Below are some of our past guests,
the 2023 season is over
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about sponsorships or booking.
ELTON JOHN TRIBUTE
Is it possible to out-glam the outrageous? One of the world’s top-rated Elton John tribute bands, Elton Rohn, recreates the sparkle, spectacle and soaring vocals of the original madman across the water. It’s a high-energy performance of some of the best songs of the last five decades, bonafide classics written by Bernie Taupin and Sir Elton John.
With more than 300 shows played for tens of thousands of Elton fans in the U.S. and Canada, the show will feature the seven-piece Elton Rohn band with the
Westmoreland Symphony strings backing veteran rocker Ron Camilleri as the Rocket Man in his prime. The concert showcases the double disc Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, the best selling album in the United States in 1974, packed with early hits that turned Elton John into a global phenomenon. Songs like "Bennie and the Jets," "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road," "Saturday Night's Alright (for Fighting)," the Marilyn Monroe tribute "Candle in the Wind" and epic "Funeral for a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding." Don’t let the sun go down on Greensburg without singing along as Elton Rohn brings Captain Fantastic to St. Clair Park.
Pre-show music by John Gresh
Sponsored by Sendell Motors
Leonid & Friends
In the process of booking shows, Gene and I sometimes send each other performance videos of promising acts, discoveries, recommendations. YouTube has certainly made this task both easier and harder, given the sheer number of performers out there.
A couple years back, Gene sent me a video of a group of Russian musicians performing “25 or 6 to 4” by Chicago, note for note, arrangement to arrangement, the only slight difference being the occasional slip towards a Russian accent. I thought “Wow, great group, too bad they’re in Moscow!” And Gene kept sending me these videos, one after the other, “Beginnings,” “Saturday In The Park,” … he just kept sending them.
Then, he went right around the bend and started talking about bringing them to Greensburg, to SummerSounds. Ten musicians, plus road crew and a manager? Not only did he fantasize to me about it, he sent emails to Leonid Vorobyev in Moscow, suggesting it to him. And Leonid thought it was a great idea too! (I thought I was in the middle of a Cold War espionage thriller, without a code word.)
While Gene and Leonid were becoming BFF’s on the ‘net, a phenomenon was occurring on YouTube: millions of views of these Russians doing Chicago’s songs, people dissecting their skills, their spot-on performances, and the fact that they were appreciably better than the current lineup on tour.
Suddenly, they were here for a short tour in January! The former USSR in the USA! Leonid & Friends sold out shows in LA, New York, and, yes, Chicago, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Chicago Transit Authority with “Chicagovich!,” an album of music from our seminal horn band.
And now they’re coming back. Back In The USSA, and to SummerSounds.
So, what are they like? Don’t just take my word for it; they’re marvelous, stupendous, and tremendous. They’re mostly conservatory trained players and they’re just plain killin’. YouTube and their website are full of videos. Focus on the live videos first, which are proof of their capabilities: not finely tuned studio magic, but the real thing. I recently spent a long evening watching, and before I knew it bedtime had come and gone. They’ve done what no other tribute band has ever done: faithfully present some of the best and most complex rock music of the 70’s, out of love and enthusiasm.
Don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to experience Leonid and Friends!
Pre-show music by Henry Bachorski
Sponsored by Sendell Subaru
Have you ever sat down with a friend and struck up a sing-along of "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes"? Of course you have, that's why you're here tonight!
Fifty-three years ago, at oni Mitchell's house in Laurel Canyon, David Crosby and Stephen Stills were having the professional equivalent of a sing-along when Graham Nash asked to join them on "You Don't Have To Cry." Nash brought the necessary high tenor to the harmonies, and Crosby, Stills and Nash were born. Not long thereafter, they plunked themselves on a couch in front of an empty house — photos were taken and their first album was released: a triumph of Super Groupdom and harmonies to rival the Beatles.
Right about that time, Mark Hudson and his brothers were forming as a band on a Saturday morning kids show, later taking over for The Smothers Brothers as a summer replacement. Two albums and a break up, and lo and behold, Mark Hudson had a new career as a producer, best buddy, and songwriting partner to Ringo Starr. Oh, and he grew a weird beard, multi-colored and multi-faceted.
