Authors Posts by Naomi Pallas

Naomi Pallas


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Panoramas fill the gallery's walls. — Michael Cummo

Michael Johnson did not study photography in school. He never spent hours poring over photographs in books or magazines, nor did he pick up a camera as a child and know that he would dedicate his life to the art. Photography simply didn’t occur to him.

The exterior of Mr. Johnson's Vineyard Haven gallery.
The exterior of Mr. Johnson’s Vineyard Haven gallery.

Yet today his panoramic images that span the vibrant cliffs of Gay Head and cloudy winter skies over Lucy Vincent Beach and his photographic studies of Inkwell Beach and other Oak Bluffs icons hang in some of the Island’s best known galleries and artisan markets. He has become a staple among photography educators on the Island and one of the foremost Oak Bluffs cultural documenters, thanks to a last-minute decision and some advice from good friends, or, as he calls them, his “angels.”

“I’ve always believed in Peter’s Principle of Pull,” Mr. Johnson said in an interview with The Times. “Push is when you go to school and you work hard to do all these things. Pull is when you find people who have more power than you and use their talent to pull you along.”

Mr. Johnson grew up a music lover in Englewood, N.J. He sang in rock bands throughout his youth before deciding one day to take a different direction, though what he would do he did not know — until his first Peter’s Principle encounter.

“I don’t mean it metaphorically when I say that God spoke to me,” Mr. Johnson told The Times. One day he heard a voice in his ear, he said, that told him to go to school for video production. At age 29 he enrolled in a class at Bergen Community College, discovered an affinity for visual art, borrowed $350 from his father to buy a 35mm camera, and headed to the Vineyard.

“I had nine days off from a crappy job,” he said. Mr. Johnson alighted from the ferry with few belongings aside from his camera in May of 1981. The morning after he arrived, he said, “I had a job and a place to stay by 11 am. That’s how the Vineyard was back then. And those 9 days turned into 15 years.”

Mr. Johnson's photographs feature many Martha's Vineyard locales.
Mr. Johnson’s photographs feature many Martha’s Vineyard locales.

Inspired by the rural character of the Island and its quiet winters, Mr. Johnson began chronicling up-Island locales such as Cedar Tree Neck and Aquinnah through black-and-white film photographs. He turned to the books and built a darkroom in his Oak Bluffs home where he perfected the art of developing and printing while using the Vineyard artist community’s support and feedback to train his eye. Mr. Johnson credits the Dutch and Flemish painting masters with the emergence of his artistic style: traditional in technique, original in execution. “I love their use of light,” he said. “I try to emulate that emotion in my work.”

Throughout his 30 years as an artist Mr. Johnson has grown from classic black-and-white images of cosmopolitan Oak Bluffs to expansive panoramas that vividly depict the Island’s most beloved landscapes. A glimpse at the large images, comprised of smaller images digitally stitched together and printed on canvas, will take you directly to the foot of the Gay Head Light or the sands of Inkwell Beach.

Peter’s Principle of Pull brought Mr. Johnson back as a seasonal resident after he attempted to leave the Island for San Francisco in the 90s, he said. Due either to his humble nature or to pure disbelief that he, an autodidact, could be included among the trained Island greats, Mr. Johnson said that it took some persistent convincing by his friends in the art community before he considered attempting to live off his art during Vineyard summers.

Thanks to the late artist Richard Lee and his wife, Claudia Canerdy, and Cousen Rose Gallery owner Zita Cousens (“gallery angels,” as he refers to them), Mr. Johnson’s works now hang in his Main Street Vineyard Haven gallery, nestled among a verdant garden next to Nat’s Nook, and on the walls of Cousen Rose Gallery on Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs. His latest projects include an exposition of the life and culture of Oak Bluffs, a town that “has not gotten its due artistically,” and street photography set in Cuba and San Francisco’s Mission District, where he lives seven months of the year.

