Audience

Concerts and Events

2021-2022 Concert Season

If you have questions about events, call Lynn at (781) 227-7500.


Upcoming FSSGB Events:


Please read our (evolving) statement about our response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. All upcoming events may potentially be cancelled or moved to an online (live-streaming) format, so please keep a close eye on the website and email for late-breaking details.

Please try to support your favorite artists, who will be losing much or all of their income for the forseeble future. Buy their CDs, support them on Patreon.com (if they have accounts there), attend livestreamed concerts and make online donations if a mechanism is in place to do so.

Here are some links to live-streamed concerts and calendars:


The Laughing Lesson

Peter Johnson Memoir Celebration

Saturday, September 18, 2021, 2-4pm
Location TBD
Free!
All attendees must affirm that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19.

Please join us as we celebrate the publication of Peter Johnson’s long-awaited memoir, The Laughing Lesson, published by Peter E Randall Publisher. Peter is a long-time member of FSSGB, and is the founder of Living Folk Records and Concerts.

The event will feature music (performers TBD) with plenty of opportunities to sing along! and Peter will do readings from his book. Refreshments will be provided.

Peter is a singer, concert promoter, record producer, writer, traveler, prankster, husband, father, and a fixture of the Cambridge music scene for the last fifty years. He is a member of the family that started, and still manages, Fidelity Investments. As the founder of Living Folk Records and Concerts, he introduced a number of traditional musicians from Ireland and the British Isles to North American audiences, thereby shaping the trajectory of this important music genre as it gained a larger place in world music.

For more information, visit the publisher’s website: https://perpublisher.com/portfolio-item/the-laughing-lesson/

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Windborne

Windborne House Concert

Saturday, October 2, 2021, 7pm
Brookline, MA
General admission: $20
$5 for students
Reservations required: email HouseConcerts@fssgb.org for
reservations and directions.

All attendees must affirm that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19.

The four Windborne singers grew up immersed in the traditional song and dance communities of New England and discovered a love of world folk music in their teens. Over the past decade, Windborne has sought out masters of traditional singing styles in the US and around the world to study a variety of vocal music. Through these collaborations, they have developed the vocal agility and authentic sound for which they are known. Their dynamic concert programs include songs from Corsica, the Republic of Georgia, Bulgaria, Quebec, and Basque country, as well as traditional and original American folk music. They believe deeply in the power of music to change hearts. In addition to performing in New England and around the world, Windborne has taught workshops in schools, community centers, singing camps, and universities. Seasoned teachers and song-leaders, they delight groups young and old with enthusiastic, clear, and nuanced instruction for musicians of all levels of experience. Singers not only learn the notes of a song, but also work on the varied vocal styles, language pronunciation, and gain an understanding of the song in its original cultural context.

Windborne is Lynn Mahoney Rowan, Will Thomas Rowan, Lauren Breunig, and Jeremy Carter-Gordon. All four have traveled extensively in the US and throughout the world with Village Harmony, Northern Harmony and the Renewal Chorus, leading workshops and giving concerts. Windborne has toured New England several times, and in 2010 their vocal agility and power won them first place in Young Tradition Vermont‘s Showcase Competition. Since then, they have appeared at the Flurry Festival, the Shelburne Harvest Festival, the Young Tradition Vermont Reunion Concert, and have taught master classes at Keene State College. In January 2014, AMA sent Windborne on a month-long tour to Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Angola performing and teaching as musical ambassadors for the US!

Specializing in close harmony singing, the quartet has a vibrant energy and a strong connection, which is evident in their engaging performance. They educate as they perform, telling stories about the music and explaining the characteristicsand stylistic elements of the traditions in which they sing. Mary DesRosiers, folk musicologist for the Monadnock Folklore Society, acclaims Windborne for "the purity of their voices, strength of their material, and attention to detail in their arrangements."

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Alison and Geordie

Geordie McIntyre and Alison McMorland Brunch Concert (online)

Sunday, October 17, 2021, 11am ET

Alison was born in Renfrewshire into a musical family. Since then she has enjoyed a long involvement in traditional music on various levels: singer, collector, broadcaster, author, founding song tutor on the Scottish Music Course at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Glasgow. Alison came to wider public notice in the mid 1970s through her immensely popular children’s album and book The Funny Family and working in BBC Children’s Radio. Under the inspirational guidance of the late Hamish Henderson in learning directly from - and recording songs - by traditional singers such as the Border shepherd Willie Scott and Lucy Stewart of Fetterangus he was to say of her 'Alison stands out as one of the principal modern interpreters of a ballad singing tradition... uniting scrupulous traditional fidelity with versatile creative and resourceful artistry'.

In 2001 she recorded a solo album ‘Cloudberry Day’ followed by and in partnership with Geordie McIntyre, Rowan in the Rock, and Ballad Tree, classic Scots Ballads in the Tradition Bearers series produced by Living Tradition. Their highly acclaimed White Wings album was most recently followed by Where Ravens Reel.

A Glaswegian of Highland and Irish descent, Geordie's lifetime involvement in song, ballad and poetry is reflected in his singing, collecting and songwriting. His early years as a radio and television technician and later as a Modern Studies teacher, coupled to his passion for the outdoors have, in diverse ways, fueled and complemented his central interest in folk music; as a concert and folk club organiser, author and record producer.

