Jumping into July Celebrations


The fireworks are over for now, but there's still plenty of summer fun sizzling on the horizon for all of us.  The women of Raison D'Etre are looking forward to some anniversaries, concerts, and community music-making during July.  We are also happy to announce our October performance at a great local arts venue.




The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is celebrating it's 10th Anniversary this year with several special events taking place during July. Raison D'Etre is proud to be part of the opening night reception for this happy anniversary on July 18 from 4:30-6:30 pm at the Artisan Center.  We will play a short set of music for the arriving artists and guests beginning at 4:30 pm.  Then, there will be a program recognizing the achievements of the Center over the past ten years followed by more music from this folk trio until 6:30 pm.  We are so grateful for the staff at the Center for introducing Kentucky's artisans and musicians to the traveling public. Our music is better known around the region and the country because of this beautiful, engaging stop along the I-75 corridor.  Thank you!  And Happy Anniversary!


July is also the "birth month" of our trio as we began our musical life together aboard a river party barge called the Kontiki in the summer of 1990 as front women for a country rock band, entitled for the gig, Runaway Stage. Of course, our bass player and resident wit, Dan'l Wilson, soon changed the name of the boat to the Cowtipi to suit our "Hoedown Cruise" adventures. After the second summer on the barge, Violet, Vickie and I decided maybe we would go to WGUC's recording studio and lay down a few of our three-part harmony tracks together, with just our guitars and keyboard. We took our resulting demo tape to a folk radio program at Morehead State University where our friend and host, Steve Young, introduced us to his listeners with our brand new name, "Raison D'Etre"-- thought up in the car on the way to the show.  We explained to Steve during our interview  that music is a good reason for our being. Of course, Steve is his own resident wit, so he promptly began calling us "The Dead Raisons." So, those of you who think you might butcher the pronunciation of our trio's name, please know that it has already been topped by Steve's intentional efforts.


I just dug the 1991 master tape out of my desk drawer. Of the ten songs on the cassette tape--yes, we go back that far--we still do two of the tracks, "Some of Shelly's Blues" and "Singing the Blues," while only two of the tracks were originals by Roberta.  The rest are covers by harmony groups like the Roches, the Whites, The Coyote Sisters, and Trio, our beloved Dolly, Emmylou and Linda. We haven't reached a milestone this year since we are just now at 23 years together, but we missed commenting on 20 years, probably out of denial and being in the middle of two projects when that anniversary passed us by. So, Happy 23rd to us--just in case we let 25 go by without noticing.


Concerts, concerts, concerts...


While most of our concert series performances take place during August this year, we are happy to return to the stage of The Music Cafe in Hamilton, OH on July 23rd to try out some newer tunes on the great audience there. We'll be one of many acts that night, so we'll be happy to do our 25 minute set at 8 pm.


In August, we share the stage at Women Writing for a Change with blues sensation, EG Kight who will also welcome Emily Ash as her special guest. That concert is August 4th with sliding scale admission. Anyone who wants to experience a great night of music with a great group of people will not be turned away. August 11 takes us back up to Lakeside the Chautauqua on Lake Erie for a Family Night in the Park Concert.  On August 17, we'll reprise our Civil War set at Battery Hooper Days. Then on August 23rd, we'll be back at our favorite coffee establishment, College Hill Coffee Company for two sets. We'll conclude our summer concert season on August 30th at Kenton County Library's Final Friday Concert Series.


Festival of Learnshops at Berea


Roberta is returning to Berea's Festival of Learnshops with two drumming learnshops on July 26.  One session from 9:30am-12:30 pm is called Recreational Drumming for Wellness and will involve the participants in a drum circle and a discussion about benefits for their communities.  No experience necessary. Drums provided.  Then in the afternoon from 2-5 pm, Roberta will facilitate a drum circle for educators along with discussing applications for schools.  


Our Big Announcement


We are so pleased to be scheduled as part of Carnegie In Concert this fall on October 3rd. Tickets were available to subscribers only in early June, but now they are available for single event purchase as well.  Our concert is entitled "Swing Canaries, Harmony Sisters, and Folk Divas" and will feature some of the best songs and stories from our specialty shows as well as selected folky originals. We would sure love to see you at this special concert in a gorgeous performing arts center right in Covington. KY.  Reserve your seats at thecarnegie.com


Raise on,

and don't defer those summer dreams!