SALLY ROGERS & HOWIE BURSEN
presented by Cranberry Coffeehouse
18 May 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Unitarian Universalist Congregation
183 Riverside Drive, Binghamton, New York
Suggested donation $10
Sally Rogers performs an evening of traditional, contemporary and original ballads and song, interwoven with stories taken from her life as a performer, a wife, and a mother. Throughout her concerts, she accompanies herself on guitar and Appalachian dulcimer, or performs without accompaniment in a voice that needs no further enhancement. Reviewers have described her voice in superlatives ranging from “remarkable” to “mesmerizing.” As one critic summarized, “…it’s really next to impossible to do justice to a voice of that quality.” Much of the material performed by Sally includes her own compositions, many of which are considered classics of the folk and popular genre.
Sally Rogers began her career as a full-time touring musician in 1979, after encouragement from Stan Rogers, the legendary Canadian singer-songwriter. That was followed by an invitation from Garrison Keillor to appear on A Prairie Home Companion. She appeared more than a dozen times on that show, which launched her performing career. Her travels have since taken her to Europe, China, Hungary and Poland, England and Scotland and across the United States.
Sally has released fourteen albums, including several collaborative projects with other artists. Her first album, The Unclaimed Pint, has stood the test of time and continues to be a big seller. Her second album, In the Circle of the Sun, received the “Best Folk Album of 1982” award from the National Association of Independent Record Distributors (NAIRD). Her 1987 album, Closing the Distance, recorded with fellow singer/songwriter Claudia Schmidt, was voted by many public radio stations throughout the country as among the ten most popular albums of the year.
Sally reached a new audience with her first children’s recording, Peace by Peace, in the spring of 1988. As one of the first albums to introduce children to the concept of peace on a day to day basis, Peace by Peace received wide critical and popular acclaim. Sally’s second children’s album, Piggyback Planet: Songs for a Whole Earth (Round River Records), featuring environmental songs for children, received the 1990 “Parents’ Choice Gold Award for Audio Recording”. Sally’s latest recording, What Can One Little Person Do? (Round River Records), offers empowerment to young people, teaching them that each and every one of them is important as an individual. That recording won the 1993 NAIRD Award for Best Children’s Recording and yet another Parents’ Choice Gold Award. Soon afterwards, Sally released a compilation of traditional and original lullabies for toddlers and infants called At Quiet O’Clock (Round River Records). This recording too has received its share of awards including the NAIRD Award for Best Children’s Recording of 1994.
In 1994 Rogers released a children’s video produced by Academy Award-winning cinematographer George Pickow. Her children’s picture book, Earthsong, was published by EP Dutton of New York (the people who brought us Winnie the Pooh). Sally’s long-awaited recording for adult audiences, We’ll Pass Them On (Red House Records) is her most recent solo endeavor. On this recording, Sally performs half original material and half traditional ballads and songs. Her last two albums with Claudia Schmidt, Evidence of Happiness and We Are Welcomed were released in 2014 and 2016
Rogers has now returned to the life of a self-employed musician, focusing her energies on school residencies and concerts. She works through Arts for Learning Connecticut and the Connecticut Office of the Arts She performs solo and also with her singing partner of over 30 years, Claudia Schmidt, and her husband, Howie Bursen. Her gorgeous singing voice, boundless energy and good humor are welcomed from coast to coast.
Howie Bursen is best known for his gravity-defying, triplet-filled, fiddle-tune variations and is one of today’s foremost practitioners of clawhammer banjo style. He has taught clawhammer at the Maryland Banjo Academy, Common Ground and the California Traditional Solstice Festival. Howie also is an excellent singer, songwriter and guitarist, and he makes his living as manager and head wine-maker for a Connecticut vineyard.
The Cranberry Coffeehouse has been a fixture in the musical life of upstate New York for forty-six years (yes, 46!), and has been a frequent stop for performers of varied acoustic genres. It is one of the longest continuously-running venues for traditional folk and acoustic music in the Binghamton area. The setting is humble, but comfortable, and the energy, exuberance, and beauty of the performances are long remembered. Primarily a venue for traditional folk music, the Cranberry also enjoys other types of acoustically-based music.
We put the “folk” back in Folk music! The Cranberry Coffeehouse encourages musicians, vocalists, story-tellers, and dancers of all ages and skill levels to share their talents during the “Middle Set”. Middle set performances are each limited to five minutes.
The Cranberry Coffeehouse is located at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 183 Riverside Drive, Binghamton, NY 13905. Unless otherwise specified, performances start at 7:30 p.m., with a $10 suggested donation at the door.
For more information, visit www.cranberrycoffeehouse.org.