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Lee, MA - Local Guide to the Town

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Berkshire Gateway Jazz: Samirah Evans and Wanda Houston sing "The Classic Duets" and more
Two of the region’s most exciting, accomplished vocal artists, Wanda Houston and Samirah Evans kick-off the Berkshire Gateway Jazz Weekend, teaming-up for an evening of classic jazz and blues duets. Their repertoire and styles run the gamut, from blues-flavored to straight-ahead jazz and popular tunes. During her 25-year career as a performer and recording artist, Samirah Evans has become known for her dynamic, soulful approach to jazz and blues, among other genres. Her musical style is also heavily influenced by the New Orleans sound: she was one of the city’s most popular and in-demand singers before moving to New England after Hurricane Katrina. Evans dedicates time to perpetuating indigenous American music. She was a long-time participant in the Blues Schoolhouse program sponsored by the International House of Blues Foundation, and served as a volunteer show host on the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage radio station, WWOZ, for over 10 years. In her adopted home town of Brattleboro, Vermont, she founded a musical mentoring concert program, bringing artists and their proteges into a jam session setting with area musicians. Wanda Houston is a professional singer, actress and song stylist who has traveled the stages of the world searching for the perfect song and performance. Her travels brought her to The Berkshires in 2001 where she has continued to "search" in musical theatre, jazz, gospel, R&B, blues, folk and rock-'n-roll. One of today’s outstanding interpreters of vocal jazz and blues, Wanda grew up singing gospel music in church and with her family’s theater group. She has led an active career as an actress performing on the grand stages of Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Broadway. She is a great singer as well as a superb storyteller; coloring the spaces between her songs with fascinating stories of her youth and the trials and tribulations of life on the road. They will be accompanied by three of the Berkshires most noted instrumental artists: Benny Kohn, piano; Andy Wrba, bass; and Conor Meehan, drums The performance takes place in a venue of audio and visual excellence: Lee Congregational Church, on the Common in downtown Lee, MA, the gateway to the Berkshires. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 on the day of the event. General admission - $25.00

When: Jun 14, 2019 7:30PM in Lee, MA
Cost: $25.00

Berkshire Gateway Jazz: Diego Figueiredo and Ken Peplowski

Headline concerts for the Berkshire Gateway Jazz Weekend conclude with the amazing duo of guitarist Diego Figueiredo and saxophonist Ken Peplowski, with special guest vocalist Chiara Izzi. Diego Figueiredo is an extraordinary, fast-rising star among the world's greatest jazz guitarists. He provides a new, fresh approach to uniting technique and emotion in a fusion of Brazilian music and jazz. His superb technique, timing and imagination have made him one of the hottest international names on the scene today. His concerts have been a great success in more than 50 countries around the world. Diego has released 23 CDS, 3 DVDs and a book, and he has received awards at the Montreux Jazz Festival as one of the greatest guitarists in the world. A brilliant musician who keeps the tradition of the true essence of Brazilian music, at the same time he can be modern and innovative, Diego frequently tours with tenor saxophonist and clarinetist extraordinaire Ken Peplowski to deliver a lively, updated look at the Bossa Nova sound. Ken Peplowski has recorded approximately 50 CDs as a soloist on both tenor saxophone and clarinet, and close to 400 as a sideman. He toured with Buddy Morrow’s edition of the Tommy Dorsey band, where one of his section-mates was Sonny Stitt, with whom he later studied. “I love all kinds of music, and I’d like to find more opportunities to bridge the gaps between different musical styles,” he says. “I consider myself an interpreter of material – if something interests me, I try to put my own spin on it, without thinking or worrying about playing in any particular style.” Now based in New York, he fulfills that vision by playing everything from traditional to avante-garde jazz, and everything in between. Special guest at this concert will be award winning Italian singer/songwriter Chiara Izzi, who was described by Jazz Times as “a talent to be heard, admired and anticipated.” Chiara’s sound is based on her own unique interpretation of a fusion of different genres, including jazz, pop and Mediterranean sounds. A bold and fluent interpreter of Brazilian music, Chiara’s international debut took place at the Montreux Jazz Festival Vocal Competition in 2011, where she was awarded first prize. The performance takes place in a venue of audio and visual excellence: Lee Congregational Church, on the Common in downtown Lee, MA, the gateway to the Berkshires. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 on day of event. General Admission - $25.00

When: Jun 15, 2019 7:30PM in Lee, MA
Cost: $25.00

Lara Tupper- Bobby Sweet

Musical brunch, 11am- 2pm: Bobby Sweet (guitar and vocals) and Lara Tupper (vocals) present Bobby's originals and Lara's folk/pop favorites. Plus, crepes galore.

When: Aug 4, 2019 11am in Lee, MA

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About Lee, MA
The Town of Lee Massachusetts was founded in 1777 and is located in Berkshire County.

Lee contains a year round population of about 6000 people. The town was named after General Charles Lee who was second in command to George Washington.

Lee still retains the first house ever built in town which dates back to 1760. Residents feel that the history is still alive and well in Lee.