Monday, August 30, 2010

Buttonwood Buzz

submitted by Anne-Marie Cannata:

The Buttonwood Tree Performing Arts & Cultural Center was filled this weekend
with an array of events and more musicians than it has seen in one weekend since our tribute to founder Susan Allison in May of 2009. Thanks to all the musicians and poets who came to share their talents with all of us! Friday, Sympetalous and friends filled the air with poetry and other-worldly music when they presented "Dada Vita".
Saturday, Laura Siersema and her band came down from Massachusetts and brought us soothing, surreal sounds from her latest CD, "Talon of the Blackwater". Sunday, Michael Arafeh of The Coffeehouse Recording Studio sponsored an event that created emotional stirrings for many. Over 60 people came to pay tribute and show their appreciation to Nate Simmons, a real Middletown Bluesman who was a fixture in the Middletown music scene in the 80s and 90s. Nate inspired many musicians on our scene today, but a stroke forced him to retire. He, among some of the other musicians, were recording artists on Arafeh's record label, Coffeehouse Records. Yesterday, we were honored and grateful to hear songs composed just for Nate by some of these musicans. The performances were spectacular and speeches heartwarming. In this photo, playing from their hearts, were Vin Delaria and Michael Cleary, Joe Flood, Bill Shaka & Tommy Moses.

Interestingly, several of those present have shows booked at Buttonwood,
check them out at
Shaka and the Soul Shakers - Sept 10
Cathy Kreger and Marci Geller of Lucky 13 - Oct 1 (with Sarah Blacker opening)
Joe Flood - Oct 8
Ben Ross (coming this winter)
J-Cherry & Tim Sparks, often with Tommy Moses can be heard weekly at our "Anything Goes" Open Mic on Mondays.
Notice, also in the photo, the artwork of the children in our 2010 Kids Arts summer camp, sponsored by Middletown's Commission on the Arts.


Anonymous said...

It was a wonderful event with a great turnout of musicians, friends and family. Nate Simmons is one of our true musical treasures here in Middletown, and he was greatly touched by the reception given him, and the stellar performances that ensued. Thank you Buttonwood Tree, all the participants, and especially, THANK YOU NATE SIMMONS for your music and talents.

Michael Arafeh, The Coffeehouse

RICK said...

I had a great time Sunday! Thanks Nate!