Friday, April 27, 2012

2x IBMA Guitar Player of the Year JIM HURST Returns to JP

notloB Parlour Concerts


notloB Parlour Concerts is proud to welcome back to the historic Loring-Greenough House, 12 South Street, Jamaica Plain, Ma 
two-time IBMA guitar player of the year Jim Hurst.
Wednesday, May 23 
Doors 7:30pm, Concert 8:00pm
$14 suggested donation + $1 registration fee
Reservations -
We are also offering a group lesson before the concert (separate admission, to register contact Jim through his website -

Pastries from Fiore's Italian Bakery
Coffee from J.P. Licks

"Jim Hurst is one of the most versatile and tasteful guitar players I know. Whether he's flailing the rhythm for an old time fiddle tune, laying down a funky groove, or finger picking a beautiful ballad, his playing is both impeccable and creative.  Accompanying this instrumental virtuosity is a rich and expressive voice with a surprising range."  Mark Schatz

To listen to Jim Hurst is to be amazed by his tasteful and flawless performances.  Perfect timing and tone and his unusual picking style has enchanted guitar players from the novice to his peers.  It’s no surprise, then, that his musical mastery began with a musical upbringing paving the way for a winding and varied career path.

Born into a musical family, Jim spent his youth playing guitar under the influences of flat-picking greats Tony Rice, Doc Watson, George Shuffler, and Clarence White.  But the finger-style playing of Merle Travis, Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed was the “turn in the road” for Jim.  This amalgam of impact defined his technique.

Using his early years to hone his style, Jim’s guitar work and harmony vocals for Holly Dunn’s Rio Band brought his talent to both the national and international stage.  Then in 1992, going electric, he played guitar with Trisha Yearwood, touring extensively and appearing on numerous radio and television shows.  He also performed with Travis Tritt, and Sara Evans, whose 1998 RCA release No Place That Far features Jim’s vocals and acoustic guitar work.

Craving to play more bluegrass, Jim joined Grammy-nominated Claire Lynch and The Front Porch String Band in 1995, during which time he teamed up with bassist Missy Raines.  They began the duet Jim Hurst and Missy Raines while with Front Porch, but then broke off in 2000 to focus solely on their collaboration. Remaining faithful to their bluegrass roots, Jim and Missy explored other genres creating ground-breaking arrangements that wowed the bluegrass community.  Their partnership resulted in two Pinecastle Records, Two and Synergy , receiving critical acclaim and garnering them IBMA Guitar and Bass Player of the Year for 2001 and 2002.

Desiring greater freedom to create his own musical path, Jim left the Claire Lynch Band in 2010 to embark on a solo career.  Already seasoned with two solo recordings, Open Window and Second Son, his latest 2007 release, A Box of Chocolates, exhibits his deft guitar work and soothing vocals.  His shows meet with rave reviews as he astounds his audiences with his brilliant playing yet makes people feel right at home with his humble congenial and funny persona.  Jim is currently performing solo full time, both nationally and internationally, as well as teaching at camps and workshops in North America and Europe.  Additionally, his highly sought-after talent has led to side projects with other bluegrass greats, most recently Rob Ickes and David Grisman.  But his solo show, which allows his personal style and unique creativity to come through in spades, is what keeps his audiences mesmerized. 

Loring-Greenough House
Loring-Greenough House

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Si Kahn / Occupy Lawrence / Bread and Roses this weekend

In these days of apolitical, materialistic pop singer-songwriters it is very gratifying to learn that Si Kahn, a civil rights, labor and community organizer and musician, in other words a real folk singer, is coming to the area!

photo by Jeff Boudreau

Dear Friends, This is a rare opportunity indeed.  As part of the weekend Bread and Roses Centennial Symposium (, there is a FREE community concert on Friday night featuring the three of us (Si Kahn, Karen Brandow, Charlie King) and surprise guests.  
Please join us for this evening honoring one of the most inspiring events in our country's labor history.   All are welcome. FRIDAY, APRIL 27th, 7:30PMEverett Mill15 Union Street, 6th FloorLawrence, Massachusetts
There is a wonderful program on Saturday, April 28th, including: 1912: Occupy Lawrence: Charlie and Karen will be doing their performance piece in that same space as the concert from 3:00 to 4:15 pm.  By registering for the day long conference ($25) you get to attend that event, many other interesting presentations and a nice lunch to boot!  
Labor and Public Art: A panel discussion on the 2011 removal of the History of Labor Mural from the Maine Department of Labor will take place on Saturday from 1:30 to 2:45 pm.
For the location of these events, and for the full Saturday program, please go to:
I'll be there all day on Saturday.  I hope to see you there.
In solidarity,

