NORWICH – The Chenango Arts Council, Norwich, kicks off its 2013-2014 Performance Series on October 12 with Americana trio Red Molly. Since 2004, Red Molly has been bringing audiences to their feet with gorgeous three-part harmonies, crisp musicianship, and their warm, engaging stage presence. The band consists of Laurie MacAllister (bass, banjo), Abbie Gardner (dobro, banjo) and Molly Venter (guitar). In 2013 the ladies were invited to open multiple shows for music legend Willie Nelson and they performed at the venerable RockyGrass festival in CO. Their CD "Light in the Sky" spent 20 weeks on the Americana Music Association's Top 40 radio chart and charted as Folk DJ's #3 Top Album of 2012. In 2013, the band spent the month of March touring throughout Australia, and in August headed to Europe for the first time, for Denmark's Tonder Festival. They have been invited to appear for the third time at NC's legendary music gathering, MerleFest. Also scheduled is a fourth appearance at the Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion, where in September 2012 the Bristol Herald Courier dubbed Red Molly "The Twin City's sweethearts", saying the band "lit up the stage, as a massive crowd of adoring fans sat mesmerized by their silky smooth harmonies and superb musicianship."
From the start, the trio got attention with their lively, engaging stage performances. They moved quickly from NYC coffeehouses to the festival circuit in less than two years, winning notices for their performances at Merlefest, the Philadephia Folk Festival, and NPR's Mountain Stage.
Laurie MacAllister dreamed of being a singer when she was a little girl - singing songs by Dolly Parton, Sheena Easton, and Olivia Newton-John at the top of her lungs into a hairbrush. A subsequent decade-long case of stage fright prevented her from performing publicly. While studying Industrial Psychology in graduate school at NYU, the urge to sing was strong enough that she began going to open mics in NYC. After a short-lived career in the field of management consulting, and landing her first gigs at the Grey Dog's Coffee in the West Village, Laurie decided to pursue singing seriously in 1998. She quit her job and became a singer/songwriter (and also a waitress). With the help of an extraordinary friend, Cheryl Prashker, she released an album of original songs called These Old Clothes in 1999. In 2000, she met Cliff Eberhardt and began singing backup for him at venues around the country, developing a passion for harmony singing, and began the process of overcoming her stage fright. Cliff produced Laurie's next album, called The Things I Choose To Do, which was purchased and released by Barnes & Noble. In 2004, at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Laurie formed Red Molly; just two short years later, due the growing success of the band, she was able to leave waitressing behind forever. Playing about 100 shows a year as part of Red Molly for the last six years has been Laurie's dream come true. Laurie recently landed her first national television spot, singing the jingle in a 2010 Folgers Coffee commercial. Her plan for the future is to have a blast making music with Abbie and the new addition to Red Molly, Molly Venter.