Past House Concerts

Past House Concerts

May 18 (Fri) Chuck Pyle (house concert)
8 pm at Pereira’s house. 541-753-9224 or to reserve a seat and get directions. $14 CFS members, $16 nonmembersChuck Pyle has won high praise from both fans and peers alike throughout an inspired performance career of over 40 years. When reviewers first gave him the “Zen Cowboy” moniker, he decided to, as he says, “Always ride the horse in the direction it’s going,” and took the nickname to heart, shaving his head and blending his upbeat perspective with old-fashioned horse sense. He mixes infectiously hummable melodies with straight-from-the-saddle poetry, quoting bumper stickers, proverbs, world leaders and old cowboys.

An accomplished songwriter, Chuck’s songs have been recorded by John Denver, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Suzy Bogguss. Country fans know him best for writing, “Cadillac Cowboy”, recorded by the late Chris LeDoux, and “Jaded Lover”, recorded by Jerry Jeff Walker.

While fans love his recordings, they adore Chuck’s live performance. The first time he made an audience laugh, he was “hooked”. A nimble guitarist, critics say his sense of rhythm is more like a fine classical, or jazz, soloist, his songwriting musically sophisticated yet full of uncluttered space. The Chuck Pyle Finger-Style approach to guitar has distinguished him as a true original, earning him invitations to teach at such prestigious events as The Puget Sound Guitar Workshop and The Swannanoa Gathering. His music has made him a favorite of Bill & Melinda Gates who have had him play at their home in Seattle. Since writing the theme-song for a PBS series called Spirit of Colorado, he’s attained local fame, and even sings for the opening session of the Colorado State Legislature.

Chuck Pyle came from Iowa in 1965 when, “Boulder was mostly gravel streets”, and resides on the front range of Colorado. He does 100 dates a year all across the country, playing festivals and theaters, coffeehouses and house concerts.

His 11th CD, THE SPACES IN BETWEEN is twelve all-new songs, each with finger-style guitar out front of a crackerjack rhythm section. The embellishments are elegant, with everything from fiddle to uilleann pipes, grand piano to ukulele; each song’s a hummable melody guaranteed to make you tap your inner feet. In the middle of the night, Chuck began writing down the words to the CD’s opening song, called Dream Song, and the more awake he became, the better it sounded. Picking Out My Outfit is about Man’s need to look casual, Copper John is about the favorite nymph of fly-fisherman and Wide Open is about Wyoming’s bigness. The rest of the songs are classic Chuck Pyle truth-telling; one man’s outlook seen from a life-in-motion as he continues to gather traction and gravity.
Chuck Pyle in cattails

April 8, 2011 (Fri) — Gerry O’Beirne
photo of Gerry O'Beirne at Innerleithen7:30 pm, Diane Arney’s home.
Gerry O’Beirne
“Beautiful… Exuberant and lyrical sound… an album so full of melodic warmth that it can barely be contained… melodically compelling, cinematically shifting compositions that have an epic dimension…. one of the most perfect acoustic albums I’ve heard in a while… a career defining album”.
— John Diliberto, Echoes about “The Bog Bodies And Other Stories: Music For Guitar”
—album of the month on Echoes.“A sublime talent… opens new creative vistas for acoustic guitar music” — fRoots“An intimate amphitheatre where the gracefulness of O’Beirne’s composition finds full expression” — The Irish Times, giving it four stars

“Gerry O’Beirne has written some of the best new tunes to come out of Ireland’s Celtic music scene. O’Beirne’s guitar playing is always a thing of wonder and his lyrics have become increasingly poetic and emotionally deep.” —Dirty Linen about “Half Moon Bay”

