Monthly Archives: March 2014

WoodSongs Celebrates the Life and Songs of Pete Seeger

Lexington, KY- PETE SEEGER was a folk icon and musical hero to many including Michael Johnathon host of the Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour. Pete Seeger’s public TV show Rainbow Quest were the seeds on what would become WoodSongs. For this special broadcast of WoodSongs, Michael Johnathon will be celebrating the life and music of Pete Seeger with a few close friends and artists. This special event will held on Monday March 31, 2014  6:45pm at The Lyric theater and Cultural Events Center in Lexington, KY Call 859-252-8888 for reservations.

Special guests for this event include:

MARK DVORAK is a folk singer, songwriter, teacher and touring musician. Since 1998, Mark has toured with WeaverMania! playing the role of Pete Seeger. WeaverMania! celebrates the sounds and songs of Pete’s legendary folk group, The Weavers. Starting in March, he is conducting a new class “Pete Seeger & The Power of Song” at Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk Music where Mark has taught since 1986. Mark is also known for conducting community sings and jams in the Pete Seeger style. Mark will be performing with fellow WeaverMania! member Chris Walz and Frank Hamilton who is the co-founder of the Old Town School of Folk Music and was a member of The Weavers from 1962-1963.

RIK PALIERI is a folksinger from Vermont. When he was fifteen, he taught himself the 5-string banjo from Pete Seeger’s famous banjo book. In the mid 70’s he joined Pete Seeger and The Hudson River Sloop Singers and became a regular performer at Clearwater events. Rik’s latest project is following the footsteps of the legendary “The Almanac Singers” made up of Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Lee Hays & Mill Lampell. Rik and George Mann traveled to some of the same places and towns as the legendary “The Almanac Singers” did in the summer of 1941. Rik will be performing with Rick Nestler who’s another member of the Hudson River Sloop Singers. banjo.net | almanactrail.com

MICHAEL JOHNATHON  is a folk-singer, songwriter, concert performer, author who created and hosts the worldwide broadcast of the “Wood Songs Old-Time Radio Hour” with a radio audience with over a million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, PBS-TV coast-to-coast plus American Forces Radio Network in 173 nations. He also created the world’s first multi-camera weekly music series broadcast on the Internet. Growing up in New York, Michael Johnathon was Pete Seeger’s neighbor. Now settled in the foothills of Appalachia, the Kentucky-based songwriter is a prolific artist with ten released albums, two published books and several national projects.  He performed two thousand Earth Concerts, plus benefits for the homeless, farm families, and shelters helping battered women and children. In all, he sang to over two million people in one four-year stretch. Billboard Magazine headlined him as an “UnSung Hero.” He has been featured on CNN, TNN, CMT, AP, Headline News, NPR, Bravo and the BBC.

Acoustics at Oaks End Welcomes Michael Johnathon-Folksinger/Songwriter

Smyrna, GA Acoustics at Oaks End house concert music series welcomes Kentucky based folksinger /songwriter Michael Johnathon for a special concert of original and traditional songs on Saturday April 12, 2014 at 7:30 pm  For more information and reservations (RSVP required) visit the website at http://www.cruisewomen.com/aaoe/acoustics.htm.

Michael Johnathon is a folksinger, songwriter, concert performer, author who created and hosts the worldwide broadcast of the “WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour” with a radio audience with over a million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, PBS-TV coast-to-coast plus American Forces Radio Network in 173 nations. He also created the world’s first multi-camera weekly music series broadcast on the Internet. Michael is also a playwright… his play Walden: The Ballad of Thoreau has over 8,000 registered performances in 42 countries and translated into four languages. He  wrote a full symphony opera to commemorate the 2012 Centennial of Woody Guthrie titled Woody: For The People, set on February 23, 1940 – the day he wrote “This Land Is Your Land.”

His new CD is Front Porch and he is working on a new CD of live tracks to be ready late spring 2014.