Recognizable by his warm smile and an open, friendly demeanor, Mr. Johnson greets passersby from his Vineyard Haven gallery on Thursdays, Fridays, Sundays, and Mondays. He sells his photographs and merchandise at the Chilmark Flea Market, and he curates the Featherstone Photo Salons at which experienced photographers offer their insight and ideas to emerging artists. On Monday evenings, he teaches the art of the darkroom photography to learning photographers at Featherstone’s Open Darkrooms.

“I think the tech aspect is relatively easy,” he said. “Training your eye and developing your narrative are the hardest and most ongoing parts.”

Michael Johnson’s Photo Studio is located at 34A Main Street and is open from 12 noon to 5 pm on Thursday, Friday, Sunday, and Monday, or by appointment. For more information, visit

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Dana Williams performs at Alex's Place this Saturday. — Ian Maxion

Alex’s Place at the YMCA will play host to a young artist making waves on the modern jazz and hip-hop scenes this weekend. On Saturday, July 19, singer Dana Williams will bring her effortless voice and timeless lyrics to the stage at 8 pm.

With inspirations such as Queen of Jazz Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday, Ms. Williams writes and records her own music and covers that of others. Hailing from a musical family (her father was guitarist David Williams), the 24-year-old singer’s vocals and natural stage presence have recently landed her a collaboration with rap artist Freddie Gibbs and the role of soundtrack artist for music executive Damon Dash’s new fashion line.

Along with original jazz melodies, her repertoire includes Lana Del Rey pop hits, folk songs by Band of Horses, and Americana by the likes of Shovels and Rope. Ms. Williams’s cover of “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac with actress/musician Leighton Meester garnered more than 1 million Youtube views, and she has earned thousands of views for her originals and solo covers.

Tickets are $12 in advance at; $15 at the door. For more information about Ms. Williams and Alex’s Place, visit

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Crft Shw enjoyed a crowd at last Thursday's opening. — Michael Cummo

Four out of the five routes at the infamous Five Corners intersection in Vineyard Haven are well traveled roads that lead to and from key Island spots; whether your destination is the Steamship Authority in Vineyard Haven, Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs, or South Beach in Edgartown, Five Corners will get you there — if a bit precariously.

Then there is the shorter fifth street — Beach Road Extension — that is lightly traveled aside from those headed to the Black Dog Restaurant or seeking a view of the harbor’s tall ships. Last Thursday, July 9, that fifth route saw more traffic than usual as art lovers poured in and out of a new gallery, Crft Shw (pronounced “craft show,”) along Beach Road Extension while sipping glasses of champagne and drinking in the atmosphere of modern artwork and wares backed by pulsing electronic music at a grand opening that showcased more than 20 artists.

At first glance, Crft Shw appears to be a quaint hole in the wall wedged between Eastern Yacht Sales and Terrain Architects along a small strip of shops and company buildings. Like the Island itself, it hardly seems possible that a space so small could house more than a few artists at a time, yet the gallery is overflowing with an eclectic array of talents that wouldn’t be out of place at a Brooklyn boutique. Gallery owners Whitney Blank and Deanna deVries have designed the space to allow for the showcasing of the works of artists with local ties, while still leaving room for a workshop/studio in the back.

“We’re showing all of our friends’ work, and hopefully they’ll treat us like their playground,” Ms. Blank said in an interview with The Times. “We want to grow in order to help them grow: it’s not really a for-profit endeavor.”

Ms. deVries and Ms. Blank have lived on the Island since 2012 when a tour with L.A.-based girls band Wet and Reckless took them eastward. Ms. deVries had made Island ties through her classmates such as Hannah Keefe at MassArt where she studied metalsmithing, and the two have spent their years here making friends with local artists and developing their own trades.

“I hope we can create a different voice for the Vineyard in a way because there are a lot of great galleries here, but we have a whole cadre of people who aren’t in those galleries and are making work for a different crowd,” said Ms. Blank.

Ms. deVries added, “We want to focus on artists who we think are underrepresented or underserved.”

