Nightcrawler: (Belated) Bombs in the Air

Their celebration may be closer to the 14th than the Fourth. But as Enfield, Conn. Fourth of July Town Celebration marketing director Greg Stokes explains, independence from the Independence Day weekend proper is certainly not without its pluses.

For starters, it greatly diminishes the potential for scheduling conflicts amongst the literally hundreds of volunteers needed to logistically pull the three-day affair off—not to mention that it respects the fact that many families prefer to come together with each other and celebrate the country’s heritage on their own of course.

And of course, there is the obvious benefit to area audiophiles.

“Our goal on the music side is obviously to offer something for everyone,” Stokes says. “With our event being July 11,12 and 13, it greatly enables to book nationally known bands, as they are both a) more readily available and b) much more affordable.”

As evidence for the claim, Stokes points to the Southern rock double-header of the Marshall Tucker Band and Dickey Betts on Saturday, July 12 and the blues-heavy twin-bill of Robert Cray and John Hiatt kicking things off Friday, July 11.

“Still all free, plus we throw in some local notables like Back-Fire and The Savage Brothers and conclude with David Foster and The Hartford Symphony Orchestra before giving way to one of the biggest fireworks displays in the area,” he concludes. “Basically, whatever it is you like to see or hear, I think we have it.”

For more information, including hours, schedules and more, kindly point your browser to


In other news… those who take the time to explore Laurel Canyon—or, at least, the collection of artists slated to perform at the Iron Horse July 15 billed under that name—will find that this is indeed a cavity brimming with regional talent.

A collective-quartet that backs each other on pianos, guitars, ukulele and vocals, Laurel Canyon comprises Rochester, Mass.’ own Rebecca Correia (who is credited with a track on the new Keb Mo album), Alyssa Bonagura (whose song “I Make My Own Sunshine” can currently be heard at Lowe’s stores nationwide), multiple award-winning New Yorker Mieka Pauley and 19-year old six-stringer Harrison Whitford (who has already shared stages with Johnny Lang and Billy Cox, to a name a choice few).

Tix are $10 in advance and $13 at the door for this 7 p.m. show.


Since we’re (Iron) horsin’ around, the headliner on July 12, Eddie Japan, is really big in Boston, as it turns out. In fact, the swagger-ific sextet won both Beantown’s Rock N’ Roll Rumble and was named Live Artist of the Year in 2013. Fellow dirty-water loves The Weisstronauts get the open nod.

And the Horse’s sister venue, The Calvin, celebrates a half century of Gordon Lightfoot on Sunday, July 13. For more info or to purchase tickets for any of the aforementioned Noho shows, visit


Last but not least, the Springfield Armory is once again wading into the music world as it presents The Flamingo Big Band and free swing dance lessons starting at 5:30 p.m. on July 12.

“Each year we invite talented Big Band musicians from across New England to commemorate Benny Goodman’s 1943 concert at the Armory,” Joanne Gangi-Wellman, the Armory’s Chief of Visitor Services, explains.

The Flamingos are a 14-piece, all-female big band that specializes in swing and has been on the regional circuit for more than two decades.

Admission is free and in the event of rain, this event will be relocated to Springfield Technical Community College. For more information, call 413-734-8551.•

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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