Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Arden Concert Gild schedules a wide range of artists

The Arden Gild Hall is simply one of the coolest venues in the state to see a concert. Driving past the innumerable developments on Grubb or Marsh or Veale Roads into the trio of the Ardens, one experiences a sort of anti-anxiety release or blood pressure reduction. To call the diverse selection of architecture in Arden 'eclectic' is to be kind. Homes that one wonders of their viability in the next hurricane stand next to beautifully appointed marvels of design. The Gild Hall, the center of the community, seats about 300 in a very intimate and funky Bohemian-style atmosphere. This inherent quality makes it equally a hoot for the performers. On Boxing Day (December 26) a celebratory crowd was entertained magnificently by 3 locally bred musicians “The Spring Standards”. They write their own music. It's a rarity that each song of the hour and one half set was joyous and fulfilling. Aisle Say in offering a service to the readership by suggesting you brighten your day by searching them on Face Book and hearing their tunes. Arden concerts was the child of resident tye-dye wearer and caretaker, George Brocklesby. George was following in an ancient tradition at Arden. Leadbelly, Pete Seeger and Burl Ives had trod the boards many decades previous. Brocklesby and Mark Taylor (who has a Roots show on U of D's WVUD) brought in Bela Fleck in 1997. Ron Ozer, a Cornell-trained chemist at the X Station, joined the Gild in 2003 and began a drive to expand the program. Early blue grass concerts evolved into World Music, Americana, the blues, jazz, classical, folk and rock; the programming as miscellaneous as the neighboring habitats. Ozer made two funding connections which aided the cause; DE Division of Arts and The Grand. The Grand shows, normally in the baby grand, have focused on World Music and Jazz. (the former being one of Ozer's predilections). “These shows”, says Ozer, “are generally harder to sell and The Grand offers a wider promotion base.” The Concert Gild is an all volunteer organization. Says Ozer, “ While we love to introduce new bands to our audience, they have an international name performing on Saturday February 18. The legendary David Johansen. Here's a guy who gives new meaning to eclecticism: The New York Dolls, Buster Poindexter, punk and New Age. Joe Trainor, who seems to be everywhere of late, is celebrating the 37th anniversary of Led Zeppelin's double album magnum opus, “Physical Graffiti”. Trainor's tribute band of superior musicians 'In The Light” will perform the album in its entirety. Ozer says the show is selling well so it is best to buy in advance. The date is January 14 and ducats are $15.00. Jimmy Page and Robert Plant state this is the pinnacle of Led Zep. The album was the first ever to go platinum before its release. It is so very impossible to get the “Kashmir” riff out of your head once implanted. Hoots and Hellmouth, who I recall have trod the boards there before, return on March 3. I have no explanation for this synapse, but each time I see their name, my mind reverts back to the late '60's group “Strawberry Alarm Clock” and their one hit wonder, “Incense and Peppermints.” Where in the world do these groups come up with their monikers? What fun! Arden's next collaborative show with the Grand is Bettye Lavette on February 3..  She did an Arden show on Saturday, April 22, 2006. Says Mark Fields, Managing Director of the Grand, “When we at The Grand decided that we needed to forge partnerships in the community to diversify our programming, the Arden Music Gild was the first group that we turned to. We had observed the Gild’s enthusiasm for all kinds of music and the members’ dedication to promoting the work of exciting artists. And, we were especially taken with Ron Ozer’s tireless promotional skills. We have established a number of other effective partnerships, but the collaboration with Arden was the one that got us started and convinced us that partnership was the way to build audiences for everyone.” If after checking out the event schedule you find that a few of the concerts interest you, a Gild membership will give you reduced prices.  

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