Nightcrawler: (Summer) Winds of Change

The venue has had artists as diverse as Tito Puente and Blues Traveler tear the proverbial roof off the joint. It’s also seen Mother Nature literally tear its roof off—forcing the cancellation of several subsequent seasons.

While the SummerWind Performing Arts Center in Windsor, Conn. will be open for 2012, Executive Director Michael Campbell is quick to note that the Winds, they are a changin’ in terms of traditional programming and scheduling.

“This year marks a new and exciting direction for us,” he explains. “Unlike previous seasons, 2012 will be a year in which we will showcase some of the incredible talent that we have in the region, with tickets now at a highly affordable rate to make it accessible for families to attend.”

This year’s summer series kicks off on July 1 with The Hartford Pops Band’s Salute To America July 1 and continues each Sunday with the likes of The Connecticut Ballet (July 8), Howard Fishman (July 15) and the Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra (July 29) before wrapping up Aug. 19 with Viva Quetzal and the Val Ramos Ensemble.

Other highlights include The Shinolas (featuring Fountain of Wayne’s Chris Collingwood and celebrated singer/songwriter Freedy Johnston) on Aug. 5 and The Buckinghams (with Tumblin Dice & Avenue Groove) Aug. 18.

Despite the caliber of talent and bonafide instances of national notoriety, the average 2012 SummerWind ticket will cost either $15 for the lawn/general admission or $25 for premium reserved seating. To purchase or for more information, kindly point your browser to


In other news, Rick Murnane (—best known for his work with the now defunct Group DeVille—checked in to report two gigs on tap this summer.

The first, a June 29 engagement at the Blue House Cafe in Haydenville, pairs him with Connecticut songwriter Bill Catalde, with whom he performs as a duo they call The Prestons.

It’s a collaboration that is as deep-seated as it is difficult to explain, but the Crawler will let Murnane give it his best shot.

“Bill and I have been writing and playing songs together for 30 years, but rarely in public,” he says. “But that’s all changed with The Prestons. We now record and perform together as Liam and Chard Preston. Preston was Bill’s mother’s maiden name, which we’ve adopted in her honor.”

On Thursday, July 19, he will perform as Rick Murnane (and with a backup band) at Pop On The Lawn, an annual engagement occurring at Angel Park in Williamsburg, on a bill rounded out by local perennial pop faves The Fawns and School For The Dead.


Last but not least, Danny Pease announces that his new production company, Turn I Loose, has landed a huge headliner for the July 3 concert slated for Chicopee’s Maximum Capacity.

Fishbone has been a strong influence on our music community, and to have this up-and-coming local talent as support really makes us feel good about our scene and what we are doing,” he proclaims of the bill that sees his own Danny Pease & The Regulators as well as The Alchemystics and Wolfman Conspiracy open for the legendary ska/funk/fusion outfit. “They [Fishbone] cross many genres, too, so it’s really a perfect way to kick off Turn I Loose Productions’ first event, because there will be something for everyone at this show and hopefully it will spark a strengthening within our local scene—helping us bring in more varied acts that bond us all musically. “

Now in its 25th year, Fishbone is currently riding a wave of popularity—and mass critical appeal—on the back of Everyday Sunshine, a full-length documentary featuring testimonials from Flea, Perry Farrell and Gwen Stefani (to name a choice few) and narrated by Laurence Fishburne.

Tickets for the show are $15 in advance, $18 at the door and available online at (event #253812). For more information, e-mail

Send correspondence to Nightcrawler, P.O. Box 427, Somers, CT 06071; fax to (860) 394-4262 or email

Author: Gary Carra

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