Ms. Blank and Ms. deVries use the entirety of their modest space to showcase eccentric works of varying media. Intricate wire sculptures by Duncan Niederlitz tumble from the ceiling and walls; Colin Ruel’s fantastical floral paintings in neon hues are sandwiched between metal-and-solder necklaces and earrings by Hannah Keefe and Nettie Kent’s jewelry made from stone and gold; Elizabeth Cecil’s unearthly “Surfers” photograph hangs directly opposite the entrance.

One part gallery and one part high-end retail store, Crft Shw also sells one-of-a-kind housewares. Enid McEvoy contributed weekender bags and quilts, Andrew Meers his handcrafted knives, and Tim Laursen a long wooden table that houses knickknacks of all sorts, including Ms. deVries’ playful toddler spoons and coffee scoops to accompany coffee roasted by Ms. Blank.

In keeping with past endeavors among the Vineyard artist community, the goal of Ms. Blank and Ms. deVries is to support and cultivate developing local artists. Next on their agenda is to devise workshops for young artists from local schools and to continue to highlight Island artists whose works might not fit with mainstream fine art galleries.

“The butterfly effect of teaching people about art on the Island is so cool to me,” Ms. Blank said. “For example, I lived with Tim Laursen this year and he taught me how to make stained glass, which he had learned through a grant from Featherstone. We would love to become a repository for the community to learn about art and to get inspiration from.”

Crft Shw, located in Vineyard Haven, is open from 11 am to 7 pm, Thursday through Sunday. For more information about workshops and shows, visit

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MV Sound Fest, held at Waban Park, featured 10 locally and nationally known bands. — Michael Cummo

Saturday’s super moon rose over a throng of dancers at Waban Park in Oak Bluffs. The music of Dukes County Love Affair (DCLA) blared from a set of speakers on either side of a stage that, throughout the day, housed 10 bands of local and national acclaim. Each group and musician contributed to the park’s lively ambience, yet it was DCLA bassist Phil DaRosa who, having organized the first Martha’s Vineyard Sound Festival to kickstart the new nonprofit The Island Collaborative, was to thank for the day of music, art, food, and dance.

The festival grounds were an embodiment of the community effort that The Island Collaborative aims to endorse. Volunteers and community members offered time and resources for event planning and the physical set up of the area. Local vendors, nonprofits, and artisans such as The Green Room, Eclipse Massage Therapy, and Kenworthy Fine Artisan Craft lined the grounds with booths at which they sold their products and services, and Vineyard Bottled Waters offered free water for attendees journeying to and from their spots by the stage.

The day began slowly; those connected with the Island music community and interested passersby trickled through the gates as Hawaii singer John Cruz performed the first set at 3 pm. Local artists Traeger di Pietro and Dan VanLandingham set up a canvas in the middle of the grounds to paint as the festival progressed; Tisberry Frozen Yogurt, Flatbread Pizza Company, Island Spirit Kayak’s Shaved Ice Shack and Slice of Life offered provisions to enjoy while listening to the likes of Lexie & Arlen Roth and Alex Karalekas. Children spent their afternoons getting face paint jobs and blowing bubbles with the stage as a backdrop on one side and the ocean on the other.

Somewhere between Barefoot Truth’s Will Evans’ performance at 5 pm and Good Night Louise at 5:30, festival goers covered the grass before the stage with lawn chairs and picnic blankets. Ben Taylor entertained the crowd with whimsically provocative lyrics, followed by Jazz duo Dwight & Nicole. DCLA and Johnny Hoy & the Bluefish took the stage just in time; as temperatures dropped around 8 pm, the remaining audience members kept their blood pumping by moving their feet. When the festival gates closed, after parties at Island Bar & Grill, The Dive Bar, The Ritz, The Lampost, Sand Bar & Grill, and The Port Hunter carried the music on through the night.

Many of the performers agreed that the festival’s first attempt was a successful one. “I would do it again next year, for free,” said singer/songwriter Alex Karalekas. “I’m all in favor of local outdoor music.” Island folk singer staple Willy Mason remarked that Waban Park is a “great place for a festival.”

