Thursday, April 20
The Lost Acres String Band serves up a rich stew of songs and instrumentals from a wide variety of musical traditions, with the added spice of some exotic originals. A typical show includes blues, rags, old-time and contemporary fiddle tunes, Hispanic waltzes from the old Southwest, a classic string-band number by The Mississippi Sheiks, swing tunes from the 1930’s, and a Ray Charles instrumental.
Writing in Fiddler magazine, Grammy-winner Stacy Phillips called the band’s music “impossible to pigeonhole…an unpretentious mood-booster…ranging confidently through several different styles, all handled with aplomb.” The Middletown Eye called it “an instrumental delight. From reels to waltzes, acoustic blues to ‘swing’ tunes…impeccably played.”
After study of Western classical and South Indian classical violin, since 1975 Gordon Swift has been playing fiddle, electric violin, and baritone violectra in bands ranging from jazz-rock fusion to reggae to country-and-western. He blends musical influences from around the world into a distinctively American violin/fiddle style. Gordon organized The Lost Acres String Band in 2008 and writes most of the band’s original material.
Master guitarist Paul Howard is a long-time member of the CT Americana/string band Last Fair Deal, with whom he has recorded four albums. Paul runs Valley Music School in Avon and is a founding faculty member of the National Guitar Workshop with five music instruction books to his credit. Paul is an eclectic guitarist bringing influences from swing, old-time, bluegrass, and folk/rock music; he’s also an accomplished vocalist.
Jon Swift (Gordon’s brother) is a veteran of the New England bluegrass and roots music scene. He was a founding member of the popular bluegrass band Traver Hollow, playing bass and singing with the group for 13 years. He has also sung and played bass or acoustic guitar in several other groups (currently BluesGrass and Deep Ellum) as well as performing solo. Appearing here on upright bass, Jon lays down a solid foundation for the band.
This event is made possible by Richard P. Garmany through a grant awarded by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. The Farmington Libraries will be hosting a variety of performances throughout the year as part of the Richard P. Garmany Music Series.