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Anni Blog February 1, 2017

Hello to All! January was a LONG month for me… unfortunately, I got that “flu/cold/head/chest thing” that was going around in my neck o’ the woods. After 2 weeks, I am still clearing my throat & feeling less energetic than usual. May February bring renewed health & energy to all who have had to endure this little test… I feel fortunate that my gig schedule allowed me some down time while I worked through it. This month’s schedule includes some assisted living & nursing home shows that I will not list here. Recent shows in these communities have been very special… I’ve seen joy & sparkle in the eyes of residents while I share my songs. I feel lucky to have branched out to include some of these performances on my calendar. Here, then, is the scoop you need to find me singing in the public eye & ear in the immediate future, in this order:

1. THE FEB / MARCH SHORT LIST (Date, Venue, Time Only)
2. TARGET GIGS (Full Details)

1. THE FEB / MARCH SHORT LIST (Date, Venue, Time Only)

FRI, FEB 3 / JJ’s / Old Orchard Beach ME / 6:30PM
FRI, FEB 10 / Toddy Brook / N Yarmouth ME / 6PM
SAT, FEB 11 / Elements / Biddeford ME / 8PM
THURS, FEB 16 / Lenny’s / Westbrook ME / 7PM
SAT, FEB 18 / The Cowbell / Biddeford ME / 7PM
SUN, MARCH 5 / Pettingill School Park Benefit Concert/ 1PM
     Franco American Heritage Center / Lewiston ME
FRI, MARCH 10 / Toddy Brook / N Yarmouth ME / 6PM
SAT, MARCH 11 / The Cowbell / Biddeford ME / 7PM
THURS, MARCH 16 / Lenny’s / Westbrook ME / 7PM
SUN, MAR 19 / Midcoast U U Fellowship / Damariscotta ME / 10:30AM
WED, MARCH 22 / Gather / Yarmouth ME / 6:30PM

2. TARGET GIGS (Full Details)

FRIDAY / FEBRUARY 3rd / JJ’S EATERY / OLD ORCHARD BEACH ME / 6:30PM / 207-934-0222… this is a fave year round hang for the locals, including yours truly. I play every OTHER 1st Friday & I always arrive with bells on, as they say. This is an all ages friendly venue with great food & beverages… a fun spot to celebrate anything, everything or nothing! I suggest y’all come early & stay late… Here’s their website.

FRIDAY / FEBRUARY 10th (& MARCH 10th) / TODDY BROOK GOLF COURSE / N YARMOUTH ME / 6PM / 207-829-5100… EVERY TIME I play here we all have such a great time! In 2017, I’ll be playing EVERY 2nd FRIDAY, every month. I’m a Yarmouth native… this spot is just over the town line in N Yarmouth, but it feels like Yarmouth to me. The food’s great, the view’s inspiring, the people are wicked friendly & my voice floats nicely in this room. FEB. 10th is a FULL MOON, so views will be especially enticing… consider calling in a reservation… I’ve seen some pretty packed nights in here! Here’s the Toddy Brook website.

SATURDAY / FEBRUARY 11th / ELEMENTS / BIDDEFORD ME / 8PM / 207-710-2011… If you’re a fan of intimate spaces where artist & audience can easily connect, this is the place for you. It is DEFINITELY the place for ME… like performing in a familiar living room with added perks…the food offerings are eclectic & healthy & YES, they have beer & wine. Performers are paid by tips & a percentage of food & bar sales… so bring your friends, eat, drink, sing along & make our collaborative evening a big success… I ALWAYS look forward to this one! Here’s their website.

THURSDAY / FEBRUARY 16th (& MARCH 16) / LENNY’S / WESTBROOK ME / 7PM / 207-591-0117… ILenny’s is on Rt. 302 at the old Al Hawkes Plaza… you know, with the guy out front swinging a tool box? Bill Umbel created this eclectic, down-to-earth venue, named it in honor of the late, great Lenny Breau & he’s booking a line up of some of the best acoustic players around…. so happy to be joining the family! Remember the old Raoul’s on Forest Ave in Portland? (Heck, I had 3 CD Release parties there… STILL MISS IT!) Well, I told Bill that Lenny’s reminds me of “a small Raoul’s”… the vibe here pulls you in & hugs you… feels like home. Grab some pals & head over… bring your appetite for food & music both. Here’s a link to Lenny’s.

SATURDAY / FEBRUARY 18th / THE COWBELL / BIDDEFORD ME / 7PM / 207-284-2355… I played here for the first time in December, had a blast, so I’m goin’ back. This place has an immediate aesthetic appeal… lots of wood & open space, the food is awesome & the staff is friendly & funny. They call themselves “The Cowbell Burger Bar” for good reason… specializing in gourmet, design-your-own burgers, they also have vegetarian & GF options. Almost right across from the Happy Dragon, this new addition to Biddeford’s Main Street is easy to find & really worth checking out… Here’s a link to The Cowbell.

SUNDAY / MARCH 5th / PETTINGILL SCHOOL PARK BENEFIT CONCERT / FRANCO AMERICAN HERITAGE CENTER / LEWISTON ME / 1 to 4PM / Top notch Maine performers unite to raise awareness & funds for the outdoor performance space created in Lewiston to commemorate the late great Lenny Breau... When Lenny’s brother, my friend & fellow performer Denny Breau called me on this one, there was no hesitation. He has chosen a fun musical theme celebrating the music of the 60’s Folk Music Scene… so all performers will be pulling out some familiar gems to share with the audience, hoping to prompt some spontaneous collaboration amongst both audience & performers… sounds like a wonderful way to share a few hours of music & good vibes, doesn’t it? The concert will take place in the downstairs venue at The Franco Center at 46 Cedar Street. Tickets are $15 per person & are available on the Franco Center website here. For more info, you can also contact Bill Maroldo of Friends of Pettingill at 207-795-1386 and/or visit their Facebook page here. If you aren’t able to make the concert, you can still donate to the park on their Facebook page..