Gary Burr took over for Vince Gill as frontman in Pure Prairie League, then he moved to Nashville, wrote songs for Juice Newton, Reba McEntire, Billy Ray Cyrus, Tim McGraw, Wynonna Judd, Kenny Rogers, Ringo, Carole King, and a duet for Ricky Martin and Christina Aguilera, to name a few. He has won “songwriter of the year” awards from ASCAP, Billboard, and NSA.
Mark Mirando, singer-songwriter, has been wingman and instrumentalist on various projects. Together they deliver an evening of fun and memory as Laurel Canyon. They promise they'll reach all the high notes for us as long as we carry the melodies. "Carry on," as CSNY would say!
Pre-show music by The Bricks
The Seven Wonders
Fleetwood Mac Tribute
You know all the words to “Gold Dust Woman,” “Say You Love Me,” “Don’t Stop,” “Go Your Own Way” and more from Fleetwood Mac, one of the biggest bands of the 1970s. Tribute band The Seven Wonders celebrates the legendary band at the height of its career, which started in 1975 when a new lineup reached No. 1 in album sales and sold seven million copies. Two years later Fleetwood Mac became an enduring part of music history when Rumors rose to monster status – top of the album charts for 31 weeks, four No. 1 songs, a Grammy for Album of the Year and sales of 40 million albums and counting.
Taking the name of a Stevie Nicks song, The Seven Wonders Wonders have toured clubs and festivals since 2017, earning national attention for their high-energy performances. The first SummerSounds concert of 2023 kicks off The Seven Wonders’ summer tour.
Pre-show music by Woodland Twang
Sponsored by McDowell Associates Insurance
Start Making Sense
Talking Heads Tribute
In the late 1970s, Scottish-American singer-songwriter David Byrne took advantage of the artistic freedom available in New York City’s burgeoning New Wave movement and pioneered a sound that mixed punk, funk, art rock and world music. Talking Heads were among the first bands to understand the possibilities of the emerging music medium MTV, using it to become one of the most important bands of the early 1980s.
Forty years later, Talking Heads’ sound is the same as it ever was and Byrne’s songs are celebrated by Start Making Sense, a Talking Heads tribute band from Bethlehem, Pa.
Including songs spanning Talking Heads’ entire career and some solo work by Byrne, Start Making Sense suggests the vibe of the band’s legendary live shows. Lead singer and guitarist Jon Braun has a lock on Byrne’s look and mannerisms. Close your eyes and the wide open Robertshaw Amphitheater almost becomes the cramped CBGB’s of the early ‘80s and you are there to see it all happening again.
Pre-show music by Devin Russian
Sponsored by University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg
Slambovian Circus of Dreams
Explore the depths of Americana ‘one trippy tune at a time’ with New York’s Slambovian Circus of Dreams. Voted Chronogram Magazine’s "Best Band of 2022" for their rootsy rockin' psychedelia, the Slambovians' deep connection with audiences and exciting live shows are legendary. Dylan, Bowie, Incredible String Band, Syd Barrett and The Waterboys may flavor the musical mix, but the Slambovians' musicianship and songwriting stand on its own. With vocals "soothing and bewitching as a snake oil tonic" the resident shaman of Slambovia, lead singer Joziah Longo, is joined onstage by bandmates Tink Lloyd (accordion, cello, mandolin, flute) and the brilliant guitar-slinging and mandolin-playing skills of Sharkey McEwen - creating a show that constantly evolves "with a little help from their friends," -- RJ McCarty (keys, bass, sax), Bob Torsello (bass), and Matthew Abourezk (drums). Woodstock-tinged psychedelia, a hint of southern rock and solid songwriting elevates this version of Americana to new heights. The band’s latest studio release, “A Very Unusual Head” is considered to be "their finest work to date." - Rock’n’Reel Magazine, UK. Anthony Thistlethwaite is featured on the album, as well as singer-songwriter Dar Williams, who also covers the Slambovians’ “Sullivan Lane” on her new album. “I’ll Meet You Here.”
Pre-show music by Hannah Newell
Sponsored by Steel City Media
ABBA Tribute Band
Sweden’s greatest export of the 20th century was ABBA, one of the world’s most popular and successful musical groups. ABBA was a regular at the top of the music charts from 1974 to 1982. Even now it would be difficult to find someone who doesn’t recognize their songs.
In 2001 Mama Mia!, a jukebox musical based on ABBA’s music, opened at Broadway’s Winter Garden Theatre. European singers Halina Ulatowski and Agnes Jawien started performing their tribute show, ABBA Girlz, as a duet in New York City in 2009, the same year the Mama Mia! film adaptation was released. ABBA Girlz became a nightclub hit and was expanded to the touring tribute show Dancing Dream.
