Adult Events & Programs


The Friends of the Charlestown Branch
of the Boston Public Library

presents

Billy Novick & Guy Van Duser



In a musical tribute
to
"Friend of the Year"
Edward F. Kelly

Free and open to all
With a reception following

Thursday, May 25, 7:00 pm
Charlestown Branch Library


 

(Charlestown, MA 02129) Billy Novick & Guy Van Duser : musical tribute to "Friend of the Year" Edward F. Kelly. Presented by the Friends of the Charlestown Branch of the Boston Public Library. Thursday, May 25, 7:00 pm award presentation, followed by the concert. Free and open to all, with a reception following. Wheelchair accessible; conveniently located to the Orange Line and bus connections. Charlestown Branch Library, 179 Main Street, Charlestown. For more information: www.friendsofcharlestownlib.orgfriendsofcharlestownlib@gmail.com, 617-242-1248.

Billy Novick & Guy Van Duser have been together as a duo for forty years, as some would say, longer than most marriages! They found each other during rehearsals for a dance performance and Novick agreed to play on Van Duser's debut solo album "Fingerstyle Guitar." Although executives at the Rounder Record label were dubious of the combination of woodwinds and acoustic guitar, the results were so impressive that Novick and Van Duser agreed to continue pooling their resources. Since then, they have performed in concerts, clubs and festivals all over North America and Europe, have been frequent guests on many popular radio programs, such as "Prairie Home Companion" and "All Things Considered," and have been featured on numerous film and TV soundtracks.

Fingerstyle guitar virtuoso Guy Van Duser has been heard on National Public Radio for many years as a player of background and theme music. Since the late '70s, his many collaborations with clarinetist, saxophonist, vocalist, and pennywhistler Billy Novick have endeared him to listeners with old-fashioned tastes, for Van Duser's primary working repertoire has always consisted of early jazz, swing standards, and Tin Pan Alley pop tunes. The combination of his lifelong respect for Chet Atkins, his early experience as a bluegrass bassist, and his longstanding involvement as a sideman with country musician Bill Staines, all stand as proof of Van Duser's genre-defying versatility. Van Duser considers himself as primarily a jazz guitarist who prefers and specializes in warm, reassuring pop and jazz melodies from the '30s. 

Billy Novick has had a whirlwind career in music as a performing artist, studio musician, arranger and composer. As a performer, he has impressed audiences throughout North America, Europe and Asia with his soulful, lyrical jazz clarinet and sax. His musical collaboration with guitar wizard Guy Van Duser has resulted in numerous recordings, with frequent appearances on the Prairie Home Companion radio show and a feature-length interview on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” In1986, Novick joined the internationally-acclaimed New Black Eagle Jazz Band, and continues to perform with them. Well-known for his versatility, Novick has performed or recorded with a wide range of artists, including David Bromberg, Leon Redbone, Jay Geils, Dave McKenna, Maxine Sullivan, Milt Hinton, Scott Hamilton, Duke Robillard, Odetta, Herb Pomeroy, Maria Muldaur, Robbie O’Connell, Martha and the Vandellas, and many others.

Like all good marriages, Novick & Van Duser's music have proven to be two musical personalities perfectly suited for each other. Their music is based around Van Duser's innovative finger-style guitar wizardry, and his uncanny ability to play bass lines, chords and melodies all at the same time. With his daring imagination, breathtaking technique, and wonderful musicality, Van Duser has become an inspiration for guitarists all over the world. Novick's ever-inventive and soulful clarinet provides the ideal complement to Van Duser's guitar. With Novick's vast knowledge of the classic jazz era, his dazzling improvising skills, and his entertaining vocals, he is able to add a melodic and dynamic spark to Van Duser’s guitar. Their music sounds fresh and original, yet is also deeply rooted in the rich legacy of the classic jazz age. The duo can play any piece from their huge repertoire, whether that be an obscure Ellington tune, a Gershwin classic, a complex Jelly Roll Morton arrangement, or perhaps one of their originals, and always have it sound immediately enjoyable. As Garrison Keillor of A Prairie Home Companion has proclaimed, they are indeed “… two elegant gents of the swing music world …”  Further info on this dynamic duo can be found at www.billynovick.com/guy-billy.html.

The Friends of the Charlestown Branch of the Boston Public Library is thrilled to present the performance of Billy Novick & Guy Van Duser as a special musical tribute to Charlestown native and long time resident Edward F. Kelly. Mr. Kelly has been chosen to be this year's "Friend of the Year," in recognition of his lifetime Library membership as well as his commitment as a benefactor and supporter of the Library. 

Further background on the Friends:

The Friends of the Charlestown Branch of the Boston Public Library was formed in 1953, becoming the second Friends group to organize within the Boston Public Library system. The Friends schedule four to six evening programs a year, support the Reading is FUNdamental programs for children, and maintain the library’s landscaping. The mission of the Friends remains today what it was in 1953: to serve as an advocacy and support group for the needs of the Charlestown Branch Library, its staff and users. Visit www.friendsofcharlestownlib.orgwww.facebook.com/FriendsCharlestownBranchLibrary, and www.bpl.org/branches/charlestown.htm