For many years Geordie has collected songs, working with Hamish Henderson, Helen Fullerton and A.L. Lloyd. He has an interest that combines hearing the songs in the community and researching their background.

Geordie has written song notes for numerous recordings along with album reviews. His first-hand experience has added greatly to his articles on the legacy of Hamish Henderson, edited by the late Paddy Bort, in the Gracenote Publications. He has sung at clubs and festivals in most corners of Britain and Ireland as well as Italy and the USA.

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Sara Grey and Kieron Means

Sara Grey and Kieron Means House Concert

Friday, November 5, 2021, 7pm
Location TBA
General admission: $20
$5 for students
Reservations required: email HouseConcerts@fssgb.org for
reservations and directions.

All attendees must affirm that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19.

Sara Grey is one of the most gifted and knowledgeable artists working in the field of traditional music. Sara's singing is both powerful and sweet, with a distinctive and lovely tremolo. It is a voice well suited to native American songs and ballads of Ireland and Scotland.

It is not Sara's lovely voice alone that makes her one of the most popular singers on the folk scene; on many of her songs Sara accompanies herself by frailing a five string banjo and, when playing dance tunes, it is obvious why she is regarded as one of the foremost exponents of the clawhammer style. As well as singing and playing, Sara is well known for her storytelling - specialising in stories from New England where she grew up learning many of her stories from her father.

"She is one of a select band of performers who still breathe life into traditional ballads." Vic Smith, Folk Roots "Sara Grey has quietly and powerfully taken over the mantle of premier interpreter of American traditional music." Tor Jonassen, WRDV Sara grew up in New Hampshire but has lived in North Carolina, Ohio, Montana, New York, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Wales, Scotland and England. As a youngster in North Carolina she developed a love for old time songs and banjo music. She cites Kyle Creed as the chief influence on her understated, syncopated clawhammer banjo style. She has now been performing professionally for more than 30 years.

Sara will be performing with her son, Kieron Means. Kieron's voice is especially striking, achieving the rare combination of a high lonesome edge with a warm richness of timbre, and it has a power to move the listener that few of his generation can match. His guitar playing is unconventional, but it's highly effective, while his stage presence is charismatic yet laid-back. His songs range from old-time through the blues - which he sings with startling conviction - to the work of tradition-influenced songwriters, and his own composition "The Shark" has people who know a good song when they hear one nodding in approval.

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Pub Carol Sing

Sunday, December 2, 2021, 2-5pm
Back room at the Burren, 247 Elm St, Somerville, MA
Free!

Start your holiday season with Boston's favorite Christmas tradition - the annual Pub Carol Sing!

Sponsored by the Folk Song Society of Greater Boston
and The West Gallery Quire.

Come and sing Carols from the Sheffield, West Gallery, and Sacred Harp traditions (as well as some standard favorites), led by Bruce Randall of The West Gallery Quire.

With special guests, The Paper Bag Mummers, providing merriment and mayhem!

Suitable for all voices and melodic instruments. Music will be available.

Free! (but we will pass the hat for the waitress)

Contact Bruce Randall (melismata@hotmail.com) for more information.

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Andy Cohen

Andy Cohen - Two Events!

Saturday, April 2, 2021:
  • Guitar workshop: 2pm
  • House Concert: 7pm
Location TBA
General admission: $20 either event, or $35 for both
Reservations required: email HouseConcerts@fssgb.org for
reservations and directions.

Andy Cohen is a virtuoso finger-style guitarist who has been described as "a walking, talking folk-blues-roots music encyclopedia." He grew up in a home with a piano and lots of Dixieland Jazz records. During the Sixties Folk Revival, he got hooked on the music of Big Bill Broonzy and the Jim Kweskin Jug Band. When Andy was 16, he heard South Carolina’s Rev. Gary Davis perform and the effect on him was profound. He has devoted his life to studying, performing, and promoting traditional blues and folk music of the pre-World War II era. Andy has toured solo, as well as with Martin, Bogan and Armstrong, John Jackson, Rev. Gary Davis, Brother Daniel Womack, Rev. Dan Smith, Jim Brewer, and Honeyboy Edwards. He also worked extensively with Walt and Ethel Phelps, Big Joe Duskin, Pigmeat Jarrett, Etta Baker, Big Boy Henry, and James "Son" Thomas.

Andy has more than a dozen recordings to his credit, including Oh Glory, How Happy I Am: The Sacred Songs of Rev. Gary Davis and Andrew M. Cohen: Dolceola Favorites. An enthusiastic proponent of the dolceola, Andy says he "never leaves home without it." Described by some as a "miniature piano," the dolceola has a keyboard, but the strings are struck with wooden mallets.

Along the way, Andy earned a Master’s Degree in anthropology. His passions come together in his essay on "The Hands of Blues Guitarists," published in Ramblin’ On My Mind: New Perspectives On the Blues, edited by David Evans (2008).

At an Andy Cohen concert, expect to hear blues rooted in Mississippi, the Piedmont, Memphis, and Chicago, as well as some ragtime, gospel, and original tunes.

In 2011 Andy received the Eisteddfod Award from The Eisteddfod Traditional Music Festival. Festival Director Dr. Jerome Epstein said, "We decided to give the award to Andy, one of this year’s performers, because of his outstanding contributions to the field of traditional music, as performer, collector, and advocate." In 2012 Andy received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the California Autoharp Gathering.

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