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2007 Events

Old Blind Dogs

8pm Saturday April 28, 2007
Center for the Arts
Homer, NY

Homer - "This band may have traveled far and wide across the planet in search of their wages but the Old Blind Dogs repertoire is set very firmly in their native Scotland. A seriously rocking crew!" (Peter Fyfe, www.folkrocking.com).

Guaranteed to get folks up and dancing, the Old Blind Dogs are appearing at the Center for the Arts of Homer 8 p.m. Saturday, April 28 (doors open at 7 p.m). Winner of the Scottish Traditional Music Award for Best Folk Band of the Year in 2004, the Dogs have just celebrated their 15th anniversary with two special concerts in Aberdeen, Scotland which were recorded for release later this year on DVD.

Tickets ($20 general admission; seniors $16; students with valid ID and children under 12 are free) can be purchased in advance at Jodi's Hallmark and Sheridan's Fine Jewelry in Cortland, Linani's in Homer, Ithaca Guitarworks in Ithaca, www.center4art.org , by calling 877-749-ARTS (2787), or at the door.

Over the last 15 years, Old Blind Dogs have evolved and grown into one of Scotland's favorite folk bands. Taking their name from an Old-timey American song, the band has developed its own trademark style, with dynamic percussion and bluesy harmonica fueling the delicately phrased melodies of traditional songs. The Dogs' roots are in Aberdeenshire on Scotland's northeast coast, an area steeped in traditional songs and fiddle tunes. Their energetic mix of soaring fiddle playing and stirring pipes, punctuated with the pulse of djembe and conga has even made a confirmed fan of England's Prince Charles.

The powerful traditional fiddling, sweet and gritty by turns which is the heart of the Dogs' sound stems from founding member Jonny Hardie, an Aberdeenshire native son. Rory Campbell is a brilliant young piper, playing the small pipes as well as the low whistle, and his original tunes are highlights of the band's repertoire. Aaron Jones, originally hailing from the North of Ireland, is an innovative multi-instrumentalist on bouzouki, guitar and bass. Fraser Stone is a specialist on African percussion giving the Dogs their unique beat.Danny Carnahan of Acoustic Guitar Magazine says: "The...band keeps its modern grooves authentic by following Robert Burns' 200-year-old model of applying original arrangements to traditional forms...This veteran Scottish trad group whips up energy while making it look like it's no big deal...the sell-out crowd is dancing behind the soundboard." During their last US tour, Kira Schlechter of Harrisburg's Patriot News observed the following: "The band cracked wise throughout with plenty of typically Scottish humor, including cracks about the drudgery of being on the road and their longing to get back to the auld sod. In set two, they took everyone there, starting with the pulsating set of reels "A Wild Rumpus." The complexity of these pieces boggles the mind, but they're so eminently listenable that you almost forget how demanding they are. Campbell's ringing tone led the way on a haunting "Bedlam Boys," his whistle trilling like a mournful bird, Hardie and Jones clear and true once again on the harmonies."

This performance is supported by The New York State Music Fund, established by the New York State Attorney General at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. This performance is also supported in part by a grant from the New York State Council on the Arts and by our season sponsor, Riehlman, Shafer and Shafer. Accommodations are provided by the Hampton Inn, Cortland.

"Old Blind Dogs bring freshness and color to acoustic music steeped in centuries of Scottish folklore and history." - Los Angeles Times

"Heralded as a Scots neo-traditional supergroup, Old Blind Dogs blend a respect for the folk repertoire and a bracingly modern musical attack." - Montreal Gazette

Come to the Center for the Arts and experience for yourself, the joy and spirit of Scotland's own Old Blind Dogs!

The Center for the Arts in Homer, located at 72 South Main Street in the village, at the corner of Routes 11 and 90, just off exit 12 of I-81, provides the region and community with a broad spectrum of cultural and artistic activities that provide education, enlightenment, and entertainment. While performance is premium at the Center for the Arts, the Center is an accessible facility for year-round classes, workshops, exhibits, summer camps, and conferences devoted to the visual and performing arts.