Larry Kurtz and The Lawbreakers at Alton Mill Arts Centre next week

September 24, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

Larry Kurtz and his band, The Lawbreakers, are back to the Alton Mill Arts Centre for the county- and country-wide Arts and Culture Days, in support of Headwaters Arts, on Friday, September 28, at 8:00 pm.

Liker many other good bands, Mr. Kurtz’s group are old friends. He told us, “James Legere is a great guitar player. He’s s a good song writer too. He’s been with me since I’ve been doing my own band seven years ago.

“Sam Carothers plays bass. He’s a music educator in university. He loves playing jazz and he’s played at lots of the big clubs – Little Caesar’s and Consul and others. He played 20 years with Ronnie Hawkins.”

Chuck Keetings wraps it up as the drummer. Mr Keetings played lots of Blues bands; for 20 years, he played with the multi -Juno award winning band, Fathead

“Now he’s a member of Big Wreck, an international, travelling  a lot.  I’ve known Chuck for a long time and last year, he moved to Orangeville. So, I get him when he’s not on tour.”

Larry Kurtz is the band’s vocalist and plays the harmonica.

“This is our second year in a row at the Alton Mill, they invited us back. The show’s downstairs [in the Mill Race room] where there will be food and beverages. Lavender Blue is doing the food. The food’s included in the ticket price and there’s a cash bar.”

He told us, “Last year, there were chairs for a concert but we moved them so people could get up and dance. This year, there’ll be fewer chairs and people will dance.We’ll be playing pretty upbeat music to encourage people to dance. This is a lot of original music and some standards.”

This is the season for acknowledging the importance and real joy the arts bring as its contribution to society as a whole. Headwaters Arts is based at the Alton Mill. Its main event of the year, the Juried Art Show and Sale, runs in the Headwaters Gallery from September 20 to October 8 with the Opening Night Preview tonight (Thursday, September 20), at 7:00 p.m. Tickets support this event as a fundraiser and are $25, a chance to meet and chat with the artists and other arts enthusiasts.

Over the many years of following the  large number of fine artists of all media and types, it is fascinating to watch them as they grow and change. They are frequently nomadic with where their art will appear and what they are using to express themselves.

Larry Kurtz is a woodworker who has spent years finding his way to replicate 100 years (and more) old wood designs and trim to replace old with new in heritage houses and buildings. Still, he is a musician with a passion so great that he co-founded Orangeville’s Blues and Jazz Festival, now in its 16th year. He is also a painter, an artist.

Sharon Wadsworth-Smith is an artist who has been showing her work and developing her art for more than 20 years in this region. She has recently had her work in the gallery of Farmhouse Pottery on Hockley Road. This season, she is participating with her paintings in the Headwaters Art and Sale show at the Alton Mill. Her newer paintings have a fresh look about them and she is very excited about what she is doing with her paintings.  Her painting, “The Road Home” could draw a viewer in, not just for the physical statement and beauty but also for the feeling of finding the way home.

Younger painters are looking to the stars for inspiration; their work is taking flights of fantasy as they seek for other subjects to define their inner visions.

An artist never stops growing and learning and, ideally, this is true of us all but, for  artists, the evidence is there in their work. This life of being inspired, of wanting to tell a story in various ways and to share their personal vision with the world means that observers and readers can know they are not alone. They can take refuge in being able to relate to what an artist reflects and this tells us why the arts matter so much. Tells us why we need to support the arts; why it is essential to keep the arts in schools.

Said Mr. Kurtz about why he brings his band to the Alton Mill as a fundraiser for Headwaters Arts: “Headwaters is a huge supporter of the arts. You need an economical [element], businesses but you also need culture and art as of part of the whole society.

And it’s great for tourism.”

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