Born in Ennis, County Clare, along Ireland’s music-rich west coast, Gerry O’Beirne is a renowned singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist (6 and 12 string guitar, tiple, and ukulele, slide guitar among others). He grew up in Ireland and in Ghana in West Africa, and has since lived in England, California, and Mexico. His own compositions blend the passion found in traditional music with the freshness of contemporary song.
Gerry’s first solo album, Half Moon Bay, featured his own songs and instrumental compositions. Half Moon Bay was cited as one of the 12 best releases of the year by Performing Songwriter magazine and was chosen as one of Folkworld’s Top Ten Albums of the year. He has just released his second album The Bog Bodies And Other Stories: Music For Guitar, which was named CD of the Month on the radio showEchoes, and one of the essential albums of the year on the same show and which was featured recently on the Irish TV show Nationwide.
Many of his songs have been embraced by the contemporary folk community. Maura O’Connell recorded Half Moon BayWestern Highway,Shades of Gloria, and The Isle of Malachy. Mary Black recorded The Holy Ground as a title track. Cathie Ryan recorded Shades of Gloriaand The Lights of San Francisco. Muireann Nic Amhloaibh has recorded Western Highway and The Isle Of Malachy on her album daybreak: fainne an lae.
Gerry has toured the globe as a solo artist and with the Sharon Shannon Band, Patrick Street, Midnight Well, Andy M. Stewart, Kevin Burke, Andy Irvine, and the Waterboys. He has performed at the White House, opened for the Grateful Dead, and played electric guitar with Marianne Faithfull. He composed and recorded the score to River of Dreams, an artistic response to the River Shannon commissioned by the Irish Department of Arts and Heritage, and he has written music for film and theater.
Gerry has appeared on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion. His performance of Western Highway was chosen as an audio highlight on A Prairie Home Companion’s website.
As a producer, he has a large number of albums to his credit, including Promenade by Kevin Burke and Michael O’Dhomhnaill (winner of the Grand Prix Du Disque at Montreux), Irish Times by Patrick Street, Man in the Moon and Donegal Rain by Andy M. Stewart, First Foooting by Anam, The Connaughtman’s Rambles by Martin O’Conner, Up Close by Kevin Burke, Lifting the Veil and Sacred Space by Fiona Joyce, To Anyone At All by Clandestine, Fine Small Storm by Jen Hamel, The Willow by E. J. Jones, Silver Hook Tango by Australian singer-songwriter Kavisha Mazella, When Two Lovers Meet and I won’t go home ’til morning by Sarah McQuiad and Lumina by Irish piper, low whistle player, and composer Eoin Duignan, which was hailed “a stunning achievement” by Hot Press, Ireland’s foremost music magazine.
Gerry has toured in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the USA, performed solo at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, and has taught musical composition from visual art at Swananoa Music Camp. He recently played on the new Lunasa album and has just released a new CD with fiddler Rosie Shipley which features new songs as well as poems by Patrick Kavanagh and Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill which he has set to music.