Mr. DaRosa, too, was pleased with the outcome of the MV Sound Fest in its first year. “I couldn’t have asked for a better vibe,” he said. “The seeds have been planted.”

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Lowland Hum performs at Alex's Place on Friday. — Photo Courtesy of YMCA of M.V.

Alex’s Place presents a weekend of folk music and comedy with two shows by up-and-coming young artists. The intimate performance venue at the YMCA in Oak Bluffs will host North Carolina folk duo Lowland Hum on Friday, July 11, at 8 pm, and on Saturday, July 12, standup comedian Charlie Nadler will take the stage at 8 pm.

Lowland Hum is comprised of husband and wife Daniel and Lauren Goans who use their differing artistic expertise to create a multi-sensory musical experience for the crowd. With Daniel as a musician and Lauren a visual artist, the two employ folk music and lyrics as their main medium and they embellish each song with artistic prints and engaging scents that allow their audiences to interact with their music on multiple levels. Admission to Friday’s show is available to all ages and costs $12 in advance at, or $15 at the door.

Charlie Nadler visits his hometown this weekend and performs at Alex's Place Saturday.
Charlie Nadler visits his hometown this weekend and performs at Alex’s Place Saturday.

Charlie Nadler returns to Alex’s place this year with new comedic material that the audience is bound to both laugh at and relate to. Mr. Nadler grew up in Oak Bluffs and graduated from the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School in 2002 before attending Boston University and then moving to California to work in the film and TV industry. Now he lives in New York and regularly performs standup comedy shows in which he spins tales of his life on the Island and abroad with witty and suggestive humor. The show is PG-13 and costs $12 in advance ( and $15 at the door.

This weekend’s two shows are among a hefty summer roster of artists from the Island and beyond to perform at Alex’s Place. Visit for information on upcoming shows and events.

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Willy Mason is among the 10+ performers set to play at the first MV Sound Festival. — Photo courtesy of MV Sound Fest

Thanks to its popularity in summer and a robust music community overflowing with homegrown talent, Martha’s Vineyard has seen its fair share of music festivals and concerts come and go from year to year. Summer 2014 brings with it a new festival to the Oak Bluffs horizon, one that benefits the Island community both musically and otherwise and aims to be here to stay. This Saturday, June 12, the Martha’s Vineyard Sound Festival will rock Waban Park in Oak Bluffs with local vendors, artists, and a seven-hour long lineup of more than 10 local, national, and international musicians.

The brainchild of Island residents and music community staples Phil DaRosa and Ann Quigley, the festival begins this year as an event to show Island residents and visitors a good time while supporting the launch of their new nonprofit startup, The Island Collaborative. The festival/fundraiser has truly become an effort of the Island community, with help from Barbara Dupree of the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce, website building by Jesse Hayes of Hayes Design, social media work by Jess Phaneuf, and advertisement printing by Dennis daRosa of daRosa’s.

Island staple Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish is among the bands to play at the festival.
Island staple Johnny Hoy and the Bluefish is among the bands to play at the festival.

The Island Collaborative will be dedicated to creating projects among local entities, individuals, and businesses that will be aimed at “social equity and sustainability on the Island,” Mr. DaRosa said in an interview with The Times. “We’re hoping for a wide umbrella that reaches anything from fixing a farm tractor to managing rainwater runoff.” Mr. DaRosa and Ms. Quigley plan to use proceeds from the festival to file The Island Collaborative as a nonprofit and be up and running by late fall.

As owner of The Print Shop recording studios, member of local band Dukes County Love Affair, and former entertainment director at Dreamland, Mr. DaRosa is a natural choice for bringing Island musical talent together. In past years he has curated Chilmark Chill Billy music festivals and booked various club events, and for M.V. Sound he has worked in partnership with production company San Miguel Sound, which hosts festivals nationwide and recently included big-name headliner Lorde. With the M.V. Sound, Mr. DaRosa hopes to eventually put Martha’s Vineyard on New England’s musical map by first showcasing and introducing the “local music vibe,” he said. “The idea is to start with the best of the Vineyard by trying to bring all people available out.”

