Legendary Blues and Folk Performer Chris Smither to Play at Long’s Park August 22

Lancaster — Chris Smither is considered one of the biggest names on the U.S. folk circuit. He is a major draw at music festivals and his driving folk and blues-infused style has earned him countless loyal fans. And deservedly so.  He’s spent four decades honing his superb finger-picking style, perfecting his songwriting craft and developing a rapport with audiences that is nothing short of magical. “We were looking for a singer-songwriter who was also a storyteller,” said Stella Saxton, director of the Long’s Park Summer Music Series.  “We selected Chris Smither because he’s a great performer who really knows how to energize a crowd.” The Long’s Park Amphitheater Foundation presents concerts featuring an eclectic line-up of world class musicians on Sunday evenings in the summer. Chris Smither will make his debut performance at Long’s Park on Sunday, August 22, at 7:30 p.m. with his band, The Motivators.

 Longtime fans of Chris Smither who are used to seeing him solo may wonder what his music will be like with a band. “The concert will be all about Chris Smither,” assures band member David “Goody” Goodrich. “We complement Smither’s unique style. We sit close together, play off of each other…and sometimes you can’t tell where Chris’ guitar ends and mine begins.” Goodrich, who plays electric and acoustic guitars as well as piano, is joined by percussionist Zak Trojano. The trio originally formed in 2008 to play for a festival in the Netherlands and more recently worked together on “Time Stands Still,” a Chris Smither CD lauded for its raw energy, sparse arrangements and creative interplay. So as not to drown out Smither’s signature foot-tapping, Trojano beats an old suitcase instead of a bass drum and uses recycled material (like tin cans) along with more standard percussion instruments. Perhaps the most unusual instrument they’ll play is a “Diddley Boo,” a one-stringed instrument with a pickup made from the ignition of an old car. “This was made for us by a friend,” said Goodrich, “in honor of a song that Chris sings about a Chevy Slant Six.”

 “Come up and see me after the show,” invites Goodrich, “and I’ll show you how it works.”

 To find out more about Chris Smither, visit his Website at http://smither.com.

By Jess Hayden. Published in Showcase Now! August-September 2010

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