Waterworks to feature musician Richard Smith


For nearly 30 years, the Gamble Rogers Folk Festival has celebrated the revered and legendary folk artist, Gamble Rogers. Now in its second year, the Gamble Rogers Folk Festival and the St. Johns Cultural Council co-present “Live From The Waterworks,” a monthly concert series hosted at the Waterworks, an intimate, historic venue built in 1898. From October to June, the series showcases musicians that echo Rogers’ hallmark talents — fingerstyle guitar artistry and storytelling. The series’ next performance features Richard Smith, with special guest Michael Jordan, on Saturday, Jan. 20. Both musicians will also present guitar workshops at St. Augustine High School.

World-renowned guitarist Smith has impressed audiences around the globe with his virtuoso fingerpicking. He’s a winner of the National Fingerstyle Guitar Championship and was named Thumbpicker of the Year by The National Thumbpickers Hall of Fame — where he was inducted in 2009. His repertoire comprises a wide variety of music from classical Bach to Beatles pop, Scott Joplin Rags, Chopin, Mozart and fiddle tunes; and ranges from jazz standards to Django Reinhardt gypsy swing, as well as intriguing originals.

“The most amazing guy I know on the guitar,” said Chet Atkins. “He can play anything I know, only better.”

Special musical guest Michael Jordan has been living and playing music in St. Augustine since 2011. At the age of 12, he taught himself to play the guitar and immediately began writing songs. The seclusion of the rural coastline encouraged Jordan to experiment with eccentric approaches and techniques, often invoking the landscape’s imagery.

Combining alternate tunings with tapping techniques and percussion on the body of the guitar, Jordan creates sounds that defy the formal approach of playing the acoustic. His use of harmonics and his unique voice coupled with lyrics full of stories ensure you’ll see something you’ve never seen before.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and show starts at 7 p.m. There are 120 tickets available, for $20 each, and are available on Eventbrite. Premium ticket packages are available for $100 and include tickets to all three winter concerts. Premium ticket holders are seated in the first three rows and receive sponsor recognition and a voucher for a complimentary beverage.

Go to: eventbrite.com/e/richard-smith-and-michael-jordan-live-from-the-waterworks-in-st-augustine-tickets-749078763747.

“This concert series is a wonderful tribute to Gamble,” says Jim Carrick, Gamble Rogers Folk Festival president. “Our goal is to feature experienced and up-and-coming artists, and they also help build momentum for the festival in April.”

The three-day folk music festival begins April 12 and continues through April 14. Tickets are available at: eventbrite.com/e/gamble-rogers-folk-festival-2024-tickets-754648041607?aff=oddtdtcreator.