Archive of Past Performances Page 3    Page 1 Page 2  Page 3  Page 4  Page 5

Sat. Jan 10   Knotty Pine

This trio features Nate Gusakov on clawhammer and 3 finger banjo, Katie Trautz on fiddle and guitar, and Jason Pappas playing upright and electric bass. They are a Vermont based group whose original material is rooted in traditional old-time music. Their experimental sound lies on the edge of Americana and bluegrass; they infuse their songs with sweet harmonies and the darker, rustic elements called for by old-time and honest folk music.

                Among their influences are Gillian Welch, the Mammals, Mayfly, Nate’s dad- David Gusakov who plays violin in the Vermont Symphony and also with the Will Patton Ensemble. They also say that the very landscape of Vermont and the musicians who go with it help them create their sound. The sound of rocking old time originals and homegrown harmonies. Hear some of their tunes at


Sat. Feb 7      Nick Kaiser

Many of you hear Nick’s voice daily on VT Public Radio where he produces, among other programs, Vermont Edition. Nick, however, started with music as a three year old learning violin. He spent summers playing Bach, Vivaldi and Telemann at the famous Interlochen National Music Camp in Michigan. Later he took up cello, but finally landed with guitar and honed his skills with both six and twelve-string instruments. Then he played music on campuses and in coffeehouses in the Midwest and the Rocky Mountain area.

                Though rooted in classical string studies, he has turned to songwriting. His songs are firmly planted in the American folk spirit with detours into acoustic rock, Celtic, blues and bluegrass/traditional. Equally comfortable in finger style and flat-picking styles, Nick plays and sings mostly, as he says, by “ears of training.”

                He has just finished his debut solo CD, “Almost True,” and you can come hear him play some of his new tunes!

Nick Kaiser
Sat. March 7   Patrick Fitzsimmons with Rob Meehan

   It has been a while since Patrick and Rob have been to The Music Box. This was due to Patrick’s fight with cancer. But he is back now performing having just released his 5th CD, So Beautiful So Blue, a recording that Seven Days’ reviewer Dan Bolles says “reveals a mature songwriter near the peak of his abilities.”

                Patrick’s musical career began in the ‘90s as the drummer for the alternative-folk rock outfit From Good Homes. He now wields the guitar which he sometimes uses as a percussion instrument, adding some unique fiber to his sound which is ably filled in with Rob Meehan’s bass lines. Patrick’s music has great melodies, words you can remember, balancing lively tunes with heart-felt ballads encompassing a wide range of emotions and musical feeling


Sat. March 21     Robert Resnick and Marty Morrissey

Many of you listen to All the Traditions, the folk music program on VT Public Radio and you have gotten to know Robert Resnik. That show is only one of his endeavors; he is also a co-Director of the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. Another facet of Robert is that he is a multi-instrumentalist playing guitar, clarinet (the last time he was here, it was a blue clarinet!), accordions, banjo and a wide variety of other stringed and wind instruments. He collects them (or do they follow him home?).

                He has been playing with Marty Morrissey for a long time. Marty is one of the most respected Irish musicians in northern Vermont. He is one of the founding members of the Highland Weavers and has played with many other musical groups in the Burlington area over the past 21 years. His instruments include his wonderful voice, the guitar, concertina, drums and bodhran. He has released three recordings with the Highland Weavers and two solo albums.

                These two will also bring alive the history and provenance of the tunes they play. They are full of fun on the stage and the evening will be rollicking fun.



Sat. May 2      The Michele Fay Band

This band from Ripton, VT will bring a mix of traditional, swing and bluegrass music with rich female harmonies. The band is comprised of Michele on vocals, banjo and guitar, Tim Price on guitar and mandolin, Andre Munkres playing the upright bass and Lausanne Allen on fiddle and vocals.

                Together the four members of the band put forth a sound that captures you from an upbeat fiddle tune to a thought provoking ballad.  This is fine country and folk music. You can learn more about the band at


Michelle Fay

Sat. June 6     Josh Brooks  at 8 pm for $8 Children Free

Josh Brooks was one of the first performers to ever grace the stage at The Music Box. When I got his first recording I listened to it so often I knew all the words. Josh continues to be one of Vermont’s finest songwriters and he has a great, full, rich voice to sing them. His songs are accompanied by his solid acoustic country-honk style of guitar with his side of harmonica playing, keeping his sound authentic. I have called him a storyteller and that he is. His songs get into the hearts of the people he writes about. He also has  great melodies that pull the words together.

