John Funkhouser Quartet
The John Funkhouser Quartet returns to Brandon Music at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29 for its annual concert at the music barn venue. The performance will be a CD release concert for the group’s fifth CD, “Brothers,” the band’s first CD in five years. In typical Funkhouser form, the album is eclectic, with influences from South Africa, the Great American Songbook, Appalachia, India, New Orleans, ‘70s prog-rock, modern jazz, and much more.
Along with Funkhouser on keys, is Phil Sargent (guitar), Greg Loughman (bass), and Mike Connors (drums) — a quartet of forward-thinking jazz musicians who are “often wildly inventive and great fun to watch and listen to” but “can also play with grace and sweetness,” according to Middletown Eye.
The title of the new album, as Funkhouser explains, comes from the relationship with his fellow band mates: “Improvised music has a curious and beautiful quality whereby you can get on stage with a musician you have never met before, play a set or two of music, and instantly develop a deep, lasting and even intimate friendship.”
Tickets are $20 (pre-concert dinner is available for $25; reservations are required); call 802-247-4295, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Road.
The Steamboats, an ensemble of picker-singer-songwriters, combine reverence for the American vocal group with a progressive sensibility all their own. They will perform a Stone Church Arts concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22 in the Chapel at Immanuel Episcopal Church, the stone church on the hill, at 20 Church St.
Singers Nick Throop, Mario Rincon and Jon Jaffee hone gospel and a capella backgrounds, their harmonies reminiscent of The Soul Stirrers and Fleet Foxes alike. Their debut EP (“Steamboats,” 2015) features accordionist Kate Dunphy (Carte Blanche) and drummer Jon Shiffman (Bleachers). Their sophomore release (“Chosen Peace,” 2016) is now available.
Tickets are $25, $20 for seniors, $20 and $15 in advance, $45 for premium reserved seats; call 802-460-0110, or go online to www.stonechurcharts.org.
The Sparkle Barn
The Sparkle Barn will open the exhibit, “Second Flight – Butterfly Paintings,” with a public reception, 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept 29. The exhibit will be up until the end of October.
The “Butterfly Paintings” are the work of artist Stacy Harshman. She creates multi- media, multi-textured environments into which she positions real preserved butterflies, creating a permanent “second flight” for the butterflies. The butterflies are sourced from eco farms, where they lived out their full, yet brief lifespan.
“Their initial flight was fleeting beauty, color in motion, and their second flight is color and beauty in stillness; moving us in an emotional sense,” Harshman said. “Creating with real, preserved butterflies has brought me intense joy. The first time I pinned a butterfly into the painted canvas, its magnificent presence startled me. Nothing was flat anymore; life had burst forth in full dimension in front of my eyes.”
Hours are: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday; go online to www.thesparklebarnshop.com. The Sparkle Barn is located at 1509 U.S. Route 7.
Artist Roz Chast
At 5:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 24, join the Rockingham Library’s book discussion of Roz Chast’s graphic memoir “Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?” led by Vermont Council on the Humanities scholar and VPR commentator Deborah Lee Luskin. Copies of the graphic memoir are available to borrow until Sept. 23, though familiarity with this book is not a prerequisite for attending this event.
Chast’s graphic memoir features her parents in their final years, and highlights the literary value and artistic merit in this growing medium. This Vermont Humanities Council Reading and Discussion event is hosted by the Brattleboro Area Hospice and the Rockingham Library.
Admission is free; for information, call 802-463-4270.
Vermont’s ‘Red Scare’
At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26, Phoenix Books Rutland will host Rick Winston for a talk on his new book, “Red Scare in the Green Mountains.”
What happened in Vermont when the anti-Communist fear known as the “Red Scare” swept the country? Quite a bit, as it turns out. Winston explores some forgotten history as we see how a small, rural “rock-ribbed Republican” state with a historically libertarian streak handled the hysteria of the time. Far from the klieg lights of Washington D.C., Hollywood, and New York City, the Green Mountain State challenged the national narrative with its own fascinating stories.
