Berggren, Smith team up for BluSeed performance

SARANAC LAKE – BluSeed Studios presents Live at BluStage: “Bridging the Years,” featuring Dan Berggren and Alex Smith, at 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Berggren and Smith are united in their passion of folk traditions and songs that grow from the mountains. Their similarities far out-number their 40-year age difference: both were raised in small Adirondack towns, studied at St. Lawrence University and they continue to keep a keen ear on local stories and write songs that reach far beyond the Blue Line. Both are featured in the PBS documentary on Adirondack music, “Songs to Keep.”

Berggren, the 40-year folk veteran, held various jobs before devoting his life to music full-time: working in the Adirondack woods with a forest ranger and surveyor, radio producer in Europe, professor of audio and radio studies at SUNY Fredonia, and owner of Sleeping Giant Records which has produced fifteen albums. Tongues in Trees is his latest CD.

Berggren is a tradition-based songsmith who writes with honesty, humor and a strong sense of place. His songs explore the many dimensions of home, hardworking folks, taking care of our planet and each other. Dan’s roots are firmly in the Adirondacks where he was raised but his music has branched out across many borders. The award-winning musician and educator has entertained audiences throughout New York State and overseas in Eastern Europe and Central Africa.

“Berggren is old-school folk in the best of ways, simple, solid and sure..” – David Malachowski, Times Union Albany

For more information about this performer, visit his website at

Smith is the son of a boatbuilder/writer/banjo player and a historian. He was immersed in folk tradition from a very young age. Growing up in Long Lake, he began writing and playing traditional folk songs at the age of 12 or 13, and has not stopped since. The community Smith grew up in is steeped in tradition, and also offers plenty of material for contemporary songs.

It is the work of Canadian artist Stan Rogers that Smith considers to be his greatest influence. His idea of promoting a sense of pride in the traditions of one’s culture, while at the same time speaking about the issues presented to it in modern times, is the backbone of Smith’s music. He tours and records extensively both solo and with his band The River Brothers, and signed in 2012 with Wepecket Island Records for the forthcoming album Hamilton County, which will be his third.

“Alex is a natural storyteller with a rich voice who is creating poignant songs rooted in the heritage of his Adirondack home.” -?Sarah Craig, Cafe Lena

The doors at BluSeed Studios open at 7 p.m.

Admission is $15 for general admission or $12 for BluSeed members. Reservations are recommended by calling 518-891-3799 or emailing