Concerts & Performances

Performances at Celebrate Gaithersburg

The festival begins at noon with a ceremony honoring individuals and organizations that make Gaithersburg a very special place. Popular bluegrass band Seldom Scene will take center stage at the Backyard Bluegrass Stage with Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen and Grand Ole’ Ditch. Fans of Latin music will enjoy a sizzling day of performances from Afro Bop Alliance and Ola Fresca.

Backyard Bluegrass Stage
Griffith Park next to City Hall
12 – 1:30 p.m. Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen
2 – 3:30 p.m. The Seldom Scene
4 – 5 p.m. Grand Ole’ Ditch

City Hall Concert Pavilion Stage
31 South Summit Avenue
12 p.m. Welcome Ceremony & Citizenship Awards
12:40 – 1 p.m. The Metropolitan Ballet
1:30 – 3 p.m. Afro Bop Alliance
3:30 – 5 p.m. Ola Fresca

Community Vocal Stage
On the corner of E. Diamond Avenue & Summit Avenue
12 - 12:45 p.m. Jerry’s Three Plus One
12:45 - 1:30 p.m. The Bobby Lewis Blues Band
1:30 - 2 p.m. Pritchard Music Academy
2 - 2:30 p.m. Harmony Express
2:30 - 3 p.m. Pitches Be Crazy
3:10 - 3:25 p.m. James Haner Banjo Man
3:30 - 4 p.m. John Baer
4 - 5 p.m. Kentlands Acoustic Jam

The Festival starts at noon with a ceremony honoring individuals and organizations that make Gaithersburg a very special place. Join the Mayor and City Council for a presentation of colors, the singing of our National Anthem, and awards to our 2014 Distinguished Citizen, Outstanding Organization and Distinguished Friends of Gaithersburg. The ceremony will be followed by a performance from the Metropolitan Ballet Theatre and Academy.

Seldom Scene
The Seldom Scene Facebook

On the Backyard Bluegrass Stage, located in Griffith Park next to City Hall, The Seldom Scene brings Grammy-nominated talent to Gaithersburg, performing classic fan favorites and newer tunes. In the 40 years since they began playing together at weekly jam sessions in Ben Eldridge’s Bethesda basement, The Seldom Scene have become one of the single greatest contributors to the progression of bluegrass while setting a new standard and attracting fresh audiences to the genre. Legendary weekly DC-area residencies included bluegrass versions of country music, rock and even classical pop. Their popularity soon forced them to play more than once a week—but they continued to be seldom seen, photographed with the stage lights only on their feet or with their backs to the camera on several early album covers. Founding members are Ben Eldridge (banjo), Lou Reid (mandolin/vocals), Dudley Connell (guitar/vocals), Ronnie Simpkins (bass/vocals), and Fred Travers (dobro/vocals). The band will be performing from 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Frank Solivan and the Dirty Kitchen
Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen Facebook

Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen stir up a tasty bluegrass/newgrass stew simmered from a blend of instrumental, vocal and songwriting skills so hot it earned them five 2013 International Bluegrass Music Association Award nominations, with wins for members Mike Munford (Banjo Player of the Year) and guitarist Chris Luquette (Momentum Award – Instrumentalist of the Year). Their new album, On the Edge, is already making listeners hungry for more. They’re on the Backyard Bluegrass Stage from Noon to 1:30 p.m.

Grand Ole Ditch
Grand Ole’ Ditch Facebook

Grand Ole’ Ditch, performing from 4 to 5 p.m., is a contemporary, homebrewed bluegrass band born in the mountain town of Cumberland, Maryland. With a style steeped in Appalachian musical tradition, the band reimagines contemporary music with bluegrass stylizations. Grand Ole’ Ditch is all about having some new fun with that old Appalachian sound. The band features a serious lineup of musicians, including Dave Williams on the mandolin, Jacob Mathews on the upright bass, Jody Mosser on the dobro, Ryan Hohing and Lucas Mathews on guitars, and Craig Miller on his banjo.

