Prescott Park - Steve Earle at Prescott Park July 25

Grammy Award Winner

to headline Prescott Park's Folk Festival
Diverse array of performers to be featured on Sunday, July 25


PORTSMOUTH, N.H. -Prescott Park Arts Festival will present a diverse array of top talent as part of its Folk Festival on Sunday, July 25. Headlined by three-time Grammy Award winner Steve Earle, the folk festival will also feature Canadian fiddler April Verch, Zydeco C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band, and Boston's up-and-coming stringband Joy Kills Sorrow. The festival will start at 5pm in Prescott Park.


"We've presented some mighty fine acts, but this Folk Festival takes the cake." said the festival executive director, Ben Anderson, "I'm usually taking care of various things here and there during our events, but when Steve Earle takes stage, I have a feeling I won't be able to budge from a seat until his set is done."


With a brand new Grammy Award, Steve Earle is a master storyteller in his own right, with his songs being recorded by Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez, and countless others. His stellar career has gone through many incarnations from rockabilly artist, young gun in the neo-traditional country movement, outlaw rocker, and political activist. His recent Grammy Award was his third consecutive. Steve Earle also produced the Grammy nominated album, Day After Tomorrow, by the legendary Joan Baez in 2008.


The festival will also feature the sounds of two-time Canadian fiddle champion, April Verch. April Verch has won both the Canadian Grand Masters Fiddle and Canadian Open Fiddle Championships, becoming the first and only woman to win both.


April Verch is a young master fiddler who is currently at the height of the traditional music scene. A driving fiddle player and dynamic stage performer, April has deep roots in the fiddling of her native Canadian Ottawa Valley but steps out and weds her music to the world of other fiddle traditions. Verch is not only highly sought after for her fiddling, but also for her high-energy step dancing.


Also performing is Zydeco superstar C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band who is best described by the Boston Globe "C.J. Chenier attacks the accordion with the tension and drive of James Brown...creating contemporary, turbo-charged dance music". Chenier flavors The Red Hot Louisiana Band's bayou beats with elements of funk, blues and ballads, infusing every song with strong, soulful vocals and skillful accordion playing. He is the son of the great King of Zydeco, Clifton Chenier, who was the first Creole musician to win a Grammy Award.


"Chenier's music is filled with infectious energy." said Anderson, "He's guaranteed to make you want to fire up some gumbo and dance the night away."


The festival also includes the Boston-based stringband, Joy Kills Sorrow. With its bold new brand of acoustic music, Joy Kills Sorrow pushes right through the envelope and out the other side bringing a decidedly modern sensibility to an old-world sound, channeling the prodigious talents of its individual members into elegant arrangements and well-crafted songs. While the group pays due homage to its Bluegrass roots - its name refers to one of the first radio stations to broadcast the music of Bill Monroe - the band truly excels in its rich and textured treatment of more contemporary material.


Like all of Prescott Park Arts Festival's events, the festival is offered at no-fixed admission and no tickets are required. A donation of $8 is suggested. Audience members are permitted to bring chairs, or rent those offered by the festival.


Since 1996, the Arts Festival has consistently been named by Yankee magazine as a "must see" tourist attraction. Prescott Park Arts Festival is an independent non-profit organization with a mission of serving the community with a diverse array of quality arts events accessible to all.


For more information on the festival, or to see a full schedule of events, visit or call 603-436-2848.