                His style if folk rock, roots music and Americana. This spring 2009 will see the release of his 4th album. Vermont Public Radio considers Brooks as “one of the handful of Vermont artists with the sound, the original songs and the voice to make the leap from the local to the national.”

                Come and hear why that is so true. Find out more about Josh at


Sat. July 25 at 8 PM for $10, kids free
Michele Choiniere with the Will Patton Trio

  Michele was born into a musical Franco-American family in northern Vermont. She began writing her own tunes in 1995 and performing in New England, Quebec and France. She was featured on TV5 International’s "Visions d’Amerique" and on VT Public TV’s "Rural Delivery." She is featured on the Smithsonian Folkways CD "Mademoiselle Voulez-Vous Danser: Franco-American music from the New England Borderlands." Her debut solo album, Coeur Fragile was one of the top ten Vermont Albums of 2003 for Seven Days weekly of Burlington. She is the recipient of the 2007 Governor’s Heritage Award by the VT Folklife Center and VT Life Magazine.
      During the performance, Michele also performs the seated form of Quebecois clogging, tapping a percussion line that dramatizes the music.
The Will Patton Trio will accompany her. Patton is a mandolin and all-around string instrument wizard, drawing his influences from jazz, Gypsy and Brazilian music. David Gusakov has a lifetime career as a violinist (member of the Vermont Symphony Orchestra since 1973) playing classical, bluegrass, and jazz. Dono Schabner started playing professional guitar at age 12 and hit the road at 17 and played all around the world until he decided to settle down in Vermont.
They will blend traditional Franco-American and Quebec folksongs, original compositions, jazz standards, Gypsy music and covers of well-known artists, such as Edith Piaf, for an evening with the taste of the foreign and the sublime.
Find out more at and at




Sat. Aug 15 at 8 PM for $10, kids free
Rik & Bec

    Rik & Bec are two prolific Vermont songsters. Each has been at The Music Box a number of times and they are now teaming up. They draw from the deep well of American music that spans the gap from the traditional ballad, blues, and cowboy songs to the folk revival of Guthrie and Seeger, to their own roots based in original music.
While their music is traditional and low tech, the two have worked onstage as performers and behind the scenes in the edit room and video studio helping each other with their regular music-based public access television shows.
      For the past ten years, Rik Palieri has produced "The Songwriter’s Notebook" for Burlington’s Community Access Media. Rebecca Padula produces "The Instant Coffeehouse" for Colchester’s Lake Champlain Access TV.
Rik, or "Totem Pole" as his hobo pals call him, lives the life of a modern day minstrel. He plays many instruments and in this duo he brings out his banjo, guitar, uke and Native American flute. He has performed around the world: at the Kennedy Center, Germany, Australia, Argentina, and more. He has shared the stage with Pete Seeger, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Ralph Stanley and Bruce Springsteen.He is also an author.
     Rebecca, with her rich alto voice, has a degree in music and journalism from St. Michael’s College. She’s penned over 40 original songs and has three successful CDs. She has written for numerous newspapers and is a documentary filmmaker. She won the Vermont Peace Song contest in 2007 for her song, "We Are Free."
Rik has one of the MOST incredible websites, visit it at
And you can find Rebecca at


