MERIDEN – Local band Inner Groove will perform with Pigeon English and Shannon McMahon this Friday, May 7, as the Olde Church Acousitc series wraps up its indoor season at First Church of Meriden.
The concert series, which began last year, expands to include three summer concerts in the Olde Church Acoustic presents its Summer Series lineup. The events will be hosted by Frank Critelli, who also hosts the indoor concerts on Thursday evenings at the Hubbard Park grandstand.
âThis is going to be a great fit for us as an extension of the show and will create momentum throughout the year,â said Denise Jones, singer and guitarist of Inner Groove.
The band, founded by Jones, will celebrate the release of their new CD at Friday’s church concert. Tickets for the 7 p.m. show are still available and seating is limited to 50 people. Tickets cost $ 12.50 and are available at https://oldechurchacoustic.com/.
Jones, Critelli, and fellow organizer David Cooley covered Tom Wilcox’s once-a-month acoustic series Olde Church, which launched it at a church in Rocky Hill. Cooley moved it to Meriden in January 2020 and had performances on the first Friday of the month in February and March. Then the pandemic shut down live events.
âIt was the survival of the fittest,â Critelli said. âI think everyone did a great job. The fittest is the most adaptable to change. We did what we needed to do to keep the music going and I think we did a great job.
The organizers staged a few virtual concerts and returned to the church where they were able to safely drive an audience of 25 into the large sanctuary. State reopening laws have raised the capacity to 50 and organizers hope to be at full capacity when the season resumes in September.
Series organizers have partnered with the city’s Parks and Recreation Department to expand the brand by adding the three summer concerts at Hubbard Park, starting with Beehive Queen Christine Ohlman and Rebel Montez with Stefanie Clark -Harris which will open on June 10.
On July 8, Big Fat Combo with Cobalt Rhythm Kings will take the stage, and organizers have scheduled a surprise performer on August 26.
âThey gave us the opportunity to do them,â Critelli said of the parks service. âA concert for each month of the summer. They wanted events to take place in Hubbard Park, especially without the Daffodil Festival. I am really excited about the opportunity to book concerts.
The pandemic hit musicians particularly hard, as canceled reservations prevented many artists from performing and making money. There is also a pent-up demand for live performances from a music-hungry audience.
âPeople are hungry for live music,â Jones said. âI know a lot of friends who do things virtually. We received an excellent reception. We were careful when reopening. People are so thankful that they can come and listen to something live. “
The concert series was selected on Thursday nights so as not to interfere with Restore With The Arts Inc.’s Twilight concert series on Fridays and Saturdays in Meriden Green, Cooley said.
The programming of the Twilight Concert series is as follows:
Saturday June 12, Coconuts and Pop-Up Market On the Green, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday June 18, Marissa LaVoz and the Cardona family, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday, July 9, southbound, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday July 24, Inner Groove and Pop-Up Market On the Green, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday, August 7, Coyote River and On the Green pop-up market, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday August 20, # 9 paying homage to the Beatles, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday, September 3, Bad Dog, 7 to 9 p.m.