- Tickets or $15 day of show
Grant Maloy Smith - CD release / Eastern Medicine Singers
BRT will present American roots artist Grant Maloy Smith releasing his new CD, "Dust Bowl – American Stories," during a special Earth Day concert featuring an opening set by Eastern Medicine Singers who perform Algonquin and Native American drumming and song. Grant Maloy Smith is a singer/songwriter of American Roots music - a blend of old country, bluegrass, folk and Celtic influences into a uniquely American genre. “Earth Day is especially significant, because the Dust Bowl of the 1930s was the biggest environmental disaster in centuries. It’s a cautionary tale about the environment,” says Smith. Songs from the album will be performed by Smith accompanied by Cathy Clasper-Torch on fiddle, Richard Ribb on bass, and Rick Couto on drums. There will be a video introduction on a large projection screen that sets up the stories of the Dust Bowl, and brings the audience back in time to the Great Plains of the 1930s, when it didn’t rain for most of the decade, and millions of Americans became essentially refugees in their own country. “The Dust Bowl caused American Roots music to be spread far and wide, and troubadours like Woody Guthrie sang about it, making it well known to the rest of the nation and the world,” says Smith. The CD was recorded over a three-year period of research, writing, and recording, from New York to Nashville, and from Rhode Island to Oklahoma and even Australia. Basic tracks were recorded in New York, and feature several members of Cyndi Lauper’s band, including bassist and musical director Bill Wittman, and drummer Skoota Warner. Then production moved to Nashville, where a who’s who of A-list players played on the album, including dobro player Rob Ickes, and steel players Mike Johnson and Troy Klontz. Additional performances were added by Native American flutist Gareth Laffely, who played a heartfelt solo on "Ihst a Lhampko" (Have Strength), a song told from the point of view of the Choctaw Nation, the first of the 5 tribes marched out of their homeland during the Trail of Tears. “That’s not even the whole list of musicians that I am fortunate to have on the album,” said the songwriter. “We recorded additional parts in Rhode Island and New Bedford. Parts were recorded in eight studios on two continents. It was the biggest project I’ve ever done.” The album is already getting great reviews from publications. Smith was recently interviewed in the Huffington Post in a piece about his music and advocacy in the world of independent musicians. “The environment has never been more important – we can learn a lot from the Dust Bowl. Reliving it through these songs and images is a powerful elixir,” says Smith.