The Minstrel Acoustic Concert Series ™

Location: Morristown Unitarian Fellowship, 21 Normandy Heights Road, Morristown, NJ, a smoke & alcohol free environment

Time: 7:30 PM unless otherwise noted. 2nd Friday usually Open Stage/audition night

Admission: $10 on your way in plus the balance of what you think the show was really worth on your way out. Children 12 and under free. All tickets are at the door. There are no advance sales or reservations.

For More Information: Email email icon or call 973-335-9489.

NEW - watch Minstrel concerts on the Web: Starting in May 2017, most concerts at the Minstrel will be webcast live on Concert Window. Click on the CW logo at right to sign in. Check out our Instruction Page if you have not yet signed up for this service.

Christine Lavin
Apr 26, 2013

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Friday, July 27: The Minstrel's 43rd Birthday Show   THIS SHOW ONLY: $12 admission includes refreshments

The Minstrel's 43rd Birthday Show

On July 25, 1975 the little coffeehouse that was to become the Minstrel Acoustic Concert Series held its first show. The Folk Project celebrates that anniversary with a performance by 40 some Member musicians combined in randomly selected duos and trios. Always a surprise. Always fun. And always a celebration.

Friday, August 3: Cliff Eberhardt with Louise Mosrie

Cliff Eberhardt

I Want to Take You HomeCliff Eberhardt is a powerhouse of a singer-songwriter in all aspects of his craft. His voice is a high-liner freight train demanding and deserving your undivided attention. The songs that train carries are fraught with emotion and brilliant in their poetry. And his guitar work complements the package perfectly.

Louise Mosrie

Land of the LivingIt's no surprise that Louise Mosrie was voted "Most Wanted" at the 2011 Falcon Ridge Emerging Artist showcase. This Nashville singer-songwriter backs up some prodigious writing skills with a great voice, emotional delivery, and an engaging stage presence.

Cliff and Louise have been collaborating, both musically and personally for some time now, so it's likely that they will be joining each other onstage for some songs.

Friday, August 10: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, August 17: George Wurzbach with Circle Round the Sun

George Wurzbach

HannibalGeorge Wurzbach was an "Audience Choice" for a headline act, based upon his bravura performance opening for Bob Malone in December. After his selection as a Kerrville New Folk Award winner in 1995, he started the much beloved folk ‘comedy’ trio Modern Man with David Buskin and Rob Carlson earning several music industry awards. Performing Songwriter Magazine has described George as, “A welcome mix of wit, wisdom, and wonder”. The unique appeal of his songs is reflected in the number of artist songwriters who have recorded them including, Tom Paxton, The Kingston Trio, David Wilcox, and many others. His recent work with Paxton was featured on the Grammy Nominated Album, Comedians and Angels.

Circle Round the Sun

Small Town Saturday NightCircle Round the Sun is an acoustic/Americana band comprised of vocalists Marie Trontell* and Jay Wilensky*, Chris Bukata* and Joe Brice on guitars, and George LaVecchia on bass, CRS will bring its rich vocal harmonies to a mix of original songs and and the best work from today's crop of acoustic singer-songwriters.
* Folk Project members

Friday, August 24: Concerts relocated to the Ukrainian American Cultural Center of New Jersey
Friday: Abe Lagrimas, Jr. and Gracie Terzian and Saturday: Victoria Vox and The Aloha Boys w/ Alan Distajo

Friday: Abe Lagrimas, Jr. and Gracie Terzian

Abe Lagrimas, Jr. - End of the Road Friday August 24, 7:30pm NJUF's concert will feature Abe Lagrimas, Jr. and Gracie Terzian. Abe is a musician, composer, educator, and author who plays the drums, vibraphone, and ukulele. As a solo ukulele artist, Abe is a Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award (Hawaii Music Award) recipient and has released multiple albums. Abe studied at Berklee College of Music. Gracie’s a singer, songwriter, ukulelist, and actor on stage and screen whose recently released debut EP, Saints and Poets, reflects a "cool, sophisticated surface" of jazz as "a deep-dyed romantic tells her tales of modern love with quiet delicacy and an inborn musicality.” She is known in ukulele circles for playing unusual instruments, including the harp-ukulele and electric ukulele. Tickets $20 advance / $25 door.

Saturday: Victoria Vox and The Aloha Boys w/ Alan Distajo

Victoria Vox & Neal Chin - True ColorsSaturday August 25 7:30pm NJUF's concert features Victoria Vox and The Aloha Boys w/ Alan Distajo. Victoria is a ukulele-innovating, award-winning songwriter and performer of engaging chansons tinged with jazz, crossed with pop mixed with folk. Victoria's melodic and cleverly written songs may incorporate a loop pedal and bass effect on her ukulele or improvisational solos on her unique "mouth-trumpet," making her a veritable one-woman band. The Aloha Boys, Glen Hirabayashi and Irv Queja, joined by Alan Distajo, play an acoustic down-home, backyard-style Hawai'ian music, a style which includes everything from the very traditional to contemporary songs and styles. Tickets $20 advance / $25 door.

