International Guitarists, Local Rocker Performing at Jones House Friday August 9

Published Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at 3:41 pm

The Town of Boone continues the Summer Concerts at the Jones House this Friday, August 9 at 5:00pm with three acts set to take the stage. This concert will feature an eclectic mix of three solo guitar performers, each bringing something different to the table: Hiroya Tsukamoto, Jimmie Griffith, and Melissa Reaves.

“Don’t let these one-person acts fool you,” says Brad Farthing of the Jones House, “Each performance will pack a punch with creative, real-time looping and overdubbing techniques that construct a powerful sound.”

Hiroya Tsukamoto

Starting the show Friday is Japanese-born guitarist, Hiroya Tsukamoto. After receiving the banjo as a gift at thirteen years old, Tsukamoto began practicing along with the only bluegrass record he owned, Earl Scruggs’s Foggy Mountain Banjo. Soon after, he also picked up the guitar and in 2000 came to the United States to attend the Berklee College of Music. Since then, Tsukamoto has released three solo albums and formed his own highly acclaimed group, Interoceánico, consisting of musicians from across the globe.

It is difficult to ascribe Tsukamoto’s music to a specific style or genre. In addition to his Japanese heritage, Tsukamoto’s songs feature a blend of influences that include Southern U.S. bluegrass, Latin American folk, and classical American Jazz. Tsukamoto takes his audience on a synesthetic journey, with acoustic notes that elicit stark imagery and soft accompanying melodies that blossom into sweet poetry. With a busy touring schedule this summer taking him across the country, Tsukamoto always tries to make time to play shows in the North Carolina mountains, the source of inspiration for his musical beginnings.

Second on the stage is another performer that also has some deep international connections, guitarist, flutist, and percussionist Jimmie Griffith. Born and raised in the mountains of Brazil, Griffith is the son of multi-cultural parents and was exposed to a uniquely rich blend of musical traditions from an early age. Now living in Lenoir, NC, he draws upon these influences, along with his love for the mountains, in the writing and performing of his songs.

Jimmie Griffith

As a solo artist Griffith performs under the moniker MaisCéu, which loosely translates to “more sky.” This title is fitting, as his performances transport the listener to a heavenly musical nirvana of sorts. Captivating and engaging, Griffith’s music hearkens back to his roots; his songs are a fresh modern take on the 1960s Brazilian bossa nova style – imagine Girl from Ipanema, but with an Appalachia twist. Regardless of the language in which he sings, the unexpected yet familiar melodies and rhythms in Griffith’s songs have a universality to them that transcends geography and culture.

Rounding out the performances on Friday will be local Boone favorite and the aptly name “Queen of Action,” Melissa Reaves. A powerful avant-garde vocalist and guitarist, Reaves brings energy to all of her concerts, with a diverse repertoire of rock n’ roll, rhythm and blues, and funk sounds. Reaves’s ever-growing list of achievements and accolades include opening for the likes of Robert Plant, Sarah MacLachlan, Cyndi Lauper, Leon Russell, and Doc Watson, touring across the U.S., Canada, and Europe, and most notably earning multiple Grammy nominations for her individual and collaborative work.

In her single “New Rock Song,” Reaves warns the listener, “Don’t get stuck on love.” Well, you just might get stuck on loving Melissa Reaves after listening to this song nominated for a Grammy for Best Rock Performance. With a powerful set of vocal cords, an electric charisma, and an on-stage élan matching that of Janis Joplin, Reaves knows how to get an audience on its feet and will leave you wanting more. Needless to say, you definitely do not want to leave the concert early this Friday evening.

Melissa Reaves

The Summer Concerts at the Jones House are free and open to the public. Concerts are held every Friday in June, July, and August, starting at 5:00 p.m., and they are held rain or shine. Patrons are encouraged to bring their own chairs or blankets to enjoy the music from the Jones House lawn. Alcoholic beverages are permitted on the Jones House property, if patrons are of legal age and bring their own beverages. No open containers are allowed beyond the Jones House property. Friendly pets are permitted on leash.

The 2019 Summer Concerts at the Jones House sponsors include the Downtown Boone Development Association, Mast General Store, Burton Moomaw Acupuncture, MPrints, Melanie’s, Stick Boy Bread Co, and Rosemary Horowitz/Jerry Hyman. For more information about the series, including a complete schedule, please visit www.joneshouse.org or call 828.268.6280.

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