Sat. Sept. 19 at 8 PM for $12, kids free
Arnowitts Improvisions Quintet

Montpelier pianist Michael Arnowitt will perform with chromatic harmonica virtuoso, John LaRuche, and mandolin marvel Dan Haley in a concert of improvisational jazz.
Arnowitt has been called "a Vermont musical tradition." He is primarily a classical pianist, best known for his personal interpretations that yield passion and clarity. Several years ago he began to explore how classical and jazz have influenced each other. In fall 2001 he co-founded the Green Mountain Jazz Series, a new organization devoted to presenting jazz concerts and special events in the Montpelier area. Over the past few years he has been working on his own jazz skills performing with a
variety of musicians in Vermont including Dave Ellis, Ellen Powell, Dan Haley and Rob Morse. He organized a tribute concert at Vermont College, "Ella Fitzgerald Night," with 25 tunes from Ella’s songbook, with an all star cast of Vermont jazz musicians.
He is the subject of a documentary film, BEYOND 88 KEYS by filmmaker, Susan Bettman. (The film is available at the Jeudevine Library in Hardwick) A favorite film at the 2004 Green Mountain Film Festival, BEYOND 88 KEYS features music by Byrd, Bach, Brahms, Ligeti, Stravinsky and Schoenberg, as well as the music of contemporary composers and jazz greats. The film reveals many facets of Arnowitt: his years as a prodigy in Boston, his political activism, his increasing interest in performing jazz, and his challenges with reduced vision.
Then put Arnowitt on stage with John LaRuche playing chromatic harmonica. LaRuche is simply one of the best jazz harp players in Vermont. He brings so much music out of a small instrument. He was last seen at The Music Box with the New Gypsy Swing Quartet. He plays in with many bands and performers. He is the most fascinating player to watch.
The next touch to the mix is mandolin player Dan Haley. He is one of those Vermont musicians who is so good he has played with almost every great Vermont musician (Spencer Lewis and Mark LeGrand to name two). Dan Haley is the "secret weapon" in several Central Vermont bands. He’s teaching mandolin at the Summit School of Traditional Music and culture. He has a musical history too long for me to write about here, but you can find out all about it him at
To finish off the Quintet the group displays Kirby Nickels on drums with Sam Davis on Bass. Check out Michael at


Sat. Oct. 24 at 8 PM for $10, kids free
Jeremiah McLane and Anna Patton

Jeremiah, composer, accordionist and pianist, performs with the nimble fingered, dancing clarinet player, Anna Patton (last seen at The Music Box with her father, Will Patton).
     Jeremiah and Anna play a unique blend of Franco-American, Celtic, jazz and roots influenced music that can be exuberant, introspective, tender or passionate.
Jeremiah and Anna both have been raised on music. Jeremiah’s family had musical gatherings with his mother playing piano and his father singing. He started on clarinet at 9, then took up piano at 11. In 1980 he started studying Celtic music and began playing the accordion. He helped start two bands with strong New England roots: The Clayfoot Strutters and Nightingale. In 2003 he formed the group Le Bon Vent, a sextet specializing in Breton and French music. He received a Master’s of Music in Contemporary Improvisation from the New England Conservatory of Music in 2001. In 2005 he started the Floating Bridge Music School. He is a faculty member at the State University of New York at Plattsburgh and teaches at various summer music camps including Ashokan Fiddle & Dance.
     Those who have seen Anna with the Will Patton Quartet know that she dances with her clarinet. She is often seen with bands playing at New England Contra Dances doing lively jigs and reels, but she is also accomplished at Gypsy jazz tunes, swing, Quebecois tunes, and musettes.
     The two of them playing together will bring us through several musical realms.
Find them on the web at and


Sat. Nov. 21 at 8 PM for $10, kids free

     PossumHaw is more than a bluegrass band: it presents diverse original music that is at the same time authentic and unique. Most of PossumHaw’s material is penned by award-winning songwriter Colby Crehan, and is brought to life through Colby’s highly praised vocals and the skilled instrumentation from all four band members. The band truly excels when all voices merge in tight harmonies to frame melodies ranging from slow and mournful to fast and furious.
    The group includes Colby on lead vocals, guitar and piano, Ryan Crehan on banjo, vocals and harmonica, Charley Eiseman on lead guitar and vocals, and Justin May on mandolin and vocals.
     They have two albums, Madtom in 2007 and Split-rail a 2005 release. They have played at the Champlain Valley Folk Festival, First Night Burlington, Higher Ground and many other venues around New England.
     Here is what Music Matter’s Review says, "Colby’s voice is front-porch real and otherworldly sweet, singing her mountain styled songs without a twang. The voices of the men in the band blend well with each other and Colby, giving PossumHaw depth and variety to the sonic palette. Sweet New England bluegrass!"
     Find out more at


