SUMMER IN THE PARKS
June 22, July 20, August 17 from 6:30 – 7:30 pm in Sweetser Park, Lessey Street, Amherst Center
(across from the Black Sheep)
Order some take out from one of our fine cafes, pubs and restaurants
Conducted by UMass Minuteman Marching Band Director, Tim Anderson!
Friday, June 22nd: The Animal Kingdom: a concert of music associated with animals.
Friday, July 20th: The Moon and Stars: a concert of space-related music, celebrating the 49th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing
Friday, August 17th: a Leonard Bernstein Centennial Celebration: music by and associated with Leonard Bernstein, in the 100th anniversary of his birth.
DOWNTOWN BEATS THURSDAY CONCERT SERIES
Free Summer Concerts in Kendrick Park
6 pm – 8 pm
JULY 19 – Mister G & In the Nick of Time
Headliner MISTER G is a Latin GRAMMY Award winner. He is a superstar in the children’s music world. A former indie rocker who was awarded the first songwriting scholarship in the history of Berklee College of Music, Mister G (aka Ben Gundersheimer) tours internationally headlining major venues such as Austin City Limits, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Central Park SummerStage (New York City), Getty Museum (Los Angeles), Chicago Botanic Garden, The National Zoo (Washington, DC), The Hard Rock Cafe (Philadelphia), and Parque Chapultepec (Mexico City). We are lucky to have him living in western Massachusetts and happy to perform to our Amherst community.
IN THE NICK OF TIME
When was the last time the whole family agreed on something to listen to? With a generous blend of rock, pop, reggae, jazz and funk, Nick Deysher and In the Nick of Time delivers music for all, big and small. His clever lyrics and cheerful tunes will catch your ear and have you tapping your toes and singing along.
It’s rare to find music that delights children, parents and educators alike. Children enjoy the imagination and whimsy of Nick’s music that transports them to outer space in one song and then back in time 65 million years ago to stomp around with the dinosaurs in another. Parents love that Nick keeps their sensibilities in mind and draws upon influences of the Beatles, Bob Marley, and Paul Simon (just to name a few). Educators appreciate that In the Nick of Time’s music explores numbers, animals, seasons and foreign languages, but above all, makes learning fun.
Nick’s live performances are a high-energy celebration – kids of all ages are laughing, jumping and singing along. Deysher admits that he often gets tackled by the audience at the end of the performance. “Ultimately, I always felt like a big kid myself, and I just loved writing music for kids. I enjoy it so much and it’s very rewarding.”
July 26 – ReBelle and Shokazoba
Their energetic voices persuade a human race toward potent change-making. Nothing remains the same after a ReBelle experience.
Valley Advocate- “Why question a good thing- even if it doesn’t really make sense? Yeah, it may seem weird that some of the best American reggae is happening deep in New England, in the Pioneer Valley (land of abundant snow, bone-chilling freeze and un-Rastified temperments). But…why ask? To feel first and think later is the path of the righteous. And when ReBelle sparks up the Iron Horse on Saturday, the fortunate in attendance will know what it is to feel the music…When ReBelle performs, concert halls become churches, and for several hours, at least, people come together.”- Valley Advocate ReBelle is an intergenerational and intercultural band from Africa and America. They are an evocative musical force offering all original music, sung in many different languages including, English, Wolof, Creole, French, Arabic and Sanskrit. Their powerhouse vocalists chant meditations on liberation while instrumentals propel roots reggae soul. Their mystical mix of pulsing tribal rhythms and strong arrangements are internationally acclaimed. ReBelle has performed in Africa, including the Blaise Senghor Institute in Senegal, Reggae Sunsplash in Senegal and Baia das Gatas Festival in Cape Verde. In the U.S., from Maine to Florida to California, ReBelle has performed hundreds of concerts at noted festivals, venues and colleges including the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, Fire Water Festival, Harmonic Convergence Festival, Vermont Reggae Festival, Bel Chere, LEAF Festival, Ziontific Festival, Reggae Sunsplash, New England Reggae Festival, Strange Creek, sell-out crowds at the Iron Horse Music Hall, Pearl Street Night Club, The Roxy, House of Blues, SOB’s in NYC, New Guilford College, Amherst College, and Smith College, to name a few. “The protest song is the first test of social consciousness and it takes many forms, including songs of advocacy. “Africa Unite”, “Black Legends”, “Gun Violence” and “Stop War” are prime examples served up by ReBelle”. – The Daily Freeman, Woodstock, NY “Few bands brave the more difficult challenges of composing new, intelligent and trail blazing music…ReBelle is one such band.”-Dirty Linen
Shokazoba is a nine piece horn driven funk powerhouse! We perform top quality, high energy music designed to move your feet, inspire the mind, and activate our souls. You will find us playing in theaters, underground clubs, on festival stages, at weddings, house parties, and wherever the cosmic tides take us. We aim to inspire greater human awareness through original, conscious, funky fusion jazz with progressive topical lyrics. Shokazoba offers our deepest love and gratitude to Fela Anikulapo Kuti and Tony Allen for inventing Afrobeat and for inspiring our existence. Since 2005, many talented musicians have influenced our sound and style and we appreciate them all for their unique contributions.
