Music Americana
The Music Of Cape Breton
Rod MacDonald
Recipient of the LLS 2012 Distinguished Faculty Award

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: One of North America’s most unspoiled areas, the Isle of Cape Breton, in the northeast corner of Nova Scotia, Canada, has a unique musical culture drawn from French, English, Scottish and Irish settlers, yet, somehow their music is distinctly New World. The small, close-knit population has a surprising number of musicians and singers known for their fiery fiddle tunes and songs of the fierce seas and breathtaking landscapes around them. Today, worldwide music festivals feature Cape Breton fiddlers and singers as a singular presence. Partially funded by a grant from FAU’s LLS Foundation, Rod MacDonald and fiddler Rex Blazer journeyed to Cape Breton in July 2016 to perform and refresh their knowledge from earlier such trips. Join Rod, Rex and mandolinist Bill Walach (the St. Patrick’s Day band at Paddy Mac’s in Palm Beach Gardens) for a musical journey through the tunes, songs and characters of beautiful Cape Breton.

BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION: Rod MacDonald began his career as a singer/ songwriter in Greenwich Village in New York City in 1973. He has 21 songs in the Smithsonian Folkways collection and has released 14 CD’s, including the 2014 releases Rod MacDonald: Later That Night and Big Tent with his band, Big Brass Bed, and recently published his first novel, The Open Mike. He performs in festivals, concerts, and clubs locally and throughout North America and Europe. He was named Best Local Acoustic Performer in Broward and Palm Beach counties by the New Times and one of the “10 Magnificent Musicians” of Palm Beach County by The Palm Beach Post. Previous Music Americana courses include, "The Birth of Rock & Roll," "The Great American Songbook," and "Mastery of the Art."

Bill Meredith, drums, is the backbone of several Palm Beach County rock and roll bands, including Big Brass Bed and Illumination. He had toured throughout the US and Canada, and appears on more than a dozen CD's.

Brad Keller, keyboards, has performed at the Montreaux Jazz Festival and with Maynard Ferguson and the Ink Spots. He is the Jazz piano instructor at Palm Beach State College and has taught music in Palm Beach County public schools for 20 years. He is also the co-author of the Jazz Cats books used internationally to introduce young students to jazz.

Doug Lindsey, bass and vocals, has been playing in South Florida bands for 30 years.

John Smotherman, lead guitar, plays with Big Brass Bed, Illumination and several Palm Beach County bands. His exquisite solos caused the Palm Beach Post to label him one of the "Ten Magnificent Musicians of Palm Beach County."

Time: 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Date: Monday, March 20, 2017
Location: Barry and Florence Friedberg Auditorium, Boca Raton Campus
Fees: Member - $30 per event
$, members only
$, members only
Non-member - $35
Cash will no longer be accepted as payment for lectures.