Festival Fever: MCLA’s Blues & Funk Fest
Photograph by Timothy Reidy
Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams hosts its tenth annual Blues and Funk Festival this weekend, presenting two nights of hot music at MCLA’s Venable Gym to warm you up and help you shake off your cabin fever.
The music gets cranking at 7:30pm on Friday and Saturday (February 6 & 7), and two-day, all-fest tickets are $15. Single day general admission tickets are also available for $10; $5 for high school and college students.
Here’s the line-up of bands for the Blues and Funk Fest:
FRIDAY (FEBRUARY 6), 7:30pm
THE REMINDERS: The husband-and-wife hip-hop duo features Brussels-born MC Big Samir and Queens-born emcee/vocalist Aja Black. The ReMINDers have shared the stage with Les Nubians, Snoop Dogg, Fishbone, Barrington Levy, Nas, Mos Def, Big Boi, KRS-One, Rakim and K’Naan.
MAYA AZUCENA: According to The Village Voice, the singer-activist is a “global artist making music that matters.” Sounding like “the Roots if fronted by a singer with four-octaves,” and “armed with a powerfully compelling voice, Azucena just could be the most impressive of the current hip-hop/soul/r&b diva crop.”
SATURDAY (FEBRUARY 7), 7:30pm
THE ARTHUR HOLMES BAND: Local blues-rock favorites featuring Arthur Holmes (guitar/vocals), John Worth (bass) and Bridget Wnukowski (drums).
THE MISTY BLUES BAND: Local blues band featuring Gina Coleman (vocals), Jason Webster and Jeff Dudziak (guitar), Bill Patriquin (bass), Ben Kohn (keyboards) and Kali Baba McConnell (drums).
ALBERT CUMMINGS: Blues guitarslinger and Williamstown native Albert Cummings has opened for countless legendary acts, including Johnny Winter, Sheryl Crow and B.B. King. He has also recorded with Tommy Shannon, Chris Layton and Reese Wynans, better known as Double Trouble, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s classic backing band. Cummings’ latest album, No Regrets, debuted at No. 1 in the U.S., Canada and France on the iTunes Blues Charts, and at No. 5 on the Billboard Blues Chart.
ADDITIONAL UPCOMING FESTIVALS FOR 2015:
Bridge Jazz Fest @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall & College of St. Rose’s Massry Center, Troy & Albany, 2/27&28/15
Country Con 2015 @ the Empire State Plaza Convention Center, Albany, 2/28 & 3/1/15
Mountain Jam @ Hunter Mountain, Hunter, 6/4-7/15
A Taste of Country Music Festival @ Hunter Mountain, Hunter, 6/12-14/15
Solid Sound @ MASS MoCA, North Adams, 6/26-28/15
FreshGrass @ MASS MoCA, North Adams, 9/18-20/15