SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Lifestyle

May 15, 2014

A space for sounds

Concert series to offer wide variety of music

A beautiful concert hall deserves music to match.

That’s why the Ames Hall Concert Series was started and will bring The Dejas and other local bands to the renovated space at Salem’s YMCA on Saturday.

“Ames Hall is a such a beautiful room; we wanted to utilize this space,” said Aaron Katz, who plays for The Dejas and booked the program with help from Charity Lezma. “This is the first step in that direction.”

Saturday’s performance will include Soul Rebel Project, a reggae band from Boston, and Kevin William.

“Kevin William is one of the lead singers of Exiting the Fall, John Miller’s band — he’s Angie Miller’s brother,” Katz said. “This is his acoustic project; he’ll be singing songs with acoustic guitars.”

Soul Rebel Project, which has appeared on stage with Grammy winners Toots and the Maytalls, features Berklee College of Music professor John Funkhouser on piano and performs regularly at Opus Underground in Salem.

“Qwill, who lives in Salem, is going to be doing one of his DJ sets throughout,” Katz said.

The soulful indie-pop of The Dejas features Katz on keyboards and drums, and Callie Lipton on guitar and lead vocals. The pair met at the University of New Hampshire in 2005, recorded the album “Speeding Softly” in 2010, and have played at the Hard Rock Cafe, the Rochester Opera House and the Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport.

They sometimes appear as a duo, but for this performance, they will add saxophonist Conor Jenks and bass player Jeff Lafontant.

“We’ll do our normal, original music set for this gig, with dance and ambient music,” Katz said.

All the performers on the program are playing for free, so ticket revenue can be used to fund the YMCA’s Youth Music Program.

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