|Praise for Church House Concerts
"Thank you for opening your beautiful space... musical haven... easy to lift our voices in such a bouyant place filed with warmth & spirit..."
- Ember Swift, March 24, 2006
"You and your venue are as classy as it gets!"
- Freebo, Nov. 15, 2005
"This is the sort of place we imagine playing in..." "What an absolute pleasure to be able to actually play in that place."
- Steve Curtis (Hem), April 22, 2005
"The perfect venue/home/vortex!"
- Radoslav Lorkovic, March 31, 2005
"Grace, Hospitality & Warmth - One can't ask for more. You've the perfect Venue for listening..."
- Pops Walker, Nov. 14, 2004
"EXCELLENT place, food, hospitality, and a great audience as well. Can't wait to come back-"
- Taylor Armerding, Oct. 18, 2003
"Beats the heck out of playing in a skanky bar." "Thanks so much for the awesome vibe!"
- Michael Manring, June 29, 2002
"Every gig should be like this!"
- Brett Hartenbach (with Rachael Davis), June 8, 2002
"This is a truly spectacular place."
Eric Schwartz, April 8, 2002
"It was the highlight of my season."
Julee Glaub, March 23, 2002
"I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed this concert season. The experience was like nothing I've ever had in my life. With each new artist came more excitement than the last, yet each event had its own special experience, special meaning, and special memory. The time between concerts was ever so slow. The time of each event passed like savoring the finest cuisine as it unfolded before my eyes and ears."
-C. Bell, from Haddam, CT, December 2, 2001
"Thanks for a fantastic experience. You nailed it!"
- Don Conoscenti, November 16, 2001
"This place is sooo cool!"
- Pierce Pettis, November 16, 2001
"I am still giddy about Friday night's concert. You have a magical place there. Everyone I met was welcoming and friendly. The acoustics were, well I'm at a loss for words on that one. I could hear every vibrato, every nuance in the voices and instruments. It could spoil you.
It was a special night I will never forget. I'll be coming again.
I wish you the best of luck. You are building a beautiful community."
- Denise V. from Edgewater, NJ, after Don Conoscenti's and Pierce Pettis' November 16, 2001 performance
[Bill R. had been scheming to expand his young nephew Nick's musical palate for some time, and decided to try bringing Nick to a Church House Concert. Here's what happened:]
"Oh, all right, it was adequate... ;-)
Nephew Nick wanted to come back to another show before we even sat down. And it went uphill from there. The whole experience was obviously a memory-making one for him and after he met Don (he appreciated your introduction too, John) and had a signed CD (I bought him 'Paradox of Grace') he just kept laughing at his seat saying 'I can't believe it.' But the kicker was in the car on the way home, he wanted to hear 'Georgia Moon' (another tear inciter) and 'The Other Side' two songs I didn't include on the tape I had made him. I almost drove into the river when he asked to hear those two songs. He wants to come back again next year. I think this had an impact on him and suspect he'll not forget last night. I sure won't. I think it opened his eyes.
And Christ, what a show to introduce him to this kind of music. I can't think of what to say except that both were just extraordinary. My benchmark is when a performer can give me chills and/or bring tears to my eyes, and not everyone can, even those I've liked a lot for years. Both did last night, hell Don had me tearing up just on an instrumental and I don't recall that ever happening to me before. Some of it has to do with the venue, of course and the proximity to the stage. I wanted to sit in the second row, but Nick wanted to be in front and we didn't miss a trick. Everything was in alignment Friday night and it was an evening for the books, for me & certainly for Nick.
So thank you both for a beautiful evening. I can only think of that old song 'The angels rejoiced in heaven last night' as a way to summarize that night. It was just an extraordinary evening. Thanks for bringing this music to this neck of the woods and thanks for being the extraordinary couple that pulled it off. I'm ready for spring now...
Have a good winter and I'm looking forward to season #2. And 3, and 4, and 5, and ...."
- Bill R. from Meriden, CT, after Don Conoscenti's and Pierce Pettis' November 16, 2001 performance
"Thank you both for having this wonderful event in your home. It was one of the most relaxing evenings I've had in a long time. I found the atmosphere created by you, John, and David flowed into the entire visiting audience. It was a special warm evening with many nice people coming together for common enjoyment. This was especially nice to experience with the events of our recent past.
Thank you so very much for this Great Idea, 'Church House'. It’s a magical place."
- Jean N. from Windsor, CT, after Johnsmith's October 12, 2001 performance
"I neglected to grab a response form on the way out, so let me do it this way. I didn't see the questions it asked, but my immediate complaint was that you didn't provide limousine transportation or at the least, valet parking. A grievous oversight.
Outside of that though, damn, you two have done something quite magical there on the River in Haddam. Your home/coffeehouse is one of the more extraordinary homes and/or venues (I guess I haven't seen all that many that are combined) I've seen. Not unlike my other favorite venue, the Guthrie Center, it retains some of the spirituality for which the building was originally designed. It just must soak into the woodwork - kind of a "once a church, always a church" sense. And that most definitely is a good thing [this coming from a backslidden Unitarian]. The evening felt like a community gathering together, probably somewhat like it felt 100 years ago. The ghosts must have been well pleased.
I had only heard Peter Mulvey do a couple of songs opening the Newport Folk Festival in '97 and wasn't really paying that much attention then since I arrived near the end of his set. Well, I did pay attention last night. He & David Goodrich put on an exceptional show and I was really happy to be introduced to his material at such a great place. I probably wouldn't have sought him out (my intrigue was primarily to see this place I have driven by so many times) but getting to see a performance like that was just icing on the cake, syrup on the waffle, whatever. It was simply a great night.
So thanks for inviting me and everyone else into your home for this concert. I look forward to many more of them. You two have really added something special to the Connecticut River Valley and this is something I and many others truly appreciate. Thank you."
- Bill R. from Meriden, CT, after Peter Mulvey's September 28, 2001 performance
"You can tell anyone that I said that you give The Best House Concert."
- Cosy Sheridan, July 15, 2001
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