We are proud to announce
THE 2014 RIVER HOUSE RESTAURANT CONCERT SERIES
PATTY GRIFFIN w/special guest PARKER MILLSAP - Saturday, June 21, 2014
The perfect way to kick off our 40th anniversary season with this Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter and musician. Known for her stripped-down songwriting style centered around the folk music genre, her songs have been covered by a host of musicians. In 2007, Griffin received the Americana Music Association's Artist of the Year award and her album Children Running Through won Best Album. In 2011, her Downtown Church won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional Gospel Album.
JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE - Wednesday, July 2, 2014
It isn't easy to forge an identity in Americana folk when your father is Steve Earle, but that is exactly why the success of Justin Townes Earle is so noteworthy. With five albums in just six years, this Nashville guitarist stunned skeptics and received recognition from the industry by winning big at the Americana Music Awards in both 2009 and 2011 for Song of the Year and named one of the MUST HEAR artists at Bonnaroo by Spin Magazine. Unlike his father, this brilliant songwriting leans less on the socio-political side and more on the personal, relational side of the music spectrum. Don't miss this latter day troubadour...back by some serious popular demand!!
ROSANNE CASH - Saturday, July 5, 2014
This cross-over star at the height of her powers, Grammy Award-winner Rosanne Cash (eldest daughter of the late Johnny Cash) has just come off two all-star tribute concerts - the Wood Guthrie Centennial and the Rolling Stones at Carnegie Hall. With 11 #1 country hit singles, 21 Top-40 country hit singles, and two gold records, this singer-songwriter draws on many genres, including folk, rock, pop, and blues. At her Prescott Park debut, she will be performing with her Grammy Award winning husband, John Leventhal.
MATT ANDERSEN - Wednesday, July 9, 2014
THIS will be a show you will not forget. Matt Andersen is considered a powerhouse performer and one of Canada's most revered acts on the scene today for good reason. This blues guitarist and singer songwriter will deliver his diverse musical styles, skilled guitar work and high energy performance like you have never seen before. Winner of three Maple Blues Awards and multiple other nominations, Matt will keep your foot stomping and your soul spinning with his bold voice, clever lyrics, and wild energy.
Voted Most-Wanted-To-Return after her performance last year, and we couldn't agree more. Over the course of her career, Mary Chapin Carpenter has recorded 13 albums and sold over 13 million records, won five Grammy Awards, was named Country Music Association's Female Vocalist of the Year in 1992 and 1993, has won two Academy of Country Music awards, one Emmy award, and in 2012, was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. Her debut orchestral album Songs From the Movie, conducted and arranged by six-time Grammy winner Vince Mendoza, was released January 2014. She is doing a select number of special acoustic shows in 2014, in addition to performing the music from this album in concert halls around the world.
THE LONE BELLOW - July 16, 2014
Get ready for impeccable talent, beautiful music, and an exciting stage show and tons of fun. Straight out of Brooklyn's thriving music scene, The Lone Bellow will no doubt deliver an exuberant live show that you can't afford to miss. With a self-titled debut album that has been called one of the best of the year by People Magazine, the band has garnered raves from everyone from USA Today, The New York Times, and more. Get ready to experience this fast-rising trio and their heartfelt, impeccably harmonized folk-pop songs.
HOUNDMOUTH - July 23, 2014
Indie/Americana rock band Houndmouth formed in 2011 in New Albany, Indiana, a town across the river from Louisville, Kentucky. The driven group of musicians quickly built a loyal following based on its fervent live shows, and was soon sharing stages with like-minded bands such as Drive-By Truckers and the Lumineers. in 2013, Rough Trade Records released the band's debut, From the Hills Below the City, a hearty collection of ragged country-informed rock & roll. This band, by far, is one of the do-not-miss acts of the summer series.
THE WOOD BROTHERS, SHAKEY GRAVES & MORE - July 25, 2014
Get ready for the gritty, soul-drenched Americana sound of The Wood Brothers, joined by Austin's "antifolk phenomenon" (NPR Music), Shakey Graves, and more as part of our Folk Festival (see full line-up here) for what promises to be an electrifying night.
INGRID MICHAELSON - July 27, 2014
With the release of her new album Lights Out still warm from the printing press, NYC songstress Ingrid Michaelson has taken the music world by storm - vaulting from an overachieving indie-pop sweetheart to a bona-fide pop star. Her most recent album debuted at the #1 U.S. Independent Billboard Charts, topped the U.S. Billboard charts at #5 and launched into the #2 position on the U.S. iTunes charts after its first day in store. The video for her new single Girls Chase Boys has attracted the attention of almost 2 million viewers alone. This ukulele-playing diva is known for her unique crystalline voice, playful disposition and thoughtful lyrics, and her performance in Portsmouth simply can't be missed.
IRIS DEMENT - July 30, 2014
One of the most celebrated country-folk performers of her day, singer/songwriter Iris Dement first began composing songs at the age of 25. Honing her skills at open-mic nights, in 1988 she moved to Nashville, where she contacted producer Jim Rooney, who helped her land a record contract. To her credit, she has won the Grammy Award for her collaboration with John Prine on his album, "In Spite of Ourselves." The wife of enrapturing folk icon Greg Brown (who played our stage in 2011), we are excited to welcome Ms. Dement back to the festival lineup for our anniversary season!
MARTIN SEXTON w/special guest BROTHERS McCANN- August 6, 2014
Martin Sexton returns! Billboard calls him "The real thing, people, a star with potential to permanently affect the musical landscape and keep us entertained for years to come."
