Greenfield, MA August 13, 2009. There is no shortage of Connecticut River-inspired songs and songwriters according to Pat LaMountain, Finance Director at the Connecticut River Watershed Council and creator of their Living along the River Songwriting Contest. “Songs about the Connecticut River came in from Maryland, Georgia, and New Jersey,” LaMountain says. Entrants range from teenagers to retirees, “We received a song from a 13 year-old and a CD from person who is seventy-three.”

In all, over three dozen tunes were submitted by the Council’s July 15th deadline, “There is jazz, plenty of folk and rock, and even a rumba and an operatic offering.” Now, according to LaMountain, the process of whittling down the entries to those that will be performed in person has begun, “We have lots of music to listen to” she says, “Its fun, but it’s also a good bit of work.” A singer-songwriter herself, Pat LaMountain offered some further hints about this year’s song crop, “There’s a ballad about an 1874 flood on the Mill River in Haydenville, MA, and one about “ice out” on the Deerfield, plus dinosaur fossils, Native American mythology, river legends, beavers and dwarf wedgemussels.”

Judges will evaluate the best of the entries as they are played before a live audience, scoring them according to contest rules available at www.ctriver.org. CRWC’s Living along the River Songwriting Contest semi-finals concerts will take place on Sunday, August 23, at 4 pm, at the French King Restaurant in Erving, MA; and at the Rapids Restaurant in Huntington, MA, on Sunday, September 13th at 4 pm. The Grand Finals will be held Sunday, October 25, in Turners Falls, MA.

This project is supported in part by grants from the following local agencies: The Arts Councils of Bernardston, Blandford, Cummington, Gill, Goshen, Greenfield, Hadley, Huntington, Montague, Northfield, Orange, Petersham, Warwick, Washington, Wendell, Westhampton, Whately, Wilbraham & Williamsburg. These local agencies are supported by the Massachusets Arts Council, a state agency.

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For press information contact: Pat LaMountain at: 413-772-2020 X 203, or plamountain@ctriver.org; or Chelsea Gwyther, CRWC Executive Director, at: 413-772-2020, X 202; or cgwyther@ctriver.org.