Tag Archives: Frontier

Connor Garvey and Sorcha Cribben-Merrill

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Frontier, Brunswick Maine

I was so glad to finally get to see Maine’s own Connor Garvey. We’ve traveled in similar Maine music circles for ages, but our paths had somehow never crossed. Sorcha Cribben-Merrill is a friend in music. She’s played Swine & Stein Oktoberfest in my sweet little town in 2013 and 2014, but I’d also never seen her play a sit down show. This was a lovely Saturday night to really sit down and see both of these talented Maine musicians shine.

Connor and Sorcha played the whole night together, alternating between their songs. Connor joked that he’d wanted Sorcha to play some shows together for a long time, and so he just went ahead and booked a handful of dates as a duo. It forced them to finally sit down and work out parts for each other on their songs. Their harmonies were lovely. These two are clearly friends and it was great to watch them happily share the stage with their wide range of musical stylings.


Connor Garvey and Sorcha Cribben-Merrill


I really like Connor’s song “Willow.” His voice is crystal clear and it’s always refreshing to be able to hear all the words to a song. The lyrics to “Willow” resonate—“The more she showed/Her longing for a love not there/She wept for a love not there.” One of the best things about this night was hearing the stories behind a lot of the songs. Sorcha talked a lot about her grandfather, who was a country doctor in Oregon, and played “Carving,” which she wrote about his life, and “Spark,” which she wrote on an airplane on her way to his memorial.


Connor played a lovely song for us he played on his wedding day. Sorcha followed up with a song about unrequited love. The whole night was like sitting around a campfire in their backyard. It all felt wonderfully personal. Connor told us a funny story about how he accidentally booked a gig on St. Patrick’s Day (he’s a redhead with an Irish name, so avoids that), and played plucky “Irish Song,” which he wrote for the occasion.

Connor and Sorcha ip

Sorcha and Connor co-wrote a stunning song about the love they have for their grandparents and more specifically about all of the things their grandparents have passed on to them. You should really check out “All These Things.” I hope Sorcha and Connor record it together soon. What a treat to see you both play!



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Max Garcia Conover

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Frontier, Brunswick, Maine

I got home from a long and relatively taxing trip to see U2 with just moments to spare before Max’s show started at Frontier. I love seeing shows at Frontier—it’s an intimate theater space, and it encourages performers to interact with the audience. It often feels like seeing a show in someone’s living room. After a challenging few days full of jam-packed travel and a disappointing U2 show, I was relieved and nearly teary, to get home to see Max play. I’ve seen Max perform easily a dozen times, but this was his best show. He spent the bulk of the summer on a national tour with Ghost of Paul Revere, and he’d clearly hit his stride. His older songs sounded stronger than ever, his banter was comfortable and jokes well timed, and his new songs revealed an innovative, powerful one-man band sound with a kick drum and tambourine. I snuggled up to Sophie in the front row for the duration and requested “You’re The Farthest I Go,” which Sophie graciously joined Max to sing unplugged from the floor. I hadn’t heard them sing together for a long while, and even without practicing, they sounded beautiful.


Max Garcia Conover

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Max and Sophie, by request

Max and Sophie, by request

Max sent me home with a recording of ten of his new songs, and I have listened to them again and again. I love “Motorhome”—Max’s tribute to his and Sophie’s now deceased motorhome and their life together on the road. “If I’m staring out at the road/It’s probably her that I’m missing/Our dear departed motorhome.” There’s also a different energy, a darkness even, in a couple of the new songs. “My Neighbor Joe” is heavy. There’s a lot to digest there. He wrote another song that makes you think twice—“As Much A Rising Sun As A Setting One Pt. 2” while on a break during a show in northern Maine. The folks there were having a bad week and some of that energy is processed in the song. It’s interesting to hear how Max’s style evolves over time. It’s always a pleasure to see him play live. It’s like being home. Thanks, Max! (More pictures below).



P.S.—You can support Max’s effort to write a new song a week here!




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