Correction: The following article was updated on Jan. 5 at 1:43 p.m. to correct names of certain band members.
BENNINGTON — Patients at the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center's Centers for Living and Rehabilitation (CLR) jammed out at the annual New Year's Day Band's performance.
The new year made an entrance on Friday with band members Michael Sausville and his son Phillip, Leroy Oldham, and Larry Betit. Three guitars and a drumset bellowed songs like Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl," John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads," and Stevie Wonder's "I Just Called To Say I Love You." Michael Sausville took most of the vocals for the duration of the performance, but then alternated with his son's deep, soulful pipes.
The New Year's Day Band was formed over 25 years ago by Michael Sausville and Betit's' fathers. Each member takes part in other bands in the area, but they come together each year to put on a show for the patients at the CLR. A dozen and a half sang along and tapped their feet to the band's tunes.
The CLR is located at 160 Hospital Drive behind the hospital. The facility offers short and long-term care and houses 120 beds with more long-term residents than short-term.
Makayla-Courtney McGeeney can be reached at (802)-447-7567, ext. 118.