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Banjo Dan's Bluegrass Review

Sky-Blue-sugarhouse-300x199STANSTEAD, QUEBEC/DERBY LINE, VT: The Haskell Opera House will once again ring with the sounds of great bluegrass music as Banjo Dan returns to the North Country’s finest performance space on Friday, September 6. It’ll be a whole new show this year, featuring The Sky Blue Boys (Banjo Dan and Willy Lindner) along with a fine new bluegrass band, Bob Amos & Catamount Crossing. Fans of bluegrass, folk and country music can look forward to an evening of great acoustic music in the tradition of Banjo Dan and the Mid-nite Plowboys, whose Haskell performances over the past dozen years have drawn legions of fans from Quebec, Vermont, New Hampshire and beyond.

This year’s program will also feature a full five-piece bluegrass band – in fact, one of the best you’re likely to hear in these parts. From 1988 to 2004, Bob Amos led his Colorado-based band Front Range into the top echelon of touring bluegrass bands, appearing throughout the US and Europe and garnering numerous awards from the International Bluegrass Music Association while releasing eight acclaimed CDs. Now living in St. Johnsbury, Bob has put together a new bluegrass band featuring some of the region’s top musicians. Bob Amos & Catamount Crossing features Bob’s compelling vocals and topnotch banjo picking, supported by the band’sBob-Amos Promo-Photo-2a-300x283 soaring harmonies and exciting instrumentals. And to top it all off, the two bands will join at the end for an on-stage bluegrass jam not to be missed.

Throughout the forty years they spent as founding members of the Banjo Dan band, Dan and Willy have also performed as a duo. Among the Northeast’s most celebrated bluegrass musicians, the Lindner brothers are equally passionate about the earlier forms of rural music from which bluegrass emerged – particularly the “brothers’ duet” style of the Blue Sky Boys, Monroe Brothers, Louvin Brothers and the early Everly Brothers. Supporting their harmonies with guitars, banjo, mandolin, autoharp, and dobro, Dan and Willy offer an engaging program of traditional and original songs and tunes, with an emphasis on energy and fun. For this special performance the brothers will be joined by New England’s top bass player, Bob Dick of Massachusetts.

For those who have never made the pilgrimage, the lovely Haskell Opera House sits squarely on the line between the US and Canada, with the international border dividing the concert hall between Derby Line, Vermont and Stanstead, Quebec. It’s a beautiful performance space, long touted by Banjo Dan as “our all-time Dan Lindnerfavorite venue.”

Banjo Dan’s Bluegrass Review is shaping up as a memorable program with some of the most dynamic and satisfying acoustic music to grace the stage at the Haskell for a long time. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. All tickets are $18, US or Canadian. They may be ordered online from www.haskellopera.com (802-873-3022x205 or 819-876-2471x205) or www.catamountarts.org (802-748-2600 or 888-757-5559) or purchased at the Woodknot Bookshop, 137 Main Street in Newport, VT (802-334-6720). Advance purchase is definitely encouraged, though tickets will be available at the door.

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