Sat. January 9 at 7 pm. Laslo Cameo with Shrimp

You will hear the influences of blues, jazz, country, R’nb, and sixties rock in both the writing and performance of their songs. The group is Randy Bulpin, guitar, dobro, and vocals, and Leslie Campos, fiddle, guitar and vocals. Randy is Australian and has played all over Australia and New Zealand. Leslie was in an all women bluegrass group in New York City before heading to Vermont. They met at the Greensboro Blues jam. They will be joined by Shrimp who has played with many of the finest Vermont musicians including Abby Jenne, Rebecca Padula and Mark LeGrand as well as doing solo gigs. He plays guitar and percussion. Find out more about them both at and


Sat. February 6 at 7 pm
 Chris Dorman and Friends

Chris has arrived to this area by way of Lansing, Michigan. He is a musician, a father, and a friend to the community. He writes about his friends, his family and his feelings and reflects upon the intrinsic value within a local culture that cannot be quantified or commoditized. He hopes his sounds will nurture and inspire all who hear them to appreciate that which is unique to them. So what is unique to him, you ask? Chris dreams of being an old man who tells funny stories over and over again even though he knows everybody already knows the punch line. He writes great songs with melodies that stick in your head. His album, "To Begin Again is one of the best recordings I've received all year, " says Lisa Sammet, who produces the Music Box concerts. "I can't get his songs out of my head."
    He will be playing guitar and bringing along some friends to add to the evening. You can visit his website: which will also lead you to his and also to some You Tube videos of him performing. You will see why Tim Lane of Metrospace writes, "If there is an ounce of hesitation in the heart, a small part of the self stored away in the heart’s drawers and closets, as is the case with most of us, the textured combination of Dorman’s breathy, piercing vocals and the music on To Begin Again will coax it out and onward." 


Sat. March 13 at 7 pm. Atlantic Crossing

For over a dozen years, the Vermont band Atlantic Crossing has been thrilling concert audiences and contra-dancers with traditional songs and acoustic instrumental music from New England - music which has deep Celtic roots in the British Isles and in French & Maritime Canada - together with original compositions inspired by these traditions. The group includes Viveka Fox on fiddle and bodhran, Brian Perkins on mandolin, bouzouki, tenor banjo, feet, cornet, vocals, Rick Klein playing guitar and vocals, and Peter Macfarlane fiddle, low whistle, vocals) relocated to Vermont from the UK. More can be found about them at


Sat. April 10 at 7:30 pm. SkelliG

Why SkelliG? It is the name of two islands off the west coast of County Cork, Ireland and the name goes well with a group which features Irish and Scandinavian music. SKelliG performs music from Ireland, Brittany, Scandinavia and beyond. Members Rachel Clark and Bob DeMarco of the band Wind that Shakes the Barley join John Drury, a veteran of the Quebecois and New England folk scene. Together they blend their talents to deliver traditional music with a rich and tantalizing flavor! Bob contributes fiddle, guitar, bouzouki, piano, vocals; Rachel lends her Flute, whistles, accordion, piano, vocals; and John finishes the mix with guitar, cittern, and vocals. They have many recordings as solo artists and with other groups. You can find out lots more about this group at

Sat. May 8 at 8:00 pm. Cindy Mangsen and Steve Gillette
Two of the best in the folk music world will be at the Music Box, Steve Gillette and Cindy Mangsen. Steve Gillette has been writing songs since the 1960's.His songs have been covered by Ian and Sylvia, John Denver, Garth Brooks, Linda Ronstadt, Tammy Wynette, and many others. But Steve's own versions are some of the best, with his warm baritone voice and his unique finger-picking guitar style (using a flat-pick and two fingers). Steve has many solo and duo (with Cindy Mangsen) recordings available.
His most recent solo album, Texas and Tennessee, was named one of the Top Ten Folk Albums of the Year by Tower Records. Cindy Mangsen is "one of the finest singers in American folk music" (Come for to Sing). Accompanying herself on guitar, banjo, concertina, or mountain dulcimer, Cindy is known for her compelling interpretations of traditional ballads, as well as for her own writing and her wonderful ear for harmony. She has recorded several solo albums (Songs of Experience received the Editor's Choice Award from Crossroads), as well as collaborations with Steve Gillette, Priscilla Herdman, Anne Hills, and Michael Smith.
More can be found about them at
It is a real pleasure to have these two folk music heroes at the Music Box!
Sat. June 26 at 8 pm. Woodchuck’s Revenge
  Formed in front of the fire on a winter's night in 1990, Woodchucks' Revenge brings together as a performing group three friends who have combined their lifelong love of music to offer their audiences an eclectic and refreshing mix of traditional and contemporary folksongs played with spirit and an old time country sensibility. The group includes Kristina Cady on fiddle, her husband, Peter on guitar and Sandy Morse on mandolin. The Woodchucks' repertoire, which has been described as encyclopedic, ranges from New England fiddle tunes to modern cowboy songs, from Irish ballads to 60's folk, blues and bluegrass. Songs about Vermont, mountains, and life in New England are staple of the group's performances, along with a healthy dose of humor and a small but growing number of originals. The Woodchucks have performed throughout Vermont and the adjoining states and in Wyoming and Montana, at colleges and community events and festivals, in coffehouses and summer concert series, country fairs and bluegrass festivals as well as the New England Folk Festival, and the Northeast Music, Arts and Dance Festival. They have performed on Public Radio in Vermont and New York, as well as local access television.
You can find out more about them at