Since then it has played more than 300 dates and continues to draw festival crowds.
When the nostalgic glitz and glamor of the 1970s disco scene spread from the stage to the grass seats at St. Clair Park, you’ll be having the time of your life.
Pre-show music by Aubrey Burchell
REELIN' IN THE YEARS
STEELY DAN TRIBUTE
When Black Friday comes on August 26 this year, SummerSounds will be awash with Steely Dan fans, Jazz fans, Rock fans, Fusion fans, and just plain old Fans. They’ll be here to hear and see Reelin’ In the Years, of Woodstock, NY and thereabouts, coming to prove that music is always more than the sum of its parts, especially where Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen and Walter Becker were concerned.
With Fagan and Becker it was all about the musicians, a myriad of them, from Chevy Chase, their first drummer in their Bard College band, who wasn’t serious enough (go figure) to Michael McDonald and Rick Marotta. Marotta's brother Jerry heads up this tribute. Oftentimes, lead guitarist Becker would give way to Skunk Baxter and others, because he didn’t have the right touch for the song. A session with the Dan often extended through numerous takes because of the constant perfectionism on the part of its leaders. In fact they’re making up now for lost touring time, often cancelling or aborting tours because the sound just didn’t measure up.
The musicians herein provide an impressive curriculum vitae, having played with Peter Gabriel, Elvis Costello, Indigo Girls, Parliament-Funkadelic, The Proclaimers, Van Morrison, Spyro Gyra, Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Buddy Rich, Slide Hampton, Little Feat and Boz Scaggs, most notably. Guest drummer Rick Marotta even played with Steely Dan!
You can choose between the Reelin’ thing and the real thing this summer; ours is much easier on your credit card account and promises almost as much richness and groove!
Willie Nile Band
Somewhere between Bruce Springsteen’s Jersey shore and Joe Greshecky’s Three Rivers, Willie Nile stakes his claim from the Hudson River to Long Beach. His rustbelt rock ‘n’ roll is served with a shot and a beer, and as much as he spanks New Yorkers for letting themselves down, Nile is the biggest booster of the city that never sleeps since Sinatra.
Cutting his teeth in Greenwich Village clubs CBGB’s and Kenny’s Castaways, Nile and his band built a reputation for high-voltage performances of streetwise rock songs that resonated with blue collar workers of the late 1970s. Following the release of Nile’s recording debut in 1980, Pete Townshend invited him to open shows during the second leg of The Who’s North American tour.
At SummerSounds, expect the New York singer-songwriter to sing about watching “grown men cry making out their wills on the day the world stood still.” And don’t take it personally when he wails, “Wake up America, red white and blue, you used to be great, what happened to.
Pre-show music by Tom Maroon
Sponsored by Toyota of Greensburg
Victoria Victoria feat. Charlie Hunter
Songs from Victoria Victoria’s first CDs in 2016 and 2020 drew the attention of indie pop fans and were placed in reality TV shows. It’s not a band, more of a vehicle for North Carolina singer-songwriter and keyboardist Tori Elliott, whose introspective ethereal music takes the form of story fragments delivered in a quiet sultry voice.
Guitarist, producer, songwriter and luthier Charlie Hunter has been a recording and touring artist since the 1990s. He took guitar lessons from Joe Satriani and as an adult played guitar and organ with Michael Franti's political rap group The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, which toured with U2 in 1992. Hunter’s solo projects spotlight his work on homemade acoustic seven- and eight-string guitars simultaneously playing melodies, chord progressions and bass lines.
Elliott and Hunter teamed up on Victoria Victoria’s third release To the Wayside. Played by Hunter, Elliott’s songs drift between indie pop, contemporary acoustic and jazzy cabaret. On the road, Victoria Victoria includes a full band bearing spectacular backing vocals. This year’s tour stops at the Rochester International Jazz Festival, FitzGerald’s American Music Festival and Greensburg’s SummerSounds.
