Burlington Musicians Perform with Tennessee Musicians, Without Leaving the Library

Words by Big Heavy World. Photo courtesy Dwight & Nicole.

Futuristic Internet Connection Makes Joint Performances Possible During International Music Festival

Update July 2, 2016: Find photos from this event at http://www.bigheavyworld.com/blog/2016/06/25/photos-burlington-chattanooga-jam-via-internet2/

BURLINGTON: The Fletcher Free Library in Burlington will connect with the Chattanooga Public Library in TN on June 21 in a whole new futuristic way, and in the name of music. Both libraries have been experimenting with an Internet2 link between each other, which is a next-next generation network connection that can be a hundred times faster than Burlington’s public state of the art Gigabit network provided by Burlington Telecom. By connecting with specialized software and equipment called ‘LOLA,’ musicians in each library can perform WITH one another — there is almost no delay in the network connection, so they hear and see each other as if they were in the same room.

The libraries are participating in an International music festival on June 21 called ‘Make Music Day’ which is held in more than 700 cities in 120 countries around the world. Big Heavy World has brought Make Music Day to Vermont for the first time, as Make Music VT, and Vermont has made history as the first entire state to participate in the festival. Information about Make Music VT can be found at http://www.bigheavyworld.com/makemusicvt Make Music VT is sponsored in part by The NAMM Foundation of the National Association of Music Merchants.

Free live music programming, connected by Internet2 during Make Music VT on June 21 at the Fletcher Free Library and Chattanooga Public Library includes a harmonica workshop hosted by Vermont-based touring blues musician Mark Lavoie followed by a play-along; a walk-up open mic; a programmed jam session, and a ukulele performance coordinated with support from the Vermont Ukulele Society and friends.

The public is warmly invited to participate!

The tentative schedule, which may change, is:

1:00-2:00 - Harmonica Workshop/Harmonica Play-Along

Learn how to play the harmonica from touring Vermont bluesman, Mark Lavoie in Burlington. After the basic lesson, participants in Chattanooga and Burlington will perform harmonica songs together. This is open to all ages and skills-levels. Jump in on this group session and see how you like it. NOTE: Participants in the jams should bring their own instruments. The first 50 participants in the harmonica workshop will receive a free harmonica, courtesy Make Music Day sponsor Hohner.

2:00-2:30 - Walk-Up Open Mic Duets

Bring your instrument for an opportunity to walk up and perform a duet with a Chattanooga musician.

2:30-3:15 - Dulcimer-Ukulele Performance and Lesson

Butch Ross (mountain dulcimer) will perform a brief set with the Vermont Ukulele Orchestra. This will be followed by a community ukulele lesson taught by members of the V.U.S.. After the short simple lesson we'll attempt a live ukulele jam with students and musicians in both cities. Limited amount of ukes will be available in both locations. Bring your instrument or just come by and enjoy the show.

3:15-3:45 - Walk Up Open Mic Duets  

Bring your instrument for an opportunity to walk up and perform a duet with a Chattanooga musician.

5:00-5:45 - Headliners In Burlington and Chattanooga

 Dwight Ritcher in Burlington will perform a brief set of blues with Rick Rushing in Chattanooga.

5:45-7:00 - Walk-Up Open Mic Duets with Headliners

Our touring headliners will stick around in both cities for duets with any musicians who have come with their instruments. Musicians in both locations will be invited to perform a song with the headliner in the other city! Bring your instrument or just come and enjoy the show. After the headliners, musicians are invited to perform again with someone new.

Participants in the jams should bring their own instruments. The first 50 participants in the harmonica workshop will receive a free harmonica, courtesy Make Music Day sponsor Hohner. This Make Music VT event is sponsored in great part by Advance Music Center. The Fletcher Free Library is wheelchair accessible.

The Fletcher Free Library and Big Heavy World are each anchor members of Vermont UCAN, the regional arm of the U.S. Unified Community Anchor Network, which connects over 90,000 community institutions (schools, museums, libraries, community centers, healthcare, etc.) to Internet2.