Sat. August 21 at 8 pm David Brahinsky and Friends

David is a singer and songwriter from Roosevelt, NJ and Walden, VT. He is the lead singer and guitarist for The Roosevelt String Band and The Hermes Music Project, two folk, blues, and bluegrass bands that play regularly in the New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania regions. David has produced two CD recordings. Both are live performances with the two groups. He specializes in great songwriters such as Stan Rogers, Leonard Cohen, Greg Brown, Bob Dylan, Cheryl Wheeler, Bill Staines and many others, as well as his own compositions. In Vermont, David has played in the Hardwick and Burlington areas in coffee shops, restaurants and in house concerts. David has also been a storyteller and folk singer for The Shoestring Players of Rutgers University. He is also a professor of Philosophy and Religion at Bucks County Community college in Newtown, Pa.
      He will be joined by Joshua Brahinsky (guitar, banjo, bass and vocals), Rachel Brahinsky (vocals, guitar), and Caro Thompson, vocals.
      Caro Thompson of Walden, Vermont, is a featured soloist for Brahinski. She’s better known locally for her documentary films and on-air work for Vermont Public Television. Yet Caro has performed as a vocalist since she was 12. She was active in the folk scene in Minneapolis in the late 70s before her creative life took a turn toward the visual arts. She's been part of the Cabot Community Chorus and has been singing with David during his family’s summer visits for the past 7 years.


Sat. September 18 at 8 PM The Missing Cats

   Who are The Missing Cats? And what do they do? They are an acoustic jazz combo doing originals as well as gypsy swing and jive swing tunes from the 1930's and 40's, featuring close 3-part vocal rhythm harmonies and thrilling improvisation. The quartet includes Lewis Franco (guitar), Will Patton (mandolin), Dono Schabner (guitar), and Justin Rose (upright bass).
     Lewis Franco has been a fixture on the Vermont acoustic music scene for many years, entertaining audiences of all ages with clever and occasionally profound lyrics, delightfully tuneful melodies, and a fun-loving presence. Vermont Public Radio’s Robert Resnik calls Franco, "a brilliant songwriter – one of our very finest."Franco’s national recognition is of a different sort. A long-time resident of Maple Corner, in Calais, Vermont, he appears with only his guitar as "Mr. January" in the famous Men of Maple Corner Calendar. He wrote the theme song for the calendar and performed it on NBC’s Today Show. Also, National Public Radio interviewed Franco for its weekend sports show, "Only a Game." A 6-time Wifflefest Champion, his combination of Wiffle-Ball and musical talents are virtually unsurpassed.
     Will Patton is well-known in Vermont for his own ensemble. He is simply one of the best jazz mandolin players around. His ensemble is a favorite at The Music Box. He also was here with the Franco-American singer, Michele Choiniere. He has played his music all over the world, from Key West to Fairbanks, Alaska and from Paris to Rio . His collaborations with the manouche guitarist Ninine Garcia from Paris, documented in the cds "Peripherique" and "String Theory" have been enthusiastically reviewed both in the U.S. and abroad. He teaches jazz mandolin at Jay Ungar and Molly Mason's Ashokan Camp and the Django in June Festival at Smith College . He has performed with Mose Allison and his bands have opened for such acts as Ray Charles, Bonnie Raitt and Van Morrison.
     Dono Schabner was born in Germany and grew up in Pennsylvania and New York . He started playing professionally at age 12 with Italian wedding bands. At 17 he hit the road, playing R & B all over the U.S. and the Caribbean . After many years of travel, he settled near Stowe, Vt. with his photographer wife, Lauren. For the last 3 years he and Will have been making music in many contexts, and also work as a duo. He has been studying the demanding 7 string guitar of late, using all 10 fingers.
      Justin Rose, acoustic bass, performed regularly with the late "Big" Joe Burrell and has played in numerous pop and jazz groups in Vermont over the years. He is also a member of the Vermont Jazz Ensemble and has performed with the Vermont Philharmonic Orchestra. Justin has become a regular bassist for musicals with Lyric Theater, and other local theater groups. When he's not playing music, Justin operates a sculpture studio in Burlington called Creations In Stone.


