BatesDowntown offers jazz and country performances this spring

Steve Grover

Steve Grover

The Bates College music series BatesDowntown continues this spring with jazz and country concerts by Maine musicians.

Lewiston native and noted jazz musician Steve Grover is joined by bassist Greg Loughman for a performance at 5 p.m. Friday, April 6.

Day for Night, a classic-country duo from Portland, performs at 5 p.m. Friday, May 4.

BatesDowntown concerts take place at 22 Park St. (the former Maple Room) and are open to the public at no cost. For more information, please contact 207-786-6135 or olinarts@bates.edu.

Grover is a pianist, drummer, educator and composer. He studied at Berklee and the University of Maine at Augusta, where he now teaches; he is also a member of the applied music faculty at Bates.

In 1985 he composed “Blackbird Suite,” a jazz interpretation of Wallace Stevens’ poem “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird.” This composition earned him first place in the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz/BMI Jazz Composers Competition in 1994.

Grover has performed with the Friends of Jazz, the late and legendary guitarist Lenny Breau, pianist Chris Neville and the renowned Dizzy Gillespie, among many others. In 2009, his band was named “Best Jazz Act” and “One of the Ten Most Influential Bands of The Last Ten Years” by the Portland Phoenix.

His catalog of recordings as bandleader includes Blackbird Suite, the Beatles tribute Flying and last year’s Statement, an all-original collection recorded with his quintet.

Known as one of the Midwest’s most accomplished bassists, Loughman is now a New England resident and faculty member at the University of Maine at Augusta and Bowdoin College. He has toured widely and worked with, among others, Grammy-nominated pianist Phillip Aaberg, guitarist Mimi Fox, Brazilian multi-instrumentalist Carlos Malta, jazz violinist Christian Howes, singer Patti Page and the Jimmy Dorsey Big Band.

Day for Night consists of Doug Hubley and Gretchen Schaefer, who perform classic county harmonies accompanied by guitar and mandolin. Their music is inspired by the big names in “brother acts” — Stanley, Louvin, Everly — as well as Merle Haggard, Webb Pierce, Gene Clark and the duet work of Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris.

Day for Night has performed at venues including the Portland wine bar Blue, the Cornish Apple Festival, the Frog & Turtle Gastropub and a variety of events at Bates, where Hubley works in the Communications Office. The pair worked previously with Howling Turbines, the Boarders and the Cowlix.

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