The concert series idea evolved from a successful BurghSong mini-festival featuring exclusively local artists that songwriters Ben Shannon and Christopher Mark Jones organized in September of 2014 at James Simon’s sculpture studio in Uptown. Joining forces in 2015 with songwriter Alexander Stanton, owner of Sunburst School of Music in Squirrel Hill, added a creative organizational thinker and a 50-seat space to the equation. Ben and Christopher’s national and local contacts did the rest. BurghSong 2015-16 included touring artists Ben Bedford (Illinois), Annie and Rod Capps (Michigan), Robby Hecht (Tennessee), Nathan Bell (Tennessee) and Louise Mosrite (Tennessee) along with local artists Tom Breiding, Heather Kropf, Mark Dignan and Alexander, Ben and Christopher.
BurghSong 2016-17 promises to be equally rich, with Camela Widad (Harrisburg), Peyton Tochterman (Charlottesville VA), and David Moss (Brooklyn NY) all performing in duo formats, followed by Ray Bonneville (Austin TX), Heather Pierson (New Hampshire) and Rachel Kilgour (Minnesota) in the spring concerts. Local artists include Eve Goodman, Mark Williams, Spencer Allan Patrick, Christopher Mark Jones, Rachel Whitcomb and Alexander Stanton.
Concerts are scheduled for the third Saturday of September, October, November, March, April and May. Each concert will feature a 50-minute set by the local artist, a short break, then a similar set by the touring artist. Doors open at 7:00, with music beginning at 7:30. Sunburst School of Music is located on the second floor at 5843 Forbes Avenue in Squirrel Hill.