|Saturday panel discussion to focus on Paramount Records
By STEVE OSTERMANN
Ozaukee Press staff
Five experts on Grafton’s Wisconsin Chair Co. music studio, which during the 1920s and early ’30s produced more than one quarter of the blues recordings in the United States, will participate in a panel discussion Saturday, Oct. 1, at the Cedarburg Cultural Center.
The event, from 3 to 4:30 p.m., is part of the center’s “Paramount Studios Blues Strut” and will precede an evening concert by nationally known blues artists Fruteland Jackson and Ann Rabson.
Members of the panel will be Mike Hatfield, one of the first researchers into Paramount Records’ rise as an offshoot of the chair company; Alex van der Tuuk, author of the critically acclaimed book “Paramount’s Rise and Fall: A History of the Wisconsin Chair Company and its Recording Activities”; Jim Van Drisse of the Wisconsin Blues Society, a blues historian who has interviewed people associated with the Grafton studio; Angela Mack, a musician and teacher with North Shore Academy of the Arts in Grafton who has initiated efforts to educate people about the studio; and Michael “Hawkeye” Herman, an internationally known blues musician and educator.
Herman will also perform in a 7:30 p.m. concert Friday, Sept. 30, at the North Shore Academy, 1111 Broad St. The concert will be the first of three shows in the “Embrace the Legacy” series presented by Grafton Area Live Arts.
The panel discussion is free and open to the public.
As part of the center’s “Blues in the ‘Burg” concert series, Jackson and Rabson will perform classic blues music as it was recorded at the Grafton studio.
Jackson is an award-winning acoustic guitarist and oral historian who has performed at blues festivals and in concerts throughout the United States.
Rabson is considered one of the world’s finest barrelhouse blues pianists and has released three acclaimed solo albums that showcase her instrumental work and keyboard prowess.
Tickets for the Saturday concert are $20 in advance, $22 at the door and $5 for students.
The center is at W62 N546 Ave. For more information, call 375-3676.
The “Embrace the Legacy” concert series will also include 7:30 p.m. Friday shows by the Greg Wessel Band on Oct. 14 and Norrie Cox on Oct. 28.
Advance tickets are $25 for the series or $10 per show. Admission at the door will be $16.
For more information, visit the Web site www.GraftonAreaLiveArts.org or call 377-5308.