Bluegrass comes to New Portland with Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection
NEW PORTLAND - New England Celtic Arts will present Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection at North New Portland Community Church on Sunday, Aug. 12. This the final installment of a series of Maine Masters partnered by Skye Theatre and the Kingfield POPS. Curtain is at 7:00 pm.
Erica developed an interest in music at an early age. At the age of seven, she was competing in fiddle contests with kids twice her age. At age nine, she was traveling throughout New England, Canada, and even Louisiana with the Maine French Fiddlers. Erica also performed as a special guest with Mac McHale And The Old-Time Radio Gang for five years. Currently, she has her own bluegrass band, Erica Brown & The Bluegrass Connection, which performs all over New England. Erica is also a member of The Stowaways, Darlin’ Corey and The Record Family Band.
Erica was a member of the Bates College “Fighting Bobcats” Orchestra for five years and was a member of the Maine All-State Music Festival for two years. She has competed in and won numerous fiddle contests throughout New England and Canada. In 2003 she was awarded Junior Female Entertainer Of The Year by the Maine Country Music Association and in 2006 she received the Harold Carter Memorial Award from the Down East Country Music Association. Erica has helped bring music into several elementary schools by holding workshops and personally performing. She has a strong desire to share her knowledge with anyone who has an interest in music and the fiddle. Erica Brown was a recipient of a 2006 Maine Arts Commission Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Award and was recognized as a Master Artist by the Maine Arts Commission that same year.
Steve Roy is a mulit-instrumentalist from Portland, Maine. While he is most well known for his bass playing, he also plays and teaches mandolin, guitar, and fiddle. He has performed locally as well as internationally with a myriad of bluegrass bands
Matt Shipman currently resides in Portland, ME and is a performer and teacher of acoustic and traditional music. He has been teaching guitar and mandolin at a Community Music School in Yarmouth, ME called 317 Main St. for 5 years now and has been performing for around 10 years. He also enjoys playing bouzouki, tenor and clawhammer banjo. He attended the Hartt School of Music for a time where he studied Jazz trumpet before going back to his first love of traditional and acoustic music.
Ken Taylor has been performing with Erica for 8 years playing acoustic bass and adds some vocals for the group. Ken keeps the band tight with arguably the most solid bass-playing in the New England area. He originally started as a guitar player with an interest in folk music but was soon sidetracked into bluegrass. Ken plays like an old master, his style is powerful, his timing is right-on and his love of music shows in every performance.
Read McNamara started playing banjo at the age of 18 while at college. As he puts it, “Everyone else played guitar. After my Grandfather died, I inherited his old Gibson banjo, so I started playing that to change things up a bit.” The ancient tones of bluegrass struck a chord with Read, and he and the four other members of his college band began immersing themselves in all things bluegrass.
The North New Portland Community Church is at 14 Handcock Pond Rd. No. New Portland. Tickets are $10.00, or $25.00 for the family, at the door or call 562-4445 for reservations.
More information is available at: http://www.necelticarts.com