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Billy Bragg Live In Concert
Saturday, September 20, 2014 from 8:30 PM - 10:30 PM
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Still in his 50s, Billy Bragg has already left an indelible mark on the history of Western pop music whether or not everyone who speaks of such things has yet to notice. The simplest description for those who know nothing about him – and I say this in the presence of those who do know something at great peril – is that Mr. Bragg unites several threads of post-war music on two sides of the Atlantic: the folk activism of Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan, the anger-fueled damn-it-all attitude of the Clash and the Jam, and the vaudevillian stylings of people you may not know like the King of Skiffle, Lonnie Donegan.

Mr. Bragg takes the description of autodidact to an extreme and has taught himself a fair amount about the history and political dynamics of the world. In a difficult Q&A he is sometimes astonishing in his command of the issues both at home in England and on the international stage. But the takeaway isn’t just that he’s a smarty-pants, it’s that he has a very big heart.

All of this would be meaningless to a concert goer were it not for the fact that Bragg is a darned fine singer-songwriter who has managed to maintain both the quality of his craft and the intensity of his perspective for more than thirty years of playing professionally. As anyone might guess, the demimonde of the music business is not the best place to stay fresh as a daisy. It’s full of ups and downs, duplicity, artifice, greed, fatigue, and disappointment. Mr. Bragg once noted that being in the music biz is like “standing up to your chin in shit and trying not to eat it.” As a matter of fact, that describes life in general, it seems to me. And so it’s evidence of the depth of his commitment to his principles that Bragg is still passionate and this, at the end of the day, is what shines through his stage performance; he’s not jut passionate about perspective, he’s still passionate about the music.

Bragg’s hilarious, engaging, quick-witted, and presents a far more personal view of the world than his ideological underpinnings might suggest. He’s learned from both Karl AND Groucho Marx and he’s something of the rhetorical heir to Emma Goldman who wanted to dance at the revolution and aim her anger at the right targets without losing the fun or the compassion of living. She was fond of saying that we all need to either dream or die. Bragg’s a dreamer and in a singular way connects us to a long line of dreamers passed and in so doing keeps us alive. He’s also a pragmatist who has learned to work a crowd. We’re unusually lucky to have this performance at the Bellows Falls Opera House where Billy Bragg played more than a decade ago to benefit the founding of area community radio station WOOL. If you want your give-a-damn renewed, buy a ticket and watch what happens. There’s a cash bar at the Opera House and a portion of the ticket proceeds once again benefits community station WOOL.

He’s supported by Canadian singer-songwriter Billy The Kid, the stage name of upstart Billy Pettinger. Widely acclaimed thoughout Canada and increasingly elsewhere, the two are a clever match both in attitude and in prenom.

Saturday, September 20, at the Bellows Falls Opera House.
Dinner reservations at Popolo Restaurant, directly across the street can be made by calling 802.460.7676.

Tickets to see Billy Bragg on September 20 are $28, $37.50, and $55.00. Doors are at 8:00pm, the show begins at 8:45pm.

Billy Bragg In Bellows Falls

Billy Bragg Live In Bellows Falls

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