Friday, August 31: No Fuss and Feathers with Michael Arthur

No Fuss and Feathers

How Much TimeNo Fuss and Feathers Roadshow is the “heck-of-a-good-time” collaboration hatched by award winning songwriters Carolann Solebello, Karyn Oliver, and The YaYas It’s like getting three bands for the price of one when these friends share the stage: a dynamic, cohesive cocktail of delicious harmonies, infectious rhythm, and spontaneous hilarity. Individually, the four are nationally touring performers that have appeared on stage at some of the most respected festivals and venues. Collectively, they are an incorrigible bunch of musical co-conspirators bent on giving their audience an unforgettable show.

Michael Arthur

SusquehannaContemporary singer songwriter Michael Arthur explores the breadth and depth of the human experience is his poignant songs. Noted for his warm emotive vocals and lush acoustic guitar work, His performances have been described as “cathartic, heartwarming, and fun all at the same time “. His songs connect with the listener on a personal level.

Friday, September 7: Betsy Rose and the Chicago Fire with Rhonda Schuster

Betsy Rose and the Chicago Fire

Betsy Rose, better known to fellow Folk Project members as Elizabeth Lachowicz, is the Folk Project's resident Blues maven. Her clear voice and saucy style are rooted in the sights and sounds of Chicago's toughest neighborhoods and rowdiest music bars. Betsy's brand of the blues is filled with life lessons, raw emotions, heartfelt sorrows and playful innuendoes. Her backup band, The Chicago Fire, is packed with some of the Project's finest musicians.

Rhonda Schuster

I Feel For You(Note: This is Rhonda Schuster's rescheduled date after her show in March was cancelled due to a Nor'easter.)

Rhonda Schuster is a new Folk Project member musician, whom we discovered at our November Open Stage. She sings mostly her own songs with a blues influence and a powerful voice. Her song "We Might Never Feel This Way Again" was featured on Phoebe Snow's Something Real CD.

Friday, September 14: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, September 21: Bill Staines with The Asthmatics

Bill Staines

RiverFor just about as long as anyone currently involved in folk music can remember, Bill Staines is the archetypical contemporary folk singer. People have been singing his songs on stage, in recording studios, and around campfires for over 30 years. He is responsible for such classics as "Roseville Fair", "All God's Critters Got a Place in the Choir", and "River", all with choruses that beg to be sung with. Come and see a true living legend.

The Asthmatics

The Asthmatics is a newly formed trio of Folk Project member musicians Todd Dennison, Carrie Cantor, & Mitch Radler. The group is blessed with three outstanding voices and two highly accomplished guitarists. And they blend these assets in wonderful renditions of the pop folk repertoire of the 60s and 70s, sometimes faithfully replicating the original arrangements, and sometimes putting their own new slant on the songs.

Friday, September 28: Beppe Gambetta with Peter Lister

Beppe Gambetta

Beppe Gambetta, the Italian bluegrass flatpicking champion. Sounds like an ethnic joke, but Beppe is no joke. Early in life he was captured by the music of such greats as Doc Watson and Tony Rice, and soon got to the point where he was sharing festival stages as an equal with his heroes. Equally adroit on mandolin, he can blaze through a hot bluegrass tune or croon a lovely Italian traditional ballad. And all with an elegant continental charm that is a joy to witness.

Friday, October 5: Closed for the Folk Project Fall Getaway

Friday, October 12: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, October 19: Abbie Gardner with He Bird, She Bird

Abbie Gardner

I'd Rather BeAbbie Gardner is best known to the Minstrel regulars as the dobro player with the infectious smile from the group Red Molly. As a solo artist she performs mostly her original songs of love and loss, both gritty and sweet, propelled by her clear and expressive vocals and impeccable slide guitar playing. There's a pure Country feel to her delivery, channeling Lucinda and Bonnie, but remaining pure Abbie.

He Bird, She Bird

Hell or High WaterTodd Evans (resonator guitar), Terri Hall (percussion), and Christine Kellar (guitar) comprise He Bird, She Bird. Their music is a mix of original, Americana, and bluesy songs with strong 3-part harmony and a real sense of joy to the music. You can tell they're having fun on stage, and the fun is contagious.

Friday, October 26: A Folk Project Member Concert
Folk Project Halloween Party

Details to follow

Friday, November 2: Magpie with Opening Act T.B.D.   NOTE: This is Magpie's rain date after their scheduled March appearance was cancelled due to the Nor'Easter

Magpie

I Stand Before the Morning SunGreg Artzner and Terry Leonino have been married and performing together as Magpie for over 25 years. It only follows that their music as a duo is instinctively tight. Their vocal harmonies blend perfectly. Their instrumental work on guitar, mandolin, and harmonica is top notch. And their music ranges from '30's swing to environmentally and socially active folk music.

Friday, November 9: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, November 16: The Shockenaw Mountain Boys with Opening Act T.B.D.

The Shockenaw Mountain Boys

The Shockenaw Mountain Boys are an acoustic subset of the great New Jersey jam band, Railroad Earth. They feature R.E. staples Tim Carbone on fiddle, Andy Goessling on guitar and banjo, John Skehan on mandolin, and Johnny Grubb (of Emmitt & Nershi) on bass. They do great high-energy versions of Irish tunes, traditional folk standards, bluegrass, and a few originals.

