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Bill Staines

Bill Staines first of five artists to perform in Grassroots Concerts 2014 spring line-up

Web posted February 18, 2014
NISSWA – Five Friday night concerts are scheduled for the Spring 2014 Grassroots Concerts season, starting with Bill Staines at 7:30 p.m., Feb. 21 at the Live Well Nightclub and Coffee Bar in Nisswa.

Staines is the quintessential folk troubadour whose music is a slice of Americana filled with cowboys, Yukon adventures, fishermen, and everyday working people. He has gained an international reputation as a gifted songwriter and performer.

Staines became involved with the Boston-Cambridge folk scene in the early 1960s and for a time, emceed the Sunday Hootenanny at the legendary Club 47 in Cambridge, Mass. He quickly became a popular performer in the Boston area. From the time in 1971 when a reviewer from the Boston Phoenix stated that he was "simply Boston’s best performer.”

Staines has continually appeared on folk music radio listener polls as one of the top all-time favorite folk artists.

“Folk music is rich in the human spirit and experience,” Staines said. “I’ve always wanted to bring something of value to people through my songs.”

A New Hampshire resident, Staines has traveled back and forth across North America, singing his songs and delighting audiences at festivals, folksong societies, colleges, concerts, clubs, and coffeehouses.

“I would like to think that bringing something of universal value to people has been one of the foundation blocks of my own writing,” Staines said. “That’s what folk music is all about -- songs that are bigger than any one person who sings them."

“And now it is over 45 years later. I have sung in all 50 states,” said Staines, "although I admit that one was a karaoke performance at a bar in Honolulu. Music is really all I have ever known. It has brought me everything I have.”

"I have always felt that I was blessed to live a life in music and to know that, surely, it must have been a lucky star that led me here.”

He has performed on 27 albums. His latest, “Beneath Some Lucky Star,” was released in 2012.

Singing mostly his own songs, he weaves a blend of gentle wit and humor into his performances.

Many of Staines’ songs are published in grade school music books, church hymnals, and scouting campfire songbooks; he is one of only a few songwriters to have eight songs published in the classic song collection, “Rise up Singing.”

Over the decades, you have heard Staines on “A Prairie Home Companion” and “Mountain Stage.” His music has been used in a number of films including “Off and Running” with Cyndi Lauper.

For more information about Staines, visit www.acousticmusic.com/staines

Rounding out the 2014 Spring series are: March 7, Lucy Kaplansky; March 21, The Pines; April 11, Jonathan Rundman; May 2, Barbara Jean.

At all shows, seating is first-come, first-served. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 6:30), and you are encouraged to come early to claim your choice of seats. The concert series welcomes your nonperishable food or cash donation to a local food shelf.

The Live Well Nightclub and Coffee Bar, 5459 CR 18, is located in the Journey Church across from the A & W Restaurant and next to the school in Nisswa.

Grassroots performances are made possible in part by a grant from the Five Wings Arts Council with funding through the Minnesota State Legislature. The series is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization under the Internal Revenue Code.

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