Pre-show music by TRIO724
Sponsored by Sam's Club
At the very least, Bluegrass has at least two distinct types: Traditional and New Grass. Traditional Bluegrass might best be defined as anything in the broader genre that Bill Monroe would play, should he be resurrected. Mr. Monroe WAS bluegrass from the very beginning, and fittingly named his band The Bluegrass Boys. If it sounded like Monroe's music, it was bluegrass; if not, it prompted a short debate and then was denied. For most of his life he was the only arbiter, not only of sound but also style. Absent of long hair or beards with the presence of guitar, upright bass, banjo, mandolin and fiddle. On the other hand, he was proud of the band members he nurtured and taught. If they innovated, he approved.
There is no question that Sideline is Trad Bluegrass, its members drawn from bluegrass bands like IIIrd Time Out, Lonesome River Band and Cherryholmes, to name a few. It has been an incubator for talent and more than the sum of its original parts when awards are handed out. Founders Steve Dilling (banjo), Skip Cherryholmes (guitar, mandolin) and Jason Moore (upright bass) have been the best at their instruments and have been revered throughout their careers. Unfortunately, Moore was stricken by a fatal heart attack last November at the age 47, while boarding their tour bus after a concert.
When Mr. Bill Monroe does rise again to sing and chip at his mandolin, he and his fellow bandmates will be the next set of Boys, succeeding Flatt and Scruggs, Vassar Clements, Peter Rowan, Roland White, Richard Greene, Del McCoury and others. Maybe Fantastic Negrito will be with them, tagging along, like Jerry Garcia did, tolerated in spite of his style.
Last summer we received one of those calls we dread; our band for the evening couldn’t make it, and we had only hours to book a replacement. Gene dove into his seemingly endless wallet of possibilities and found Billy Price, a great Pittsburgh guy who we had never booked before.
He called his band into action at short notice, arrived on time for soundcheck, regaled us with stories, and made himself at home! His keyboard player might have even shown up anyway, because he and his wife are SummerSounds fans when Billy doesn’t have a Friday performance. A great show was enjoyed by all, from one of the greatest of our PGH artists.
Back in the late 60’s when music was everything to me, word came down from State College of a band called the Rhythm Kings, a group of undergrads playing R&B against the tide so to speak. Instead of rock they played soul, with Billy Pollak on vocals. After receiving his degree, he somehow caught the attention of Roy Buchanan, hillbilly bluesman extraordinaire. Buchanan made Billy his lead singer and songwriter for 3 years of touring along with two albums, including a live album universally thought to be Buchanan’s best.
After splitting from Buchanan, who would not awaken from an overdose soon thereafter, Price, along with Glenn Pavone formed the Keystone Rhythm Band, the Charm City Band and the Billy Price Band, and would tour France with Fred Chappelier on their Night Work tour of Europe. By my count, he’s been a favorite performer of Picks-Burghers for over 50 years. I can’t wait to hear our announcer say, once again, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Billy Price!”
Based in Asheland, North Carolina, Toubab Krewe plays a kind of instrumental Afro-jam rock. The music focuses on the ancient percussive groove of the West African Mandinka, who pass their rich oral history from generation to generation through music.
The Mandinka are known for their communicative drumming style and use of a unique musical instrument, a 21-string harp-lute called the kora. With instrumentation including a kora, a 12-string harp-lute (kamele ngoni), a Malian horsehair fiddle (soku), two electric guitars, an electric bass, drum set and African percussion, Toubab Krewe’s progressive music is often an improvisational amalgam of African tradition and modern jam rock. It’s a safe bet you’re never heard anything like it. Don’t miss it at SummerSounds.
Pre-show music by MSJR
Sponsored by Westmoreland Museum of American Art
SummerSounds votes Bach best in genre!
No, not Johann Sebastian, but David, and his Consort, a roving and revolving band of some of the best jazz musicians the metro DC area has to offer. He, the Consort, and his well-tempered keyboards, double-stacked, front and center, have graced the stage at SummerSounds a record four times now and surely earned his being voted our favorite smooth jazz artist in our two decade history.
We’re not the only ones who’ve named him a winner: he also won the 2016 Maryland Music Awards’ “Best Jazz Artist” honor. He’s received airplay at major smooth jazz stations worldwide and his recording Otherworld reached #28 in the CMJ National Jazz Chart and #4 in the Canadian Earshot National Jazz Chart.
Bach has received two Gold Records, one for a song he co-wrote for Crystal Waters and the Basement Boys and another with Thievery Corporation for keyboard work he did for Everything But The Girl.
