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BWW Interview: Brady Rymer Benefit Concert at THE GROWING STAGE on 9/26

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Brady Rymer at THE GROWING STAGE

BWW Interview: Brady Rymer Benefit Concert at THE GROWING STAGE on 9/26

There's a fun event being presented by The Growing Stage, The Children's Theatre of New Jersey. A "Couch Concert" can be viewed from your own home as Brady Rymer comes to you live from Netcong's iconic Palace Theatre on Saturday, 9/26 at 4:00 pm. Brady Rymer offered to present a benefit concert to support the ongoing mission of The Growing Stage. The concert, that kicks of the Theatre's 39th Season, promises to be enjoyable for all.

Concert packages consist of the "Fan Package" for a family of two. For a $25 donation, the package includes the livestream concert, an exclusive concert poster signed by Brady Rymer and a post-concert virtual meet and greet with Brady.

Broadwayworld.com had the great opportunity to interview Brady Rymer about his career and the upcoming concert.

After a decade-long career with RCA Records jam band From Good Homes, recording and touring with acts from the Dave Matthews Band to Bob Dylan and Bob Weir's Ratdog, Brady Rymer ventured into family music as he started his own family, releasing Good Morning, Gus in 2000. Since then, he has released ten CDs, including 2017's GRAMMY-nominated Press Play, 2014's GRAMMY-nominated Just Say Hi! and the 2008 GRAMMY-nominated Here Comes Brady Rymer and the Little Band That Could. His most recent album, Under the Big Umbrella, was inspired by and written with students & teachers. It's a collection of songs full of hope for a future with room for everyone. Brady and the Little Band That Could invite us to join them in a place where individuality is celebrated, and kindness wins the day.

Rymer's rootsy, accordion-laced pop and rock music regularly wins critical acclaim and national awards including three Children's GRAMMY nominations as well as numerous Parents' Choice Gold and NAPPA (National Parenting Publications) Gold Awards, and has garnered him a growing fan base of enthusiastic families. Together with his longtime bandmates in the Little Band That Could -- outstanding players all, with backgrounds from Americana to Zydeco -- he performs rockin' live music for kids and families across the country at Performing Arts Centers, concert halls, clubs, outdoor festivals, schools and libraries.

A special "Let's Move" edition of his tune "Jump Up" was included on the 2013 album Songs for a Healthier America, a compilation of songs produced by Hip Hop Public Health for First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move campaign. To encourage children to get active and make healthy choices, the album is available as a full-length free download on iTunes.

Brady's 2011 CD Love Me for Who I Am was inspired by his experience performing for and working with kids with Autism, Asperger's Syndrome and related disorders, and celebrates kids of all abilities. He regularly performs sensory-friendly shows for audiences including children with special needs.

Brady's original songs and recordings are included in HBO Family releases A Family Is A Family Is A Family: A Rosie O'Donnell Celebration and Don't Divorce Me.

Brady serves on the Education Board of the Long Island Music Hall of Fame, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving and celebrating the region's musical heritage.

He is a featured performer and composer for ASHA's (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association) Listen To Your Buds Campaign, a hearing health public education campaign to provide parents and children with information about safe usage of personal audio technology.

When he's not playing with his own band, Brady plays bass guitar with the Laurie Berkner Band; he also performs a few select shows a year with his 'grown-up' band From Good Homes. He lives on the North Fork of Long Island with his wife, Bridget, and two children Gus and Daisy.

We are delighted to share Brady's responses to our questions.

Who was the first person to recognize your musical talents?

Looking back, I think it was my brother. He was two years older and we were in elementary school he came home from school one day & said, "my friends & I want to start a rock band & play KISS & The Beatles and I think you would be a great guitarist!" At that point we were just playing in the school brass ensemble & listening to rock n roll records at home. So I guess he recognized my musical talents by the way I was rocking the baritone horn!

Can you tell us a little about your professional training?

I took a few formal guitar lessons when I was just starting. I needed to know how to play "Stairway to Heaven!" After that I learned by listening & developing my ear. Playing songs over and over until I figured out what I thought they were doing - or something close - just so I could feel like I was making music & we could play a song together as a band. The other part of my training was learning from all of the musicians I played with throughout the years - from my brother & high school friends way back in the early garage band days to my current collaboration with UK artist David Gibb - I always love learning from my peers.

What prompted you to focus on youth and family entertainment?

I had kids of my own and I just started writing songs about it all. It's such a new and exciting time, becoming a dad & rising a family, so there was a lot to sing about. Once I had the songs & had the urge to play live, I immediately fell in love with the special connection that you make with the kids & family audience.

What have been some of your most memorable collaborations?

My current one with David Gibb has been memorable. It was such a surprise to become friends & work together & tour the UK. Writing, performing & working together has been so natural & easy - I think we compliment each other real well. I've also loved my collaborations with my bandmates in the Little Band That Could as well as my many years playing with From Good Homes. The open collaborative process in making music is vital - it keeps it fun, rewarding, inspiring & memorable for all these years.

Tell us a little about the challenges of being a performer in the current times.

I love the live connection I make with the audience. So the isolation has been a challenge. Live streaming is fun & I do love it & it's a great way to stay connected but getting together with musicians & sending that sound out to an audience & having them send back their energy is a truly magical experience. I look forward to the days when we can do something as simple as that again!

How do you like working with The Growing Stage on the upcoming concert?

Love it!! Always love working with them. We've been doing shows together for a while now. It's like working with family, kind, thoughtful, fun, energetic, I could go on & on - some of our best shows have been with The Growing Stage!

Why do you think the streaming format for the concert will be so effective for audiences?

The Growing page is creating fun ticket packages that will enhance the experience, make it more personal and fun and allow for more of a connection. It's hard to not be in the same place & share a live experience - but by creating fun add-ons - like inflatable guitars, tambourines, snack packs, etc... it gets everyone involved & active during the show. It's going to be so fun knowing that folks at home are shaking, playing (& snacking! ) along!

Can you give us a little preview of what viewers can expect?

I'll be playing songs from my catalogue (all the hits! a?? ) as well as a new one or two the new album Songs Across the Pond. I'm taking requests before the show. And as usual, there will be lots of interaction, dancing, singing & merriment!

Please share with our readers some of your future plans.

I'll continue to live stream concerts from home. A new video with David Gibb for our tune "Living in a Beatles Song" will be out soon. I just started working with an educational group called Zigazoo and I'm adding lots of educational and interactive projects to their app platform and I'm busy putting the final touches on a holiday EP called "Angels in the Snow" that's scheduled to be released early November.

For more information on the upcoming Brady Rymer Benefit Concert and the other performances this season at The Growing Stage, please visit: https://growingstage.com/.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Brady Rymer and The Growing Stage


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