Blair Crimmins and the Hookers to perform at Masonic Hall


Editor's note: This article was updated on April 10, 2017 at 1:38 p.m. to reflect a correction with one of the sponsors. This is also the 13th annual basement music series. Information on ticket purchases was also updated.

BENNINGTON — A mixture of jazz, rock, ragtime, and blues from the 1920s will be making its way to Masonic Hall on April 22.

Bliar Crimmins and The Hookers will be playing songs off their brand-new album "You Gotta Sell Something!" for a concert hosted by the Vermont Arts Exchange as part of the 13th annual Basement Music Series.

The Vermont Art Exchange's 2017 Basement Music Series is sponsored by Thyme Tables Catering, The Hampton Inn, Bad Dog Creative Group, and Harvest Brewing.

The Bennington concert is one of 14 stops for the band on their latest tour, which kicked off in late March in Knoxville, Tenn. Following the Bennington show, the group will be heading to New York City.

"You Gotta Sell Something" was released in February. The band plans on playing tracks from this album along with older songs. Crimmins said that so far their latest music has been well received. To date, the Crimmins and The Hookers have released four albums.

"We come with quite a bit of energy," Crimmins said in a phone interview.

Blair Crimmins and The Hookers has a modern touch to it while also staying rooted in the heart of ragtime and 1920s Dixieland jazz. The instrumental has sounds influenced by jazz musician Louis Armstrong and even has lyrical influences from Randy Newman and Bob Dylan, among plenty of others.

Crimmins and his band like to get their audiences up and moving with uplifting and swinging music. Blair Crimmins and The Hookers want to see people having a good time and they hope that their sound will attract more listeners.

"We're really looking forward to going up and down the East Coast," Crimmins said. "We've been to Vermont but not to perform. We've been looking to play a gig for a while here."

While on this tour, they've played big and small venues, but the number of turnouts isn't much of a concern for the band as they're just happy to get a chance to perform and share their music to the world.

Crimmins has opened for indie-folk band Mumford & Sons and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. The group has played over 500 shows across the country.

In 2010, Crimmins' album "The Musical Stylings Of" became a hit on college radio on WRAS Atlanta. The statement reported that he was the most requested band at that time. Crimmins and The Hookers have always been interested in music. Crimmins explained that he and his bandmates all picked up instruments at an early age and have been playing ever since. Music has been something they've always wanted to do.

Their last album, "Sing-a-longs!" reached 21 on the EuroAmerican radio chart. They received a nomination at the Georgia Music Awards for best jazz artist.

Besides writing music for Blair Crimmins and The Hookers, Crimmin has also stepped out from his traditional genre of music and wrote and composed the score for the 2012 short film "Old Man Cabbage."

"If you're coming to one of our shows, don't think that you need to be swing dancing," Crimmins said.

Blair Crimmins and The Hookers' latest album can be purchased off of iTunes and Amazon. It can also be streamed off and their music videos can be found on YouTube.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 8 p.m. The show is expected to go until 11 p.m. Tickets are $18 in advance, $22 at the door, and $10 for students - tickets can also be purchased from the Vermont Arts Exchange website.

Bennington College students will pay $5 per ticket when a valid college ID is presented at the door. Tickets also are available at 1-800-838-3006. The Masonic Hall is an accessible facility, call for specific accommodations 802-442-5549


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