This year’s Rockport New Year’s Eve Summer Sampler will take place Saturday, August 6 from 4:00pm to 7:00pm at the Back Beach Bandstand. If the weather doesn’t cooperate, we will try again Sunday, August 7 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. The earlier hour on the rain date is to accommodate the Rockport Legion Band concert that evening.
Admission is free. However, RNYE would appreciate your generous donations to support the performers and Rockport New Year’s Eve 2022. A bucket will be passed at the Summer Sampler. You can also make donations here.
The Summer Sampler will feature three amazing acts.
Downhome Swing will perform from 4:00pm to 4:45pm (or, on the rain date, from 1:00pm to 1:45 pm).
Down Home Swing delivers the finest in jazz, blues, country, and so much more, in a heartfelt and rousing way. Their act features traditional and contemporary tunes, thrilling harmonies, and expert picking, delivered with flair and enthusiasm. Down Home Swing is Jay & Laurie and Chick & Ellen – two married couples, four professional musicians, friends for many years. When they began performing together as a quartet, their sound came together quickly, fed by their abiding friendship and stellar musicianship.
Jay Keefe (mandolin, fiddle) and Laurie Keefe (vocals, upright bass, guitar, ukulele), sweethearts for over forty years, have played extensively with their wildly popular bluegrass band, Old Cold Tater, at festivals, clubs, and churches in and around New England since the early 80s. They have also played with their swing band, The Hot Club of Coral Bay, on St. John in the Virgin Islands, for more balmy and glorious winters than the rest of us could ever dare to imagine.
Chick Marston (fingerstyle & slide guitar, vocals, banjo) was a commercial fisherman in the 70s and 80s who played his barroom blues in waterfront saloons from the Maritimes to Miami. He met his wife, Ellen Ford (vocals, guitar, ukulele), in Tampa, where she was working in a waterfront club as a traditional jazz singer. They have performed together in and around Cape Ann as Chick & Ellen for nearly twenty years.
Down Home Swing’s repertoire features nearly every form of music that can be delivered with acoustic instruments and a good groove. Some of the styles they feature include Tin Pan Alley tunes, classic & old-time country, delta & ragtime blues, traditional & contemporary folk, bluegrass, traditional & gypsy jazz, celtic, fiddle tunes, and sea songs.
Satch Kerans Band
The Satch Kerans Band will perform from 5:00pm to 5:45pm (or, on the rain date, from 2:00pm to 2:45 pm).
Tom “Satch” Kerans is a singer, songwriter and guitarist drawing on such influences as Tom Petty, Leonard Cohen, and Bob Dylan. Founder of the band the Catalinas, he has opened shows for the likes of Little Steven, NRBQ, and South Side Johnny and the Asbury Jukes. He opened for Roy Orbison four days before the legendary singer’s death. He was runner-up in the 92.5 The River “Rising Star” contest in 2009 and has released six well-received records. Jonathan Perry of the Boston Globe says “Kerans gets better and surer with age.”
Henri Smith and Friends
Henri Smith and Friends will perform from 6:00pm to 6:45pm (or, on the rain date, from 3:00pm to 3:45 pm).
Performing and recording artist Henri Smith was born and raised in the birthplace of jazz, New Orleans, and began his career polishing his sophisticated and dramatic vocal delivery at a young age. Today he thrills audiences with his New Orleans Jazz, Blues, Creole and Cajun flavored music touring extensively throughout the United States and Europe. Catch Henri at one of his performances because every show is a New Orleans Mardi Gras Party! Henri Smith released his debut CD titled “Henri Smith New Orleans Friends & Flavours”. His album was produced in New Orleans with an All-Star band of famous musicians. Hurricane Katrina took his home in New Orleans and he moved to Cape Ann in Massachusetts, where he now lives and shares his Creole and Cajun heritage. It is yet another reminder that the spirit of New Orleans will always prevail through the superb performance of Henri Smith. He is a true ambassador of the city of New Orleans! Henri continues to tour internationally with his All-Star jazz, blues, Creole and Cajun Band “Henri Smith & Flavours”. Henri’s band is an ever-changing lineup of professional musician friends who appear as special guest performers, both live and on his recordings. They include; Amadee Castenell, Jr (Saxophone & Flute), Charles Neville (of The Neville Brothers, Saxophone), Andrew Clark (Saxophone, Clarinet & Flute), Christian Contreras (Saxophone), Kermit Ruffins (Vocals & Trumpet), Stanton Davis, Jr. (Trumpet & Composer), Jerry Sabatini (Trumpet), Patriq Moody (Trumpet), Wendell Brunious (Fluegel Horn), Danny Heath (Trombone & Vocals), Anthony “Tuba Fats” Lacen (Tuba), Ben (Piano), Frank Wilkins (Piano), Thaddeus Richard (Piano), Jason Marsalis (Vibraphone), Herman Hampton (Berklee Associate Professor, Bass), Dr. Nicholas White (Bass), Roland Guerin (Bass), Kevin Morris (Bass), Rick Maida (Bass), Tucker Linquist (Blues Harp & Guitar), Tom Yates (Guitar), Stanley C. Swann III (Drums), David Hurst (Drums), John Loud (Drums), Jerry Anderson (Drums), Andrew Jones (Drums), Bill Summers (Congas), and many others who are very well versed in Henri’s unique style of music.