The Maranacook String Band
The Maranacook String Band
Posted April 25, 2013, at 9:21 a.m.

Friday, May 3, 2013 7 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Location: Keith Anderson Community Center, 19 Bennoch Rd, Orono, ME

For more information: Stan Keach; 207-397-2241

On Friday, May 3, the Keith Anderson Community Center on Bennoch Rd in Orono will ring out with the youthful, bluegrass sound of the Maranacook String Band. The MSB is a band of mostly teenagers, but, as Skye Theatre/New England Celtic Arts Director Phil McIntyre says, “Their soaring harmonies belie their youth!”

The MSB started out in the halls of Maranacook Community High School in Readfield, when Stan Keach (then a teacher of Gifted/Talented) invited talented, student vocalists Julie Churchill and Lee Stetson to join him after school to sing some three-part harmony. Three years later, the MSB is a band of seasoned (though young) professionals, who play a very busy schedule. Most of the band live in the Augusta/Waterville area, but Julie Churchill and Megan Dood, the band’s Banjo player, are both sophomores at UMO, who drive home on weekends for gigs. Not counting a couple of campus appearances, this will be the band’s first Orono gig.

“I hope some UMO students and faculty will come out to see this show,” says band director Stan Keach, “I don’t think many campus people realize what a treasure they have in Julie. To my mind, she’s one of the best 2 or 3 female vocalists in Maine.”

The MSB also includes guitarist and impressive lead singer Lee Stetson, 17 ; bassist Zach Greenham, 18; Fiddlin’ Jay Smith (“the best bluegrass fiddler in Maine,” according to Keach); and super mandolinist Dan Simons.

Simons and Keach, who have a duet act called Stan & Dan, have recently become notorious for their YouTube video, “What the North Pond Hermit Knows,” a song that Keach wrote as soon as the North Pond Hermit story broke. Keach, a nationally-known bluegrass songwriter, recently released a CD, Cry of the Loon and Other Original Songs About Maine, featuring all the Maranacook String Band, as well as members of the Sandy River Ramblers. That CD, as well as the Maranacook String Band’s debut CD, Bear in the Barn, will be available for sale at the concert.

Opening for the MSB will be Freshly Cut Grass, a prominent, local bluegrass band that features Laurie LaViolette, Warren Kelly, Angie Glidden, Theresa Pottle, and Jim Leighton. Eric Collins (UMO class of 2012), will also sing a couple of songs.

The concert will start at 7:00 PM. Admission at-the-door is Adults $10; Seniors $8; Students & Military $5; Children 10-and-under FREE. There will be a 50/50 raffle, with partial proceeds benefiting the Keith Anderson Community Center. Delicious refreshments will be sold. For more info call Stan 207-397-2241 or Jim 207-944-3128, or email