As the music committe said unique talent rises to the top, a big yes! ” and that’s one reason why the ACMA is looking forward to Mare and Nomad’s show to close out our 2018 season.
“Daddy was a seeker,” says Mare Wakefield. “Eventually he became a Salvationist minister. Mama was a gypsy, loving nothing more than a long stretch of highway.”
Born with wanderlust in her DNA, Mare lived in eight different places before she was ten. “It was a roller-coaster way to grow up, but my brother and I learned to fit in fast,” she says. “We picked up Wisconsin accents in two weeks. Eighteen months later we were drawling like native Texans.”
For Turkish-born Nomad, the journey was equally varied. His musical education began at the exclusive Istanbul Conservatory and continued with a scholarship to Berklee College of Music. Nomad’s gift for musical arrangements includes a full arsenal of classical, folk and jazz chops.
Versatility and travel-scapes are evident in their music. Listeners roam through Arizona deserts, Oklahoma oil fields and Amsterdam canals. Journeys go inward too, exploring hope, heartbreak and barroom brawls. Story and song are woven together by Mare’s intimate delivery and Nomad’s exquisite piano and accordion.
Karen Cohen Opens
Karen got her start playing the guitar in the late 60s, learning to fingerpick the folk songs of Joan Baez, Odetta, Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Arlo Guthrie and many more artists of the day.
In more recent years, Karen worked on arrangements for some old Country Style Blues and some Slide Guitar by the famed Robert Johnson.
Karen was Only able to gain confidence to perform, with the enthusiastic support of a wonderful community of musicians here in Southwest Florida who she considers her family.
Fellow open mic players and fans, kept her at task, learning new songs, helped get her over her stage fright, and even challenged her to start writing some of her own music.
During these first Guitar Revival years, she was Affectionately penned “The Acoustic Queen”
at open mics and jam circles around the Punta Gorda, and Englewood areas.
She is a long-time member of the Ghilcrest Guitar Army in Punta Gorda where she lives, and has been a Swannanoa Gathering attendee for the past 5 years.
Karen considers herself fortunate to have found the ACMA, another incredible musical family, who like her have a passion for music that touches soul and brings us together in harmony.
ACMA events here in this Listening Room are always of the highest quality. The amazing professional artists that come play here are surprising and inspiring.
For me personally, it’s an incredible honor to be the opener here at the ACMA.