Season's Lineup

Second Sunday
s 2017-2018 Season

Here’s the exciting lineup of performers for the 2017-2018 Second Sunday season with links to artists websites. A concert by White Water and guest begins each event. For a printable (PDF) version of this season’s flyer click here.

October 8Anne Hills

Anne Hills has become one of the better known voices of the contemporary folk music scene, receiving awards and recognition for her live performances (2009 Bound for Glory live radio show favorite- Ithaca, NY), her unique solo and collaborative recording projects (2001 WAMMIE for duet CD with Tom Paxton, Under American Skies), and her overall artistry and benefit work (2002 Kate Wolf Award, Carole Robertson Award & Kerrville Female Vocalist of the Year 1997). Her song “Follow That Road” was the title cut of the Martha’s Vineyard Songwriter Retreat and has enchanted audiences for over a decade. Whether she is singing her own song, the words of 6 year old Opal Whiteley, or the Hoosier poet James Whitcomb Riley; accompanied with her guitar, banjo, or simply a Tibetan bell, she puts her whole heart and soul into the moment. So, even if you haven’t become familiar with her voice (featured often on XM/Sirius Folk Radio, The Midnight Special & many other folk shows) you won’t want to miss a chance to hear her songs and stories in person. She’s just begun touring more extensively, winning over audiences with her warm, lively and humorous performances. The AllMusic Guide says, “A stunning soprano tone has made Anne Hills one of contemporary music’s premiere vocalists … Her knack for writing heartfelt songs brought her to the upper echelon of her craft.” and Tom Paxton says, “Anne Hills is such an exquisite singer that it’s understandable that people might be swept up in the pure beauty of her voice and thereby overlook her writing. That would be a mistake. For me, Anne’s writing, in songs like ‘Follow That Road’ and many others, is as direct, melodic and deep as any work being done today. She is quite simply one of my absolute favorite songwriters.” Hear more from Anne at

November 12 – The Derrell Syria Project

The Derrell Syria Project travels throughout the Great Lakes states with their unique style of original music along with a large variety of re-arranged cover tunes, mixing their performances with guitars, bass, percussion, congas, keyboards and vocals, playing old time blues, Finnish reggae, Latin, contemporary and folk music. On November 12th the band will include Derrell Syria on guitar and vocals, Ethan Syria on percussion and vocals (both are members of Conga Se Menne), Cliff Porter on the bass, Janis Peterson (Marquette Symphony Orchestra concertmaster) on the fiddle, along with Bill Hart (WNMU) on the resonator guitar and vocals and Randy Seppala (Bones man) on the bones and spoons.

December 10 – Joe Jencks

Joe Jencks is an international touring performer, songwriter, entertainer, and educator, based in Chicago, IL. From venues like Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York, to coffee houses, festivals, spiritual communities, and schools, Joe Jencks has spent the last 18 years touring full time. His songs have traveled to every continent via his own performances, radio, CDs, web casts, and other musicians. He is noted for his unique merging of musical beauty, social consciousness, and spiritual exploration. Jencks weaves a diverse web of stories with brilliant musical skill, ensnaring even the most rigid of hearts, inviting them to open. In addition to his performance work, Jencks’ skills as a vocal harmony arranger are in demand. With over 30 appearances as a guest vocalist and arranger on various studio recordings, he brings a unique rich sound to the work of other artists. On the stage, in the studio, or in the classroom, Jencks applies conservatory training to contemporary genres, bridging styles and techniques. Drawing on his Irish heritage (dual U.S./Irish Citizen), Jencks uses his lyrical voice to enchant, heal, and inspire. Jencks has won numerous songwriting awards and is also highly regarded as a song interpreter. Joe’s latest solo release, “Links in a Chain”, highlights this aspect of his work. Check out Joe at

January 14 - Bryan Bowers

January is the traditional appearance from Bryan Bowers who is a master autoharp player and traditional songster that has been a major presence on the North American folk music scene since the mid–1960s. He is a powerful singer and a gifted performer and is a returning favorite to the Second Sunday Folk Dance stage. For nearly three decades, Bryan Bowers has been to the autoharp what Earl Scruggs was to the five-string banjo. He presents instrumental virtuosity combined with warmth, eloquence, expression and professionalism. Bowers has been described by the Houston Post as one of the finest all-around entertainers on the folk and bluegrass circuit and a person who is a national treasure. Visit Bryan’s website at

February 11 - Steve Kickert and Carrie Dlutkowski

Steve Kickert grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and got his first guitar when he was a junior in high school. That was forty plus years ago. He's been playing and singing ever since. He particularly enjoys performing the music of singer-songwriters who are not household names. “I derive a great deal of enjoyment introducing audiences to singer-songwriters they have never heard of before. It's kind of like sharing your mother's favorite recipe with someone. You just hope they like as much as you do.”

