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Canadian legend coming to Skye
REGION -- New England Celtic Arts will host JP Cormier's final tour at the Franco American Heritage Center in Lewiston on Tuesday, March 6, at Skye Theatre Performing Arts Center in South Carthage on Wednesday, March 7, and at Unity College Center for the Performing Arts on Thursday, March 8.
Curtain at the Franco Center and Skye is 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in Unity.
JP Cormier is returning to Maine for a final tour with the Elliot Brothers for five engagements. In a recent statement made in January, he announced his retirement from touring to devote his time and energy to his studio, Ranson House.
"After celebrating 30 years on the road this month, I have decided to essentially retire from touring and live performance. We have a small handful of dates that were contracted prior to this decision and they will honored. Other than those, however, we will not be pursuing any further live work. Instead, I have decided to throw all my effort into more challenging arenas: My recording studio where I will continue to make my own records and produce other artists and their music."
Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, sideman, innovator, recording artist, award winner. His names are many, but underlying that is a young man with an ancient soul who has traveled the world for the past 30 years bringing his unique brand of joy to audiences wherever he goes.
J.P. Cormier began playing guitar, self taught, at the age of five and quickly became immersed in the rich musical heritage of his Cape Breton roots.
By the age of nine, he was considered a genuine prodigy and won his first guitar competition against 30 other players three times his age. By his mid-teens, it became obvious J.P. could play almost any stringed instrument he picked up. However it was his guitar playing which shone with his flawless executions of tunes he learned from records of giants like Chet Atkins and Doc Watson.
At 16, Cormier recorded his first album, a collection of bluegrass instrumentals. With the project in hand, he worked his way across the U.S. festival circuit - performing for anyone who might take notice. These appearances led to a move to the U.S., and 10 years of session work, live appearances, and many memorable nights at the Grand Ole Opry with such notable artists as Waylon Jennings, Marty Stuart, Earl Scruggs, Bill Monroe, Charlie Louvin, and Vince Gill.
Since his return to Canada, Cormier has released more than 10 award winning recordings. Fans of the writing traditions of Stan Rogers and Gordon Lightfoot tend to equate the name J.P. Cormier with "songwriter", even before multi-instrumentalist. As a performer, J.P. is known for his flawless delivery of original 'story songs', most often basing his lyrics on true events. Inspiration comes when he least expects it and, in his words, "I just hold the pen."
The Franco American Heritage Center is located on 46 Cedar St. in Lewiston, Skye Theater is located three miles west of East Dixfield village at 2 Highland Dr. off Winter Hill Road and U.S. RT. 2 in South Carthage. UCCPA is at 42 Depot St. in Unity. Ticket price is $15 at the door. For reservations at The Franco Center and at Skye Theatre, call 562-4445 or UCCPA at 948-7469. Reservations are strongly suggested at all three venues.