The seventh in a series of summer concerts will be held at The Nicholson Pavillion in Dykstra Park at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 16 with Sparta’s Kate Salerna opening the show. Her group, The Treble Alliance, brings an ever-growing set list of creative arrangements of of acoustic guitar, keyboard, powerful lead vocals and vibrant harmonies. Kate is featured on piano and vocals, husband Jose Salerna on guitar, and their longtime friend Frank Gillette provides lead and backup vocals.
Next up is award-winning artist Vanessa Collier.As a multi-instrumentalist, Vanessa Collier, weaves funk, soul, rock, and blues into every performance. With soulful vocals, searing saxophone, and witty songwriting, Vanessa is blazing a trail. She’s won; Blues Music Award Nominations (BMAs), a Blues Blast Award nomination, the Jammingest Pro Award bestowed by the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise, and First Place for lyrics in the International Songwriting Competition.
A 2013 graduate of Berklee College of Music, she’s toured nationally and internationally, released two critically acclaimed albums (2014’s Heart, Soul & Saxophone and 2017’s Meeting My Shadow), and released a third album, Honey Up, in July 2018. Honey Up spent 9 weeks atop the Billboard Blues Album Charts Top 15. In early 2018, Vanessa was nominated for TWO 2018 Blues Music Awards, the first one for Contemporary Blues Female Artist of the Year, which puts her in elite company with artists such as Beth Hart, Samantha Fish, and Shemekia Copeland, and a second nomination for Instrumental – Horn Player of the Year, in company with veteran artists like Trombone Shorty, Al Basile, and Jimmy Carpenter.
"I am driven to do this because I find it a total form of expression and connection,” Collier said. “I love connecting with an audience and feeling their energy and I hope to inspire people to follow their dreams and passions, to find what brings them joy, and then to pursue it doggedly.”
This Aug. 16 concert starts at 7 p.m. at George Dykstra Park, 22 Woodport Road, Sparta. The concert is free and the public is invited. All concerts are rain or shine, but will be held in Mohawk Avenue School nextdoor, if there is inclement weather. For more information and weather updates visit www.spartaarts.org.