FRIDAY / MARCH 10th / TODDY BROOK GOLF COURSE / N YARMOUTH ME / 6PM / 207-829-5100… (see FEB 18th for details.)

SATURDAY / MARCH 11th / THE COWBELL / BIDDEFORD ME / 7PM / 207-284-2355… (see FEB 10th for details.)

THURSDAY / MARCH 16th / LENNY’S / WESTBROOK / 7PM / 207-591-0117… (see FEB 16th for details.)

SUNDAY / MARCH 19th / MIDCOAST U U FELLOWSHIP / DAMARISCOTTA ME / 10:30AM… The U U Fellowship meets in the auditorium of the Skidompha Library, entering from the Elm Street entrance (not Main Street.) I’ll be performing music throughout the Sunday worship service, which begins at 10:30AM. Several times during the year, this gathering includes guest songwriters & musicians from a variety of geographical locations. I am honored to share some songs with this community in such a soulful way. People begin to gather around 10AM & they stay after the service for refreshments & conversation. The preacher in attendance that day will be Rev. Mark Glovin. Please refrain from using perfumes & aftershave when you join us here… & let us celebrate the coming of spring!.

WEDNESDAY / MARCH 22nd / GATHER / YARMOUTH ME / 6:30PM / 207-847-3250… an upscale yet laid back place to imbibe in local fare, inclusive of the music they offer. Gather is set in my home town, right there on Main Street near the Rt 1 overpass. This used to be the Masonic Hall way back when… the stage where I performed several times as a much younger self is now an open air kitchen, where tasty, eye appealing menus are created 6 days a week. Reservations can be taken for parties of 6 or more… I recommend you “Gather” your friends mid-week to celebrate hump day & to support local foods & local music. I LOVE singing here… you can help to keep the Wednesday music nights alive & well by stepping out for a mid-week adventure. Here’s the website.

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The things each of us hold precious could make an endless & insightful list… passions & things held precious can be shared… as a couple, a family, a community, a state, a nation, a world… or maybe touched upon in a fleeting conversation in the line at the grocery store. Sometimes, the thing we hold tight to is born from individual intuition & intention. Each of us has a gift or gifts to bring to the table. I’ve always believed that an individual’s gift loses its value if it’s not shared. This is how I feel about my voice.

I knew when I was four that I could sing… more than that, I knew I LOVED to sing. I wrote my first song when I was five… about saving the world with music… & I’ve never stopped singing! Imagine the joy I felt today, when, having undergone a test to see if I had developed polyps on my vocal cords… results came back negative… OMG. Long story short, I’ve had some hoarseness in the mid-range of my voice for a while & I couldn’t pinpoint the problem. One theory is that during the 12 years that I was teaching, I perhaps used my voice in ways not conducive to keeping my vocal cords in their best “elastic shape.” Well, now I get to go back to those vocal exercises I learned back in the 90’s from David Goulet, a well known & brilliant singer & voice teacher in southern Maine. I think I maybe got a little lazy while I was teaching school. Singing is like running or skating or being a good leader or… anything else… you can’t be good at it unless you practice.

I just learned that a friend of mine, someone else who was born to share his voice, his love of the piano, his love of people… has died. For Danny Beal, there is no more practice; there are no more nights of sharing his voice here on planet earth. I am in touch with friends of Danny (a huge long list there!) & we are all in a funk, especially not knowing yet the full details of how, why, where. I find myself thinking over all the times I laughed with Danny, sang with him, stayed up late with him talking & sharing newly written songs. I am remembering with thanks a night last August when I surprised him at his regular summer Sunday night gig at the Tugboat in Boothbay Harbor… we laugh & hugged & I sat at the piano with him playing as I sang a song he had taught me years ago. Priceless, precious.

Fortunately, I have Danny’s CD’s & years of memories to tide me over as I contemplate the world without him in it. I anticipate a time when many of us will gather to sing & play music to celebrate his life & our special times with him. Meanwhile, I will practice. This gift I was given remains ever precious to me & I intend to share it for as long as possible… thusly, keeping its value in tact. I find some solace in knowing that Danny was able to share his gift in places all over the globe before he left us. His voice, his love of the piano, his passion for reaching out to people were gifts that were shared fully while he was here.

I hope to be able to share my music with each of you sometime soon along the way… as always, thank you so much for continuing to tune in to my ramblings.


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5 - Pettingill School Park Benefit Concert - Franco American Heritage Center
     Lewiston ME - presented by Denny Breau, from 1 to 4PM - 207-795-1386 for info
10 - Toddy Brook - N Yarmouth ME - 6PM - 207-829-5100
11 - The Cowbell - Biddeford ME - 7PM - 207-284-2355
16 - Lenny’s - Westbrook ME - 7PM - 207-591-0117
19 - Midcoast U U Fellowship - Damariscotta ME - 10:30AM
22 - Gather - Yarmouth ME - 6:30PM - 207-847-3250

14 - Toddy Brook - N Yarmouth ME - 6PM - 207-829-5100

12 - Toddy Brook - N Yarmouth ME - 6PM - 207-829-5100
19 - Biddeford Saco Country Club - 6:30PM - 207-282-9892

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