For those unfamiliar with Si, his complete biography is provided:

About Si Kahn


Si Kahn has worked for over 45 years as a civil rights, labor and community organizer and musician. He began his organizing career in 1965 in Arkansas with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, more popularly known as SNCC, the student wing of the Southern Civil Rights Movement. During the War on Poverty, he served first as a VISTA Volunteer and later as Deputy Director of an eight-county community action agency in rural Georgia, where he also coached the first racially integrated Little League team in that part of the state.
During the 1970s, he worked with the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) during the Brookside Strike in Harlan County, Kentucky, and was an Area Director of the J.P. Stevens Campaign for the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union (ACTWU). These historic labor struggles are portrayed in the movies Harlan County U.S.A. and Norma Rae.
Si founded Grassroots Leadership, a Southern-based national organization, in 1980, and served as its Executive Director for 30 years, becoming Executive Director Emeritus on May Day 2010. For the past 12 years, Grassroots Leadership has worked to oppose privatization and to defend the public sector. This work currently includes a campaign to abolish all for-profit private prisons, jails and detention centers, including immigrant detention centers, as a step towards helping create a prison and criminal justice system that is at least to some extent just and humane.
In August 2009, shortly before Si's retirement, Grassroots Leadership won a major national victory in its Campaign to End Immigrant Family Detention, when the Federal government removed 150 children from the notorious for-profit private T. Don Hutto "family residential center" in Taylor, Texas, where children as young as infants were imprisoned together with their parents. The New York Times wrote, "The decision to stop sending families there - and to set aside plans for three new family detention centers - is the Obama administration's clearest departure from its predecessor's immigration enforcement policies." Si is currently a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos: A National Center for Ideas and Action, and serves as Executive Director Emeritus of Grassroots Leadership.


Si's latest book is Creative Community Organizing: A Guide for Rabble-Rousers, Activists and Quiet Lovers of Justice (Berrett-Koehler, 2010). The book features forewords by Angela Davis and Jim Hightower. Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman wrote about the book:
Democracy is not a gift bestowed by the powerful on the rest of us. If we want democracy now, we have to be willing to fight for it - and we need to know how. Si Kahn's passionate new book, based on a lifetime of organizing for justice, offers hope for all of us who will not compromise the dream of democracy.
Si's most recent book prior to Creative Community Organizing is The Fox in the Henhouse: How Privatization Threatens Democracy (Berrett-Koehler, 2006), co-authored with public/feminist philosopher Elizabeth Minnich, his long time partner and spouse. Katrina vanden Heuvel, Editor of The Nation, wrote of this book:
Inspiring to read, this book will be of great value to organizers, activists and citizens of conscience . . . Nothing less than our democracy is at stake when extremists want to roll back our hard-earned rights. It offers a spirited blueprint for all citizens who care about renewing America's best and most generous traditions.
Si is the author of two widely used organizing handbooks, How People Get Power and Organizing: A Guide for Grassroots Leaders, which together have sold over 80,000 copies. Both were published by McGraw-Hill, and later reissued by the National Association of Social Workers Press (NASW Press). As a result of his 1974 study The Forest Service and Appalachia, published by the John Hay Whitney Foundation, he was invited to testify before the U.S. Senate in hearings that resulted in substantially increased federal payments in lieu of taxes to hundreds of poor mountain counties from Alabama to New York.
He is the author of Si Kahn Songbook (Hal Leonard, Publishing, 1989), as well as of articles in such magazines and journals as The Nation, Liberal Education, Alternet, New York University Law Journal, The Journal of Community Practice, Social Policy, Southern Exposure, New South, South Today, Southern Patriot, Mountain Life and Work, People's Appalachia, Old Time Music Magazine and Horizons, the magazine for Presbyterian women. He wrote the section on community organizing for the 19th edition of the Encyclopedia of Social Work, published by the National Association of Social Workers Press.


