Saturday 24 — Friday 30 August 2019, at Pinewoods Camp, Plymouth MA
2019 tentative and preliminary Staff List
Liza DiSavino & A.J. Bodnar
Mara (Brigitte & Katell Kloareg,
Mist Covered Mountains
(Donna Hébert, Molly Hébert-Wilson,
Máire Ní Chathasaigh
Máire and Chris
The Vox Hunters
. . . and our talented campers
|Our staff members are not only great performers, they are also excellent teachers, whether it be instruments, styles, or the music of a particular area, collector, or era, etc.|
|Directors: Joy Bennett and Heather Wood. Sound: Don Wade|
has been a musician all his life. He came of age during the Civil Rights era, and cultivated a powerful affinity for cross-cultural exchange. He has studied with elder musicians on both sides of the color line — in the Old-Time Southern Appalachian fiddle and banjo traditions, as well as Black Gospel and Blues. He plays this music with affection, authority, and power. Armed with a variety of instruments — vintage guitars, a fretless gourd banjo, a one-string, homemade diddley bow (aka cigar box guitar) and carefully chosen historical personal anecdotes of his encounters with senior musicians across the South — Ainslie brings the history, roots music, and sounds of America to life.
is a violin maker and musician based in Providence, Rhode Island. He has studied at Berklee College of Music and the University of Limerick, and is a graduate of the North Bennet Street School in Boston, MA where he earned his diploma in Violin Making & Repair. Picking up the fiddle and tin whistle in his mid-teens, Armand learned much of his music from renowned Irish musicians and tunesmiths Jimmy Devine and Patrick Hutchinson, both of whom helped to foster an interest in the lyrical and colorful styles of older musicians such as Denis Murphy and Julia Clifford, Bobby Casey, Johnny Doherty, and Tommy Reck. In addition to being the 2010 Mid-Atlantic Fleadh Cheoil Champion for Senior Fiddle, Armand was also a finalist at the Séan Ó Riada Gold Medal Fiddle Competition held in Cork, Ireland in 2011. Since 2010, he has taught fiddle and tin whistle for the Reynolds-Hanafin-Cooley branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Eireann in Boston. Much to Ben's delight and dismay, Armand is working on incorporating English concertina into his repertoire of instruments. Armand joins Benedict Gagliardi as The Vox Hunters.
is from Warren, RI,an award-winning musician, singer, clog dancer, writer, teacher and public radio commentator, Aubrey Atwater presents captivating programs of folk music, dance, and narration. Aubrey has performed throughout the United States and beyond, singing and playing dulcimer, banjo, guitar, mandolin, and whistle, and thrilling audiences with her highly percussive freestyle clogging. In a scholarly, yet humorous way, Aubrey conveys the heritage behind traditional folk music and dance, showing deep passion and understanding of folk history and key players. Aubrey and her husband Elwood Donnelly have thirteen recordings and eight books to their credit.
is an award-winning duo that presents a unique and thrilling blend of traditional American and Celtic folk music and dance. From Warren, RI, Aubrey and Elwood are vibrant teachers, offering vocal workshops in harmony, ballad and repertoire, as well as master instrumental and dance instruction on mountain dulcimer, old-time banjo, Irish whistle, guitar, harmonica, limberjacks, bodhran, bones, spoons, freestyle clogging, foot percussion, and contra dance. Their joy and musicality blend with their scholarly sides, showing a deep understanding and appreciation of folk music history and its key players. In their 31-year career together, Aubrey and Elwood have produced seven books, a documentary film, and thirteen recordings which receive international airplay.
grew up winning piano competitions, playing jazz, pop, and composing. While his taste in music changed, he retained much of the early technique that allowed him to forge his signature fiery and daunting piano style. His varied experience includes touring Europe with a Hungarian-American country music band, being featured on the Joe Franklin and Uncle Floyd shows, signing with Mariachi Berea, and doing a commercial for Bell Labs. His approach to the stage was shaped by his work in New York with the comedy group "Manhattan Improv," and he considers any audience to be friends he just hasn't met yet. (By the time he's done, they usually are.) He has been Music Director of several Unitarian churches in New Jersey, and has been Artist-in-Residence at historic Union Church in Berea. He currently serves as accompanist for the dance department at Berea College, and has toured China with the Berea Country Dancers.
is an accomplished guitarist who balances tremendous sensitivity with driving rhythmic power. A studio musician, producer and engineer, Max works in rock, children’s music, country, traditional folk, and singer-songwriter genres.
