Culture Connect Featured Event
For more than thirty years, Geoff Kaufman has been leading audiences to find truth, humor, and beauty in folk music. Whether singing sailor songs with his quartet, Forebitter; or environmental songs on board the Sloop Clearwater in the Hudson River; or in solo performances at coffeehouses throughout the Northeast United States and festivals in Europe, Geoff has entertained and touched audiences near and far.
Songs of the sea, songs of the earth, songs of the heart and the spirit—all of these are in Geoff Kaufman's ditty bag. Ancient ballads, work songs, and songs of love; poignant songs of people in struggle, humorous glimpses of human foibles, and insights into history—all of these are likely to be woven into one of Geoff's concerts.
Above all, at the core of Geoff's performance is his rich tenor voice and an exuberant love of singing. And part of that love is to entice audiences to sing along, to share in the exhilaration of full-throated vocalization if they wish. In this age of electronic overload and passive media pabulum, Geoff likes to stress the "live" in live performance, promoting participation, be it by voice or heart or mind.
Magpie - Greg Artzner and Terry Leonino
From the beginning Terry and Greg's interests in various musical styles have led them to be eclectic in their repertoire. Rather than confine themselves to a single style, Magpie has always embraced a musical rainbow, and with impressive proficiency in each different genre. From traditional, classic country, swing, and blues of the nineteen twenties and thirties, to contemporary songs written by themselves and others, Terry and Greg cover a lot of musical ground. Terry is a gifted singer of jazz and blues in the tradition of Connie Boswell and Billie Holiday, but is equally comfortable with the subtle beauty of traditional folk and contemporary songs. Greg is an outstanding guitarist whose fingerstyle approach owes a lot to his heroes, guitar legends such as Reverend Gary Davis, Big Bill Broonzy, Nick Lucas, Phil Ochs, and Rolly Brown. His playing is the solid basis of Magpie's sound, providing whatever is called for, whether it be a hard-driving rhythm, or a ringing lyrical beauty.
With the power of their delivery, Magpie is well-known for their performances of hard-hitting topical songs and as regular performers on Phil Ochs Song Nights, organized by Phil's sister, Sonny Ochs, since 1984. Politically, their viewpoint has been shaped by their life experiences.