Lindsay McCaw and Aaron Jonah Lewis–both champion multi-instrumentalists and singers, and two-thirds of the inimitable Corn Potato String Band–are rolling through town, and stopping over for a Chenango Craftsman Session. As you may remember, Aaron played our inaugural houseconcert with Ben Belcher, the other third of CPSB. So it’s the Corn Potato Duo again, but different! As if that’s not enough, Emily Keener will be in town to open the show. Emily turned the chairs of all four coaches to become a finalist in Season 10 of The Voice, and is the winner of the 2017 No Depression Singer-Songwriter Award.
SEPTEMBER 13TH, 2018 @ 7:30 PM
POTLUCK & DOORS @ 6:30 PM
CHENANGO CRAFTSMAN SESSIONS, BINGHAMTON, NY
$15 SUGGESTED DONATION (100% to the artists)
The Corn Potato String Band
The members of the Corn Potato String Band earn high praise in traditional American music, keeping old time fiddle and banjo music from a one-way trip to the dustbins of history. Theirs is a story of struggle, hard knocks, and triumph. Essentially unable to cope with modern life, the members of this band are outcasts of society who survive by playing the lost music of the flatlands where they were raised.
The Corn Potatoes have delighted audiences with their driving fiddle tunes and harmonious singing across the US, Canada, Europe, Mexico, and India. They are all multi-instrumentalists dedicated to continuing the music and dance traditions of the Central and Southern United States. In addition to being champion fiddlers they play banjo, guitar, bass, and mandolin, and deftly handle many different antiquated styles including ballads, “ho-downs,” country “rags,” and southern gospel, specializing in twin fiddling and double banjo tunes.
“I’ve heard quite a lot of old-time fiddle and banjo playing, trust me, but I’ve never heard it like this… played at break-neck speeds, Aaron’s fiddle whipping around tight corners like a high-end sports car. It was like watching Bach hopped up on speed, composing kickass barn dance tunes in Appalachia. Kind of.” –No Depression
“They blew the audience away. A half-hour of standards, obscurities and charming banter later, the decidedly hip multi-instrumentalists received one of the most thunderous ovations of any opening act I’ve witnessed in quite some time.” –PopMatters
Aaron Jonah Lewis
Aaron Jonah Lewis is a multi-instrumentalist, performer and educator. He has won awards at the Clifftop Appalachian String Band Festival, including First Place Neotraditional Band in 2008, and at the Galax Old Fiddlers Convention, including First Place Bluegrass Fiddle in 2007, and he has performed at major festivals from the U.S. to the U.K. and from Italy to Finland. Lewis has appeared on dozens of recordings from bluegrass and old time to swing jazz, modern experimental, and Turkish classical music projects. He has taught workshops at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow and at the English Folk Dance and Song Society in London. He also plays and teaches banjo, mandolin, guitar, and bass, and is currently based in Detroit, Michigan.
Lindsay McCaw has been playing American old time music for over 15 years. She performs music and calls dances around the country. McCaw plays fiddle, banjo, guitar, accordion and piano. She is also part of several theater and puppet companies, including her own, called The Dolly Wagglers. She has won several musical distinctions such as two-time winner of the Minneapolis Jug Band Contest and four-time Grand Prize winner of the Sheffield Field Days Fiddle Contest.
Cleveland based singer/songwriter Emily Keener is a craftswoman of emotion, and her take on alternative folk is somewhere between Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, and Eliott Smith. Reflective and evocative, Emily’s music is a mirror and a magnifying glass, and she delivers her lyrics with a presence that resembles conversations in dimly lit living rooms.
Keener’s emergence into artistry was more of a fateful stumble, and the difference between each early release exhibits a quick wising-up: from the Folk/Americana EP, East of the Sun (2015), to her latest full length, Breakfast (2016), following a successful run on The Voice. Music Connection called Breakfast “warm, pleasant and smart”, deeming Keener “a born communicator.” In 2017, she received No Depression’s Singer-Songwriter Award.
The Chenango Craftsman Sessions are an occasional series of concerts and live recording events which take place at the home of Sarah Gerk and Andru Bemis in the Northside of Binghamton, New York. Because of the intimate nature of the space, sessions are by invitation only. This can come from a performer’s newsletter or website, through our periodic email newsletter (sign up here), or from an acquaintance, family member, or other guest.
Recordings from the Chenango Craftsman Sessions are broadcast during the Audio Classics Local Music Hour on WBDY-LP 99.5 FM, Binghamton’s new community radio station. The Local Music Hour airs weekdays at 11 a.m. and 7 p.m., and weekends at 7 p.m.
100% of audience donations go directly to the artist. To ensure a seat for you at the performance, we encourage you to make your donation in advance. Guests without advance reservations may make their donation—cash or check—at the concert, and will be seated according to availability. Reasonably well-behaved kiddos and babies are always welcome.
Doors open at 6:30 pm. Join us for potluck-style food, snacks and drinks before the concert, if you wish. Don’t feel that you must bring something to be included; there’s enough for everybody. Music starts at 7:30 pm. Emily Keener and the Corn Potatoes will play till 9 pm or so. Feel free to stay and visit after the performance, and don’t be afraid to arrive late or leave early if your schedule requires it.
We’re looking forward to seeing you on the 13th!
If you have questions or would like more information, contact Andru.