Benefit Concert Gets Jazzy

With only 132 seats, the Arts Council’s Centre for the Arts is a dream for musicians and audiences alike. The acoustics are great and the stage has held such musical luminaries as Denise Carlson, Bruce Anthony, Catfish Hodge, Stef Scaggiari and Sue Matthews. On Saturday, March 28, 2009 the Centre will host a concert featuring jazz guitarists Vince Lewis and Steve Abshire. Joining them on stage are Paul Langosch on bass and Mike Shepherd on drums.

Abshire is a jazz guitarist, teacher, and clinician whose mainstream style comes from years of study with Herb Ellis, Barney Kessel, Joe Pass and rhythm guitarist Steve Jordan. He has appeared in concert with notable jazz greats, Herb Ellis, Mundell Lowe, Charlie Byrd, Milt Hinton, Tal Farlow, Dick Morgan, Keter Betts, Howard Alden, Frank Vignola, Gene Bertoncini, and Marian McPartland, to name a few. He has also accompanied many legendary vocalists such as Della Reese, Rosemary Clooney, Joe Williams, Ernie Andrews, and Etta Jones. He performs regularly at well-known local venues such as The Kennedy Center, Smithsonian Jazz Café, Blues Alley, and Peabody Conservatory. In 1997, he retired from the U.S. Navy Band’s Commodores, where he performed as guitarist/featured soloist for 18 of the 24 years he spent in Navy Bands.

Lewis is a veteran performer, composer and recording artist who has appeared with Cab Calloway, Don Rickles, Don Goldie, Herb Ellis, Bob Hope, Les Elgart, Johnny Mince, Henry Cuesta and Bobbie Rosengarden. He has been a Heritage Guitar, Inc. Performing Artist since 1991, and is currently a featured artist on their website. Guitar Player magazine describes his playing as “silky-smooth hollow body jazz with fluid bebop lines, flawless technique, and a Wes Montgomery approved tone that’s lively and bright.” Jazz Improv magazine calls his latest release “A great jazz guitar record,” and has included him in their 2002 selected list of “leading and emerging active Jazz artists.” In May of 2002 he was the opening act in concert for blues legend B.B. King. He is a contributing writer and consultant to Just Jazz Guitar magazine.

Langosch has been called the quintessential bass player. In fact, Langosch, 41, has been backing up Tony Bennett for the past decade and a half and tours with the Ralph Sharon Quartet, Bennett’s on-the-road band. He has accompanied vocal giants such as Mel Torme, Rosemary Clooney, and Tal Farlow. Of Langosch Bennett has said, “[he is] an exquisite musician.”

Drummer Shepherd has performed with such nationally known pop and jazz artists as Rosemary Clooney, Roger Williams, and Marvin Hamlisch. He has performed with both the Baltimore and the National Symphony Orchestras and toured with the Maynard Ferguson Big Band performing at Carnegie Hall. He has numerous recording credits and is a former member of the U.S. Naval Academy Band, Drum Set Percussionist for the U. S. Navy Band Commodores, and Percussion Instructor for the Armed Forces School Of Music. He currently works as a free-lance musician, and is on the faculty of Shepherd College, in Shepherdstown, WV.

The performance will be held at the Centre for the Arts at 206 S. Commerce Street in Centreville, Maryland. Tickets can be purchased before March 28 for $25 and for $30 at the door. There will be an After Party (meet the band and enjoy foods from the home of jazz) and a cash bar. Please call 410.758.2520 for tickets and information. This concert is presented by the Arts Council and sponsored by Neal Tilghman. The Arts Council is a non-profit organization supported in part by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council.

The Queen Anne’s County Arts Council is a non-profit organization committed to promoting, expanding and sustaining the arts. Visit us on the web: