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Shirley Massachusetts - Information and Local Guide to the Town

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Coco Montoya


Guitar One Magazine calls guitarist/vocalist Coco Montoya “the hottest southpaw in the blues” and raves about his “master touch and killer tone.” The Boston Globe succinctly states that Montoya’s music is “hot, blistering soul.” From his early days as a drummer to his current status as one of the top-drawing guitarists and vocalists on the blues-rock scene, Montoya earned his status through years of hard work and constant touring. It all started with a chance meeting in the mid-1970s with legendary bluesman Albert Collins, who offered Montoya a gig as his drummer. Albert took an immediate liking to Montoya, becoming his mentor and teaching his new protégé the secrets of Collins’ “icy hot” style of blues guitar. Five years later, British blues icon John Mayall happened to catch Montoya at a jam session and was blown away. Coco was asked by Mayall to pack his Strat and follow previous Bluesbreaker guitarists Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor in the Bluesbreakers. “I would never be doing what I’m doing now if I hadn’t gotten the phone call from John Mayall."

Montoya spent the next 10 years touring non-stop, proving himself to be a world-class guitar master in one of the most renowned blues bands in existence. In 1993 it was time to take the lessons from his two musical fathers and begin to sculpt a solo career. In the early 1990’s he was signed to Blind Pig Records and released three critically acclaimed discs, "Gotta Mind To Travel," "Ya Think I’d Know Better" and "Just Let Go."
In the middle of his Blind Pig days, Coco also received national recognition when he was named the Blues Foundation’s Best New Blue Artist at the 1996 Blues Music Awards. In 2000, Coco took his music up a notch and signed with Alligator Records, the country’s top blues label. In his seven years with Alligator, Coco released three more outstanding records, "Suspicion," "Can’t Look Back" and 2007’s "Dirty Deal."

The rest is History! 

“Smoldering blues and southern-fried rock ‘n’ roll
           with a master touch and killer soloing.” - GuitarOne
“An astounding guitar virtuoso and a forceful singer.” - Billboard
“Awe inspiring.” - Village Voice

When: Sep 8, 2016 7:30PM in Shirley, MA
Cost: $23.50 advance; $26.50 day of show



For all of you who've been asking when they're coming back - here they are! Last year's show was one heck of a party!

Epic in sound and kaleidoscopic in vision, the eclectic six piece Entrain has been thrilling critics and fans alike since its inception. Formed by drummer Tom Major in 1993, Entrain has recorded eight albums, available on Dolphin Safe Records, all of which have been praised for their ability to shift effortlessly between musical styles - from rock, blues, calypso and ska, to zydeco, jazz and funk - often within the same song. "The whole Entrain concept is based around the drums and infectious rhythms. Once we've got that.... anything goes, everything goes," explains Major. "The most important thing that we try to do with our music is bring everybody together in the spirit of peace, love, fun and a ton of drums!"
Their latest record "Reason To Feel Good" has enjoyed heavy rotation in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New England, Upstate New York, Aspen, Santa Fe, Houston, Cincinnati, and Nashville, and is climbing industry trade charts like CMJ, Album Network, FMQB, and The Gavin Report. The first single from the album, titled "Lucky Just to Be Alive," was number 2 in WMVY's top 25 songs for 2011. Combining top notch musicians with great songs, and infused with some passionate and conscious lyrics, this CD is undoubtedly the best work from the production team of Major/Alex.
The band with Tom Major on drums, Brian Alex as guitar wiz/lead singer, M'Talewa on bass, Rob Loyot on sax/keys/percussion, Hilary Noble on sax/percussion and Lennie Peterson on trombone/keys have jammed with James Taylor, Carly Simon, Chuck Berry, Southside Johnny, Blood Sweat & Tears, Grateful Dead alum Bob Weir and rock legend Bo Diddley.
Their goal according to Tom Major is "…to create music that makes people feel good. When we look out from the stage, all we see is smiling faces of all ages and bodies moving. You can't beat that feeling."

"Entrain zips along like a lively summit conference between the Dave Matthews Band and Little Feat.” - Steve Morse, The Boston Globe

“Entrain . . . merges funk, rock, reggae, swamp, and worldbeat rhythm into a sweaty good time . . .” - The Boston Herald


When: Sep 9, 2016 8pm in Shirley, MA
Cost: $20 advance; $25 day of show

We Were Astronauts


Rock Act of the Year at The 2015 New England Music Awards,
We Were Astronauts is a four piece rock band hailing from Boston and hitting the pavement with tasteful guitar licks, strong rhythms and memorable vocal melodies. Inspired by and named for every kid whose dream of becoming an astronaut was crushed the day NASA’s shuttle program was closed, the band presents a melodic rock sound that is as timeless as the American dream. 

Recently named by CBS Boston as one of the regions best live acts, catch them live in the intimate space of The Bull Run Ballroom for a special (and rare) unplugged all acoustic performance as they play songs from their award winning CD - "Artificial Light" produced by music veteran Warren Huart, whose roster includes Aerosmith, The Fray and Augustana, and engineered by Phil Allen, Grammy winner for Adele’s 21.

“In a musical era that hails experimental sounds and the avant-garde pop-star, revisiting rock ‘n’ roll roots can be a breath of fresh air. Combining modern pop sensibilities with the more rugged aspects of rock, We Were Astronauts aims to occupy that role” - Milford Daily News

When: Sep 9, 2016 8pm in Shirley, MA

Buy Local
Devens SpringHill Suites Hotel 
27 Andrews Parkway
Devens Common Center

Devens, MA 01434

The SpringHill Suites hotel by Marriott offers 120 spacious Suites with separate areas to work & relax that includes a fireplace, mini-fridge, microwave & a pull out sofa bed. Enjoy a free hot breakfast buffet, high speed internet, indoor pool & fitness room.
About Shirley, MA
Shirley is a rural industrial town located on the lowlands of the Catacoonamaug River. A handful of colonists arrived in 1720 and settled on scattered farms throughout the town.

Early in its history Shirley was supported by its many farms and orchards. There was an increase in industrial activity around 1790 and the first paper mill was opened followed shortly after by a small iron works and nail factory.

The location of the water to power industries served to create an industrial village along the narrow valley where Shirley is located. Many of the period brick towered mills still survive and create an authentic period landscape.