WOODBRIDGE – The popular “Music on Main Street” concert series returns to Woodbridge with a Sept. 16 “Blues Extravaganza” featuring Guy Davis and Samuel James, two acclaimed masters of the deep-country blues.
The fall edition of Central Jersey’s newest live music series takes place at United Methodist Church, 69 Main Street, downtown Woodbridge, at 7:30 p.m. Mississippi songwriter Steve Forbert (Oct. 7), country-rock legends Poco (Oct. 21), eclectic folk and bluegrass virtuoso David Bromberg (Oct. 28) and singer-songwriters Susan Werner and Cheryl Wheeler (Nov. 18) are also scheduled to perform.
Individual concert tickets are $22 advance, $25 at the door, with discounts for three or more concerts. Advance tickets are available by calling (732) 634-4500 x6015 or by ordering online at www.WoodbridgeArtsNJ.com.
“Music on Main Street is a dynamic blend of American songwriting styles from the late 1960s to the present-day,” says New York music critic Bill Brandenburg. “It’s an exciting mix of original music that highlights some of the top creative talents performing today.”
Sept. 16: Guy Davis and Samuel James. Son of legendary actors Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis, Guy Davis is a master of American blues on guitar, banjo and voice – and an award-winning composer, actor, director and writer whose stage portrayal of legendary bluesman Robert Johnson won a slew of Off Broadway awards. Guy has recorded and produced with Whoopi Goldberg, Jackson Browne, Maya Angelou, Jessica Lange, Ian Anderson, Levon Helm and others. Guy’s latest Red House album Sweetheart Like You hit the Number 1 position on the Folk Charts and again demonstrated his mastery of the blues in all its diversity and power. Opening artist Samuel James is a performer of stunningly singular talent. A master of fingerstyle and slide guitar, banjo, harmonica and piano, his musical influences ranging from blues giants Skip James and Sonny Terry to Gus Cannon and Charley Patton. www.guydavis.com and www.myspace.com/sugarsmallhouse
Oct. 7: Steve Forbert. Steve Forbert is a master songwriter hailing from Meridian, Mississippi, whose emergence from the New York folk scene in the early 1980s began with Romeo’s Tune and was quickly followed by a string of hit songs and albums – Jackrabbit Slim, Streets of This Town, Evergreen Boy, Young Guitar Days and more. Still a prolific writer and performer, the honesty and dignity of his approach to music continues to have an almost magical spell on his growing and loyal coterie of fans. www.steveforbert.com
Oct. 21: An Acoustic Evening with Poco. Since 1968 Poco has pioneered a smooth country-rock sound that has influenced scores of artists from Loggins & Messina to The Eagles. Their hits include Pickin’ Up the Pieces, You Better Think Twice, Kind Woman, A Good Feelin’ to Know, Rose of Cimarron, Crazy Love, Heart of the Night and more on two dozen original albums. An Acoustic Evening with Poco presents singer/songwriters and master instrumentalists Rusty Young, Paul Cotton and Jack Sundrud. www.poconut.com
Oct. 28: David Bromberg. Having gained prominence as a session guitarist in the 1960s for folk and country legends such as Bob Dylan, Ringo Starr, Willie Nelson and The Eagles, David Bromberg embarked on a solo career in 1971 that resulted in a dozen acclaimed albums. Weaving through bluegrass, folk, blues and rockabilly, Bromberg is a talented songwriter and master instrumentalist on fiddle, guitar, mandolin and dobro. www.davidbromberg.net
Nov. 18: Susan Werner and Cheryl Wheeler. Over the course of her colorful career, Susan Werner has cultivated a reputation as a daring and innovative songwriter with a killer live show. Her work infuses traditional music styles and methods with her intriguing contemporary worldview, constantly challenging listeners to experience music from a fresh and unexpected perspective. Cheryl Wheeler’s songs have been covered by artists as diverse as Dan Seals, Peter Paul & Mary, Kenny Loggins, Garth Brooks, Suzy Boggus, Melanie, Bette Midler, Kathy Mattea and Holly Near. A natural story teller and gifted comedienne, Cheryl is a gifted songwriter with a beautiful voice. www.susanwerner.com and www.cherylwheeler.com.
The Music on Main Street Concert Series is sponsored by United Skates of America and Woodbridge Township.
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