Si is a frequent guest on community and public radio stations throughout North America, and has appeared on Mountain Stage, E-Town, Prairie Home Companion and the late Studs Terkel's nationally syndicated interview show. He is recently completed an international radio promotion tour for his new book Creative Community Organizing and his new CD Courage, for which he did over 100 individual interviews, many of them syndicated to nationally and internationally.
Reviews of Si's CDs, books and musicals, as well as personal profiles, have appeared in the New York Times, USA Today, The Progressive, The Nation, the Washington Post, the Village Voice, the Chicago Tribune, the Charlotte Observer, the Chronicle of Philanthropy, and the music publications Rolling Stone, Variety, Performing Songwriter, Sing Out!, Old Time Music Herald, Penguin Eggs, Bluegrass Unlimited and Bluegrass News.


Si's 16th CD Courage was named the #1 CD for 2010 by the Folk Alliance, based on statistics compiled by the Folk DJ Chart for airplay by DJs around the world. Si also had the #1, #3 and #10 songs on the Folk DJ Chart for the year ("Peace Will Rise," "Otis Is Flying," "Playing the Old Songs"), and was recognized as the #1 folk artist, garnering more airplay on folk radio than Bob Dylan or Pete Seeger.
Released on May Day 2010 by Strictly Country Records in the Netherlands, Courage features production and instrumentation by legendary Swiss banjo player Jens Kruger, with liner notes and harmony singing by Grammy-winning country artist Kathy Mattea.
Si's previous CD, Thanksgiving, his third for Strictly Country Records, won #1 CD, #1 artist and #1 song on the Folk DJ Chart in November 2007.
His songs of family, community, work and freedom have been recorded by more than 100 artists and translated into half a dozen languages, including French, Welsh, Hebrew, Swedish, Drents (a Dutch dialect) and Plattdeutsch ("Low German"). Such songs as Aragon Mill (aka Belfast Mill, Oregon Mill, Douglas Mill, Weave and Spin), Gone Gonna Rise Again, Go To Work On Monday, and Rubber Blubber Whale have become a part of the oral tradition, and are sung in folk clubs and living rooms, at rallies and on picket lines around the world.
Si has performed at concerts and festivals in Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England, Northern Ireland, Canada and the U.S. His musical body of work includes 15 albums of original songs for adults and children, plus a collection of traditional labor, civil rights and women's songs recorded with Pete Seeger and Jane Sapp.
One of Si's favorite musical experiences was being asked by publisher Harper-Collins to set to music and record the classic children's books Runaway Bunny and Goodnight Moon. He has composed original music and lyrics for half a dozen films and videos, including the labor videos The Turning Point, We're Not Leaving, Shout Youngstown and One Voice, and the PBS documentary, Hazardous Wastes: The Search for a Solution.
Si is a member of the organizing committee for Local 1000 of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM), AFL-CIO; a past trustee of the Labor Heritage Foundation; a lifetime member of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA); a lifetime member of the Folk Alliance; and the official poet laureate of the North Carolina labor movement by unanimous vote of the convention in 1986. He is represented worldwide by Real People's Music in Chicago, and in Europe by ADASTRA Arts and Leisure in Yorkshire, England.


Si has worked for over 30 years as a composer, lyricist and book writer for musical theater, with past and planned productions and readings at the Goodspeed Opera House's Norma Terris Theatre; the Berkeley, Milwaukee and Tennessee Repertory Theatres; the York and Amas Musical Theatre Companies in Manhattan; The Nora Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts; and the Heritage Music Theatre in Petaluma, California.
Si's latest musical Silver Spoon, a romantic musical comedy in which Upper East Side investment bankers fall in love with Brooklyn-dwelling Jewish garment worker trade unionist communists, opened for a five-week World Premiere production at The Nora Theatre in Central Square, Cambridge on May 19th, 2011.
Immigrant, Si's latest musical-in-progress, which stars six-time Grammy nominee and AFM Local 1000 President John McCutcheon as labor agitator, songwriter and martyr Joe Hill, will have its first workshop productions at Heritage Music Theatre in Petaluma California on October 8 and 9th. Immigrant had its world premiere reading on April 22, 2009 at Judson Memorial Church in Washington Square, produced by Amas Musical Theatre as their contribution to New York's Immigrant Heritage Week.
Si has recently been commissioned by the Bread and Roses Heritage Committee in Lawrence, Massachusetts to write a musical in honor of the 100th anniversary of that historic "strike of the immigrants," which will take place in 2012.
Some Sweet Day, a 22-cast member multi-racial musical based on the history of the Southern Tenant Farmers Union, opens for a major revival in 2012, also at Heritage Musical Theatre.