With a natural onstage energy and charisma and an eclectic style that incorporates jazz, world music, rock, ambient music, European, Latin and classical influences, The David Bach Consorth has been a powerhouse performer for discerning live performance venues across Maryland, DC, Virginia and, of course, Pennsylvania. We have always found his refreshing and comfortable stylings to be the perfect accompaniment to a gathering in St. Clair Park with your family and friends.
Sponsored by Redstone Highlands
Bill Toms and Hard Rain
ROCK / R & B
In the 1987-2006 iteration of Joe Grushecky and the Houserockers, Bill Toms played a wicked lead guitar and was known for his gritty electric sound. When he left the Houserockers and started doing his own thing, his conversion as an acoustic singer-songwriter took some members of the Pittsburgh music scene by surprise. In fact, Toms had an acoustic outlet for his songs since the mid-1990s, and in the mid-2000s he started booking shows as Bill Toms and Hard Rain.
Now with nine Hard Rain albums and tours of the U.S., Canada and Europe under his belt, Toms has reestablished himself as a rocky, folky, bluesy Americana artist with good songs and a following. When he plays under the Robertshaw Amphitheater, he’ll be backed by a Hard Rain lineup that includes some of Pittsburgh’s busiest bar performers: Tom Breiding (guitar, vocals), Tom Valentine (bass, vocals), Steve Binsberger (piano,organ), Phil Brontz (saxophone), George Arner (trumpet) and Bernie Herr (drums).
Pre-show music by Shane Turner
Lao Tizer Band
In the five years since the release of their last jazz fusion CD, Lao Tizer Band has expanded its sound, band roster and presentation. With the new project Songs From the Swinghouse, the ensemble dipped for the first time into reimagined classic rock covers performed with a vocalist, as well as eight scorching original instrumentals. The jazz and world-fusion band takes the new repertoire on a summer festival tour that includes a SummerSounds concert at St. Clair Park.
Tizer was a teenage keyboard prodigy touched by a broad range of influences from his Russian-Jewish heritage to his hippie parents’ new age values to radio rock from the ‘60s through the ‘90s. It left Tizer with a free-range appreciation of music in all its forms and a curiosity about how it is all interrelated. Throughout his 25-year career, Tizer has been regarded as a gifted performer of genre-bending music that mixes classically inspired jazz, new age and jam rock.
At the Greensburg show expect veteran vocalist Tita Hutchison to breathe new life into inspired reinterpretations of Led Zeppelin's "Ramble On," U2's "Pride (In the Name of Love)" and Cat Stevens' "Sad Lisa.”
Pre-show music by Mia Z
Sponsored by Redstone Highlands
The Suitcase Junket
Everything about The Suitcase Junket is different. Matt Lorenz of Massachusetts isn’t the only one-man band on the road, but he does it without tape loops. Sitting on a ratty suitcase, Lorenz plays a beat up guitar that he pulled from a dumpster and a bass made from another discarded suitcase. Additional homemade instruments were crafted from augmented pots, forks, a gas can, bones and a baby shoe that he bangs with his feet. Practicing the ancient art of throat singing, Lorenz sounds like he’s using two voices at once.
At some 200 performances a year, audiences marvel at the strange sight, but Lorenz says he’s most interested in his songs. He wrote and performed all of the songs on his three albums, but broke down and brought in a collaborator, Steve Berlin of Los Lobos, to produce his 2018 project.
"The things I value are under attack and writing songs and making art are the methods I have for responding,” said Lorenz. “I have tried to use my observations and reflections of the world bent through my fun-house-mirror mind to show what I see – a planet stressed. We can do better."
Pre-show music by Jackson Stokes
Creedence Clearwater Revival Tribute
In 4 short years, 4 guys from El Cerrito, California released 7 albums and charted about 25 songs on Billboard. In truth, John Fogerty wrote, sang, played most of the instruments on, and produced nearly all of the music of a Southern swamp rock band from Northern California, influencing the Allmans, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, to name a few.
Just as the Vietnam war was slowing, CCR had more musical influence on its demise than any other band, due to the band's popularity among servicemen.
While John Fogerty worked his fingers to the fretboard, his recording company, Fantasy Records, was robbing them blind with a notoriously onerous contract, and his bandmates either took advantage of him or didn't have the talent to help Fogerty other than to play at shows.
He left CCR and refused to play his own songs for decades so as to deny Fantasy licensing fees. And yet they've steadily continued to be popular without there being a Creedence to tour the songs. Forbes magazine just noted that they were still charting in Billboard's various Top Ten lists, including #1 in songs for "Have You Ever Seen The Rain?"
