Lizzie Dickerson
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Lizzie Dickerson

Band Folk Adult Contemporary


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The best kept secret in music


"Lizzie Dickerson Brings Her Music Home:Live At Catherine Cornell, Martha's Vineyard August 18, 2004"

By Julian Wise
The themes and topics of Lizzie Dickerson’s songs are not always easy or pretty, yet they seethe with vitality and emotional resonance. Whether she sings of incarceration, homelessness, disenfranchisement, or miscommunication, she does so with a raw, direct energy that seizes the listener’s attention. An Island girl who graduated from the regional high school in 1983, Ms. Dickerson grew up with music surrounding her. She has lived on the coast of Maine for a number of years and has developed her own musical style. She will return next week to share her work with Vineyard friends and neighbors at the Katharine Cornell Theatre, performing songs from her new CD, “Black Art,” a collection of 12 acoustic songs.

Ms. Dickerson is a classically-trained flutist and guitarist who uses the two instruments on the recording to create a melodic interweaving of notes. The only non-acoustic track on the disc is the opening track “Morning Glory,” a rock and roll song that blends distorted electric guitars and flute to create a Jethro Tull-like effect. On the acoustic songs there are English-flavored folk numbers (“Swim Away Selkie”) and the Latin-sounding, “The Sewing Song.” “I Wish I Was A Kid Again” is a wistful piece of acoustic poetry, while on “Vivian’s Ride” she describes a single mother wishing for a motorcycle and the freedom it represents as she sings, “Vivian pushes a perambulator full of babies and groceries, a single mother rides a motorbike only in her dreams.”

Ms. Dickerson currently lives in Rockland, Maine with her partner and two children, Penelope and Rory. For her Vineyard performance she will be joined by singer/guitarist Miguel de Braganca and her mother, vocalist Michelle Jones. Sister Nina Violet will not be joining the mother/daughter team on stage since she has taken an opportunity to bring her music to the West Coast this month.

Ms. Jones says that she and her daughter have sung together from the very beginning.

“We never had a TV when she was growing up, so that was what she did,” says Ms. Jones. “We haven’t sung together much since she became a mother and moved away from home, so it will be wonderful.”

The performance will be a fundraiser to help purchase a professional sound system at the Katharine Cornell Theatre. Ms. Jones explains that artists currently need to bring their own sound systems and configure them to the theater, a cumbersome process that discourages potential artists from performing at the venue. With a sound system, she says the theater could experience a renaissance of live music.

Ms. Dickerson is a fierce advocate of political and social justice and feels that music can be a tool to communicate powerful messages. “One of the things I feel is lacking in the pop music front is we don’t have a lot of artists using music and language as a vehicle to express the feelings and the emotions and the political climate going on around them,” she says. “We don’t have the Bob Dylans and the Joan Baezs. I think there’s still such a need for that kind of message carrying though the music.”

This performance comes amidst a busy time in Ms. Dickerson’s self-directed musical career; she currently owns her own recording label (Artemisia Records), records her own music in a home studio, has her own web site ( and produces performance events in the New England area. Her Vineyard show will represent both a homecoming and a look ahead in her unfolding artistic adventure.

Lizzie Dickerson in concert, Thurs., Aug. 19, 8 pm, Katharine Cornell Theatre, Vineyard Haven.
Julian Wise is a free-lance writer, educator, and, since 1998, a frequent contributor to The Times, specializing in music, film, and performing arts. - Martha's Vineyard Times, Julian Wise, reporter

""Double Helix" Show, Portland, ME, Oct. 29, 2004"

By Aimsel Ponti, Music Editor
As I write this, the election is one week away and the Red Sox are up two games in the World Series. Both issues lend themselves to great hope and great anxiety and both continue to be in the forefront of lots of our minds. However, let's not forget that the musical landscape of Portland offers alternatives to both of these trains of thought, especially since Halloween weekend is upon us.

How perfect to be able to be able to describe a sound as haunting when referring to a show happening Friday night. Lizzie Dickerson and Jonathan Barker put out a CD called "Double Helix" and it's trippy, eerie stuff for sure.

She's known for her ethereal voice and flute and he is a synthesizer/computer whiz. Lizzie sent me "Double Helix" and I found it to be both mesmerizing and unsettling. Listening to it is like a mysterious voyage into the unknown. There's an urgency about it yet at its heart lies a spirit of calm.

Dickerson's vocals intertwined with the intricate sounds created by Barker make for a different kind of listening experience. They call it "avant-trance improvisation". I call it a far-out magic carpet ride.

Dickerson also has a CD of her own out called "Black Art", and Friday night she'll be performing acoustic tracks from it. Expect to hear her wail on the flute, strum on her guitar and belt her songs like nobody's business. There is something psychedelic and spiritual about her style and her songs. Furthermore, this is a sublime way to recharge your batteries before the election.
- The Portland Press-Herald, Portland, Maine, Arts Editor Aimsel Ponti


"Black Art", By Lizzie Dickerson, Published by Penelope's Web Music Publishing, registered with ASCAP, and on the record label Artemisia Records.
It receives airplay on WMVY Martha's Vineyard,
WMPG Portland, Maine,
WERU East Orland, Maine,
WKIT Bangor Maine,
And a few other college stations I can't keep track of, pretty sure University of Illinois, I think WERS in Boston might have played something...


Feeling a bit camera shy


I am a classically-trained musician who branched out into many areas of musical expression. I am also a writer, and often in the position of being a vocal advocate for a variety of situations in my community. I teach music to children at a Waldorf school, I record music in my home studio, and I work supporting elders at home, so that they can maintain their independence. I have two children, ages 16 and 6. I am not confined to any one area of music, equally comfortable in an orchestra, a rock band, or a progressive-techno format. When I play alone, I primarily focus on my songs with guitar, and on the words and poetry, the message I am trying to convey.