On February 16th, 2011, at its opening plenary session, the Folk Alliance (the international association representing the folk music community) presented Si with a plaque honoring him for having had the #1 CD (Courage) and the #1 song ("Peace Will Rise") for 2010, as well as for being the #1 folk artist for the year, based on statistics compiled by the Folk DJ Chart for airplay by DJs around the world.
On December 8th, 2010, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice in New York honored Si with their Rabbi Marshall T. Meyer Risk Taker Award. As a congregational rabbi in Buenos Aires during the years of the Argentine military regime of 1976-1982, Rabbi Meyer became a strong critic of the military government and its violations of human rights. He worked to save the lives of hundreds of people that were being persecuted by the regime and he visited prisoners in jails, among them the renowned journalist, Jacobo Timerman, who dedicated his book, Prisoner Without A Name, Cell Without A Number, to the rabbi, who "brought solace to Jewish, Christian and atheist prisoners."
On October 14th, 2010, Si received the honor of delivering the keynote address at the Southeast Regional Folk Alliance Conference (SERFA) at the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, Arkansas.
On June 10th, the national organization 21st Century Democrats honored Si with their Solidarity Forever award. Previous honorees have included the late Senator Paul Wellstone, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Congressman John Lewis, Senator Al Franken, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Governor Howard Dean, and filmmaker Michael Moore.
Si has previously been a Fellow of the John Hay Whitney Foundation and of the Ford Foundation's Leadership Development Program. A public television broadcast of his musical Some Sweet Day won the Award for Cable Excellence (ACE) in 1982. The video We're Not Leaving, produced by the United Steel Workers of America (USWA), for which he wrote and recorded the title song and soundtrack, won the Silver Screen Award at the U.S. Industrial Film Festival in 1985. Six children’s CDs by John McCutcheon, for which Si co-wrote the majority of the songs with John, have been Grammy finalists.


A long time volunteer in the field of philanthropy, Si was the founding chair and is a continuing board member of the Jewish Funds for Justice, a national Jewish foundation that supports local community organizing projects dealing with the root causes of poverty. He was also the founding chair of Changemakers, a national foundation dedicated to deepening, diversifying and democratizing community-based philanthropy.


Si Kahn received his A.B. degree magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1965. He left school twice during his Harvard career: once to write and translate poetry in Spain, a second time to work with SNCC during the Southern Civil Rights Movement. His senior thesis on the 12th century Provencal troubadour (that is, folksinger) William IX of Aquitaine won the Susan Anthony Potter Prize in Comparative Literature.
Thirty years later, in 1995, he received his Ph.D. in American Studies with a specialization in Cultural Studies from The Graduate College for Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences of The Union Institute. His doctoral project, Habits of Resistance: Cultural Work and Community Organizing, is published by University Microfilms. He also holds an honorary doctorate from the University of New England.


Elizabeth Minnich and Si Kahn have three adult children, Simon, Jesse and Gabe, and one grandchild, Anson. Gabe carries on the family musical tradition as a creator of hip-hop beats.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Skye Theatre named by Yankee Magazine as the "Best, Hidden Performing Arts Center in New England"

The greater Boston area is full of music listening room choices, with many more further afield. It is nice when one of the best (based on consistent genre/artist presentation) gets well-deserved recognition by a major travel magazine.

Phil McIntyre's work does not end with the Skye, he tirelessly facilitates the "block booking" Celtic artists he presents at Skye with kindred Maine and other New England venues. If you are involved in listening room operations, or a patron, or house concert host, consider bringing one of his Celtic artists to your own venue.

