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Conversations with Artists: Singer-Songwriters

December 2, 2023 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm


The Art of Music: Conversations on the Music Industry

Saranac Lake ArtWorks has brought several visiting artists to the community for our special “Conversations with Artists” series. The first weekend of December, we are focusing on musicians! This free discussion, moderated by Peter Seward (Lake Flower Landing) will take place at BluSeed Studios, Dec 2, at 3 pm. Refreshments will be provided. Musicians and everyone who enjoys music are invited!

The program will feature Laura Wortman and Kagey Parrish of the Honey Dewdrops (performing Friday Dec 1, 7 pm at BluSeed), and Casey Neill of the Norway Rats (performing Saturday Dec 2, 7 pm at Lake Flower Landing). They will engage in an open conversation on the music industry and songwriter’s craft. This event is sponsored by Saranac Lake Artworks and is free and open to the public.

The artists’ relationship and identity with roots music traditions, and departure from those traditions, will be explored as well as the current cross-pollination of various music camps. The discussion will also address the challenges of independent artists sustaining in a marketplace where consumers expect to access music for free, and the need for artists to tour to make ends meet. Bandcamp – a platform for artists selling their releases– having changed hands for the second time in less than two years, highlights one of these challenges. The artists’ relationship to their fan base, and navigating the itinerary of their touring, will also be a subject of the conversation.

A prolific songwriter and road warrior since the late 1990s, Casey Neill tours throughout the USA, Japan, and Europe performing at venues such as Town Hall in New York, Bumbershoot, and the Newport Folk Festival. American roots and Scots/Irish-folk influences have often underscored his songwriting and solo material. His latest release (as a bandleader of the Norway Rats), Sending Up Flares, hints at a European influence, with songs that channel everything from the cinematic sweep of golden-era U2 to the dark, complex alt-rock of PJ Harvey. Neill’s collaborators include Jenny Conlee of The Decemberists, Sleater-Kinney’s Corin Tucker, and R.E.M.’s Peter Buck.

Americana duo The Honey Dewdrops – Laura Wortman and Kagey Parrish – have long felt the push-and-pull between their original roots in the Appalachian mountains, and their current home in urban Baltimore. You’ll hear it in their harmony-soaked songs and the mastery of their instruments’ acoustic tones, but also in their songwriting, which reflects the hard realities of today. The Honey Dewdrops have just released their seventh album, Light Behind Light, and have toured internationally since 2009,  on stages such as A Prairie Home Companion, Merlefest, Celtic Connections (Glasgow, SCO) and the Bluegrass Jamboree (Germany). Artistically, Wortman and Parrish are inspired by American folk and traditional music and their sound expands on that style and showcases the dynamism and intimacy of musical duos.

The Honey Dewdrops perform at BluSeed Studios, Friday, December 1st, at 7pm. Casey Neill performs at Lake Flower Landing, Saturday, December 2nd at 7:30pm with Tyler Dezago, opening. Join us in this weekend celebration of music. Saranac Lake ArtWorks “Conversations with Artists” program is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. For additional information about the December 2 event, contact Marissa Hernandez, executive director of BluSeed Studios. 518-891-3799.


December 2, 2023
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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Saranac Lake ArtWorks
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BluSeed Studios
24 Cedar Street
Saranac Lake, NY 12983 United States
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