May 14, 2010 (Fri) — Betsy Branch & David Kaynor (house concert)
photo of Betsy Branch and David Kaynor7:00 pm, Diane Arney’s home. $10 suggested donation, CDs $10 each.
David Kaynor & Betsy Branch have been playing and jamming together since they met in Seattle in the late ’90s. Over the years, they have fallen in love with each other’s fiddling, and bring out the best in each other’s playing. They weave a rich tapestry of melody, harmony, and backup, so that one forgets that there are no other backup instruments playing. Both David (of Montague, MA) and Betsy (of Portland, OR) are teachers at heart, welcoming in new fiddlers both through private teaching and through workshops. They are most at home in the contra dance hall, but can be frequently found at informal jams, where they delight listeners and fellow players with their inventiveness and groove. After rave reviews of a concert set at The Northwest Folklife Festival in 2009, they were inspired to record their twin fiddle CD, Midnight in Montague. The CD will be released in May of 2010.
Contact Diane Arney for reservations and information: 541-753-0762      or
April 8, 2010 (Thu) — Andrew & Noah VanNorstrand
photo of Andrew & Noah VanNorstrand8:00 pm, suggested $12 donation, Diane Arney’s home.
Andrew and Noah VanNorstrand of the Great Bear Trio will bring their contemporary acoustic / alternative folk music to a HOUSE CONCERT
What: House concert including Diane’s wonderful refreshments When: THURSDAY April 8th at 8pm Where: Home of Diane Arney (email or phone Diane for details) Cost: $12 suggested donation at the door
Andrew and Noah VanNorstrand have been bringing their brand of high-energy contemporary acoustic music to concert halls, festival stages and dance floors across North America for several years. Both boys are accomplished singers, songwriters and multi-instrumentalists; focusing on twin fiddles, acoustic and electric guitars, mandolin and banjo. Their original music is a finely crafted blend of old-time Country and Bluegrass, Celtic and Contra, Swing and Jazz, alternative folk rock and various world music influences with equal emphasis on both daring improvisation and intricate arrangements Fans of modern folk artists such as Iron & Wine, Sufjan Stevens and Nickel Creek will love Andrew & Noah’s music.
Andrew and Noah are two thirds of the wonderful, energetic, eclectic contra band “Great Bear Trio” who will be playing at Cascade Contras this weekend. Be sure to take this opportunity to see them in a whole new light (“hear them with a whole new ear”??) as they perform some of their delectable music in the intimate setting of a house concert.
For music, pics, tour info, mailing list and more visit
Please forward the news to anyone who is a lover of baked goods, savory treats, and intimate music
For More Information, contact Diane Arney:  541 753 0762
You can download and print a PDF poster for the concert.
Nov 13, 2009 (Fri) — Dorrian Micheal (Fingerstyle acoustic guitarist)
photo of Dorian Michael7:00 pm, $10, Diane Arney’s house, (541) 753-0762      .
Dorian Michael started playing guitar as a seven-year old in Los Angeles just as folk music was about to have a renaissance of sorts and earthy acoustic music was his first guitar experience. He has been a working guitarist for over four decades and in that time has played plenty of blues and folk, jazz and rock and roll. There has always been a huge variety of playing experience from smokey honky-tonks to theater orchestra pits. He calls his solo music “contemporary traditional”; original music that reflects his interest in a number of styles of music. These influences come through in his original material, but it is a contemporary music that grows from, rather than mimics, those influences. When he plays someone else’s music or a traditional piece he always manages to add a few surprises. Along with the fingerstyle instrumentals, Dorian just can’t help singing some blues along the way. Its the thing he grew up with and it informs all the music he plays whatever the genre. Says Dorian, “Some music makes you feel, some makes you think and some music is just for the fun of it. I try to get to all those places in the space of a performance.”
Sept 12th, 2009 (Sat) — Rose Laughlin
“Rose Laughlin is a true folk music chanteuse.” — Sing Out Magazine
July 27, 2009 (Mon) — Gregor Borland (Scottish fiddler)
7:30 pm, $14, Diane Arney’s house,  (541) 753-0762      .
Gregor Borland, originally from Inverness, started playing fiddle at the age of 9 under the instruction of Donald Riddell. After many successes in fiddle competitions all over Scotland, he was given tuition by the now legendary Hector MacAndrew, who guided him on to win many more Scottish Championships. Working to keep alive the tradition of playing in the old style as handed down to him by Riddell and MacAndrew, Gregor released his first album “Bowstroke” in 2006.
He has also recorded and toured with many bands and artists, including the Kathryn Tickell Band, Burach, Caledon (with Davie Steele), and Jim Malcolm (who recently visited Corvallis).
Gregor now lives in Spain, where he started a traditional Scottish fiddling school. He has taught at music camps throughout Europe, New Zealand and the US, gives private lessons and judges at competitions, when not busy helping raise his two young children.
