LEWISTON — Maine singer/songwriter Denny Breau will be headlining a benefit concert for the Friends of Pettingill citizen’s committee organized to create a two-acre park in Lewiston. “Pickin’ for Pettingill” will be held at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 12, at the Franco American Heritage Center, 46 Cedar St. The event will also feature Arlo West, Nick Knowlton, Malinda Liberty, Frank Coffin, Paul Mellyn and Justin Lindsay. Admission is $10 at the door.

Friends of Pettingill was created last winter and is currently fundraising to help offset the cost of a multi-year plan to preserve the playground and turn the old Pettingill Elementary School property on College Street into a community park. The city is planning to demolish the building later this year.

Breau, whose mastery of the six-string guitar has amazed audiences for more than 40 years. He was inducted into the Maine Country Music Hall of Fame in 2004, the youngest inductee in the history of the organization. He is the son of RCA recording artists Betty Cody and Hal “Lone Pine,” and the brother of Lenny Breau, voted by Guitar Magazine as one of the 20 greatest guitar players of all time. Denny is able to draw in an audience with a finely arranged melody, and then slide effortlessly into scorching fingerwork that sets ears aflame.

West is an American guitarist and singer-songwriter. He has recorded 14 albums and has appeared as a guest artist on many others. Many Maine fans remember him as the leader of the Arlo West Band. He has toured with Uncle John Turner and Bobby Torello, both formerly with Johnny Winter.

Liberty performs frequently throughout Maine and is well-known for her recording of “The Maine Christmas Song” and her hit single “Working Days” which charted on the Cash Box Magazine Top 100.

Knowlton is one of Maine’s most beloved musicians, having performed and recorded continuously since the mid 1960s when he started out as the lead singer for Terry and the Telstars. Knowlton later joined the band Katfish which spent six weeks on Billboard’s Hot 100 in 1975 with a remake of the Beatles’ “Dear Prudence.”

Coffin is perhaps the most sought-after electric bass guitar session player in Maine, having performed on countless recordings for rock and country artists. He frequently performs in concert with Breau and is married to Malinda Liberty.

Mellyn is a highly regarded strummer and picker who has performed regularly on the bluegrass festival circuit with the Neon Valley Boys from Rhode Island. Although he has played with big names such as Mary Chapin Carpenter, today he prefers the low-key life performing with his friends in Maine.

Lindsay is a 12-year-old guitar sensation from Scarborough. He has performed at Pedro O’Hara’s and Fast Breaks in Lewiston, the Loft in Portland, and Run of the Mill in Saco. He was recently showcased on the WCSH-TV program “207” where he was cited as the next up-and-coming child prodigy.


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