On the Island in the summer there is no lack of “people available,” and the festival’s Island roots are deeper than the stage’s posts in Waban Park. Islanders will recognize the familiar sounds of Dukes County Love Affair, whose rock tunes never fail to get the crowd moving; upbeat country blues group Good Night Louise; folk-inclined Willy Mason and Alex Karalekas; father-daughter folk duo Lexie and Arlen Roth; longtime Vineyard staples Johnny Hoy & the Bluefish; and Ben Taylor. Will Evans of Connecticut folk-rock band Barefoot Truth will be visiting for the show, as will Grammy award winning Hawaii singer John Cruz, and jazz group Dwight & Nicole. When the gates close at 10 pm, after parties will be held with Peg House at The Dive Bar; Mike Benjamin, Funkwagon, and Rich Brown and Paul Size at The Ritz; and DJ AP and Euphony at Island Bar and Grill.

The lineup is not the only thing that will keep the crowd entertained; throughout the day local vendors, artists, nonprofits, and victualers will sell their wares and provisions at stands and tents surrounding the park. Festival attendees can listen to the tunes on stage while sipping beer and wine from the beverage tent, drinks from the Chilmark Coffee Company, pizza from the Flatbread Pizza mobile oven, tempura and sushi

Jazz/blues group Dwight & Nicole.
Jazz/blues group Dwight & Nicole.

from the Sand Bar and Grill stand, and frozen yogurt from Tisberry. Everyone is encouraged to bring an empty water bottle for refills provided by Vineyard Bottled Water. A number of other vendors are yet to be confirmed. Artists Traeger diPietro, David Tierney, Dan VanLandingham, Darcie Lee Hanaway, and others will present their works and create live art on the scene.

Under a 3,000-person cap set by the town, Mr. DaRosa hopes that the festival and its prime spot across from the Oak Bluffs Town Beach will prompt music lovers of all ages and families to stop by the show or settle in for the day with a picnic blanket and umbrella. “If it’s hot, go to the beach, take a dip, and then come back for more music,” he said.

M.V. Sound Festival, 3–10 pm, Saturday, July 12, Waban Park, Oak Bluffs. $30 includes entry and re-entry to the festival and a discounted cover charge for the after parties; $100 all-access pass offers a spot in a lounge tent with light refreshments, view of the stage, and a meet-and-greet with the artists. The festival asks attendees to leave food, drinks, and cigarettes at home. Parking will be available at the Oak Bluffs School for $5 that will benefit the school, and a shuttle bus will run between the lot and park starting at 2:30 pm.

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From left: Jessica (great-granddaughter), Ella (great-granddaughter) Michelle (daughter), Gabriel (grandson), on his shoulders: Sophie (great-granddaughter), Adriana (daughter) — Courtesy of Adriana Stadecker

Nelly Nasch celebrated a century of life on June 19 at a gathering of her friends and family at Windemere. Her party was complete with cake from the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital’s dietary department, gifts and flowers galore, Nelly’s favorite music — Mozart and Edith Piaf — and 100 years of memories made throughout the world.

Nelly has lived in five cities and learned French, English, and Spanish in addition to German, her mother tongue. She has been adored by many friends and a loving husband. She has seen war and occupation, and she has seen survival and the growth of her legacy and family, which includes two daughters, four grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

Nelly was born Nelly Auslaender in Franzenthal, Austria, in 1914. At age 18 she traveled to Bucharest, Romania, to study pharmacy, and there she met her future husband, Josef Nasch, another pharmacy student. The two married and Nelly became a pharmacist known for “her great relationship with customers, her hard work, and dependability,” according to a biography of Nelly’s life written by her daughter, Adriana Stadecker of Chilmark.