August 2 – Flathead Rodeo and Colorway
Flathead Rodeo, based in Western Massachusetts, plays an original blend of rockabilly and the music that influenced it: rhythm and blues, jump blues, jazz, swing/western swing, and country and western. FHR plays music by such artists as Elvis Presley, Gene Vincent, Patsy Cline, Bill Haley, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, LaVerne Baker, Wanda Jackson, Barbara Pittman and many others. The band also writes and plays original compositions in the style of the above categories and artists.
Mistress Miriam (vocals). Mistress Miriam (the name was bestowed upon her by Iggy Pop) enjoyed a long and varied musical career in New York City before shacking up with her husband in Northampton. She studied cello at The Manhattan School of Music before discovering singing, her true passion. Mistress Miriam performed in legendary New York clubs including CBGB, The Knitting Factory and Arlene’s Grocery. Combining music with acting and comedy led her to other creative pursuits; Gordon Gano of The Violent Femmes cast her in one of his original musicals, and she played opposite Eric Stoltz in the film “Happy Hour.” She is a member of The Chainsaw Boys, an award winning improv troupe. She can improvise an entire musical. Dare her.
Theo Aronson (upright bass). Theo is a Massachusetts native who has been playing guitar and bass for more than 25 years, playing in various punk and hardcore bands in Western Massachusetts during that time. In 2010, he moved to Nashville, Tennessee spending five years in the rockabilly and psychobilly scene while playing guitar in Hellfire Revival. While doing time in the Music City, Theo also picked up the upright bass for the first time and was soon playing with a local rockabilly band. Now back in the Valley, Theo is providing a solid rhythm foundation on the doghouse bass for Flathead Rodeo.
Dangerous Pete (guitar and lap steel). In late 2016, Dangerous Pete relocated to the Valley from New York City where he was among the city’s most in-demand roots and rockabilly guitarists. He was born in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky, date unknown. Orphaned at an early age, Dangerous Pete was raised by a family of Eastern gray squirrels. Exhibiting a natural gift for music from the time he could walk (on two legs), it is said he fashioned his first guitar from a live venomous swamp moccasin. Guitarists who have influenced him include Charlie Christian, Merle Travis, Eldon Shamblin, Grady Martin, Scotty Moore, Cliff Gallup and Link Wray. Dangerous Pete’s favorite food is acorns.
Colorway is a guitar heavy, pop rock trio formed and fronted by Independent Music Award winning guitarist, F Alex Johnson (The Young@Heart Chorus/Drunk Stuntmen).
Hailing from Northampton, Mass and exuding the progressive, energetic indie rock leanings of the Pioneer Valley (home of And The Kids, The Sun Parade and Sebadoh) Colorway has put out two full length albums of finessed rock and roll (their 2015 release mastered by engineering legend, Bob Ludwig). The band strive to make every live show an new experience where revelatory moments aren’t sacrificed for the sake of a cookie cutter set devoid of rough edges. Bandleader/vocalist/guitarist F. Alex Johnson gobbles up every inch of real estate on his guitar neck while bassist Matt Clegg and drummer, Riley Godleski hold down the fort with equal parts grace and ferocity.
Colorway has opened sold out shows for Foreigner, The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band, The Yardbirds, Delta Deep (feat. members of Def Leppard and Stone Temple Pilots), Ian Hunter, Quinn Sullivan and Television’s Richard Lloyd (who called the group “amazing and inspiring”) and was included in the 2016 Green River Festival alongside Dawes, Los Lobos, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Shakey Graves, Peter Wolf, NRBQ and tons more over three days.
The band’s third album, These Are The Days is slated for release on 6/21/18 and includes Chris Collingwood (Fountains of Wayne/Look Park) on backup vocals. The album–co-produced by Danny Bernini (Blondie, Martin Sexton, Stryper)–features nine songs about incredible love, loss, heartbreak and joy in this world we’re forced to share.