For more than 35 years, I have pursued the art of songwriting and solo performance as a vocalist and 12-string guitarist, including developing what I find to be a unique skill as a songwriter: composing a song with a group. The most visible example of that particular craft was writing a song about the Minnesota State Fair on Minnesota Public Radio live from the fairgrounds. The audience was invited to give suggestions to the song. (There are now five State Fair songs, all written the same way.)
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In recent years, my growth as an artist has led me to create pieces that incorporate music and storytelling—most of which appeal to an older audience. Too often our senior citizens find themselves in a world lacking in social interaction, separated from the activities that once offered connection to peers. My interest in COMPAS is to have more opportunities to give performances that engage and connect the senior segment of our population. What I bring to the table is 35-plus years of performance experience, a life lived in the arts, and a willingness—eagerness—to create new pieces that will benefit the senior audience.
Sample Programs: Customizable To Site’s Needs
An Introduction to PolkaSol!
What happens when three well known Twin Cities musicians decide to learn to play new instruments and then form a group? You get PolkaSol! The musicians – Ann Reed, Joan Griffith and Anita Ruth, who usually play guitar, bass, and piano respectively, have tossed those instruments aside and become a trio playing two accordions and a violin. The repertoire consists of lots of polkas, waltzes and old time songs. The music falls into many categories and genres – Scandinavian, Irish, French, old time, folk and popular to name a few. But what PolkaSol likes best is to sing along with their audience. A very interactive group, PolkaSol encourages its listeners to join in the fun. PolkaSol loves to talk with its audience, share stories and humor. PolkaSol wants to bring a smile and a light to the eyes of those that are present and hopefully bring back memories of other days.
Stories In Song
Ann Reed brings in a melody and a topic, the audience brings their ideas, and together … a song is born!
Nothin’ But Class: The Songs of Dorothy Fields
(Featuring four artists: Ann Reed, Denise Tabet, Dan Chouinard, and Joan Griffith. Running time is approximately 80 minutes with one intermission.)
This show honors the life and work of lyricist Dorothy Fields, the first woman inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the first woman to receive an Oscar for songwriting. Dorothy Fields is remembered for songs like “On the Sunny Side of the Street,” “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “Big Spender,” and others.
Music with Ann Reed & Joan Griffith
Singer/songwriter Ann Reed and bassist/guitarist/mandolinist Joan Griffith offer a relaxed, fun-filled, and engaging program. It’s a rich mix of Ann’s original songs, some jazz standards, a Brazilian choro on mandolin, plus a few sing-alongs, so everyone gets into the act!