Nelly and Josef Nasch.

Nelly and Josef raised two daughters, Adriana and Michelle, in Bucharest before the 1948 Occupation of Romania by the Soviet Union compelled them to move their family to Western Europe. But work there was hard to find, due to the influx of returning World War II soldiers. The family gathered their belongings once again and headed this time for Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1951, though neither Nelly nor Josef spoke a word of Spanish. Nelly’s maiden name “Auslaender” means “foreigner” in German, so perhaps she was destined to travel.

In Buenos Aires she and her husband opened a toy factory and became close with the large Romanian and Austrian populations in the area, as well as with many Argentine families. The two worked there for 20 years before setting off on a series of world travels. Nelly’s favorite, according to Adriana, was Bora Bora.

Their children, too, began lives on new frontiers. Adriana moved to Boston with her husband and son, and Michelle to Vancouver with her family. When Josef passed away in 1987, Nelly joined Adriana and her family and lived with them in Boston and San Francisco. According to Adriana, Nelly led a happy life playing bridge and reading books. She volunteered in the children’s section of the Newton Public Library where she has had several books donated in her name.

4 generations june 2010nellynasch
The Nasch family is four generations strong.

In her more recent years Nelly’s main focus has been her children and grandchildren. “They all call her Oma,” which means “Grandma” in German, Adriana wrote in an email to The Times. “She was always particularly close to her four grandchildren despite the distances that separated them.” So close, even, that she knew of all the happenings in their lives, “whether it was an exam at the university or a date with their fiancé.”

Nelly has lived at Windemere, where she has befriended the nurses and many other residents, since 2010, when Adriana decided to retire to the Island. The celebration at Windemere was a precursor to a larger party to come; since Nelly’s great-grandchildren left school for the summer, she was able to ring in 100 years with even more of her loved ones by her side. On Tuesday, July 1, Nelly’s family from the first to the fourth generation feted their mother, friend, and Oma at Farm Neck with a party featuring mac n’ cheese and crab cakes to accommodate the age range, and a decadent chocolate cake.

“The greatest legacy that Oma has left to her family besides wonderful memories are the values that she espoused and lived by,” Adriana wrote in Nelly’s biography. “She is deeply loved by her family and her friends for her kindness, concern and unwavering support. For her, her family is sacred.”

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Sarah Ortlip-Sommers, a recipient of the Keith A. Dodge Scholarship. — Photo by Ralph Stewart

Each spring the Martha’s Vineyard community offers invaluable resources in the form of financial aid to its college-bound high school seniors and students already enrolled in higher education. The Permanent Endowment Fund (PEF) is one of many organizations that work to support Island students on paths toward bright futures, and this year they broke their already charitable record by awarding a total of $219,700 to 98 students.

The PEF uses donations from Island residents and organizations to create grants and scholarships for local students who excel in various academic and extracurricular areas. The past few years have brought with them three newly established scholarship funds that allowed for the record-breaking rise in awards this spring, according to a press release.

One of those funds is the Keith A. Dodge Scholarship, which is awarded to students who excel in English. Keith Dodge, a longtime English teacher at Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS), established the fund when he retired in 2013. This year’s recipients, MVRHS seniors Mary Ollen and Sarah Ortlip-Sommers, received scholarships of $2,500 each for their hard work and potential to major in English or a similar field.

The Blankenship/Hughes Scholarship Fund is awarded to students for their dedication to community service on the Island. Established by the Ruth B. and Robert H. Hughes Charitable Annuity Trust, this year’s $5,000 award went to MVRHS senior Alice Keenan for her work at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital and her response to the scholarship essay prompt, “How can I help improve the quality of life on the Vineyard?”

The Rusty Flack Scholarship Fund, set up in 2012 by Rusty Flack’s friends and family, aids students who are members of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church and who demonstrate a strong work ethic. MVRHS senior Aaron J. Wilson was the recipient of this year’s $700 award. Mr. Wilson wrote in a statement to The PEF, “[The] scholarships certainly help with college expenses, but they also provide moral support.”

