Blue Sky Band to kick off Summer Concert Series
Band vocalist and guitarist Ron Brault of Wilton said “acoustics, harmonies, and good feelings” are to be expected from The Blue Sky Band at the opening concert of the 15th annual Wilton Library Summer Concert Series.
The concert is scheduled for Thursday, July 9, at 5 p.m. in the library’s Brubeck Room, rain or shine.
Brault, who also founded the band a year ago by way of a Craigslist ad, told The Bulletin this week concert-goers can also expect original songs mixed into the standard set of cover songs.
“We’ll probably play a Beatles song, perhaps some Crosby, Stills & Nash, but who knows? We’re a little on the eclectic side; we try not to be too predictable, but I will say that we’ll definitely be playing some originals, too.”
The Blue Sky Band plays fan favorites and deeper cuts from the 60s and 70s, with genres that include folk, swing, and pop.
It covers “choice” material by Carole King, The Mamas & the Papas, Johnny Mercer, Michael Jackson, Laura Nyro and other acts.
The band is heavy on the side of vocals. “We love to sing and harmonize; it’s central to our sound,” said Brault.
According to a press release, “The Blue Sky Band formed to sing songs in rich, close harmonies and to choose material from any era that would suit a band that is focused on voice.”
When asked how the band found its sound, Brault spoke for the rest, lightheartedly saying, “We wanted to keep the noise level down.”
But he was only half-joking.
The clear softness of acoustic music is something the band actively strives to achieve.
“Consistent across our musical spectrum is rich harmony and rhythms from acoustic guitars and bass that resonate with the clarity, good feeling, and tone of a blue-sky day,” read the release.
Brault grew up in a musical household in Fairhaven, Mass. He played full time across New England with the rock band Tamarac after he graduated from college.
When he moved to Wilton in 1991, Brault formed The Wingnuts, a cover band that was well-known across Fairfield County for two decades.
Brault recorded two original CDs as a solo artist and three with The Wingnuts, and he wants to record one with The Blue Sky Band as soon as possible.
“I play electric and acoustic; fingerstyle; picking; swing and jazz-comping,” said Brault.“The Wingnuts used to play the July 4 fireworks,” he said. “We also played the library concert series. It’s neat to be going back with a different band.”
The aforementioned Craigslist ad that Brault jokingly termed a “time-honored tradition” for bandmaking, was first answered by another Wiltonian: Dan Lanzi, 20 years a resident.
Lanzi plays bass for the band. He started to play guitar during his middle school days in upstate New York, and took up the bass in college, where he played in a “space-punk” band called The Shards in the early 80s. He now performs throughout the New York metropolitan area as well as on tour through the Midwest and Canada, on bass as well as guitar with the group SymphoNYChorus. He also plays bass or guitar most Sunday mornings at Jesse Lee Memorial Church in Ridgefield.
Other members of the Blue Sky Band are Janine Jandrositz, vocals, of Stamford, and Mark V. Bisson, of Easton.
The concert is sponsored by the Village Market, with wine provided by Michael Crystal. Admission and refreshments are free. It will run until approximately 6:30.
Future concerts in this year’s series are The 5 O’clocks on July 16, The Bernadettes on July 23 and Echoes of Sinatra with Steve Kazlauskas on July 30.