is a multi-instrumentalist (ukulele, guitar, banjo, harmonica, mandolin, piano) who has been performing & teaching music for all ages since 1986. She has recorded three CD’s for families and is an active member of The Children’s Music Network. Once an active member of FSSGB, Amy now creates community music programs in southern NH such as the Second Friday Song Circle, music jams, concerts and Ukulele Playshops for adults. Her classes emphasize singing and playing for fun. Amy has taught Beginning Ukulele at all TradMaDs to date and her classes have performed brilliantly in the Camper Concerts.
plays fiddle, banjo, mandocello, guitar, spoons, jaw’s harps and a few instruments hand-made by folk craftsmen. He has toured extensively throughout the United States and to festivals in Canada, England, Ireland, The Netherlands, and Norway. He recently released a solo album, Some Fabulous Yonder. He also worked on an English Anthology, called Song Links, of old English songs and their American variants. His latest CDs are a collection of thirteen Civil War Naval Songs with an all-star crew of singers and musicians including Dan Milner and David Coffin; and Sharp's Appalachian Harvest with Brian Peters. Jeffperforms also with Dave Ruch as The New Boys of Old New York.
had conservatory training on French horn, played on Broadway and at Carnegie Hall numerous times under the batons of great conductors, and arranged for and was a member of Solid Brass. Liza was a volunteer crewmember and musician on Pete Seeger’s Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. It was thene that she started writing songs on issues of the day. She won songwriting competitions, including the Falcon Ridge New Artist Showcase and the American Songwriters' Competition, and her music has been included on a Smithsonian Folkways compilation (Fast Folk, “Songs From the Garden State”). She recently finished a book on early Kentucky ballad collector Katherine Jackson French. She has also been honored by the Appalachian Women's Project, and had her work selected by a jury for a public presentation.
|Liza DiSavino & A.J. Bodnar
were based in the Catskill Mountains of New York for ten years and now live in Kentucky, the heart of Appalachian music. Their multi-faceted and engaging repertoire combines timeless traditional, roots, folk, virtuosic instrumental and original music to the accompaniment of over 20 (often unusual) instruments. Their large repertoire of Americana music includes songs from the Catskill Mountains of New York State (as recorded on one of their five albums, “A Home in the Catskills”) and Southern Appalachian ballads and songs (gleaned during their seven years at Berea College, including two fellowship studies). They also are award-winning songwriters, rooting their style firmly in Americana with well-crafted songs that tell great stories, insightfully explore social issues, and bear witness to the redeeming power of love.
is one half of the husband-wife duo, Atwater-Donnelly, who present delightful programs of traditional American and Celtic folk songs, a cappella pieces, old-time gospel songs, dance tunes, and original works. They blend gorgeous harmonies and play mountain dulcimer, banjo, tin whistle, harmonica, percussion, and other surprises including Appalachian clog dancing. Elwood has a BS degree in Education, which contributes to his ability to coach and instruct students, particularly beginners, advanced beginners, and intermediate players, with patience and understanding.
has developed a specialist repertoire of songs originating from her native North East. What matters to her is that "songs tell of how life was… they take you into that time without it being a history lesson, so that you are almost in the middle of the time looking out of it rather than in a history book, reading about how things were." The Boston Irish Reporter wrote: "Anni Fentiman executed her notes so perfectly, with such an eerie sound that one could actually picture the scene described in the song." Anni also sings with her husband, Dave Webber.
was produced and developed in central Connecticut. He discovered folk music in high school by way of a cassette tape of CT-based band The Morgans, and immediately bought a concertina (likely aspiring to become a pirate). His style is the result of an eager student and an ill-advised teacher (both him). Although Ben never received formal lessons, his music-making was nurtured and encouraged at sessions by local trad musicians including Joe Gerhard, John Tabb, Jeanne Freeman, Jon Warner and many others. Ben can't dance a step, so he tries to make good use of his time sitting by singing and playing banjo, baritone ukulele, harmonica, or melodeon. In real life, Ben is a full-time lab coordinator at The Nature Lab at Rhode Island School of Design. Benedict joins Armand Aromin as The Vox Hunters.
