Friday, June 29, 2007

The Derek Trucks Band Parks in Vacant Artpark Headliner Spot!

Six-String Sensation’s Acclaimed Quintet Highlights July 3 Event in Place of Hootie & the Blowfish!

Artpark officials have confirmed that The Derek Trucks Band are the latest addition to the venue’s incredible 2007 summer schedule, and will serve as the headliner act of the “First Niagara Tuesday in the Park” free outdoor concert series on July 3. Trucks, the youngest artist ever to grace Rolling Stone’s list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All-Time,” and his eclectic, five-piece band fill a six-day old vacancy in Artpark’s Tuesday night lineup created when Hootie & the Blowfish were forced to cancel 13 July events due to surgery on lead singer Darius Rucker’s left knee. All of Artpark’s free concert events include hands-on art workshops for children and begin at 6:30pm.

Trucks, nephew of Allman Brothers Band member Derek “Butch” Trucks and wife of fellow guitar virtuoso Susan Tedeschi, is widely accepted as one of the greatest slide guitar players of all-time. He began playing the instrument at age nine and, before his twenty-first birthday, was tabbed to join his uncle in the Allman Brothers Band as a replacement for the late Duane Allman in 1999. Following his acceptance to join Eric Clapton on the legendary musician’s 2006-2007 world tour, Trucks now finds himself touring over 300 nights a year with three highly-recognized groups.

The Derek Trucks Band has been a work in progress for over 10 years, blending jazz, rock, blues, Latin, Eastern Indian, and other world music into the sound that now defines them. Trucks, who received his first paying gig at age 11 and formed his first band at age 12, began playing with Atlanta bassist Todd Smallie in 1994 (at age 15), which is when the current incarnation of The Derek Trucks Band began to take shape. In 1995, Yonrico Scott – more than 20 years older than Trucks – rounded out the band's permanent rhythm section, while flutist Kofi Burbridge joined four years later. Vocalist Mike Mattison came onboard later in 1999 and provided the final piece of the puzzle for the band, whose acclaimed live performances often incorporate flutes, congas and guitar-fueled “jams” to complement Mattison’s vocal prowess.

Other recent career highlights of the 29-year-old Trucks include the January release of his band’s first live concert DVD (Songlines), a February cover story in Rolling Stone (“The New Guitar Gods”), and an upcoming collaborative performance with Tedeschi at Clapton’s “Crossroads Guitar Festival.”

The Derek Trucks Band consists of Trucks (guitar), Smallie (bass/vocals), Scott (drums/percussion/vocals), Burbridge (keyboards/flute/vocals) and Mattison (lead vocals).
Artpark’s July 3 concert event with The Derek Trucks Band is sponsored by The Reid Group.
The “First Niagara Tuesday in the Park” concert series is also sponsored by Certo Brothers Distributing Company, Sevenson Environmental Services, Modern Corporations, Hard Rock Café – Niagara Falls (USA), S&S Lawn Services, Tim Horton’s, Pine Pharmacy, DiMino’s Lewiston Tops and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Children’s art activities are sponsored by the New York Power Authority.

Hootie & the Blowfish made an official announcement on Monday that they would be postponing 13 upcoming concert dates – including its July 3 date at Artpark – as a result of complications that arose from a post-surgery staph infection in Rucker’s left knee. The band plans to reschedule many of the events, which means that the possibility remains open of a late-summer appearance at Artpark.

Artpark’s Outdoor Amphitheater can be accessed via the Upper Park’s Portage Road entrance off of Center Street or through South Fourth Street nearest the Mainstage Theater.

Carry-ins (food and beverages) are prohibited at all of Artpark’s free concert events while on-site parking is $6.

For more information, access the Artpark website at or call the Artpark Box Office at (716) 754-4375.

The Earl W. Brydges Artpark is being operated by Artpark & Company, Inc. for the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation under a license agreement.

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