Local young Scottish fiddler Rebecca Lomnicky will join Gregor for a portion of the show. Advance tickets at available in Corvallis at Grass Roots Books and Music (227 SW 2nd Street, Corvallis)
June 24, 2009 (Wed) Notorious
photo of Larry and Eden7:30 PM, at Diane’s house
tickets $15, available in Corvallis at Grass Roots Books and Music (227 SW 2nd Street, Corvallis) or at the door (discounts available if needed).
Lauded as “sparkling” and “exhilarating”, Notorious musicians Eden MacAdam-Somer and Larry Unger will perform in Corvallis on June 24. If you haven’t heard them yet, it won’t take you four beats to realize that this isn’t just any ordinary folk band. Sweet vocals and virtuosic fiddling coupled with driving rhythm and snappy guitar solos make for a thrilling musical experience in genres that span many continents. Declared “guitar genius” by Sing Out Magazine, Unger combines talent with exciting and versatile young violinist Eden MacAdam-Somer whose classical and jazz background merges with Larry’s driving style to push the envelope towards swing, blues and Gypsy modes. Come see how many ways they can “metamorphosize 64 beats!”
Contact Diane for more information, (541) 753-0762      .
April 23, 2009 (Thu) — Tone Bent
7:00 pm, doors open at 6:30 for seating, $10-$15 suggested donation, refreshements included
Robin Eschner and Bill Horvitz are both accomplished musicians and composers, and together they deliver gorgeous harmonies and inspired guitar playing. Their original songs consider the many layers of what it means to be human. The duo from Forestville, CA, have a great time when performing, telling the stories behind the songs and creating an intimate mood sprinkled with humor and all that tugs at the heart. They’ve recorded one CD together, *Say What You Will.*
March 29, 2009 (Sun) — Claudia Schmidt
7:30 pm $15 suggested donation. Diane Arney’s house, (541) 753-0762      .
“More than three decades as a touring professional have found her traversing North America as well as Europe in venues ranging from intimate clubs to 4,000 seat theatres, and festival stages in front of 25,000 rapt listeners.” “She has recorded fourteen albums of mostly original songs, exploring folk, blues, and jazz idioms featuring her acclaimed12 string guitar and mountain dulcimer playing. Recently, she collaborated with the New Reformation Jazz Band on a Dixieland gospel recording and a tribute to Gershwin and Ellington in celebration of their hundredth birthdays.” ’A musician who has always hated categories, she describes herself as a “creative noisemaker,” which has irritated some critics but delighted many audiences, who learn to expect anything at a Schmidt concert, hymn, poem, bawdy verse, torch song, satire, and the gamut of emotions. Her live performances are not to be missed. Her musicality is astonishing. Her joy and love of performing are contagious. She can weave the elements of music and stage into a program so unified and full of life that one critic has described a Claudia Schmidt concert as “….a lot like falling in love. You never know what’s going to happen next, chances are it’s going to be wonderful, every moment is burned into your memory, and you know you’ll never be the same again.”’
March 7, 2009 (Sat) — Casey Connor
6:00 pm, $5 suggested donation. Diane Arney’s house:  (541) 753-0762
“Casey performs an eclectic mix of high-energy post-folk-rooted music. His songs range from the personal-sensitive-guy-process ballad, to earthy songs about home and politics, to the more enigmatic, existential fare. He combines intricate, rhythmic guitar playing with an expressive voice.”
“Raised in Ohio, he learned to sing and to play guitar by memorizing Indigo Girls song books. A strange mix of embarrasing influences, years of a cappella group performance, subsequent travel, and study of the sitar with Ustad Imrat Khan in Calcutta all seasoned his musical world with eclectic flavor. Currently based in Bellingham, Washington, he has recently recorded, mixed, and released the album g-g-g-ghosts?, a crazy layered extravaganza of bedroom-studio magic.”
Feb 22, 2009 (Sun) — Carolyn Cruso
4:00 pm $10-12 suggested donation. Diane Arney’s house, (541) 753-0762      .
“Boundless highlights both Carolyn’s fluid playing style and the broad knowledge of Celtic music she brings to her compositions. A gorgeous listen throughout!” — Sing Out! Magazine
“She’s a splendid guitarist and possesses a clear and expressive voice.” — Dirty Linen Magazine
Jan 16, 2009 (Fri) — Rita Hosking
7:30 pm, $10 suggested donation. Diane Arney’s house, (541) 753-0762      .
Rita Hosking grew up in the mountains of Shasta county in northern California, and began composing songs at age 20. Her bluegrass-tinged, soulful tunes tell of springs, woddsheds, miners, old folks, and forest fires; her voice grips you and won’t let you go. With two CDs out and a third on the way, Rita won the Dave Carter Memorial Songwriting Contest at the 2008 Sisters Folk Festival. She’ll be accompanied on banjo and dobro by her husband, Sean Feder. You can catch her live phone-in interview on Saturday Cafe on KLCC, January 10, 4-6 pm, or check out her wbsite.
Nov 1, 2008 (Sat) — Debra Cowan
3:00 pm
Oct 3, 2008 (Fri) — Dana Cooper
Sept 21, 2008 (Sun) — Lisa Ornstein and Dan Compton
7:00 pm $15, Diane Arney’s house, (541) 753-0762      .
Aug 25, 2008 (Mon) — Lissa Schneckenburger
Vermont based fiddler and folk singer Lissa Schneckenburger announces Northwest tour dates to support the release of her new album, Song.