Sat. October 16 at 7:30 PM Yankee Chank

Yankee Chank is a group of musicians from throughout Vermont who perform traditional dance music from Southwest Louisiana. Drawn together by a passion for traditional Cajun and Zydeco music, the group has performed at weddings, festivals, nightclubs, community gatherings, parties and other events since debuting on New Year’s Eve in 1996. The group offers an immersion in Cajun music, featuring fiddle, accordion, guitar and bass, specializing in traditional Cajun two-steps and waltzes as it continues to be played in the rural dance halls and honky tonks of Louisiana, with some Zydeco thrown in for extra spice. The group often works with dance instructors who can provide an introduction to the dance figures for beginners or experienced dancers.
The group includes Bob Naess (fiddle and vocals), Cannon Labrie (accordion and vocals), Jim Burns (guitar), and Mark Sustic (bass and percussion).
To get in the mood, listen to some of their tunes at:

Sat. November 6 at 7:30 pm Rick Norcross (Of Rick and the Ramblers)
   Rick is well known for his work with his western swing band, The Ramblers. He will be doing a rare local solo show here to brighten up the gray lights of November. From East Hardwick, Vermont, Rick celebrates 46 years in the music biz by fronting the band of his dreams, the Ramblers. He spent 17 years performing as a solo singer/songwriter, toured England for 10 years, working the southeast out of Tampa before returning home to play Vermont summers and Florida winters for 25 years. For the past 25 years, he has resided in a former railway express depot at the foot of Battery Street on Burlington's historic waterfront, inspired by breathtaking sunsets over Lake Champlain. Rick writes songs and spins tales of a Vermont gone but not forgotten.
    His newest album "I Rode The Ti" contains 12 songs, six written by Rick. Each song holds special significance, celebrating the people and places he experienced playing music over the past 45 years, early on as a folk singer during the 60s, touring extensively in England, Holland, Ireland and the East Coast out of Tampa, Florida all the way into northern Canada. And for the past 25 years, as front man/band leader of Vermont's premier western swing band, Rick & The Ramblers."I Rode The Ti" relates the history of the last of the opulent Lake Champlain steamboats, the Ticonderoga, a 220 foot sidewheel steamer built in 1906 and moved two miles overland in 1955 to the Shelburne Museum.
    Find out more about Rick at

Sat. December 11 at 7 pm Mark Struhsacker

Mark has played guitar and sung in Montana and Vermont based Bluegrass bands for over 35 years. Mark created and has fronted the WDEV Radio Rangers radio show band, which has aired on WDEV every Saturday morning at 10:30 since June of 1986. Beginning in 2004, the Radio Rangers have also been featured on WLVB, Sunday mornings at 9.
Mark is well known as one of few practitioners of the Bluegrass flatpicking and cross picking guitar style in Vermont. Performing as a solo act, he features old Folk, Bluegrass and Country songs that loan themselves well to his guitar and singing style. He also showcases his flat-picking guitar style on traditional fiddle tunes and Bluegrass instrumentals. Check out
     Joining Mark on acoustic bass & tenor vocals will be Jon Henry Drake, who also performs these duties for Banjo Dan & the Midnight Plowboys.


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