Kat Edmonson brings jazz-pop blend to Masonic Hall

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BENNINGTON — Critically acclaimed vocalist, songwriter, actor and dancer Kat Edmonson will appear on Saturday, March 16 at the Masonic Hall at 504 Main St. in Bennington, as the 15th season of the Vermont Arts Exchange's Basement Music Series continues.

Possessing an airy, light voice with a sly touch, jazz vocalist Edmonson brings both the songs and the sensibility of the Great American Songbook into the 21st century. Texas Music says, "Her blend of traditional jazz and singer-songwriter pop is unusual but not without analogues Willie Nelson, Rufus Wainwright, Gregory Porter and Edmonson's longtime champion, Lyle Lovett have all explored similar territory. And there is something so distinctive about Edmonson's voice and song-writing that she deserves a place among those fellow travelers."

Edmonson has played major stages across the United States, Europe and Japan. She's appeared in major motion pictures, performed on radio and television, and released four ground-breaking albums to date. Her newest album, "Old Fashioned Gal," is out now on Spinnerette Records.

Growing up in Houston, Edmonson wrote her first song on a school bus at age 9. She evolved her signature style in Austin's local club circuit for several years before self-releasing "Take To The Sky" in 2009. In the proceeding years, Edmonson toured throughout the U.S., Europe and Japan while also supporting high profile acts including Lyle Lovett, Chris Isaak, Gary Clark, Jr., Jaime Cullum, Shawn Colvin, Smokey Robinson, George Benson, Michael Kiwanuka, Nick Lowe and Willie Nelson.

Of writing "Old Fashioned Gal," Edmonson says, "I wrote these songs while holed up in my Brooklyn apartment during the winter of 2016. I had a terrible, reoccurring cold that winter and was often laid up in bed. I'd go back and forth from watching 1930s movies on Turner Classic Movies to working on a song. While writing this album, I realized that I was seeing what looked like scenes from a film in my head—a film not yet made. I ultimately sat down and wrote an entire outline for a screenplay—a musical, of course—with this music, the score. I processed a great deal of self-doubt in order to write this hopeful record. Old Fashioned Gal is about believing in yourself even when it seems no one else will."

Tickets for this Basement Music Series concert are $22 in advance through www.vtartxchange.org or by calling 800-838-3006. If not sold out, tickets are $26 at the door. Student tickets are available for $10. Garam garam will be providing homemade food to purchase and Thyme Tables Catering of Shaftsbury will provide a cash bar. The Masonic Hall is an accessible facility, call for specific accommodations.

Basement Music Series sponsors get tickets, a reserved table and if they wish, their names or business logos in promotional material and mentioned onstage. The tax-deductible sponsorships are critical to continuing the BMS and ensuring the diversity and quality of the artists VAE presents. The BMS not only benefits the community, but also local restaurants, artists and musicians. Contact Director Matthew Perry at 802-442-5549 or matthewvae@comcast.net for more information about becoming a sponsor.

Follow the season at vtartxchange.org, on the new Basement Music Series Facebook page and on Twitter (twitter.com/BMSatVAE). For more information about Vermont Arts Exchange, the Basement Music Series, exhibits and camps, contact VAE at 802-442-5549 or visit vtartxchange.org.

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