Growing up in New York, Michael Johnathon was Pete Seeger’s neighbor. Now settled in the foothills of Appalachia, the Kentucky-based songwriter is a prolific artist with ten released albums, two published books and several national projects.

He performed two thousand Earth Concerts, plus benefits for the homeless, farm families, and shelters helping battered women and children. In all, he sang to over two million people in one four-year stretch. Billboard Magazine headlined him as an “UnSung Hero.” He has been featured on CNN, TNN, CMT, AP, Headline News, NPR, Bravo and the BBC.

WDVX Blue Plate Special Welcomes Folksinger/Songwriter Michael Johnathon

Knoxville, TN- WDVX Blue Plate Special live performance radio broadcast welcomes Michael Johnathon on Friday April 11. The WDVX Blue Plate Special is a live performance radio show held at noon, Monday through Saturday, at the Knoxville Visitor Center on the corner of Gay Street and Summit Hill Drive. It’s free and open to an audience of all ages!  Hosted weekdays by Red Hickey, the WDVX Blue Plate Special is broadcast and webcast around the world. Can’t make it down for a show? Listen live online. If you’re in town, bring your lunch and join us for real, live music in beautiful downtown Knoxville.

Michael Johnathon is a folk-singer, songwriter, concert performer, author who created and hosts the worldwide broadcast of the “WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour” with a radio audience with over a million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, PBS-TV coast-to-coast plus American Forces Radio Network in 173 nations. He also created the world’s first multi-camera weekly music series broadcast on the Internet. Michael is also a playwright… his play Walden: The Ballad of Thoreau has over 8,000 registered performances in 42 countries and translated into four languages. He  wrote a full symphony opera to commemorate the 2012 Centennial of Woody Guthrie titled Woody: For The People, set on February 23, 1940 – the day he wrote “This Land Is Your Land.”

His new CD is Front Porch and he is working on a new CD of live tracks to be ready late spring 2014.

Growing up in New York, Michael Johnathon was Pete Seeger’s neighbor. Now settled in the foothills of Appalachia, the Kentucky-based songwriter is a prolific artist with ten released albums, two published books and several national projects.

He performed two thousand Earth Concerts, plus benefits for the homeless, farm families, and shelters helping battered women and children. In all, he sang to over two million people in one four-year stretch. Billboard Magazine headlined him as an “UnSung Hero.” He has been featured on CNN, TNN, CMT, AP, Headline News, NPR, Bravo and the BBC.

Jenny and Robin Bienemann release first-ever duo CD

Chicago singer/songwriters Jenny and Robin Bienemann announce two CD release events surrounding their first-ever duo album, Jenny and Robin Bienemann LIVE. Jenny and Robin Bienemann will celebrate and perform on Saturday, April 5 at Fitzgerald’s, 6615 Roosevelt Rd in Berwyn, and Wednesday, April 9 at Mayne Stage, 1328 W. Morse Ave in Chicago.

The Saturday, April 5, CD release party at Fitzgerald’s in Berwyn will begin performances by special guests at 6:30pm with Jenny and Robin taking the stage at 9:30 p.m., featuring songs from Jenny and Robin Bienemann LIVE. The evening’s special guest performances include 30-minute sets by Small Forest (Jeanne Kuhns, Mary Mattson, Pat Palmer from Door County WI) at 6:30pm; Jodi Walker (Walker Music Network) at 7:30pm; and Steve Dawson (Dolly Varden) & Alton Smith (Come Sunday) at 8:30pm. On the hour, Chicago favorites Steve Doyle and Brian Wilke (The Hoyle Brothers) and their “dueling telecasters” entertain in the Sidebar. The Significant Others (Jenny and Robin Bienemann, Dave and Jodi Walker, Naomi Ashley) will play from 10:30pm-midnight. A community potluck dinner celebration will be held at 6:00pm in the Sidebar.

Tickets are $10, and are available at Fitzgerald’s in advance or at the door.

