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Sunday, August 6, 2017


Fireside Collective includes (from left to right) Jesse Iaquinto, Carson White, Tommy Maher and Joe Cicero.

At 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 12, Fireside Collective will bring its progressive folk and bluegrass music to the stage in the Coolidge Theatre at the Deane Center for the Performing Arts, 104 Main Street in Wellsboro.

The band is composed of lead vocalist and songwriter Jesse Iaquinto on mandolin; Tommy Maher on dobro; Carson White on upright bass and Joe Cicero on acoustic guitar. All four sing.

During the concert in Wellsboro, the band will be playing music from their newest CD called "Life Between the Lines." Released on May 5 of this year, it was recorded at East Tennessee University's state-of-the-art recording studio. "We worked with some of the professors from ETSU's renowned Bluegrass, Old-Time, and Country music department who helped engineer and co-produce the album," Iaquinto said. The album features all original songs written by the band and presents an array of guests on banjo and fiddle. The songs range from upbeat bluegrass numbers to heartfelt folk ballads.

Known for their energetic live show, the band members present finely crafted original music infused with impeccable solos and tight harmonies. They captivate listeners with songs centered on change, relationships and being on the road and transition smoothly between danceable bluegrass numbers and passionate folk ballads.

Winners of the 2016 MerleFest Band Competition in Wilkesboro, North Carolina and finalists in the 2015 Telluride Bluegrass Festival Band Competition in Colorado, Fireside is blazing a name for itself as a must-see progressive acoustic ensemble.

Formed in Asheville, North Carolina, this band burst onto the music scene in early 2014 following the release of “Shadows and Dreams.” It features original compositions by Iaquinto that weave bluegrass, funk, rock and blues influences into a refreshing representation of modern folk music.

Iaquinto has ties to Tioga County. Shortly after he was born, his family moved from Gaines to Wellsboro where he lived until he was nine years old. "I started playing piano at age five, saxophone at 12, guitar at 15 and mandolin at 20," he said. As a freshman, Iaquinto studied musical theater at SUNY Freedonia.

It was his interest in bluegrass and acoustic music that led him to transfer to East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. He put his first band together there.

When it disbanded, Iaquinto formed Beside the Fire, a jam band that played original music and covers from the 1960s and 1970s during his three years at East Carolina. White was a member of the jam band and Iaquinto and Maher became friends during that time.

After graduating from college in 2007 with a major in philosophy, Iaquinto decided to move to Asheville, known as a mecca for music. That is when he began to seriously study bluegrass.

Even though Iaquinto, White and Maher lived in separate communities, they began getting together several times a year to perform old bluegrass standards under the name Fireside String Band. "Tommy, Carson and I learned the ropes of bluegrass through that band," Iaquinto said.

A few years later, when he decided to form a five-member band and record an album, two other musicians, White and Maher joined Iaquinto, and the band was named Fireside Collective. Cicero joined them in November 2015.

The Aug. 12 concert is a BYOB and snacks event. Tickets are $15. Reserve a table for this performance and tickets by calling the Deane Center at 570-724-6220.

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