Friday, November 23: Windborne

Windborne

I Can HewThis is Windborne's return for a headline set, which was awarded them by audience acclaim after their stellar opening act for Frank Vignola in June.
Conjuring up echos of the Canadian group "Finest Kind", Windborne is a harmony-driven quartet of 20-somethings who revel in the vocal traditions of the British Isles and early American folk song. To this they add vocal harmony traditions around the world from the Balkans to South Africa. They sing either acapella, or with spare accompaniment on banjo, fiddle, and percussion.

Friday, November 30: Reeds, Rhythm, And All That Brass with Opening Act T.B.D.

Reeds, Rhythm, And All That Brass

Jumpin' At The WoodsideLaunched in 1973, Reeds, Rhythm, and All That Brass is an 18-piece band playing the classic American Songbook repertoire of the Big Band era and beyond. Comprised of professional and semi-professional players, they perform the music made famous by Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, Frank Sinatra, and the like. The band includes Folk Project members Jeff Rantzer and Hen3ry Nerenberg on trombone, Darrell Courtley on sax, and Jay Wilensky on vocals.

Friday, December 7: Chorus Song Night

An evening of songs for the audience to sing. Details to follow.

Friday, December 14: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, December 21: A Folk Project Event
Folk Project Holiday Show

A concert to benefit the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship. Details to follow.

Friday, December 28: The Kennedys with Pepper & Sassafras

The Kennedys

Midnight GhostWhen not serving as Nanci Griffith's backup band, The Kennedys have been joyfully rocking the folk world with their own unique brand of high-energy performance. It's more than the powerful close-harmony singing. It's more than the hot guitar work. It's more than the driving rhythms and power chords. It's the obvious chemistry between Pete and Maura Kennedy that is so charming and so contagious that the listener can't help but grin and join in their fun.

Pepper & Sassafras

FlyPepper & Sassafras is the duo of Jeffrey Pepper Rogers and Wendy Ramsay. What the Kennedys do for folk rock, P&S do for straight folk. Well written songs with agile guitar accompaniment and really sweet harmonies and an old-timey feel.

Friday, January 4: Susan Werner

Did Trouble MeIt is rare performer who covers all the bases the way SSusan Werner does. She scores off the chart in intelligence, heart, instrumental and vocal chops, and enough charisma to make Radio City Music Hall feel like your local coffeehouse. She writes with the stylish craft of a Cole Porter and the spirituality of a Bob Franke. She plays sophisticated, effortless and perfectlly tasteful accompaniment on piano and guitar. And she makes you feel a better person for having spent the evening in her presence.

Friday, January 11: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for Folk Project members and anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, January 18: T.B.D.

Friday, January 25: T.B.D.

Friday, February 1: Folk Project Valentines Day Extravaganza

More details forthcoming.

Friday, February 8: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for Folk Project members and anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, February 15: T.B.D.

Friday, February 22: T.B.D.

Friday, March 1: T.B.D.

Friday, March 8: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for Folk Project members and anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, March 15: T.B.D.

Friday, March 22: T.B.D.

Friday, March 29: T.B.D.

Friday, April 5: Cheryl Wheeler

Cheryl Wheeler

ArrowThere are two Cheryl Wheelers, actually. There's the Good Cheryl Wheeler, who stops you in your tracks with the most beautiful poignant ballad that can bring you to tears. And there's the Evil Cheryl Wheeler whose biting wit and relentless probing of the foibles and foolishness of society reminds you of Jon Stewart or George Carlin and leaves you helplessly rolling on the floor with laughter. And watching those two Cheryl Wheelers vie with each other on stage is what has made her a top drawing talent in the Folk World for over 3 decades.

Friday, April 12: OpenStage   $5 admission Open Stage only.

The Minstrel OpenStage is the place where a diverse collection of acoustic musicians perform for a welcoming, supportive, and attentive audience. We’re a listening room, not a noisy bar. We've often seen previews of our regularly scheduled opening acts for the first time at our Open Stage. Admission is $5.00 at the door, but is free for Folk Project members and anyone under the age of twenty-five. (Free-will donations are encouraged.) For information on how to sign up to perform at our next Open Stage, visit www.OpenStage.FolkProject.org.

Friday, April 19: T.B.D.

Friday, April 26: RPR with Opening Act T.B.D.

RPR

Temporary SongThose who mourn the demise of the great Canadian band Tanglefoot will rejoice at the emergence of RPR, which might justifiably be called "Tanglefoot II". Three of T'foot's members, Rob Ritchie (keyboard), Steve Ritchie (guitar), and Al Parrish (bass) form the core of the band, and are joined by Beaker Granger (percussion & guitar). The full-throated folk sound is still there, along with some of the old band's repertoire. But the focus is broader and the musical palette more varied. The vocal harmonies are powerfully evident as ever, as is the energy, the finely-honed songwriting, the penchant for humour and the twinkling eyes.