Fiddler and step dancer Carrie Dlutkowski is a regular presence at Second Sunday, playing with White Water for the past nine years. Carrie plays a mixture of Canadian and American fiddle repertoire, from traditional tunes to contemporary compositions. She combines expression, technical ability and “feel,” whether playing lilting airs and waltzes, or driving swing tunes and high energy reels. She has studied with some of the biggest names in Canadian fiddling and step dancing, including Natalie MacMaster, Calvin Vollrath, Patti Kusturok, and members of The Fitzgeralds and Leahy. Born and raised in the UP’s Keweenaw Peninsula, Carrie grew up playing violin. She has a diverse musical background, having performed classical and folk music in concerts, festivals, interpretive programs, orchestras, for dances, and on the air; she also teaches, arranges music, and has produced a CD with her family band which can be purchased here: Their second album is scheduled for release in 2018. Her enthusiasm for the fiddle music of Canada led her to explore its history, with a focus on the development of Scottish, French-Canadian and Métis (Native/French/Scottish) fiddle styles in the 18th century. Carrie will take listeners on a musical exploration of how these now-distinct styles of music (and dance!) blended and developed through cross-cultural interaction.

March 11 – Gina Forsyth

New Orleans-based Gina Forsyth is an award-winning singer/songwriter, who is known for her wizardry on fiddle and guitar. With an alto as unique as it is soulful, unpretentious songs that cut straight to the heart, and a wicked sense of humor, her live performances are legend. Considered one of the best Cajun fiddlers in Louisiana (no small feat), Gina is in demand from other great Louisiana musicians to play club gigs and festivals, some of the same talent that backs her up when she plays as Gina Forsyth and Friends. Born in Florida and raised in Alabama, Gina grew up on hymns, country songs, and old time fiddle tunes. In the mid-1980s, she moved to New Orleans to study classical and jazz violin at Loyola University and quickly developed an irrevocable passion for Cajun music. Over the last 20 years, Gina has evolved into one of the most respected folk artists in America. In 2001, cult folk label Waterbug released her debut CD, You Are Here, which was quickly heralded as “…an eclectic, beautifully played testament to choosing the right personnel and crafting a great song.” (Daily Advertiser, Lafayette, LA). She toured the US and Canada with Texans, Lisa Markley and Beth Cahill, as The Malvinas. Together the trio released two acclaimed CDs, I’m not like this (2002) and Love, Hope + Transportation (2004). In 2006, two of her songs, “Somewhere Off the Foot of This Mountain” and “St. Anthony,” were published in the venerable folk song magazine, Sing Out! She has toured and recorded with some of Louisiana’s greatest Cajun bands, including the legendary, Bruce Daigrepont, and regularly plays his Sunday fais do do at the iconic Tipitina’s club in New Orleans and continues to tour nationally, most recently playing with Bruce “Sunpie” Barnes for the National Park Service. She also appears on the new 2-CD compilation, Songs from the Lower Mississippi Delta (2011). Among the many clubs where you can find Gina performing solo is the Neutral Ground Coffeehouse, New Orleans’ hangout for the singer/songwriter set. Find Gina at

April 8Joel Mabus

Joel Mabus may be called a singer-songwriter, but he doesn’t sound like one. He’s the son of a 1930s old time fiddle champ and a banjo-pickin’ farm girl. His performing career began in college during the Vietnam era, where he studied anthropology and literature by day and played coffeehouses by night. One critic writes, “Joel Mabus knows his way around the English language and American culture just as well as he knows his way around a fretboard.” Born in 1953 in the southern Illinois town of Belleville, Joel has recorded 20 solo albums of original and traditional music since his recording career started in 1978. For three years running, Mabus has been in the top 10 most played artists in the Folk Radio Charts for North America ( [The only other top 10 artists who share that 3-year distinction are Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan.] Joel’s latest CD is 2015’s A Bird In This World, a guitar-driven album of original songs exploring the blues. A one-off in the folk world, Mabus defies any easy pigeon-hole. His palette ranges from mountain banjo to jazz guitar -- from sensitive introspection to wicked satire. He’s both picker and poet, and from coast to coast over the past 40 years this Midwesterner has brought audiences to their feet, wanting more. Visit Joel at


A Message from White Water

We are thrilled to offer such a great line-up of musicians for this, our 33rd year of the Second Sunday Folk Dances. They are all excellent musicians, wonderful educators, and display a genuine love for their art and their audience.

Copyright 2017, White Water and individual photographers, Last update 11/8/2017