JAMAICA -- The Jamaica Town Hall Summer Music Series concludes with a performance by blues musician and scholar Scott Ainslie on Saturday, Sept. 15, at 7 p.m.
Ainslie says things haven’t been the same since he saw Virginia bluesman John Jackson playing in the middle of a Mike Seeger concert at Groveton High in 1967. He took up the guitar a month later and has never put it down.
From community concert series and local schools to the Kennedy Center and the Empire Music Hall in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Ainslie plays and speaks of the music with passion and authority. With more than 35 years of scholarship and 45 playing guitar, Ainslie brings a mix of the African and American roots music to the stage, in story and song.
With five CDs, a teaching DVD on the guitar techniques of Delta Blues legend Robert Johnson, and a book on Johnson’s music "Robert Johnson/At The Crossroads" to his credit, as a performer and a teacher, Ainslie presents programs that are engaging, vital and entertaining.
Frank Matheis on www.thecountryblues.com said of Ainslie: "When it comes to keeping the traditional blues alive and well in the 21st Century, any discussion about contemporary American musicians has to include the venerable Scott Ainslie. ... Ainslie is a true master of the old traditions, not just as performer but also as a serious blues historian and musicologist.
In addition to his music, Ainslie has been active with other fund-raising efforts in Brattleboro and on the internet to aid the victims of Hurricane Irene. Within hours of the flooding of Flat Street in Brattleboro, Ainslie had edited his own video footage of the torrent running through town and put up an appeal for donations on YouTube.com for local aid organizations. Funds were received from as far away as the United Kingdom and New Orleans, a city, as Ainslie observes, "that knows something about the devastation that high water can bring to people’s lives." Ainslie also helped produce "Get Up 8" -- a benefit concert at the New England Youth Theater.
The Sept. 15 concert will be held at Jamaica Town Hall. Admission is $10, and a portion of the concert’s proceeds will be donated to the Stratton Foundation, specifically for Jamaica’s continued recovery from Tropical Storm Irene.
For more information, call 802-896-6810.