The Wednesday, April 9, 8:30 p.m. “North Side” CD release at Mayne Stage is part of the Chicago Acoustic Underground concert series. Jenny and Robin will take the stage at 8:30pm, Nino Arobelidze & Friends at 9:30pm, and Tonos Triad at 10:30pm. Mayne Stage tickets are $5.

The husband and wife duo of Jenny and Robin Bienemann are both singer-songwriters and instrumentalists. Their first-ever album as a duo, Jenny and Robin Bienemann LIVE was recorded live in 98.7 WFMT’s studio as part of its one-hour, live-broadcast Folkstage program, capturing a performance by turns hilarious and sublime, and songs that blend heartfelt, acoustic folk with an elegant hint of jazz. Host and producer Rich Warren says, “Jenny and Robin Bienemann give a refreshing twist to the singer-songwriter genre, with clever and quirky songs, a lovely voice on Jenny’s part and some impressive guitar picking on Robin’s part.”

Robin’s wild guitar stylings harken back to the earliest forms of Jazz, Blues and Country guitar while his songs are quirky snapshots and celebrations of modern life in all of it strange and hilarious beauty. Robin has shared the stage with the likes of Dan Hicks, NRBQ and Reverend Horton Heat. He has toured the U.S. and Japan and released 2 albums with his celebrated duo Twang Bang and a solo album, Songs About Work.

Jenny’s 2012 release, Heading Slowly Towards the Beginning was hailed by WXRT’s Local Anesthetic as “simply striking in its fluidity and charm.” Her songs, compelling portraits of often-overlooked moments, have been have been heard on MSNBC, the Howard Stern Show, National Public Radio, and The Midnight Special, described as “wholesome, quirky and wise, unfolding slowly and surely like flowers.”

Jenny and Robin Bienemann are touring, Chicago-based singer/songwriters. Their music has underscored film and theatre projects, and garnered international radio play. www.jennyandrobin.com; www.robinb.org; www.jennybienemann.com

From Loretta: Heading Toward Spring

January 2014 began with Loretta Sawyer Promotions sending three new CD releases to radio; Amy Dixon-Kolar’s Dancing Through the Storm, James Curley’s There Use to be a Train, and Inside out Studio (Gary Gordon) Premier Collection.  All continue to receive airplay on Folk and Americana radio stations.

Folk Alliance Trade Show

Loretta Sawyer Agency shared a trade show booth with Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs

February was the Folk Alliance International Conference in Kansas City, MO.

Loretta Sawyer Agency shared a trade show booth with Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs. LSA has worked with Michael Johnathon on various projects providing publicity/promotion and national booking  Thanks to all the artists, DJs and venues who stopped by the trade show booth, it was great meeting you!

MJ Folk Alliance

Michael Johnathon workshop at Folk Alliance

 

Michael Johnathon conducted a workshop at the conference titled Why Free Works to a full room. Other highlights of the conference was a very sincere and touching key note address by Graham Nash and a presentation about Climate Change by Al Gore. Of course… music was everywhere!

 

 

Mark Dvorak provided social hour and dinner entertainment for the Paul Seiwert Foundation’s annual dinner dance fundraising event for children with cancer in Park Ridge, IL on March 1, 2014

Mark Dvorak provided entertainment for the Paul Seiwert Foundation’s annual fundraising event for children with cancer.

Mark Dvorak provided social hour and dinner entertainment for the Paul Seiwert Foundation’s annual dinner dance fundraising event for children with cancer in Park Ridge, IL on March 1, 2014. Thanks to all for your support in making this a very successful evening.

Michael Johnathon returns to Two Way Street Coffee House in Downers Grove, IL on Friday March 7 and then rides out of town to join Michael Martin Murphy in concert in Winchester, KY the next day. Stay tuned for more press releases about Michael’s upcoming concerts.

Mark Dvorak is conducting an audience participation concert and sing along celebrating the life and songs of Pete Seeger, Saturday March 15 at 8:00 pm in Woodstock IL.

