Three seasoned singer-songwriters will come together for one memorable night of music this season at the Opera House in Boothbay Harbor. On Sunday, June 12, Ellis Paul along with Vance Gilbert and Molly Venter will take to the stage. Each will perform solo, with the possibility of some duos or even a trio. The evening is unrehearsed and not part of a concert tour. Doors for seating open at 6:30 p.m. and the round robin of music begins at 7.
Born a stone’s throw from the US/ Canadian border in Aroostook County, Ellis’ Maine roots run deep. A meticulous and lyrical chronicler of the times we live in and the times we’ve lived through, Ellis’ work draws deeply from the traditions of American folk music as well as his own extensive travels and experiences, spanning three decades of life on the road, 19 albums, multiple awards and recognitions, and countless collaborations with other artists. He’s consistently played over 200 shows a year, at virtually every venue, festival, concert hall and coffehouse in existence and along the way has cemented his rightful place in the story of American music.
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.
Molly Venter is perhaps most widely known for her work in the beloved Americana/Folk trio Red Molly. She last appeared at the Opera House, with Ellis, in 2018. Her calling card is her powerful, nuanced voice, swinging from a silky whisper to a bluesy shout in a single breath. American Songwriter magazine writes “Few singers turn first time listeners into eternal fanatics as effortlessly as Molly Venter.” Her knack for shedding lyrical light on emotional darkness has earned her placements at Rocky Mountain Folks Fest & Kerrville Folks Fest songwriting competitions. Molly’s latest project, Goodnight Moonshine – a duo album with singer-bassist-guitarist Eben Pariser of Brooklyn quartet Roosevelt Dime – recently landed at #12 on the Folk Charts and was the Recommended Hot Pick for Euro-Americana charts.
Advance discounted tickets are $25 and currently available through the Opera House box office at 86 Townsend Avenue, Boothbay Harbor, or by calling 207-633-5159. Regular tickets are $30 and will be available at the door, and online at boothbayoperahouse.com