combines spirituals and roots music, historic inspiration, and moving original songs, often in the themes of unity and social justice. He has been affiliated with the John F Kennedy Center’s Partners in Education program for over two decades, offering both multimedia performances for students and communities as well as and in-depth workshops for educators at all grade levels. His writing, research, field work and recordings have amassed an amazing repertoire of African American music, blending spirituals and freedom songs, the old with the new. He has raised awareness of the Underground Railroad in young school audiences, college symposiums, and adult concerts.
who hails from Southern Illinois, has played music all of his life and is a wizard of stringed instruments — fiddle, banjo, and guitar. Hawf also performs with his family bluegrass band and plays first chair violin for the Vincennes University string ensemble. With a program titled “Bluegrass, Blues, and Roots,” Hawf takes listeners on musical history ride, showing how these three genres of music intertwine, and how they have an influence on rock and roll and even pop music. When Hawf's not out playing music, he enjoys working in his music store and sharing the joy of music with his many students. Doug often performs with Dennis Stroughmatt.
is a Franco-American fiddler with deep roots in music. Her mother and aunt formed a cowgirl band in their late teens in Haverhill MA and their cousin, Clem Myers, was a passionate fiddler who founded the Northeast Fiddlers’ Association. Clem also mentored Donna in the 1970s. Donna was cited for “outstanding artistic achievement” by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. Each year, she leads the Great Groove Band of youngsters at the Old Songs and Philadelphia Festivals. Donna is a member of Mist Covered Mountains.
is a stunning vocalist. "Molly lives her songs. Every word and every note is absolutely felt!” — Jane Yolen, author and poet. Molly has degrees in Irish studies and musical theater from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She was a member of NYU’s Irish Folk Group at Ireland House and teaches Irish singing and language basics to children and adults at folk schools and festivals. An experienced actress, Molly imbues Irish, French and English language songs with character and meaning, comedic to tragic. She is also a vocal coach, preparing children for performance with the Great Groove Band every year at Old Songs and Philadelphia Folk Festivals. Molly is a member of Mist Covered Mountains. Back to top
has been a teacher of three-finger style banjo since the 70's, and for the past twelve years he has taught the Appalachian Round Peak claw hammer style banjo. He is also a certified Wernick Method bluegrass jam teacher, as well as a professional artist and illustrator. He began his music career in 1961 when he first heard banjo music and became obsessed with it as banjo players often do!. Growing up near New Haven, Connecticut, he immersed himself in the rich folk and bluegrass scene centered there, and by 1963 was playing in various bluegrass bands and and performing with guitar in folk music venues in the area. He cofounded the seminal Connecticut band Apple Country, which played over the South and Northeast until the early 80s. He is now based in Southern Maine and plays in The New England Bluegrass Band and the Bolt Hill Band”, and has taught at Banjo Camp North, Common Ground, the Joe Val Festival and Colorado Roots Music Camp.
is a traditional singer from Brittany. She is active on the music scene as a performer, as well as teaching in music schools and the University of Western Brittany. She is strongly involved in promoting the oral heritage of the south-west of Brittany and performs in Breton, French, Welsh, and English. She spent time in Wales on a British Council grant, learned Welsh (which is closely related to Breton), and carried on learning Breton through the medium of Welsh. Brigitte also picked up songs in Ireland, with frequent incursions into Scotland and occasionally England.
and her mother, Brigitte, have sung together for 20 years around the Celtic countries. They share a large repertoire of Breton, French, English, Welsh, and Irish music.
is a teacher of children, a singer of old songs, sailor of old square-rigged wooden ships, and man of Chanteys at Mystic Seaport Museum. Chris primarily performs US and British traditional music, and he is attracted to the stories behind many of the songs he sings. He has played in concerts and festivals in both the US and the UK, and has led workshops dealing with a variety of traditional music forms. Chris can accompany himself on Guitar, Banjo, Fiddle, Concertina, and other things common to an average garage sale.
is a musician, performer, composer and teacher. He plays guitar, piano, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, bass, recorder, and others. He also sings, composes and leads rounds. John will be one of our dance callers.
has been performing Appalachian ballads and old-time songs since she was eleven. Her magnificent voice, her respect for the songs, and her authentic mountain sound and style brought her to the attention of first Ginny Hawker and then Sheila Kay Adams. Raised in Rural Retreat, Virginia, Elizabeth attended old time fiddlers’ conventions and sang harmonies with her family, who taught her traditional singing styles and encouraged her to sing their own favorite American folk music. She received her undergraduate degree from the College of William and Mary with a major in Southern Appalachian Traditional Performance, and now tours the US regularly both performing and teaching.
plays fiddle tunes from both Breton and Irish traditions. She met Katell Kloareg at university, and now plays with Katell and her mother, Brigitte as Mara. Brigitte and Yuna met in 2014 for a performance of sea songs from and around Concarneau, which is a well-known harbor on the south coast of Brittany, as well as Brigitte’s hometown and Katell’s place of birth.