 

In celebration of Women’s History Month in March, local folk musicians have arranged a fundraiser for Family Shelter Service at Caribou Coffee, 5100 Main St., Downers Grove, on March 22, 7-9 p.m., featuring songs “about, by and for women.” The musical lineup includes: Comfort Food (Rich & Vicki Ingle), Robinlee Garber and Amy Dixon-Kolar.

Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour will be presenting a Pete Seeger celebration broadcast on Monday March 31 that will include a Chicago Old Town School of Folk Music reunion of Mark Dvorak, Chris Walz and Frank Hamilton performing songs of The Weavers.

Thanks for visiting the LSA website and stay tuned!

Lo

Woodstock remembers folk legend Pete Seeger March 15

WOODSTOCK IL – Off Square Music presents a very special concert of story, song and audience participation, “We Remember Pete,” at the Unity Spiritual Center, 225 Calhoun Street on Saturday, March 15 at 8:00 pm. General admission to the concert is $12.

The program will feature folk artist and songwriter Mark Dvorak of Riverside IL, leading the audience through some of Seeger’s best-known songs. Dvorak has followed in the footsteps of Seeger as a musician, educator and community builder. He toured for six seasons with “WeaverMania!,” performing Seeger’s role as a singer, storyteller and banjo player, and has given hundreds of presentations on American folk music in elementary schools and for community organizations across the country.

“All of humanity has lost a great artist and teacher,” said Dvorak. “Pete lived a very long and productive life. He leaves behind a lot of great songs we can learn to sing together, and a social model upon which we can learn to take care of each other, and the planet. I am thrilled to be a part of the Woodstock music community, and looking forward to singing together in the beautiful sanctuary at Unity.”

Dvorak was named “Chicago’s Troubadour” by WFMT 98.7 fm fine arts radio last year,  and is the 2013 recipient of FARM Lantern Bearer Award for his contribution to the field of folk music.  His songwriting has been called “wondrous” and “profound.” His performance “an elegant balancing act of the traditional, the original and the powerful.” The Chicago Tribune calls him “masterful,” while SING OUT! magazine says, “Dvorak shines!” In December his first book of essays and poems, “Bowling for Christmas and Other Tales from the Road” was published. It has received glowing reviews and sold out of its first printing in nine days.

Visitors are invited to send in their remembrances of Seeger and song requests. Those wishing to sing with Dvorak may contact him directly at markdv@aol.com.

 

An evening of story and song with folksinger Mark Dvorak March 16

BATAVIA IL – “Chicago’s official troubadour,” Mark Dvorak will make two special appearances on Sunday, March 16. Kiss the Sky Records, 180 W. First Street will present Dvorak in a free concert at 6:00 pm and Dvorak will join Waterline Writers at 7:00 pm to read selections from his recently published book of essays and poems, “Bowling for Christmas & Other Tales from the Road.”

“We’re absolutely thrilled that Mark is coming to Batavia,” said Steve Warrenfeltz, owner of Kiss the Sky. “We’re very proud of our intimate listening space, and Mark’s acoustic sound will be a perfect fit.”

“Steve got in touch with the idea of collaborating on this event,” said Anne Veague, Waterline Writers founder and curator. “I read Mark’s book earlier this year and loved it. He truly has a gift, and his stories read like folk songs sound. They give the reader a feel for the kind of experiences he’s had as a traveling musician, and remark on the sacrifices one makes in the arts.”

The reading will take place at Water Street Studios, 160 S. Water Street. Both events are free. CDs and books will be available for purchase and signing.

Dvorak has given concerts and presentations nationally and internationally and released sixteen albums. His 2011 CD, Time Ain’t Got Nothin’ On Me rose to number fourteen on the Cashbox Roots Report. He has been on the faculty of Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk Music since 1986, where he is currently artist-in-residence.

The Chicago Tribune calls him, “masterful,” while SING OUT! Magazine says, “Dvorak shines!” In 2012 WFMT 98.7 fm Fine Arts Radio named him “Chicago’s official troubadour.”

For information on the concert contact Kiss the Sky at 630-406-0086 or on their website.