Bluegrass band Raven Hill to close out 2013 Concerts in the Park series

Raven Hill performs in Green Lane Park in Montgomery County with Brad Haberle filling in on bass. Photo courtesy of Raven Hill

If you’re a fan of fun, driving, traditional-style bluegrass, then get ready for a great time in Honey Brook Borough Park Sept. 8.

Phoenixville-based traditional bluegrass band Raven Hill will perform in the park from 5 – 7:30 p.m., closing the summer Concerts in the Park series for 2013. The show is free and open to the public.

The band is made up of J.J. Fischer on banjo, Dan Nace on Mandolin, Neal Neuman on upright bass, Brenda Smith on lead and harmony vocals and guitar, and Pete Smith on tenor and lead vocals, guitar and occasional bass.

According to their website, Raven Hill is influenced by a variety of regional and national acts, from some members’ former Greater Philadelphia-based bands to nationally recognized acts like Steve Earle, Hazel Dickins and the Stanley Brothers and Townes Van Zandt.

Many of the band members have been regulars on the bluegrass scene for some time, having played with other groups in the past. Fischer, for example, used to be a regular at the Wheeling Jamboree with Lila Lou & the Country Boys. Nace used to play with the J.P. Daniels Band and Neuman, Raven Hill’s newest transplant, was a member of Philadelphia-based Aimless Pursuit.

Borough Council Member Jeanne Jenzano, who organizes the Concerts in the Park series, said she was excited when the group contacted her about performing in the park because it shows the series is getting recognition locally. She was also happy to add a bluegrass act to this summer’s lineup since it lent itself to an effort to bring variety to the series.

“It’s a family activity, but it’s also exposing people to different genres of music that they might not have otherwise heard,” she said.

Concert goers are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets. The Honey Brook Lions Club will have food and beverages available for purchase. In the case of inclement weather the concert will be postponed and a message will be placed on the Honey Brook Borough office line 610-273-2020 after 1:00 pm the day of the concert.

Other upcoming events in the park include a bocce tournament Sept. 14 and a cornhole tournament sponsored by borough police Sept. 22.