Grammy award winner and former Vineyarder John Cruz will be making his yearly visit to the Island this weekend. The singer/songwriter will perform material from his soon-to-be released new CD along with much of his older material during a series of sunset cruise concerts aboard the Black Dog's tall ship Alabama tonight, Aug. 4, through Sunday.
Mr. Cruz spent a number of summers during his formative musical years on the Vineyard, where he attracted an avid following. He was one of the founders of a popular Vineyard band, Entrain. Returning to his native home of Hawaii in 1995, Mr. Cruz quickly established himself there as a musical legend. In 2005, a compilation of Hawaiian music that included a song of Mr. Cruz's won a Grammy award. Mr. Cruz headlined four galas during Barack Obama's inauguration and his
recent tours have included stops at Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Tennessee, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Summerstage in New York's Central Park, and Carnegie Hall.
Mr. Cruz is collaborating with acclaimed folk singer Jack Johnson on one of the songs on his new CD. Mr. Johnson is a big fan of Mr. Cruz's music and has called him "One of my favorite songwriters in the world."
Mr. Cruz has performed sold out shows for the past two years aboard the renowned Alabama. The retrofitted 90-foot schooner is a popular choice for day sails and charters.
According to a press release, "We set up a fantastic sound system so the acoustics are wonderful." Earlier this summer, the Alabama hosted concerts by Mike Benjamin and Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish.
The ship sails from the Black Dog Wharf in Vineyard Haven, 5–8 pm, Aug. 4–Aug. 7. Guests are welcome to bring their own refreshments and picnic dinner. $100. 508-693-1699; theblackdogtallships.com.
Campground house tour
Once a year, the public is given the opportunity to experience Campground cottage life on an intimate level. On Wednesday, Aug. 10, owners of six of the landmark historic gingerbread cottages will open their homes to visitors. A self-guided tour with docents in each house will include a visit to The Dog House, an 1871 cottage that was once home to famed "Little People" Lucy and Sarah Adams who were featured in the Barnum and Bailey Circus in the late 19th century.
All six homes feature the details that defined the Campground's Carpenter's Gothic style and a few exhibit examples of unique architectural elements. On display at some of the homes will be original antiques and old photos of the cottages. The tour also includes a visit inside the 1878 Trinity Methodist Church and access to a cottage garden.
Refreshments will be available to guests in the Visitors Center and tickets include admission to the Cottage Museum. Hours for the tour are 10 am to 3 pm. Tickets are $25 and are available at the Tabernacle at the day of the event from 10 am to 2 pm or in advance via Paypal at mvcma.org and at the Cottage Museum.
All proceeds benefit the Tabernacle Restoration Fund.
At The Yard
Humor and costume changes combine with song and dance this weekend at The Yard with a unique and outrageous performance by David Parker's The Bang Group.
Part autobiography and part homage to Broadway music, The Bang Group tells their stories through ballet, tap, jazz, and modern dance, as well as song, stunts, and physical comedy. Says The Boston Globe of the group, "Parker's work is both parody and ode, full of show-biz posturing, sweeping ballet-meets-jazz lifts and turns, and wildly imaginative partnering, all leavened with wicked humor. Delicious."
Dave Parker's The Bang Group, Friday, Aug. 5, 8 pm; Saturday, Aug. 6, 4 & 8 pm. $25; $15 senior/student; 4 pm show free. 508-645-9662; dancetheyard.org.