(Brigitte Kloareg, Katell Kloareg, and Yuna Léon) are from Brittany. They were at the Mystic Sea Music Festival in 2015. They share a large repertoire of Breton, French, English, Welsh, and Irish music, as well as the Breton dances that are accompanied by vocal music. Yuna Léon on fiddle plays tunes from both Breton and Irish traditions.
|Mist Covered Mountains
is a trio of masterful Celtic roots musicians based out of New England. Anchored by the amazing vocals of Molly Hébert-Wilson, mom and fiddler Donna Hébert uplifts Molly’s songs with the lightest and most subtle of touches on her fiddling and string arrangements, while guitarist and vocalist Max Cohen brings his own songs.
is "one of the UK's greatest musicians" (BBC Radio 2). He's played with luminaries of folk (Máire Ní Chathasaigh, Boys of the Lough, Aly Bain), jazz (Stéphane Grappelli and Diz Disley) and comedy (Fred Wedlock). He received a silver disc for producing Fred's hit Oldest Swinger in Town. "Newman's playing boggles my mind" Flatpicking Guitar, "Dazzling" Acoustic Guitar, "Guitar-playing of astonishing virtuosity and versatility" Songlines. Chris has been principal guitar tutor for Newcastle University's Folk B.Mus. course since its inception. His fourth solo CD Still Getting Away with It, a celebration of his 40-year career, is "Astonishing - a must-buy for any guitar player." Scotland on Sunday, "Dazzling... guitar-playing to be marvelled at" Daily Telegraph, "Beauty and virtuosity from a master craftsman at the peak of his abilities" Maverick. His partnership with Máire Ní Chathasaigh tours worldwide and has made seven acclaimed duo and two quartet albums.
|Máire Ní Chathasaigh
Máire is "the doyenne of Irish harpers" Scotland on Sunday, sole harpist recipient to date of Irish music's most prestigious Award, Gradam Ceoil TG4 (Traditional Musician of the Year), and one of Ireland's most influential traditional musicians - described by the late Derek Bell as "the most interesting and original player of the Irish harp today". A multiple All-Ireland and Pan-Celtic winner, she developed profoundly influential techniques for harp performance of traditional Irish music, heard on her New-Strung Harp (1985) - the first harp album to concentrate on traditional Irish dance music: "a masterpiece of virtuosity… a milestone in Irish harp music" The Irish Examiner. Her "celebrated virtuoso partnership" (The Daily Telegraph)with Chris Newman has made seven duo and two quartet albums and toured in twenty-two countries worldwide to venues ranging from the tiniest of village halls and historic European churches to palaces in Kyoto and Istanbul, London's Barbican, Sydney's Town Hall and Cologne's Philharmonie. "Their blinding technique, sizzling Irish reels and hot jazz improvisation brought an extended standing ovation" The West Australian. Her 2015 CD with her sisters, Sibling Revelry, was "Blissfully beautiful" Songlines, The Daily Telegraph, The Irish TImes.
|Máire Ní Chathasaigh and Chris Newman
is a "celebrated virtuoso partnership" (The Daily Telegraph that has made seven duo and two quartet albums and toured in twenty-two countries worldwide to venues ranging from the tiniest of village halls and historic European churches to palaces in Kyoto and Istanbul, London's Barbican, Sydney's Town Hall and Cologne's Philharmonie. "Their blinding technique, sizzling Irish reels and hot jazz improvisation brought an extended standing ovation" The West Australian. "This celebrated duo took the place by storm. Stately Carolan tunes, jazzy Django-ish numbers, dazzling Doc Watson style flat picking fliers, driving Irish dance tunes - this pair can nonchalantly do the lot. Guitar players applauded and went sadly home to burn their instruments!" The Belfast Telegraph.
was born in London, surrounded by traditional music from the outset: his father (Tom Paley, one of the great figures of the American folk revival), mother (singer Claudia Gould) and step-father (Ron Gould, writer on jazz, country and folk music) were all enormous influences. At six years old, Ben began playing the fiddle, taking formal violin lessons as well as learning traditional tunes and taking his place in the musical life of his family. When he was nine, they moved to Morganton, North Carolina, where Ben began to learn about harmony, improvisation, and playing nicely with others; and where he had the enormous privilege of studying with renowned Nashville session musician Jim Buchanan (who's played with everyone from Jim & Jesse to The Doors).