From Phil:

Skye Theatre Performing Arts Center has just been named by Yankee Magazine as the Best, Hidden Performing Arts Center in New England. The announcement will be made on May 1. Maybe this will take us from being the best kept scecret to the least kept scecret in New England. Thank you Yakee Magazine. We don't mind being out of the way, more people are finding us every week..

Skye Theater upcoming shows"

Tuesday, April 24
 April Verch @ UCCPA in Unity, Me 7:30pm $15.00
Wednesday, April 25
 April Verch @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm. $15.00
Sunday, April 29
 April Verch @ The Plantation in Lebanon, NH 7:00pm $20.00
 Gordie MacKeeman @ Calais Celtic Series, K of C Hall pm $15
Monday, April 30
 April Verch @ The Tillotson Center in Colebrook, NH 7pm $15.00
 Boreal Tordu @ Skye Theatre 7pm $15.00
 Gordie MacKeeman @ 430 Bayside in Ellsworth, Me 7:00pm $20
Tuesday, May 1
 Gordie MacKeeman @ The Franco Center 7:00pm $15.00
Wednesday, May 2
 Gordie MacKeeman & His Rhythm Boys @ Skye Theatre 7:00 $15.00
Thursday, May 3
 Gordie MacKeeman @ UCCPA 7:30 pm $15.00
Friday, May 4
 Gordie MacKeeman @ Nordica Auditorium 7:00 pm $15.00
Sunday, May 6
 Olympic Symphonium @ Skye Theatre 7pm $15.00
WhenSun, May 6, 7pm – 9pm
Where2 Highland Drive South Carthage, Me 04224 (map)
DescriptionCrafting delicately arranged folk-pop that drips with bittersweet melodies, soaring harmonies, and an awful lot of passion, The Olympic Symphonium have been sharing their quiet world with us since 2005. They are and always have been a collaborative effort between three multi-instrumentalists, songwriters, and friends: Nick Cobham, Kyle Cunjak, and Graeme Walker. After piecing together each of their first two albums from sporadic recording sessions stretched out over many months, The Olympic Symphonium have opted this time for a change of pace. A much quicker pace. The band locked themselves away in a large, empty, secret location in Fredericton, free of distractions, with longtime engineer Brad Perry and gave themselves a week to record an album. With the clock ticking away, the band went to work. Sketches of songs were prepared beforehand and then developed in the studio with all members being on hand at all times; a new experience for the Olympic Symphonium and one they feel has created a cohesive feeling for their third full length album. Office and Reservations: 207-562-4445 Web page: http://www.nece​​​​​​​​​​​ Pre-show jam session starts at 6:00
Tuesday, May 8
 North Sea Gas @ Phillips Community Hall 7:00 pm $15.00
Wednesday, May 9
 North Sea Gas @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm. $15.00
Thursday, May 10
 North Sea Gas @ UCCPA in Unity 7:30 pm $15.00
Sunday, May 13
 Mason Strunk & Friends @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm $15.00
 Silas Rogers & Friends at Skye Theatre 8:00pm $15.00
Monday, May 14
 Raz de Maree @ St Kieran in Berlin, NH. 7:00 pm $15.00
Tuesday, May 15
 Raz de Maree @ Tillotson Center in Colbrook NH. 7:00 $15.00
Wednesday, May 16
 Raz de Maree @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm. $15.00
Thursday, May 17
 Raz de Maree @ UCCPA in Unity Me. 7:30 pm $15.00
Sunday, May 20
 Ennis @ Calais Celtic Series in Calais, Me 7:00pm $15.00
 Kathleen Gorey-McSorley @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm $15.00
Monday, May 21
 Ennis @ 430 Bayside in Ellsworth, Me. 7:00pm $15.00
Tuesday, May 22
 Ennis @ The Franco Amer. Heritage Center in Lewiston, Me 7pm $15
Wednesday, May 23
 Ennis @ Skye Theatre 7:00 pm. $15.00
Thursday, May 24
 Ennis @ UCCPA in Unity, Me 7:00 pm $15.00
Monday, May 28
 The Forge @ GNWCA in Colebrook, NH. 7:00 $12.00
Tuesday, May 29
 The Forge @ Phillips Community Center 7:00pm $15.00
Wednesday, May 30
 The Forge @ Skye Theatre 7pm $15.00
Showing events until 5/31. Look for more