Fernando Pinto Presents! East Rock Concert Series
If Joni Mitchell and Richie Havens had a love child, with Rodney Dangerfield as the midwife, the results might have been something close to the great Vance Gilbert.” As the above quote from Richmond magazine suggests, Vance Gilbert defies stereotypes. It’s little wonder then that he also exceeds expectations. In this case, those two qualities go hand in hand. “I’m black, I sing, I play an acoustic guitar, and I don’t play the blues,” Gilbert insists. That may be a broad statement, but it rings with truth. What he does do is make memorable music, as evidenced by the 13 albums he’s released so far, as well as the mark he’s made on the folk and acoustic music scenes in general. Over the course of a prolific career that extends back to the early ’90s, he’s recorded with his good friend Ellis Paul and shared stages worldwide with Aretha Franklin, Shawn Colvin, Arlo Guthrie, the Milk Carton Kids, George Carlin (150+ shows), Anita Baker, the Subdudes, Paul Reiser and any number of others.
Anne Marie hails from New Haven, CT, where she has been a long-time favorite singer/songwriter. She comes from a family of three brothers where playing and listening to music was their greatest passion. In 1998, she released her debut album “Untried & True”, followed by “When the Love Ran Deep” in 2004, and “Seven Secrets” in 2009. Her fourth collection, “Sky Tonight” was released in December 2019.
Anne Marie has opened for artists such as Richard Shindell, The Kennedys, Cheryl Wheeler, Sally Barris, Eddie from Ohio and Linda McRae, and has been a featured performer at the CT Folk Festival in New Haven, CT. She was a finalist in the 2004 South Florida Folk Festival Singer/Songwriter competition, and a showcase artist at NERFA (New England Regional Folk Alliance.)
Anne Marie accompanies herself on acoustic guitar, appearing solo or as part of an acoustic band. The band featured on “Sky Tonight” includes fellow CT musicians Mark Mirando on piano, Bob Csugie, upright bass, Cadence Carroll, percussion and harmonies, and producer Richard Neal on mandolin, guitar and dobro. Sky Tonight was recorded at Neal’s 34 West Recorders in Sandy Hook, CT, and mastered by Vic Steffens at Horizon Music group, West Haven, CT.
Anne Marie’s songs range stylistically from contemporary folk, Americana, acoustic pop, country, and folk-rock, all featuring her warm vocals and solid guitar. The tunes reflect her wide influences and devotion to Joni Mitchell, Rosanne Cash, Emmy Lou Harris, Lucinda Williams, and Mary Chapin Carpenter, to name a few.
The songs touch on the usual themes of love, life, and loss, but they deliver the listener to the not-so-usual place of recognition, empathy, solace and hope. Anne Marie pairs her poignant lyrics with catchy melodies to create moving song memoirs. Equally melodic and lyrically driven, the songs might be described as autobiographical meets storytelling, personal meets universal, childhood meets adulthood, love meets loneliness, family embraces family, friends share love.