Green River, a Creedence tribute band with a prodigious repertoire of Fogerty masterpieces will finish our slightly truncated Summer/AutumnSounds with our favorite genre, a sing-along — if you can remember the words. Rest up your voices, there's nothing we can do for your memories
Pre-show music by Gashouse Annie
The Colbys Band
New Orleans style R&B jazz band
Led by John Colby, Keyboardist, vocalist. Grammy, Emmy & Ace award winning composer and producer. (Music Director ESPN ESPYs, NASCAR Awards) the Colbys feature Bev Rohlehr (Ro-laire) - Jazz and R&B singer. Only woman to record with the legendary acapella group 'The Persuasions'. The Colbys are a high-energy, no two nights ever the same musical experience.
THE SWEET LIZZY PROJECT
Within a few years, the Cuban-born members of Sweet Lizzie Project grew from an unknown Nashville rock band to the show opener for their idols Heart and Joan Jett, playing for an arena crowd of 20,000 people. They were showcased on PBS, profiled on NPR and featured on the cover of the Miami Herald where the Cuban defectors were celebrated as cultural heroes.
Singer and songwriter Lisset Diaz, guitarist and songwriter Miguel Comas, keyboardist Wilfredo Gatell, bassist Alejandro Gonzalez and drummer Angel Luis Millet arrived in the U.S. shortly before the borders were closed. They traded a home where kids still hide in basements to listen to pirate radio stations for a land they saw as brimming with musical opportunity.
“We had dreams and sacrificed for this opportunity by saying goodbye to friends and family,” said Diaz. “I remember when we got to the U.S. it was such a shock. It’s, of course, so different here, but the move has let us connect with much wider influences here in Nashville and made us more accomplished musicians.”
Sweet Lizzie Project’s euphoric pop rock songs bear sharp musical hooks and are influenced by their upbringing in the repressive land across the water. At clubs and festival grounds, audiences find it hard not to move in time with Diaz’s explosive stage dynamics.
Pre-show music by Brian Junker
There are less than 100 words, by our count, in the song “Seven Bridges Road” by Steve Young, yet it has its own Wikipedia article, and a damn good tribute band named after it, in the bargain. All because of the Eagles.
It seems that when these Eagles first began playing arenas and stadiums they warmed up vocally on the song a cappella, in a shower room, and then opened the show with it. Monkee Mike Nesmith took offense at them lifting the arrangement directly from Iain Matthew’s version that Nesmith produced and arranged.
Perhaps the Eagles take offense too, when 7 Bridges does their tribute to them, what with the arrangement by arrangement, song by song, note by note. Yet, our experience has been that works out just fine, because you get Eagles and nothing but Eagles with 7 Bridges … and without a hefty MasterCard invoice in July! You’re treated to that famous 4 and 5 part harmony, echoes of the late Glen Frey, and the very much alive Don Henley, Don Felder, Timothy B. Schmidt and Joe Walsh.
Just as Frey and Henley were the mainstay leaders of Eagles, so are Jason Manning and Keith Thoma the glue and talent that hold 7 Bridges together after many years of touring in tribute. As many of our 7 Bridges fans know, it’s worth sitting in the rain to see and hear our favorite tribute band.
Every show features one brilliant hit single after another. The perfect blend of songs, musicianship and onstage charisma has earned 7 Bridges their glowing reputation as one of the finest tribute acts in the country.
".....best EAGLES tribute on Earth" -ROLLING STONE MAGAZINE
And call yourself lucky, we get to enjoy 7 Bridges on the last tour of this great band in its present form. We’ll sure miss you guys!
Pre-show music by Sean Howard
Man, she was amazing!” said Buddy Guy, after singing and playing with Vanessa Collier, on The Legendary Rhythm And Blues Cruise. So, let that roll around in your ear for a while!
Unfortunately, those who let a little precipitation get in the way of a great time missed a transcendent performance by the splendid Ms. Collier last year at SummerSounds. Those who didn’t mind getting a little moist enjoyed the closer view, onstage with her and the band and her grandmother and various other family and audience members. Not to be outdone by Buddy, our greatest living blues artist, my grandson proclaimed that he really liked her too. It was a great night to be a part of the show!
