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talk a lot to the audience – the stage banter, and letting them get to know us is a big part of what we do. So we weren’t sure without being able to communicate, other than the music, how things would go. And we needed a lot more material to make up a set! “But it really went over. Even the vocals – it was amazing to me how sometimes we’d sing a song, and they couldn’t understand the words but somehow they had the same reaction that an audience at home would to listening to the lyrics. “That’s the cool thing about music, and your body language, and the tone that you’re setting with the instrumental part of it.” People in Hangzhou, Ningbo, Beijing, Shanghai, Dongguan and other cities, Verch says, “loved what we did, but part of it was that we were from so far away. “And we were so unique. When Cody pulled out the banjo every night, they clapped – because they weren’t really familiar with it.” CS Savannah Folk Festival All events are free Schedule: Oct. 7, 7–11 p.m. in Ellis Square: The Old Folkers, Michael Maddox, Chris Desa, Jean–Paul & Dominique Carton, Hanson and Amburgey, Jamison Murphy Oct. 8, 8–11 p.m.: Old Time Country Dance at Notre Dame Academy Gym, 1709 Bull St. Music by the April Verch Band. Caller: Janet Shepherd Oct. 9, 2–7:30 p.m. in Forsyth Park (rain site: Ships of the Sea Museum) 2 p.m. Opening Announcements; 2:10 p.m. Four Shillings Short; 2:45 p.m. Boo Hanks 3:20 p.m. April Verch Band; 3:55 p.m. Tom Chapin; 5 p.m. Four Shillings Short; 5:35 p.m. Boo Hanks; 6:10 p.m. April Verch Band; 6:45 p.m. Tom Chapin; 7:25 p.m. Closing

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“They’re all related – it’s just hard to pinpoint exactly what came from where,” Verch says. “Certain regional styles at home to me sound more like old–time American than others. Or certain tunes even. And the old–time American stuff also has that African influence.” She was 15 and still questing when she attended fiddle virtuoso Mark O’Connor’s camp in Tennessee; later, she studied classical music and played with the Ontario–based Deep River Symphony Orchestra. Then came the Berklee School of Music in Boston. “I wanted to study further, but I didn’t want to pursue just classical,” Verch explains. “I also knew of a really good jazz school, here at home, but I didn’t want to do just jazz. The string department at the time was still really tiny – they didn’t want you to do one thing or another, they just wanted to help you pursue whatever it was that you were looking for. “And what I wanted to do was just be exposed to more styles. And I wanted to be able to improvise a little bit more – you know, I grew up in a tradition where you play the tune a few times, and then play another tune, and then another one. And you vary the tunes. But I didn’t grow up in bluegrass where you learn to solo and stuff like that.” Verch left Berklee after a year, and she hasn’t slowed down since. When her touring schedule has a break, she’s part of the award–winning, high energy fiddling band Bowfire. Last April, Verch, Ross and Walters toured the People’s Republic of China. It was both an eye– and ear–opening experience. “There are certain things you get used to as a performer,” she says. “We


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Profile for Connect Savannah

Oct. 05, 2011 Connect Savannah Issue  

Featuring the true-history scares of Davenport House's Yellow Fever show and the Owens Thomas House pre-Halloween Victorian mourning exhibit...

Oct. 05, 2011 Connect Savannah Issue  

Featuring the true-history scares of Davenport House's Yellow Fever show and the Owens Thomas House pre-Halloween Victorian mourning exhibit...