Eastport Arts Center will feature Sara Grey and Brian Miller with a concert, Irish Songs from the Logging Camps of Maine, on Tuesday, April 24 at 7 pm. Grey and Miller’s program consists of tunes which have migrated to Northern New England, New Brunswick, Ontario, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Singer, story-teller and five-string banjo player Sara Grey has had a long and full career on the folk music scene. Back in 1969 the New York Times made note of the young girl who “brought a fresh, contemporary aura to the traditional art of unaccompanied ballad singing” and who even as a newer performer “showed a fine talent for involving the audience in the line of her story.” Sara has been performing traditional songs for more than 60 years, appearing at most every folk club and arts center in England, Scotland and Wales as well as more than 60 folk and bluegrass festivals. Her career-long fascination with the traditional repertoire has given her an incomparable knowledge of songs and ballads and how they have moved and evolved, and a desire to gather these songs and pass them on to future generations.
Currently living in Rockland, Maine, Grey grew up in New Hampshire but has lived in North Carolina, Ohio, Montana, New York, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Wales, Scotland and England. As a youngster in North Carolina she first heard a lot of mountain music and her love for the old time banjo music and songs developed from this experience. She has carried this interest into her adult life studying folklore and collecting and performing music from the various areas in which she has lived. She has been concentrating for the last several years on tracing the migration of songs from the British Isles to North America. Grey’s music is not only technically excellent but also filled with warmth and spirit.
A native of the northern Minnesota logging town of Bemidji, Brian Miller fell in love with Irish traditional music 20 years ago and has since become a sought-after musician in North America’s Irish music scene. A guitar and bouzouki player and singer, Brian is an avid researcher of traditional song, particularly Irish-influenced music collected in the north woods regions of the US and Canada. Brian has toured widely throughout the US and Canada with these and other projects. As a scholar, Brian has written for the Journal of American Folklore and lectured on traditional song at University College Cork (Ireland), University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Minnesota. He teaches Irish music on a variety of instruments at the Center for Irish Music in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Tickets are $10; those 17 and under will be admitted free of charge. More information about Grey can be found at harbourtownrecords.com/sara-grey/. The Eastport Arts Center is at 36 Washington Street, Eastport, and is handicapped-accessible. For more information, please visit www.eastportartscenter.org or call (207) 853-4650.