Vance Gilbert burst onto the singer/songwriter scene in the early 90s when buzz started spreading in the folk clubs of Boston about an ex-multicultural arts teacher who was knocking ‘em dead at open mics. Born and raised in Willingboro, N.J., he moved to Connecticut to attend Connecticut College, relocating to Boston after graduating in 1979. Vance started out hoping to be a jazz singer, and then discovered his affinity for the storytelling sensibilities of acoustic folk music. Before he began performing his own songs in concert, he worked in cocktail lounges, performing a wide repertoire of songs that ranged from Gershwin to Top 40, Stevie Wonder and Earth, Wind and Fire. After the lounge work dried up, he began teaching in Boston-area public schools.
As a singer/songwriter, his training as a lounge singer paid off, as he’s blessed with an uncanny ability to read the moods of his audiences, and he’s learned to trust his intuition in his song selection on stage. He has released three excellent albums for the Philo subsidiary of Rounder Records.
Along with being opener of choice for artists as varied as Aretha Franklin, Arlo Guthrie, and Anita Baker, 2006 and 2007 found him opening 140+ shows for comedian George Carlin. Most recently he’s the opener of choice for Paul Reiser and The Subdudes.
On Friday, Nov. 15, the Salmon Brook Music Series at South Church, will host this remarkable entertainer. Show starts at 7:30, doors open 7. Tickets may be purchased for $25 online at salmonbrookmusicseries.com or by calling 860-916-5066, or at the door for $28. The venue is cozy and a sellout is likely, so get your tickets early. South Church is located at 242 Salmon Brook St. (rt. 10) in Granby and is handicapped accessible. Homemade refreshments will be available at intermission. Proceeds go to support the mission of South Church.