Branford Folk Music Society
The Branford Folk Music Society, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization recognized as tax exempt under the Internal Revenue Service Code section 501(c)(3). The Society sponsors the Branford Folk Coffeehouse, a monthly folk music concert series, September through May, at the First Congregational Church, on the green in Branford, Connecticut.
The group also produces a bimonthly newsletter with schedules and information on concerts and folk performers in Connecticut and the region. Branford Folk Music Society members receive a copy of the newsletter in the mail, as well as discounts in admission to our coffeehouse concerts. Become a member of the Branford Folk Music Society. Facebook members: Look us up on Facebook.
The Branford Folk Coffeehouse is in the auditorium of the First Congregational Church of Branford, 1009 Main Street, Branford, CT. Wheelchair accessible. Concerts begin at 8:00 p.m. Admission prices are listed for each concert. Please pay at the door – there are no advance sales.
Directions: Take I-95 Cedar Street exit #54, go south on Cedar
Street to the end (crossing Route 1), turn left on Main Street. The
Congregational Church is the brick church on the green (on the right).
For more information, call 203-488-7715.
If parking immediately next to the Church and the Green is full, there is additional parking nearby.
Please contact us if you are interested in helping the coffeehouse as a volunteer. In particular, refreshment donations will be welcomed.
If you are wondering if a concert will be held on an evening when the weather is bad, please call 203-488-7715. (There is no one at the church who can give out concert information.) Also, cancellations will be posted on WTNH Channel 8.
Click here for a video clip of Toby Walker's concert on February 10.
April 14, 2018: Matthew Byrne
Born into a family of Newfoundland music makers and storytellers, Matthew Byrne's repertoire is heavily influenced by that unique musical lineage – the weaving of a great story with a beautiful melody – and he supports this tradition with powerful vocals, polished guitar work, and a presence that fills the listening room. His repertoire transcends time and place and his live performance reminds us how satisfying traditional songs can be when stripped down to their basic elements.
He's a young performer, but he holds a deep, seasoned respect and reverence for traditional music. His music has traveled well beyond the rugged shores of his Newfoundland home since his 2010 debut album, "Ballads." It wasn't long before his second album, "Hearts and Heroes", received Traditional Recording of the Year at the 2015 Canadian Folk Music Awards. With that, Matthew established himself as one of Canada's most authentic and vital traditional voices.
Touring both as a solo artist as well as a singer with The Dardanelles, Matthew has graced major festival stages worldwide including the Winnipeg Folk Festival, Celtic Connections in Glasgow, UK, and The Woodford Folk Festival in Queensland, Australia.
Last summer he released his third album "Horizon Lines" a collection of traditional material exploring songs from both sides of the Atlantic and also continuing his journey through his own unique musical lineage.
Accolades abound for Matthew's music with perhaps some of the highest praise coming from renowned Canadian singer-songwriter James Keelaghan who noted that Matthew "sings with a voice as true as a compass needle and is a dab hand on his instruments as well. His 'Ballads' is one of the finest English language traditional albums to come out in many a year."
Admission: $20 non-members, $17 members, $5 children 12 and under.
April 28, 2018: Michela Musolino & Rosa Tatuata
This ensemble that performs infectious folk music and dance from Sicily and Southern Italy was snowed out for our December concert but we were fortunate enough to reschedule them this spring in what we trust will be warmer weather.
Michela Musolino and Rosa Tatuata are driven by the love of the roots music from that region of the globe and they offer up passionate interpretations of the traditions and melodies of their ancestors. Just as their name comes from Tennessee Williams' beloved play about the happy, raucous collision of immigrant and American cultures, likewise Rosa Tatuata's performance relates that incredible commingling to their beloved audience through song!
And because it's Spring, Rosa Tatuata will be presenting a concert around the themes of rebirth, growth and renewal and the celebrations of Carnevale and St. Joseph's Day. Then there will be dancing.
Fueled by their research into traditional instruments like the tamburo (Sicilian frame drum), organetto, marranzano (jaw's harp) and zampogna (Southern Italian bagpipes), Rosa Tatuata introduces traditional songs into different musical contexts that rhythmically mirror the commingling of Old & New World. With an enchanting mix of ballads and dance tunes, Rosa Tatuata will take your imagination to sunbathed Southern Italy and the clear, crystal-blue waters surrounding Sicily.
Michela will be joined by Phil Passantino, Charlie Rutan and Jeffrey Panettieri as Rosa Tatuata in what is sure to be a concert with plenty of audience participation, whether singing or dancing. Bring your dancing shoes because in the concert's second half, Rosa Tatuata will teach and lead the audience in traditional Sicilian dances.
Michela is American-born-and-raised, but has been carrying on a love-affair with Sicilian music since growing up in a household where Sicilian dialect was spoken. Known for her fiery and passionate interpretations of both traditional and contemporary Sicilian folk and roots music, she turns world fusion songs into timeless pieces and infuses her vocals with the emotions of life. She enchants with a voice that seems to float between the ages.
