the Belleville Roots Music Series presents The Rarely Scene on Saturday, May 7 at 8 p.m. at the Belleville Congregational Church Meetinghouse, 300 High Street. The Seldom Scene is an American progressive bluegrass band organized in Bethesda, MD in 1971. The opening for The Seldom Scene is green heron, a folk, old-time and bluegrass duo living in southern New Hampshire.
In their 50+ years of music making, The Seldom Scene have released 20 albums, been nominated for a Grammy Award and won awards in the Bluegrass Album and Song categories at the 14th Annual Independent Music Awards. The band has faced many changes over its long career due to members leaving for other activities, as well as losses through death. They adapted and regrouped each time, determined to continue doing what they love: making music and sharing it with their audience. The scene rarely lives. Current members are Dudley Connell on guitar, Lou Reid on mandolin and guitar, Ron Stewart on banjo and fiddle, Fred Travers on dobro, Ronnie Simpkins on bass.
While their music is rooted in traditional American bluegrass, the band was an early force in progressive bluegrass. Their original compositions incorporate a diverse range of influences from pop, rock, jazz and blues. They have also applied their exceptional musical talent and distinctive style to create innovative covers of works by many other artists. The Scene’s latest release on Rounder Records, Changes, features boldly reimagined songs by Bob Dylan, John Prine, Gordon Lightfoot, Phil Ochs, James Taylor, Townes Van Zandt and more. On this album, the band focuses on a very specific body of work: songs first recorded in the 1960s and very early 70s, rooted in the archetype of singer-songwriter storytelling classics. Changes is Seldom Scene’s first album without a founding member, following the retirement of banjo player Ben Eldridge. “I guess it’s a bold move to continue without a single original member left,” admits Dudley Connell. “But we’ve all been doing it for a quarter of a century now, so if anyone can wear that coat, it’s us.” The Seldom Scene are back on the road to deliver a show that happily balances the band’s most recent work with many fan favorites and audience requests.
Green Heron Featuring Betsy Heron (formerly Green) on fiddle, banjo and vocals, and Scott Heron on guitar, banjo and vocals, the duo have shared New England stages since 2017. The two songwriters- composers weave the contemporary with the traditional and deliver high energy performance.
The Belleville Roots Music Series was founded in December 2010, with a mission to build a community by bringing a variety of high quality Roots music to the Newburyport area for all to enjoy, and to raise funds to restore and maintain the Belleville Roots Music Series. ‘historic 1867 Belleville Congregational Church Meetinghouse .
After being closed by Covid for two years, Belleville Roots Music Series was eager to resume productions. Thankfully, the season’s first gig, Dervish in March, drew a packed audience and was followed by a successful second show from Cheryl Wheeler in April, proving that music fans are ready to get out there and enjoy it again. live music! Roots looks forward to continuing its regular schedule with a concert schedule for the fall.
To learn more about the Belleville Roots Music Series or to purchase tickets, visit http://bellevilleroots.org. Tickets are $35 in advance; $40 at the door; $10 18 and under.