Lititz musicians performing at Roots & Blues

By on February 24, 2016

Now in its third year, the Lancaster Roots & Blues Festival brings together more than 50 artists on 11 different stages, spread out across 10 venues in downtown Lancaster this weekend.

And many folks with local ties are eager to be a part of the event.

For Lititz native Greg Shenenberger, being involved yet again this year was a no-brainer, and he’s quick to give kudos to organizer Rich Ruoff.

“Rich and I have known each other since I was in high school. He is a local guy and a local businessman, not to mention a regional entertainment icon,” Shenenberger says. “He has always done right by and for his own community of Lancaster. Our entities find great value in sponsoring his events.”

And with featured artists like Ruthie Collins, Dana Fuchs, and The Innocence Mission, there’s bound to be something for everybody.

Shenenberger is sponsoring several events at The Chameleon Club and 26 East, as well as Collins’ performance Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Ware Center. He’s also looking forward to catching such acts as the Mamma Tried Band and Corty Byron.

When asked, his advice to newcomers (as well as veterans) is to see at least three performers you may not have heard before, but soon may fall in love with.

 

Todd Fausnacht

Todd Fausnacht

 

Originally from Lititz but now calling Philadelphia home, Todd Fausnacht is excited to be playing the gathering this year.

Although he’s the lead vocalist of the Snails (a band first formed in Lititz fusing ska, Fifties rock and roll, and American soul), he’ll be the first to tell you that his solo material is much different, having a strong influence of Sixties beats, repackaged into a country and western style.

“As soon as I saw the blueprint for the festival this year, it seemed like a great excuse for me to hang out in my old city for a weekend,” Fausnacht says. “I’m looking forward to visiting my hometown, my family, and ultimately being a part of Lancaster for a weekend.”

 

Mollie Swartz

Mollie Swartz

 

Yet another musician performing this weekend that grew up in Lititz is Mollie Swartz. No stranger to the scene, she has played, as well as photographed, the event for the past two years.

Swartz, who plays violin in the Celtic rock band The Ogham Stones, cites Lancaster as the perfect backdrop to hold a celebration of music of this magnitude.

“It (Lancaster) is growing in a good way. I am so happy that there seems to be new bands popping up around here all the time,” Swartz says. “I hope we can keep growing and bringing in more artists from other regions, especially indie acts, and keep trying to find new and better ways to support and create a community for the artists that are here. I’m excited to wander around and hear bands that I’ve never heard before and being surprised. Festivals like this are a great way for me to find new music to love.”

Catch Mollie Swartz with The Ogham Stones Friday evening at the Elks Lodge, located at 219 N. Duke St., at 7:45 p.m.

Todd Fausnacht will play a special VIP ticket holder only reception at 26 East (26 E. King St.) on Saturday at 5 p.m.; and again at 9 p.m. in the lobby of the Lancaster Marriot hotel, located at 25 S. Queen St.

Visit lancasterrootsandblues.com for tickets and a full lineup of Roots & Blues artists and events.

Cory Van Brookhoven is a freelance correspondent for the Lititz Record Express. He welcomes your comments at coryvb@hotmail.com.

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