FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WATERSHED COUNCIL SEEKS SONGS ABOUT TROPICAL STORM IRENE FLOODING
Greenfield, MA. May 14, 2012 – The Connecticut River Watershed Council, a conservation group based in Greenfield, MA, has announced it is soliciting songs inspired by the flooding from Tropical Storm Irene. These songs will be featured in a concert to be held on August 28, 2012, the first anniversary of the flood. Roads, bridges, homes and businesses were flooded or washed down the rivers in Western Massachusetts and Southern and Central Vermont. Idyllic brooks became raging torrents and whole towns were cut off from the world. Hurricane Irene had widespread damage up the entire East Coast but the affect in the Northeast was the result of a huge lingering rainstorm that overpowered the drainage system of the rivers. Some rivers experienced 100 year and 500 year events.
“Many people were affected by the Tropical Storm Irene flooding in deep ways: emotionally, economically and spiritually,” says Pat LaMountain, who, along with her husband, Tex, is producing the concert. The duo have been singing, writing, performing and harmonizing together for almost 35 years and have shared the stage with Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne, Pete Seeger and Arlo Guthrie. “This concert is meant as a way to make peace with the power of nature we witnessed and experienced.”
The concert will be a benefit for the Connecticut River Watershed Council’s annual Source to Sea Cleanup which this year takes place on September 29th. Pat and Tex also have a personal reason for wanting to support the Cleanup effort and give voice to Tropical Storm Irene’s impact. “This year, some of the stuff being pulled out of the river will be parts of our barns and our summer place,” explains Tex LaMountain. “We lost all five buildings at our Hawley, MA retreat, the place we would go to write songs and watch grandchildren enjoy nature. It all went down the Chickley River on August 28th.” “I’m still looking for my hula hoop, the silverware, everything. The river is so powerful. It’s just gone,” adds Pat.
To enter a song for consideration, go to the CRC web site at ctriver.org. Deadline for submission is June 21, 2012 and there is a $10 processing fee. People may also make a donation for the concert. In 2008 and 2009 the Council held songwriting contests of river songs. In 2010 many of the winning songs were presented in a concert at the Academy of Music in Northampton. This year’s event is not a contest but a concert that brings together the community to celebrate, mourn, and come to terms with the impact that Tropical Storm Irene had on our community. The concert is also about supporting the local songwriting community. “The Council knows how to support songwriters and give them a stage for their work in a conscious, careful way. We cater to songwriters because we are songwriters.” emphasized Tex LaMountain. To learn more go to ctriver.org.