A native of Syracuse, N.Y., and the tenth of 12 children, Martin Sexton grew up in the '80s. Uninterested in the music of the day, he fueled his dreams with the timeless sounds of classic rock 'n' roll. As he discovered the dusty old vinyl left in the basement by one his big brothers, his musical fire was lit. Sexton eventually migrated to Boston, where he began to build a following singing on the streets of Harvard Square, gradually working his way through the scene. Sexton's percussive guitar playing, and multi-octave voice will indeed leave you breathless (and grinning).
HOT CLUB OF COWTOWN - August 9, 2014
Back by popular demand! Be prepared to be blown away. Picked by such artists as Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson to tour the globe, this Austin-based band has grown to become one of the hardest-swinging Western swing trios on the planet. With a repertoire based on a fusion of vintage jazz and the Grand Ole Opry, you'll hear not only the influences of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli, but those of western idols Bob Wills and Hank Williams among many others. The Globe & Mail says their fiddler would be charged with arson "if rosin was flammable". Don't miss this act!
LOUDON WAINWRIGHT III - August 13, 2014
Loudon Wainwright III has had a long and illustrious career highlighted by 22 album releases, a 2010 Grammy Award, and two previous nominations. His most recent records, "Older Than My Old Man Now" was named one of NPR's Top 10 Albums of 2012. Wainwright is perhaps best known for the novelty song "Dead Skunk (in the Middle of the Road)" and for playing Captain Calvin Spalding (the "singing surgeon") on the television show, M*A*S*H. His songs has been recorded by Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Cash, Earl Scruggs, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, Rufus Wainwright, and Mose Allison. As an actor, Wainwright has appeared in films directed by Martin Scorsesse, Hal Ashby, Christopher Guest, Tim Burton, Cameron Crowe, and Judd Apatow.
RUTHIE FOSTER - August 20, 2014
Ruthie Foster blew our audience away at our folk festival last summer, creating a giant demand to have return as part of the River House Restaurant Concert Series. Best Female Vocals at the 2013 Austin Music Awards. Two-time Grammy Award nominee. Highest honor at the 2013 Blues Music Awards. The list goes on. From a family of gospel singers, those who have followed Ruthie Foster's eclectic musical history know that she can burn down any stage with her combustible blend of soul, blues, rock, folk and gospel. Often compared to the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin, get ready for this full-on blast of soul and blues.
TAJ MAHAL - August 22, 2014
Two-time Grammy Award winning Blues legend Taj Mahal makes a long-awaited return to Prescott Park after last performing to a record-crowd in 2011. Considered to be one of the most prominent and influential figures in late 20th century blues and roots music, Taj Mahal pushes the boundaries of expectation, using music to transform and inspire. Bringing more than half a century of experience, heart and soul to the park, get ready for a concert folks will be talking about for a long time to come.
CHRIS SMITHER - August 23, 2014
Chris Smither is THE legendary songwriter's songwriter. Having distilled his own signature sound of blues and folk for over 40 years, Smither is an American original. A profound songwriter, Smither continues to draw deeply from the blues , American folk music, modern poets and philosophers with his 14th record of his lengthy career. From his early days as the New Orleans transplant in the Boston folk scene, through his wilderness years, to his reemergence in the 1990s as one of America's most distinctive acoustic performers, Smither continues to hone his distinctive sound.
A long-awaited return of one of our Canadian favorites!! The Wailin' Jennyrs are three extraordinary voices, two founding singer-songwriters, one singular vision. Juno Award (Canada's Grammy) winners, The Wailin' Jennys continue to evolve into far more than the melodious sum of their individual talents since blowing in on a fresh acoustic breeze from Canada's mid-western heartland. They are one of Garrison Keillor's favorite guests on the Prairie Home Companion, as well as one of our own. Get ready as the folk and country trio, The Wailin' Jennys, are back with their heart-stopping harmonies.
Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder are rollin' in to Prescott Park!! With 14 Grammy Awards, 7 Country Music Awards, and 12 International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, this dynamic tenor from Kentucky is more than a country and bluegrass legend. By age 21, this mandolin wiz was already considered a master of one of America's most demanding art forms, but his career took him in other diretions, catapulting him to popularity and success in the mainstream of country music. Joined by his razor-sharp all-star band Kentucky Thunder (made up of fierce players in their own right), this concert promises to be a bluegrass experience unlike any other. Come and see this unbelievable multi-instrumental talent and traditional mountain music like you never have before.
Talk about taking the music scene by storm, Spirit Family Reunion plays homegrown American music to stomp, clap, shake and holler with. Ever since they started singing together on the street corners, farmer's markets and subway stations of New York City, their songs have rung-out in a pure and timeless way. "Dusty acoustic guitars, wailing fiddles and weeping accordions, with a woozy-yet-skintight rhythm section -- and topped off with burr-edged vocals that sound like they've been soaked in a Mason jar for generations -- it's the type of music that blurs the line between past and present so thoroughly, and so deftly, that time feels irrelevant." - Paste Magazine's Best of What's Next. Come and rejoice in this energetic and wonderfully fun sound.
The legendary Dr. John is a six-time Grammy Award-winning musician and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee. Known throughout the world as the embodiment of New Orleans musical legacy, Dr. John is a true icon in American culture. His colorful musical career began in the 1950s when he wrote and played guitar on some of the greatest records to come out of the Crescent City, including recordings by Professor Longhair, Art Neville, Joe Tex and Frankie Ford. He's also played on records by Sonny and Cher, Van Morrison, Aretha Franklin, and The Rolling Stones' Exile On Main St. Get ready as the good Doctor takes you on a funky rollercoaster ride of timeless swampy soul blues classics with his soundtrack of tunes from an illustrious fifty-plus year career. This legend is sure to get the temperatures rising along the banks of the Piscataqua for a one-of-a-kind season finale.