Reservations are required: email HouseConcerts@fssgb.org for reservations and directions. Admission is $20, payable in cash at the door. ($5 for students if you let us know in advance.)
There will be a potluck supper before the concert, starting at 6:30pm. Please bring something to share, if you plan to join us for supper.
John Conolly is an internationally-recognized singer and songwriter who plays guitar and melodeon. He styles his songs so masterfully on the sound of English traditional songs that many people are surprised to hear that his songs are not from the tradition. Many of his most famous songs have been inspired by the fishing heritage of his hometown of Grimsby, UK, and have been performed and recorded by famous singers all over the world, including “Fiddler’s Green,” “The Trawling Trade,” “Punch and Judy Man,” and “The Widowmaker.” He has been actively involved in the folk music scene all of his life and was one of four people who came together in 1963 to form the Grimsby Folk Club. He has been in many different band configurations over the years, performing his own material and English traditional songs at pubs, clubs, festivals and concerts – an article in Living Tradition of unknown date mentions that he performed for FSSGB but that must have been quite a while ago now! He currently has seven cds available.
He will be accompanied on this tour by Rob van Sante, who lives in Whitby, UK. He is known for his subtle guitar accompaniment and fine harmony singing, which is a perfect complement to John’s singing. In the 70’s and 80’s he toured extensively through Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East working with many well-known UK folk and jazz performers. He is a noted sound engineer, having served as the sound engineer for the Battlefield Band for nearly 20 years in the 90’s and early 2000’s. He is a noted producer, recording engineer and session musician. I met Rob when he came through New England last year touring with Janie Meneely – they performed at Lynn Noel’s house and it was a great evening. He has a great stage presence but doesn’t overwhelm the headliner.
John and Rob have been working together as a duo since their collaboration on the production of John’s most recent CD, “The Man from Fiddler’s Green,” which has received critical acclaim in folk media. Rob’s sensitive guitar accompaniment and vocal harmonies add an extra dimension to John’s tuneful, thought-provoking songs and together they provide a thoroughly entertaining evening of good music and great humor.
Janie Meneely is setting up all of their East Coast tour so she is touring with them, and will present a song during the evening – she’s a wonderful singer with many lovely songs from the Chesapeake Bay area. She splits her time between DC and UK, and performs out with these two gentlemen whenever she can. I’ve met her, and the Old Howard Troupe used her home in DC as our rehearsal/crash space when we performed in DC last year. She’s warm and wonderful and a great singer/guitarist.