americana

FreshGrass At MASS MoCA

Sep 19, 2019

This year’s FreshGrass Music Festival takes place this Friday through Sunday in North Adams, Massachusetts. The festival is produced in partnership by MASS MoCA, the FreshGrass Foundation, and No Depression and is a family-friendly festival, featuring established, acclaimed, and new talent on four stages and in MASS MoCA’s galleries.

The line-up includes Mavis Staples, Greensky Bluegrass, Steep Canyon Rangers, Calexico and Iron & Wine, Andrew Bird, Sam Amidon, Amy Helm, Alison, Brown, The Mammals, Tony Trischka and Bruce Molsky, Johnny Irion & Friends, Jade Bird, The Gibson Brothers, Tinariwen, inaugural Artist-in-Residence Aoife O’Donovan, and more!

We are joined by MASS MoCA’s Performing Arts Director Sue Killam and Communications Director Jodi Joseph.

Aoife O’Donovan is the inaugural FreshGrass Artist in Residence at the FreshGrass Music Festival taking place, as it always does, at MASS MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts.

She’ll perform a set of her own music on Friday, September 20, join Kronos Quartet’s Music for Change: Pete Seeger @ 100 set on Saturday, September 21, and re-visit her Fresh Score on Sunday, September 22.

O’Donovan is an acclaimed songwriter and vocalist known for her solo work, touring and recording with her band Crooked Still, frequent appearances on American Public Media’s “Live from Here” with Chris Thile, and her work with Sara Watkins and Sarah Jarosz, I’m With Her - the trio, just this week, was recognized as the Group of the Year at the Americana Honors & Awards.

Crooked Still will play The Egg in Albany, New York on December 11.

The Whiskey Treaty Roadshow has new music their ready to play and they will do so on Barrington Stage Company’s Mainstage in Pittsfield, Massachusetts on June 1.

The collaborative of five Massachusetts-based singer-songwriters have recorded a new album entitled “Band Together” which is forthcoming. The release date isn’t set, but we get to preview a few of the tracks in this interview. The album was recorded at the Stationery Factory in Dalton, Massachusetts, produced by Johnny Irion, and features special guests Steve Gorman, Pat Sansone, and Arlo Guthrie.

The members of The Whiskey Treaty Roadshow are Tory Hanna, Chris Merenda, Greg Smith, David Tanklefsky, and Billy Keane - who joins us.

The Capital Region is filled with opportunities for people to attend community dances. Community dancing generally has a variety of dances and formations during an evening: Circles, squares, longways (the roots of contras), snaky lines, scattered formations, couples dances (waltzes and occasional others), and international folk dances.

The typical community dance emphasizes dancing in which people enjoy moving to great live music as a community. Everyone is welcome, no matter how fast or slow moving they might be, and no matter what their age.

Monthly dances include Albany Shindig at First Congregational Church on Quail Street in Albany, New York and Old Songs Community Barn Dance in the Old Songs Community Arts Building on South Main Street in Voorheesville, New York.

DanceFlurry founder and dance caller Paul Rosenberg and folk musician Sue Mead join us to tell us more about community dancing in our region.

David Crosby
Anna Webber / davidcrosby.com

Folk rock pioneer and two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee David Crosby will perform in the Koussevitzky Music Shed at Tanglewood in Lenox, Massachusetts with singer-songwriter Mary Chapin Carpenter and Americana duo Chris Hillman and Herb Pedersen on Saturday, June 16 at 7 p.m.

Crosby joins us to discuss the show, the current state of the music industry, and his method for coping with upsetting news cycles.

Leland Sundries
Sara Feigin

Leland Sundries, a band from New York led by Nick Loss-Eaton, is playing at Ör Gallery and Tavern in Hudson, NY tomorrow night. The New York TImes describes Leland Sundries’ music as “scrappy Americana [that] will get you longing for empty two-lane highways and kudzu-encased back porches.”

Nick Loss-Eaton joins us.

The Suitcase Junket
Jo Chattman

Clearwater's Great Hudson River Revival is taking place this coming weekend at Croton Point Park in Croton-on-Hudson, New York. This year’s festival will include performances by Nick Lowe, Arlo Guthrie, Los Lobos, Toshi Reagon & Big Lovely, Josh Ritter, Joan Osborne and many other great acts -- including our guest, The Suitcase Junket.

Western-Massachusetts based one-man-band Matt Lorenz creates music on restored, salvaged, and fully invented instruments created from old instruments and found objects. His latest album, Pile Driver, came out in April on Signature Sounds. 

WAMC

     A federal grant has been announced to help preserve rare pieces of Americana in Springfield, Massachusetts.

FreshGrass At MASS MoCA

Sep 15, 2016

  FreshGrass is MASS MoCA’s three-day festival of bluegrass and roots music. This year’s festival is this weekend - September 16-18 in North Adams, Massachusetts.

FreshGrass is a family-friendly festival, brimming with bright talent on four stages, and also in MASS MoCA’s galleries, brick-lined courtyards, and grassy field. It is produced in partnership by MASS MoCA, the FreshGrass Foundation, and No Depression.

This year’s line-up of world-class talent includes Glen Hansard, Rosanne Cash, Old Crow Medicine Show, Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, Aoife O’Donovan, and many more.

Here with a preview and to point out other highlights we welcome Chris Wadsworth, FreshGrass Founder and Producer and Publisher of No Depression and Jodi Joseph, MASS MoCA’s Director of Communications. 

  Signature Sounds' first CD came out in 1995 and the lable has seen over 150 releases since then, moving into show promoting, opening a venue in Northampton, MA, overseeing frequent collaborations between its artists, and taking over the long-running music and hot air ballooning gathering of the Green River Festival.

Earlier this Spring they released “Signature Sounds 20th Anniversary Collection: Rarities from The Second Decade” - an album of previously unreleased songs from Signature Sounds artists - a mix-tape lovingly prepared for you by the label. Jim Olsen is the President of Signature Sounds and he joins us to talk about the label's history and future.

    Blending country, folk and pop styles, Lucy Kaplansky makes every song sound fresh, whether singing her own sweet originals, covering country classics by June Carter Cash and Gram Parsons, or singing pop favorites by Lennon/McCartney and Nick Lowe.

She is performing at Caffé Lena in Saratoga Springs, NY on Saturday, July 20th.

Tomorrow night at 8pm, David Wax Museum is playing at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA. Their indie rock is a unique blend of Americana folk and Mexican son music. The New Yorker said of their sound that it “Kicks up a cloud of excitement with its high-energy border-crossing sensibility.”