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Vermont's 'Blues Brother' to perform on Proctorsville Green

CAVENDISH/PROCTORSVILLE-Cavendish is one of this writer's favorite places. The towns people are friendly and the quaint community speaks 100 percent Vermont to tourists.

This summer is no exception.

Starting this month, the Cavendish Community and Conservation Association will host a number of community events including the annual summer music series that kicks off Wednesday, July 7, at 6 p.m. The series is cenetered on the Proctorsville Green and features a nice lineup of regional performers including Chris Kleeman, the Vermont-based master of blues. Kleeman is both an accomplished singer and song stylist.

According to Peter J. LaBelle of Cavendish Concert on the Green, "Kleeman is a performer of great energy and focus; he provides a unique opportunity to see and hear the real thing; an artist of high energy and gritty musical performance, who's been matched up to perform in shows with musicians such as B.B. King, Taj Mahal, John Hammond, George Thorogood, Johnny Winter, Leon Redbone-the list goes on and on."

Kleeman plays a circa 1933 National Duolian guitar (six- and 12-string guitars also included). He has shared the stage with many performers of national stature over the years; in 1998 and 2001 he was a featured performer at the Champlain Valley Folk Festival.

In 2002, Kleeman appeared at the Montreux Jazz Festival with Bob Stannard. The Vermonter has six recordings to his credit; his last few solo projects are now compiled on the CD titled Northern Blue. Two newer CDs of country blues, with Malkum Gibson, were released in 1999 and 2001-along with Made in Vermont with Bob Stannard in 2004.

La Belle said Kleeman's appearance this week provides a unique opportunity to see and hear the real thing; an artist of high energy and gritty musical performance, who's been matched up to perform in shows with musicians such as B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal, Chris Smither, Susan Tedeschi, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Rory Block, John Hammond, Koko Taylor, George Thorogood, Johnny Winter, Leon Redbone, David Bromberg-the list goes on and on.

Six concerts will be showcased on each Wednesday night in July and August. All concerts are free and open to the public at the gazebo on the green.

LaBelle recommends visitors bring a comfortable chair, a blanket, maybe a picnic; it's a good time to kick back and relax on the grass and enjoy summer music.

Concerts are held rain or shine and move to the Cavendish Elementary School in case of inclement weather.

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