Winston is currently teaching film history in several places, including Community College of Vermont.
Admission is free; call 802-448-3350, go online to www.phoenixbooks.biz.
Mamet and Miller
Stage 33 Live brings two headlining acts in one intimate early-evening listening event at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, at 33 Bridge St. The event will be recorded and filmed.
Dayna Kurtz has shared stages with Elvis Costello, Richard Thompson, Mavis Staples, Rufus Wainwright, B.B. King, Dr. John, Richie Havens, Chris Whitley, and the Blind Boys of Alabama. She was named Female Songwriter of the Year by the National Academy of Songwriters.
Willa Mamet and Paul Miller write and perform songs that range from soaring to searing. Mamet’s voice has been described as “heartbreaking, musical, contemporary and ancient” by Patti LuPone. Miller is known for his 40 years with acts like Coco and the Lonesome Road Band, Bluebird, Andy Shapiro, Breakaway, and the Bluegrass Gospel Project.
Admission is by donation ($10 suggested); for reservations, go online to www.stage33live.com.
Art and Craft Festival
When the cooler days of autumn approach, that’s when the craft festival season heats up. Craftproducers kicks off the season with the 30th annual Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival Sept. 28-30, 2018 at Riley Rink, on Route 7A (410 Hunter Park Road).
The show features 150 artists and artisans displaying and selling traditional and contemporary crafts and original art, as well as a specialty food section. While craft shopping, customers can enjoy food, music and Vermont craft beers.
Admission is $10, $7 Friday (children are free); go online to http://craftproducers.com. Hours are 10-5 daily, Friday through Sunday.
Join Village Square Booksellers in welcoming local author Sharon Wilsie to discuss her new book, “Horses in Translation: Essential Lessons in Horse Speak: Learn to “Listen” and “Talk” in Their Language,” at 1 p.m. Saturday Sept. 22.
In her follow-up to “Horse Speak,” Wilsie uses true stories to relate examples of “problems,” and how they were solved using the book. She introduces readers to dozens of real-life scenarios from different barns, various disciplines, and riders and handlers with contrasting experiences and backgrounds.
Wilsie is a professional animal trainer and rehabilitation expert who regularly works with horses for private clients and at equine rescues. She runs Wilsie Way Horsemanship from her base in Westminster.
For information, call 802-463-9404, or go online to www.villagesquarebooks.com.
In recent years, hospital leaders, physicians and patients have discovered that art and music in the hospital environment can help patients deal with their illnesses more effectively and possibly return to fully functioning earlier. The Great Hall, in celebration of Springfield Hospital’s 105th anniversary, is presenting “Healing: The Transformative Imagery of Art,” a group exhibition of 12 artists, Sept. 27-March 30. A public artists’ reception will be held 5 to 7 p.m. at One Hundred River Street. Wine and light refreshments will be served.
Drawing on personal, in some cases tragic, experiences, these artists have created art to share with the viewer. The exhibition features: painters Robert O’Brien (Springfield), Cai Xi Silver (Brattleboro), Robert Carsten (Springfield); sculptors Pat Musick (Manchester), Carolyn Enz Hack (East Thetford), Mary Admasian (Montpelier), Margaret Jacobs (Enfield, N.H.); ceramic art by Natalie Blake (Brattleboro); stained glass by Karen Deets (Fair Haven), blown glass by Robert DuGrenier (Townshend); and fiber art by Priscilla Petraska (Chester) and Neomi Lauritsen (Springfield).
The Springfield Medical Center is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., when the Great Hall can be viewed. There are docents 1 to 4 p.m. Fridays. The Great Hall will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13 and 14 for Vermont’s statewide Open Studio weekend.
For more information, call 802-258-3992 or 802-885-3061, or go to http://Facebook.com/GreatHallSpringfield.