takes listeners on a musical odyssey not so different from his own musical journeys into Upper Louisiana Creole Culture. Taught to play fiddle by local Creole fiddlers Roy Boyer and Cliehar Pashia in the tradition of their fathers, Dennis gradually became an adopted son of the French Midwest Creoles living along the Mississippi River near St Louis. A vibrant blend of Celtic, Canadian and Old Time sounds, this music bridges the gap between contemporary Canadian and Louisiana Cajun styles. Preserved by families in the Ozark foothills, the music remains largely intact and true to the traditions that have been passed down for over three centuries. A medley of music, language, stories, and culture secreted away in the Missouri Ozarks now has a voice in the tapestry of this world. Dennis often performs with Doug Hawf.
|The Vox Hunters
is (or are?) Armand Aromin and Benedict Gagliardi, who are musically bound by a shared love of traditional folk music. Though originally united through Irish instrumental music, they share an enthusiastic affinity for an ever-growing amalgam of songs both inside and far outside the realm of ‘folk music’. With a pair of oft-harmonizing voices accompanied by fiddle, free reeds, and tenor guitar, The Vox Hunters present an exciting and eclectic repertoire of traditional folk songs, driving dance tunes, sean nos dancing and other musical varia. The Vox Hunters' philosophy is that the search for good songs is endless and satisfyingly so. They don't aim to fuse genres, push boundaries, or redefine 'folk music' — they simply sing songs they like to sing in exactly the way they like to sing them. Their influences and inspirations are voices in the English, American, and Irish folk music realms, but they allow their ears a long musical leash.
hails from Swindon in Wiltshire, England, and it was mainly in southern folk clubs that he developed his skill as a singer of traditional song. He now says that "you sing songs a long time before you become a singer." For him, singing is about interpreting a song: "I think that’s where you kind of break through and find the crock of gold in a song. You can go along the track of the tune and the words but there comes a point (and it’s only with some songs) where somehow you get through to the treasure." Dave sings with Anni Fentiman as a harmony duo, working largely a capella and featuring mainly traditional and traditional idiom material. Many of Dave's own songs have entered the general repertoire. Scott Alaric wrote in the Boston Globe, "Dave Webber has that rare gift of writing songs that sound traditional."
was trained in voice by Claire Alexander, Shirlee Emmons, Alan Seale, and Myron McPherson. She also studied vocal acoustics, vocal anatomy, repertoire, and vocal health at Teachers College. A soprano and harpist, Elissa created the Everybody Can Sing® voice studio and workshops to help people who are afraid to sing. She has run workshops for the 92nd Street Y, Makor, the Rio Caliente Spa in Mexico, groups of Episcopal seminarians, and in various private settings. “[She is] a wonderful, patient, sensitive teacher, who made everyone feel more confident in their abilities,” wrote a workshop participant.
has been involved in folk music most of her life. As a member of the quartet Water Sign for 13 years, she explored the close-knit harmonies of both traditional and contemporary folk music. Joy is also a founding member of the all-woman chantey group The Johnson Girls. The "J-Girls" bring a sound and energy to sea and work songs that has brought entire audiences to their feet. They not only have beautiful harmonies, but raw power, allowing audiences a glimpse of the situations in which the chanteys were used. She has performed solo, with Water Sign, the Johnson Girls, Chris Koldewey, and with guest artists in the US, UK, Canada, and Europe. Joy is the Executive Director of Old Songs, Inc,, an organization that presents the annual Old Songs Festival - Music with Roots, a year-long concert series, community dances, and instrument classes.
is a veteran singer from the English revival for some 50+ years, dating from her days with The Young Tradition. She has a great repertoire of ballads, historical songs, love and agricultural songs, and a lot from the humorous side. In addition to the old songs, she has written some dynamite new ones. Over the years, Heather has also acted as agent for other artists, run folk clubs, organized weekends and other events, and written about folk music for an assortment of publications.
has over four decades of experience in sound reinforcement and recording. He has worked at everything from concerts to large festivals and is particularly familiar with Folk, Classical, and Jazz. Don is co-founder of Minstrel Records, which has produced some fine albums.
rev 13 September 2018