Besides being a fine writer and performer, Scott Alarik may have found a way to stay young that doesn’t involve surgery or Botox. He has an outstanding record of appearing at the Me&Thee with up-and-coming artists who are not only virtuosos on their instruments but are in the springtime of their years. This year is no exception, when he’ll share the stage with Aoife O’Donovan and Rushad Eggleston.
Merging American, Irish, klezmer and jazz styles, Aoife O’Donovan’s angelic voice brings mature expressivity to traditional songs. A one-of-a-kind vocalist whose unfettered crystalline voice climbs clouds and hushes even the rowdiest audiences into dead silence, she has been praised everywhere from the New York Times to Rolling Stone Magazine (“. . .cold, lonesome, Celtic mist”). While studying Contemporary Improvisation at the New England Conservatory, she joined fiddler Matt Glaser’s all-star band, The Wayfaring Strangers, playing a huge role in the success of their second album, “This Train” (Rounder Records). Aoife has become quite a figure in the Boston folk scene, where she is deeply envied by anyone with vocal cords. (And we can safely assume that “Celtic Heritage” host Brian O’Donovan is proud of his 22-year-old daughter.) Aoife plans to make her own album of original music soon.
Rushad Eggleston is a master of improvisation: his keen, inventive skill at adapting driving fiddle styles for the cello is nothing short of revolutionary. He performs regularly with the Grammy-nominated Fiddlers 4 as well as Darol Anger’s American Fiddle Ensemble. Rushad also leads his Wild Band of Snee, performing songs and instrumentals that are truly out of this world. Although not too demanding himself, Rushad is nonetheless in demand as an improvising cellist throughout the U.S.A. He graduated in May 2003 from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he was the first string player awarded a full scholarship.
You may recognize Scott Alarik’s name from his regular byline in the Boston Globe, where he has been the principal folk music writer since 1987. He is also known as the folk critic for National Public Radio’s noontime news show “Here and Now” and as a contributing writer for the magazines Sing Out!, Performing Songwriter, and Billboard. In 2003 he published Deep Community: Adventures in the Modern Folk Underground, a wonderful collection of pieces on the contemporary folk scene. And, not least, Scott is a regular headliner on the New England coffeehouse circuit, delighting audiences with original songs, folk classics, and his trademark stand-up drolleries delivered in his unmistakable, oak-barrel baritone.
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