, jazz, gospel, funk, folk and rock.
      Click here or email for more info.


BACH BUS--The Center for Culture and the Arts in Franklin County will transport a grand party to an evening at the Vermont Mozart Festival for The Virtuoso Violin Bach Concerti on Friday, July 20. Vermont Public Radio President Mark Vogelzang will speak before the concert and BFA Choral Music Director Armand Messier will lead a post-concert discussion on the ride home.
      The ticket price of $50/person or $99/couple also includes luxury coach transportation between St. Albans and enchanting Knight Point State Park, admission to the park and to the concert, private restrooms, a scrumptious box supper created by Jeff's Maine Seafood, and more. Please bring your own blankets and beverages. The Bach Bus will leave promptly at 5:30 p.m.
      Email the All Arts Council for more info.

CREATIVE ECONOMY--The statewide Advancing Vermont's Creative Economy conference will take place Wednesday, July 18, in Montpelier. The conference includes Governor James Douglas, Speaker of the House Gaye Symington, and the VCRD Community Leadership Award. The keynote address will be given by Bill Schubart.
      Mr. Schubart founded and is Chairman and CEO of Resolution, Inc., an e-commerce provider to clients including Sesame Street, CBS, Star Trek, Oprah, NPR, The History Channel and more.
      Attendees will also share experiences and discuss policy options for downtown activities and ways to push a local creative economy effort into a regional success.
      The registration deadline is this Sunday, July 1. There is strong interest in this conference. Click here for a registration form to return by July 1. Email for info about the conference.


     I went looking for storyteller Chris Abair and found the entire family. This site lets one "shop" for a wide range of entertainment from the Phil Abair Band, Dave Abair, Carol Abair, Mark and Sami's Harmony Pub, Casey traditional Irish Fiddler, and, yes, even Chris the Storyteller.


      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 © 2007 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.