For more information about The PEF, visit

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Father-daughter musicians Lexie and Arlen Roth at Featherstone's Musical Monday. — Naomi Pallas

Jemima James and her friends filled the late June air with familiar tunes at Featherstone Center for the Arts this past Monday for her annual Variety Show. The sun lingered low over the stage as a multi-generational crowd settled on the lawn for an evening of warm entertainment by the Island’s musician community at the second Musical Monday of the summer.

Featherstone features different musicians at each Musical Monday throughout the summer.
Featherstone features different musicians at each Musical Monday throughout the summer.

After a warm welcome by Ms. James, Geordie Gude opened the show with a buoyant harmonica melody. When Ms. James returned to the stage, this time with a guitar in hand, she beckoned longtime friend D’arcy Dursham and Josh Campbell to accompany her with vocals and mandolin. Father-daughter duo Lexie and Arlen Roth followed with an acoustic song set before making room for Sofi Thanhauser bearing her guitar and expressive lyrics.

Children left their parents’ picnic blankets for games and dancing while the charismatic outlaw jug band Brother’s Rye from Woods Hole picked up the pace. Lead singer Benjamin Lee Paterson thanked the Island for “being such a supportive place for us to play our music,” and was met with a response of friendly cheers from the crowd.

As has been proven in seasons past, a solo performer is never alone for long on the stage of a Jemima James Variety Show, and no musician is restricted to his or her own band. During the second half of the show, Lexie Roth and Lilah Larsen soothed the audience with their harmonies, Ms. James, Ms. Larsen, and Mr. Gude performed side by side, and Kate Taylor was joined by her friends and family, including her daughter Liz Witham and granddaughter Fiona, to take the audience back in time. Marciana Jones and her band, Nina Violet, and Willy Mason played as the sky turned a few shades darker, and members of Good Night Louise elicited some barefoot dancing in the grass. Ms. James commended Featherstone and reminded the audience to “treat it well” by cleaning up trash before she and Mr. Mason, her son, led their whole musical family through a high-spirited finale.

Brother's Rye featuring upright bassist Josh Dayton, Benjamin Lee Paterson on the banjo, and Topher Maffei on the washboard, visited from Woods Hole.
Brother’s Rye featuring upright bassist Josh Dayton, Benjamin Lee Paterson on the banjo, and Topher Maffei on the washboard, visited from Woods Hole.

Featherstone hosts the annual Musical Mondays series throughout the summer. This Monday, July 7, stop by the lawn with dinner, drinks, and a blanket or chair to watch performances by Nancy Jephcote, Tristan Israel, and Paul Thurlow at 6:30 pm. The admission price of $10 (free for children under 14) includes bug spray and a spot on the hill facing the outdoor stage. For more information, visit

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Jamaican reggae artist Chronixx is playing at Dreamland on July 3. — Chronixx Music

In a joint effort with Dreamland in Oak Bluffs, Nectar’s summer concert series is back with the first show of the season by up-and-coming Jamaican reggae revival artist Chronixx and his band, Zincfence Redemption. The doors of Dreamland will open to the 21+ crowd for the show this Thursday, July 3, at 9 pm.

Jamar “Chronixx” McNaughton’s performances feature a smooth voice and stimulating lyrics over Diplo’s Major Lazer-backed mixtapes. The young artist found his musical footing during studio visits with his father, reggae musician Chronicle, where Burro Banton and Gregory Isaacs, among others, became his peers. He wandered the Jamaican music scene performing gospel harmonies in high school for artists Jermaine Edwards and Lutan Fyah and creating rhythms for Icebox and Maverick Records. Now 21 years old, he beckons “Rasta youths” in his lyrics and synth-heavy beats that hint at the coming of a reggae revolution.

City One Sound and DJ Kalif will entertain the crowd before and after the show. Tickets are $22 in advance and $27 at the door. Visit for more information.