20160520-IMG_8292Photos: Top: Dwight & Nicole, courtesy the band. Above: Vermont-based musician Dwight Ritcher of Dwight & Nicole helps test LOLA equipment by performing with Chattanooga musician Megan Emery on May 20, 2016 at the Fletcher Free Library. L-R: Eric R. Hill, technician; Dwight Ritcher; Rubi Simon, FFL Library Director. Below: Dwight on a monitor, performing with Chattanooga musician Megan Emery. Library photos credit: James Lockridge/Big Heavy World

Megan Emory in TN performs with Dwight Ritcher of VT via Internet2About LOLA: LOLA stands for LOw LAtency Audio Video. LOLA is an open source audio visual streaming system developed by the “Conservatorio di Musica G. Tartini” in Trieste, Italy, in collaboration with GARR, the Italian Academic and Research Network. LOLA allows for near real-time synchronized musical performances to occur with musicians across distances of up to 1500 (network) miles with extremely low latency. Depending on how the connection is routed, this could be anywhere from 800 to 1500 geographic miles with the greater distances producing more latency. The effect of having this low latency gives musicians the feeling they are performing together in the same room.

LOLA uses specialized audio and video devices (machine vision cameras, for example) and optimized software that taps the power of multi-core CPUs and GPUs. To achieve the lowest possible latency, packet loss, and jitter, LOLA relies on the data transmission capabilities only available on research and education (R&E) networks such as Internet2 and its regional R&E partner networks in the United States and other national research and education networks around the world such as GARR and GÉANT.

Nicole Nelson & Dwight RitcherDwight Ritcher

Nicole Nelson and Dwight Ritcher make up the critically acclaimed, American indie-soul/blues band Dwight & Nicole. Recipients of the 2016 Band of The Year award from the New England Music Awards, and the Boston Music Award's Female Vocalist of the Year. Their single “I Need Love” was named one of the Songs of the Year by the Boston Herald and Nicole, coined “The Voice of Vermont” in a cover story printed in the Burlington Free Press. Last year ended on a high note with a string of sold-out concerts up and down the East Coast, and more nominations: Vocalist of the Year and Best in State. http://dwightandnicole.com

[bandcamp width=100% height=120 album=2024265572 size=large bgcol=333333 linkcol=0f91ff tracklist=false artwork=small]

Rick Rushing

Rick Rushing III

Rick Rushing & the Blues Strangers are a Blues based Trio out of the scenic city of Chattanooga Tennessee. This trio harnesses the key elements of Blues, Jazz, Rock and Rhythm to create a synergy that lifts audiences to new heights of musical consciousness. Rick Rushing a native of Cincinnati Ohio, is the band leader, vocalist and guitarist. Rick is kin to the legendary Jimmy Rushing the American Blues Shouter and vocalist for the Count Basie Big Band. https://www.reverbnation.com/rickrushingthebluesstrangers


Mark LavoieMark Lavoie

Mark LaVoie has been playing harmonica and performing for over 42 years. His solo voice and harmonica performance in a unique acoustic style is reminiscent of the late great blind legendary harmonica player Sonny Terry to whom Mark was a protege. Mark invented the LaVoie Vermont maple wood harmonica comb and the LaVoie titanium harmonica comb for the Hohner MS Series gaining him international recognition in the harmonica world. http://us.playhohner.com/artists/mark-lavoie/ Photo: Mark Lavoie (on right) performing with Bill Sims, Jr., courtesy William Henderson of Hold The Eye Images,

Butch RossButch Ross

One phrase you'll hear a lot at a Butch Ross concert is "I didn't know you could do THAT on a mountain dulcimer!" Ross has taken a simple folk instrument and energized it with technical wizardry, inventive arrangements and rock-n-roll attitude. It’s this groundbreaking and iconoclastic approach that caused ukulele-virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro to comment, "Now I know what a dulcimer is supposed to sound like." He’s performed at the Central Ohio Folk Festival, Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, and the Lancaster (UK) Music Fest as well as the prestigious Philadelphia Folk Festival. http://www.butchross.com/

[bandcamp width=100% height=120 album=3003459605 size=large bgcol=333333 linkcol=0f91ff tracklist=false artwork=small]

Vermont Ukulele SocietyThe Vermont Ukulele Society

The Vermont Ukulele Society is a group of ukulele enthusiasts founded in 2008, sharing a common fondness for Tin Pan Alley, Hawaiian and oldies songs. The Society performs at fundraisers, company picnics, luncheons, luaus, open air markets, street fairs, sing-alongs, strum-alongs, historical society events, and at senior citizens' programs. Beginners are welcome and lessons are offered by members. http://vtukes.webs.com/

For more information: Rubi Simon, Fletcher Free Library, (802) 865-7214, rsimon@burlingtonvt.gov, http://www.fletcherfree.org Mary Barnett, Chattanooga Public Library, (423) 643-7711, mbarnett@lib.chattanooga.gov, http://chattlibrary.org James Lockridge, Big Heavy World (Make Music VT), (802) 865-1140; jim@bigheavyworld.com, http://www.bigheavyworld.com

Make Music VT