After celebrating the success of its first independently run season with a live recording of 10,000 Maniacs at Chautauqua Institution, "Rolling Hills Radio" is back, and ready to bring more local and regional acts to Jamestown.
The second season of "Rolling Hills Radio" is set to begin with the live recording of episode No. 25 tonight at 7 at the Labyrinth Press Co. in Jamestown. The show will feature Kerry Regan, a Rochester-based musician who performs with Watkins and the Rapiers, and The Haybaylers, of Chautauqua County.
"Rolling Hills Radio," which was formerly known as "The Woodsongs Coffeehouse Radio Hour" for its first two seasons, is hosted by local musician Ken Hardley, who in addition to playing solo acoustic shows, performs with Ken Hardley and the Henways.
Rochester-based Kerry Regan will perform during episode No. 25 of “Rolling Hills Radio” tonight.
According to Hardley, although nothing new in particular has been added to the show this season, instead a theme has begun to reveal itself.
"The nature of the music industry has changed, and we have inadvertently begun to reflect exactly that," Hardley said. "There was a time when there were record or CD stores all over the place, and even in Jamestown on a Friday or Saturday night there were 10-15 venues with live music - that's not the case anymore. There are a variety of reasons for that, but music itself doesn't go away, rather it seems to be evolving into something different. Now there are these things called house concerts, which are becoming popular, and I think the coffeehouse scene is continuing to thrive.
"I think music is beginning to reflect Americana not in a corporate way, but in a front porch way if you will - we are sharing on a much more personal level," Hardley continued. "Now we're looking at having a more intimate experience with the artists, and I think this season reflects that because we've got a lot of people who are doing that exact thing."
Kerry Regan, who will make his first appearance on the show, is the brother of Scott Regan, who has appeared on "Rolling Hills Radio" several times. Regan, bass, guitar, harmonica and vocals for Watkins and the Rapiers. For more information visit www.rapiers.org.
"Watkins and the Rapiers are an extremely unique outfit, and we've had two other members of the band on the show: Scott Regan and Steve Piper," Hardley said. "It's a band of songwriters, and it has four guys who primarily write songs - Kerry is one of them. Kerry himself is a first-rate songwriter who is real left-of-center in his political songs. But, he as well has a real kind of ensconced view of reality that is reflected in the songs he writes about romance, or any other topic that has a Kerry Regan viewpoint. Both Scott and Kerry are pretty cerebral songwriters, and if you like one of those guys you'll definitely like the other."
The Haybaylers, who will also appear on the show for the first time, are a bluegrass rock 'n' roll band which is comprised of: Bryan Moore, banjo, guitar and vocals; Greg Welty, banjo, mandolin and vocals; and Tim Reed, bass fiddle and backup vocals. However, the show will only feature Moore and Welty.
"The Haybaylers are some of the premier bluegrass musicians we have in this area - in an area where we have a lot of great bluegrass musicians," Hardley said.
According to Hardley, Welty recently finished fourth in a national banjo competition. He is also the banjo player for the "Rolling Hills Radio" theme song "Possum Trot." For more information visit haybalersmusic.com.
Tickets to the show are available at the Reg Lenna Civic Center ticket office, 484-7070, online at www.reglenna.com or at the door while they last. The Labyrinth Press Co. is located at 12 E. Fourth St. in Jamestown. A meet and greet will be held at Forte on Third Street following the performance. The show will rebroadcast on WRFA-LP, on Thursday, Oct. 3, at 7 p.m. Episode No. 26, featuring the Dady Brothers and Max Garcia Conover, is set for Oct. 24.
For more information, search for "Rolling Hills Radio" on Facebook, or visit wrfalp.wordpress.com/rolling-hills-radio to purchase tickets, stream WRFA's broadcast debut of each show or listen to previous performances.