ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 19 * * All Arts News On the Web * * September 3, 2015


      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.

     Franklin County's arts and music gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. There are also booked and acoustic Open Mic Nights that feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.

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  ArtBits News Photo     Plan ahead: The upcoming 25th anniversary Summer Sounds Benefit Music Festival will take over the Franklin County Field Days site with continuous music on Sunday, September 20, the last day of summer. Gates will open at noon and the music will start around 2.
      The stage will fill with star power from the first decade of the series, anchored by Jenni Johnson and the Jazz Junketeers. Jenni has played more Summer Sounds concerts than any other performer!
      Highgate was the original home of Summer Sounds and we're having this benefit bonanza in part to say "thank you!" The festival raise money to build a band shell in Highgate for the next 25 years of music and to help programming at Camp Ta-Kum-Ta.

     The Summer of Music has been busy! Franklin County has hosted more than 40 festivals, major events, theatricals, and individual concerts in just eight weeks so far but all good things must close.
      The 25th season of Summer Sounds brought exceptional performances "from away" with groups rarely heard here in Franklin County but the regular season came to an end on Sunday, just in time for the Champlain Valley Fair to start. The series dodged rain drops a couple of times in July but we had great weather this month.
      Each concert brought back a group that played the first decade of this popular series.
      Mango Jam, Dr Jazz & the Dixie Hot Shots, the Constitution Brass of Vermont, and Lisa Brande and Easy Street on the Bayou wowed the crowd in July with music from the bayou, from Dixieland, and from the American Town greens. Anderson Gram, Mark LeGrand and the Lovesick Band with Sarah Munro, and NoCoLocal appearing for its final show as Branded amazed us with straight up folk originals, honky tonk, and wailing saxes. We celebrated with cakes at each concert and are getting ready for the all-day, end-of-the-summer finale!
      The 2015 Summer Sounds concerts were sponsored by the Town of Highgate and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling Co. Inc, Desorcie's Market, Drummac Septic Service, O. C. McCuin & Sons, and Ray's Extrusion Dies Tubing.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings, always at 7 p.m., always in a Town Park, and always free "but we do pay the bands!" Click here for more info.


ENOSBURG FALLS--The Artist In Residence Gallery features different artists each month. This month, the spotlight is on the 3-dimensional work of artists Barry and Maureen Genzlinger as well as 2-dimensional pieces by the students of the Blue Crayon Studio. Ms. Genzlinger makes decorative ornaments, mobiles, and display stands. Mr. Genzlinger creates hand turned wooden spinning tops and small bowls from wood scraps and discarded wooden items. The members of the Blue Crayon Studio study under Rebecca Bennett in a studio directly behind the A.I.R. gallery.
      The gallery hosts a free meet-the-artists reception with refreshments on Sunday from 1-4 p.m. The exhibit continues through the end of September.
      The Artist in Residence art cooperative features paintings, fiber arts, stained glass, sculpture, lamps, pottery, folk art boxes, scarves, hats and more by 45 Franklin County and surrounding area artists. It is owned and operated by the artists and sponsors. The gallery, located at 321 Main Street, is open Wednesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. plus the first Sunday of each month, noon to 5 p.m.


ST. ALBANS--The One Fed Summer Concert Series presents Barbie-n-Bones tonight at 7 p.m. Jennifer DiNatale, Mark DiNatale, Mike Fredette, Joey Clark, and Scott Milne will let their hair down in a pure mayhem metal show.
      The summer concert series has had performers under the tents every Thursday, rain or shine. This is the final concert of the series this season.

ESSEX JUNCTION--On Tap offers Blues Night with the Nobby Reed Project tonight at 7 p.m. Vermont's number one blues trio includes Eric Belrose, percussion, Ray Bushey, bass, and Mr. Reed on lead guitar and vocals.
      Call 802.878.3309 or email for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Twiggs brings on a three day must-see music weekend with Bob Young in the window tonight, Chris Parker and Erica Mae Couture in the front window on Friday, and Troy Millette on Saturday. All three shows start at 7 p.m.
      Mr. Young has played in and fronted Rock and Roll bands all over Vermont since the 70s. As a solo singer/guitarist, he performs The Band, Eric Clapton, Dire Straits and Tom Petty leavened by recent material. Mr. Parker and Ms. Couture are a new-to-Twiggs duet with a guitar and two big voices. A Franklin County singer/songwriter, Mr. Millette offers quirky, funny, energetic live performances with contemporary and retro cover tunes and his own huge repertoire of original material.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info.

ESSEX JUNCTION--The Champlain Valley Fair opened on Saturday and continues through Labor Day. The Fair hosts Vermont's Music Showcase on the Koffee Kup Stage in the Adsit Building every day. The Music Gazebo highlighted some of the best musicians in Vermont.
      Dark Horse is today's Beer Tent Band. The quintet plays the best mix of country with a kick and southern rock with Bob Corbiere, bass; Bob Berger, guitar; Dan Cox, guitar; George Seymour, steel guitar, banjo, and fiddle; and Kent Blackmer, drums.
      Click here for more info.

SHELBURNE--The Vermont Heritage Brew Festival takes over Shelburne Museum on Saturday for Labor Day Weekend. Fiddleheads play at 5 p.m.
      Come hoist a tankard to welcome Fall at this trifecta of Green Mountain brews, food, and music produced by the Vermont Folklife Center and the Museum. Live music throughout the grounds also feature Pete Sutherland and Tristan Henderson (fiddle and guitar), Brass Balagan (a radical marching band), Erica and Eric Andrus, and Scheitholt and his Zithers. The first 500 Vermont resident ticket purchasers will receive a commemorative sample glass.
      Admission is $55 or $35 for members. Click here for more info.


     Thomas Jefferson once wrote, "I cannot live without books."
      The 15th annual National Book Festival takes place at the Washington (DC) Convention Center on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. This year, the Festival commemorates the 200th anniversary of the historic connection between the Library of Congress and President Jefferson who sold his personal library of more than 6,000 volumes to Congress to rebuild the Library of Congress.
      About 175 writers, illustrators and poets will flood the Convention Center to talk about their work. There's something here for every book lover, and it's all free.


      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 © 2015 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.