If you enjoy great fiddle music and song, head to Nisswa Friday, Dec. 9, to hear Jerry Newberry and April Verch perform as part of the Grassroots Concert series.
Missouri native Joe Newberry learned fiddle tunes from the great Missouri fiddlers and has been a frequent guest on A Prairie Home Companion. Fiddler, singer, and step-dancer April Verch is from Ontario’s Ottawa Valley and has twice appeared on the Grassroots stage
Both Joe and April are masters of their traditions, yet they never forget the roots of their music or that connection to the audience and to the community sparked by a good song.
Thoroughly woven into the fabric of a welcoming community, Grassroots Concerts has for more than a quarter century presented live music from artists who have put the series on the national folk map.
The series is rooted in the era of river fests and house concerts, evolving beyond river bank and living room to serve larger gatherings in a sustainable schedule of spring and fall Fridays. Remaining dedicated to the intimacy and interactive environment, Grassroots has drawn music lovers to shows hosted in civic halls, churches, and for several years the Nisswa Community Center.
Now hosted at Journey Church’s Live Well Nightclub and Coffee Bar in Nisswa, the non-profit series holds the line on the price of admission thanks to grant support from the Five Wings Arts Council, a regional authority periodically using tax revenue approved by Minnesota voters.
“Artists love our series, love the acoustic venue, appreciate not playing in a bar, and love that people are listening,” said Dawn Stattine, artistic director, who books the performers.