Peter Covino, Pen America prize-winning poet and University of Rhode Island Assistant Professor of English said this about Michela: "Can you imagine the wild soulfulness of Tina Turner and the earthy yet ethereal voice of Neapolitan songstress Teresa De Sio combined? Well imagine that; then think even more vibrancy, more urbanity, in songs that somehow also feel impossibly intimate.... No wonder Michela Musolino has such a devoted underground following; full divahood seems scarily within reach."
Admission: $20 non-members, $17 members. $5 children 12 and under.
May 12, 2018: Ken & Brad Kolodner
The society closes out its 2017-18 concert season on May 12 in fine fashion with the father-son duo of Ken and Brad Kolodner who have been taking old-time music into uncharted territory, creatively infusing the idiom with their tasteful and hypnotizing approach on hammered dulcimer, banjo and fiddles.
Long regarded as one of the most influential hammered dulcimer players and old-time fiddlers in North America, Baltimore's Ken Kolodner joined musical forces nearly a decade ago with son Brad, a rising star in the clawhammer banjo world, to create and perform old-time music that draws largely on tradition but also offers a neo-traditional approach through their innovative arrangements of the music and their own compositions.
They are a duo that's simply in-synch. As son Brad aptly puts it, "Playing as a father-son duo feels very natural." Whether rehearsing, jamming or performing on stage or in the recording studio, the Kolodners are always locked-in. "Our musical sensibilities are very aligned."
Ken Kolodner's roots run deep in folk music. He toured and recorded for many years with the legendary world music trio Helicon with Chris Norman and Robin Bullock. His extensive repertoire of thousands of pieces includes traditional music from over 30 countries on all continents. He's performed in every state in the U.S. and teaches locally in Baltimore with over 75 fiddle and hammered dulcimer students.
Brad Kolodner is recognized nationally for his delicate touch and expressive style on banjo and his original musical compositions. He has placed in the finals of the banjo contest in 2014, 2015 and 2016 at the Appalachian String Band Festival in Clifftop, WV, one of the most prestigious old-time banjo contests in the world.
Clawhammer banjo is experiencing a rebirth in American folk music and Brad is helping to lead the charge as a performer, teacher, DJ for WAMU's "Bluegrass Country" in Washington, D.C., jam leader, community builder and ambassador for old-time music. He is the recipient of the International Bluegrass Music Association's 2016 Momentum Award for Industry Involvement. In addition to touring with his father, Brad also regularly performs with the roots quartet Charm City Junction.
Ken and Brad have released three critically acclaimed albums. Their first recording, Otter Creek, in 2011, quickly became the most played instrumental recording on the international Folk-DJ Radio charts. Brad's original composition "Otter Creek" was the most played instrumental track on the charts that year. Their second album "Skipping Rocks" followed in 2013 and 2017 saw release of their third album, "The Swift House".
Concert appearances for the Kolodners include performances at The Kennedy Center, The Walnut Valley Festival, The Old Songs Festival, The Charm City Folk and Bluegrass Festival and The Champlain Valley Folk Festival. They have logged numerous live radio broadcasts and concerts and festivals along the Eastern seaboard from North Carolina to Vermont and across the country from Wisconsin to Arizona.
Admission: $20 non-members, $17 members. $5 children 12 and under.
Previous concerts at the Branford Folk Coffeehouse
Branford Folk Photo Gallery
Restaurants in Branford
Lodging in Branford
BRANFORD FOLK NEEDS VOLUNTEERS!
Branford Folk Coffeehouse performers are often provided overnight accommodations by volunteers in their homes. However, some performers are very sensitive to furry critters, so if you can provide overnight accommodations in a pet-free environment, please let us know, either at a concert or by email at email@example.com. Hosts receive complimentary admission to the show! Thank you!
Wanna be on our Board?
The all-volunteer Board of Directors of the Branford Folk Music Society is looking for new members with a passion for traditional and tradition-based folk music and the skills to help us bring the joy of that music to wider audiences. We are seeking interested people with the time and willingness to take an active role in creating awareness of Branford Folk Music Society events in Connecticut, particularly in the broader shoreline community, and with skills to complement those of members of the current Board. These could include experience in public relations, arts or events coordination (not necessarily in music), outreach or fundraising; or connections with media, historical and cultural organizations in the New Haven area and towns along the shoreline. Anyone interested should contact us at 203-488-7715 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Branford Folk Music Society is a member of the
Folk Alliance International,
the Arts Council of Greater New Haven and the Shoreline Chamber of Commerce.
|The Branford Folk Music Society primarily books "traditional" and/or "traditions based" acoustic music, rooted in the Anglo-Celtic and/or American folk genres, and other traditional forms, such as Cajun, French Canadian, Klezmer, etc. We are also open to booking "traditions based" performers who write their own material provided their music demonstrates a knowledge and respect for these long established traditions.|
The Branford Folk Music Society posts monthly concert listings on the following web sites and blogs:
americantowns.com at http://www.branford.americantowns.com/
Nonprofit Bulletin at http://www.nhbulletin.blogspot.com/
Please send event listings to the editor at email@example.com.
Branford Folk Music Society
P.O. Box 441
Branford, CT 06405