Afro Bop Alliance
Afro Bop Alliance Facebook

Latin Grammy Winning Afro Bop Alliance is an exciting jazz septet from Annapolis, Maryland that will be performing on the Concert Pavilion Stage from 1:30 to 3 p.m. These talented musicians thrill audiences with their infectious polyrhythmic grooves, harmonic colorings and improvisational flights.

The band’s influences come from the musical styles of the many different cultures that come together under the umbrella of "Latin" or "Latin Jazz." Afro Bop’s focus is to blend all of these wonderful Latin styles and musical traditions with each member’s jazz experiences to forge their own sound. Currently the group consists of bandleader and percussionist Joe McCarthy, pianist Harry Appelman, saxophonist Luis Hernandez, Tim Stanley on trumpet & flugelhorn, bassist Tom Baldwin, Victor Provost on the steel pan, and saxophonist Vince Norman.

At the 9th Annual Latin Grammy Awards, Afro Bop Alliance was awarded a Grammy for Best Latin Jazz Recording for the 2008 album, Caribbean Jazz Project - Afro Bop Alliance featuring Dave Samuels. This same album was also nominated for Best Latin Jazz Album at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards.

Ola Fresca
Ola Fresca Facebook

Led by internationally acclaimed, award winning, Cuban roots singer, bandleader and producer Jose Conde, Ola Fresca performs Salsa/Cuban roots dance music with 100% rhythm and authenticity. Called "One of NY’s most important Latin voices" by TIMEOUT NY, Conde brings unparalleled talent, professionalism and "SABOR" to Latin music. He is a dynamic and exciting performer, writer, arranger, and producer, well-versed in classic Salsa, Cuban son, timba, Latin, jazz, and the American songbook. The band will perform on the Concert Pavilion Stage from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Community Vocal Stage

The Community Vocal Stage features some of the hottest voices in Gaithersburg. Lend your ears to local musicians who perform a wide variety of pop, rock, barbershop favorites and classic tunes.

Jerry’s Three Plus One Rockers
Cover song band. These are jamming adult students that have achieved their goals! To share the passion for the art and play in a band. Come rock with us!

The Bobby Lewis Blues Band
A local band, The Bobby Lewis Blues Band, prides itself on its motto of “we’re having a party and you are all invited!” Consisting of a quintet of highly experienced musicians who have played regionally, nationally and internationally. The Bobby Lewis Band delivers blues with the excellent musicianship, a taste of groovy soul and a whole lot of fun!

Pritchard Music Academy
The Pritchard Music Academy is located in the Kentlands downtown offering music instruction to children and adults. They provide lessons for keyboard, piano, guitar, brass, woodwind, string, percussion, drums, violin, viola, cello, bass, French horn, trumpet, trombone, baritone, tuba, saxophone, clarinet, and flute. Today’s performance features several of their brass instrument students.

Harmony Express
Harmony Express is a four-part a cappella Men’s Chorus specializing in the old-but-new-again barbershop style. Listen for everything from old favorites to Beatles, Beach Boys, and Broadway.

Pitches Be Crazy
Pitches Be Crazy is an all vocal band. We bang around with our instruments (aka, our voices) with no sheet music and just make music that is edgy and uninhibited. Couple this with moments of harmonic bliss, PBC A cappella is proud to be one of the Capital area's newest vocal bands hitting on a vast genre of music from rock to hip-hop to R&B and everything in between.

James Haner Banjo Man
From good tyme music to old tyme favorites, the Banjo Man brings the entertainment!

John Baer
A Fredericksburg, VA native, John plays solo arrangements of popular new hits and your favorite classic songs.

Kentlands Acoustic Jam
Listen to the sounds of Kentlands Acoustic Jam. This group of hobby musicians meets twice a month on the first and fourth Tuesdays in the Kentlands Clubhouse in Gaithersburg. Come jam with us.