Still in her 20’s, Vanessa is not that far removed from captaining her high school basketball team yet she’s received honors at the renowned Berklee College of Music, toured the US and Europe with Joe Louis Walker, and impressed the aforesaid Mssr. Guy enough to earn the “Amazing!” (It’s true! Check out her website!)
The best thing is, you’d never know she “had” the blues if you hadn’t heard her yourself. She lit up our stage, and our backstage, last summer, despite the rainy weather. All of our male volunteers were smiling and all of our female volunteers were making a new friend. Our only disappointment was that we couldn’t share her with more of you.
She IS amazing, talented, soulful, full of energy and sass, audience focused … and did I say talented. She goes effortlessly from vocals to sax and back, plays a pretty mean laptop, and writes the hell out of a song.
So drag out your rain gear and bumbershoots just in case. Vanessa’s back, hopefully high and dry this time!
Pre-show music by Joe Scheller
Sponsored by UPMC Health Plan
DEREK WOODS BAND
ROOTS / ROCK
The Derek Woods Band is an award winning, timeless and lyrically driven Americana rock band with a modern polished exterior. Well known in Western Pennsylvania, The Derek Woods Band was initially formed in Los Angeles in early 2012. With a core lineup of musicians, they were later transplanted to their home base in Pittsburgh, all the while gaining a coast-to-coast following. The band has been featured at many major events from the historic Woodstock 50th Anniversary festival at Yasgur's farm in New York to the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena, California.
Their latest full-length album, "Picture Yourself," is being released as single tracks with accompanying music videos throughout the year.
Pre Show music by Josh Starrett Video
When Kirk McLeod first formed his band, it didn’t have a bagpiper or fiddler or someone on the Uillean pipes. It wasn’t named after Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, Wales, Cornwall, Galicia or The Isle Of Man
Soon enough, though, Kirk and Co. realized that the only true way to honor and emulate the music of the great Gaelic tribes was to blow up the bladder, finger the chanter, and let the drone go, producing the sound of the angels (at least to those full of Scotch or Irish whiskey, which would be any authentic 7 nationer.)
The band started out as Clan Na Gael, but were soon run off that name by an identically named band that didn’t last, but not before they were fully embraced by the vast majority of Scottish Game Goers, who still refer to them by their former name. The Scots were always stubborn that way.
A look at their busy touring schedule reveals their popularity among St. Patrick’s Day celebrants and Highland Gamesters, where the rock n’ skirl (the shrill sound made by the chanter pipe of a bagpipe) crowd hang out. They’ve been SummerSounds favorites since 2003, making them pioneers, but we’ve also featured The Tartan Terrors and Enter the Haggis, a clear indication that most of our ancestors spoke Gaelic as their first language. Some of our male attendees have been known to wear heavy woolen kilts in 90 degree heat and some of the women have been seen sporting “Official Kilt Inspector” badges.
Load up the Guiness and Dewars, the scones and haggis, don your tweeds or tartan and welcome back the descendants of the Seven Nations for a jolly auld time. Slainte!
Laurie Morvan Band
The road warrior out of California is known for scorching blues licks on a hot Stratocaster, but Laurie Morvan can get just as carried away carving deep grooves with a blues shuffle wrapped in bass and synched to an incessant kick drum beat. It’s a wet fluid sound, a little bit Stevie Ray Vaughan and everything that gives electric rockin’ blues its signature sound. Somewhere on the road between gigs in the U.S., Canada and Europe, the volatile five-piece Laurie Morvan Band earned laurels including a Blues Foundation Award and the respect of international fans.
More than just a blue-eyed blonde with a guitar, Morvan used her full sports scholarship at a Big Ten university to become a star athlete. With a pilot’s license and degree in electrical engineering, she landed a lucrative job working on missiles at a West Coast aerospace company. She walked away from the money for the thrill of playing blues in L.A. bars, working on the side as a college math teacher. The bar gigs led to festival tours fronting the Laurie Morvan Band, where the singer-songwriter shares the stage with her ex-husband bassist Pat Morvan, her current husband backing vocalist Lisa Morvan, keyboardist Tommy Salyers and drummer Lonnie Jones. Be on the lawn when Laurie Morvan Band brings smoky-bar blues to the Robertshaw Amphitheater.
Pre-show music by The Bricks
Sponsored by First Energy
That's all folks.
Thanks to all 30,000 of our music loving friends for a great 23 years of SummerSounds!