PORTLAND — Each year, St. Lawrence Arts hosts a fundraiser concert with a wine-and-cheese reception. It is a fun opportunity for audience members to have a more personal experience with a famous musician. Slaid Cleaves, David Mallett, and Rod Picott have been featured at this special event in the past, and this year SLA is delighted to have John Gorka at 7 p.m. Sunday, April 6, at St. Lawrence Arts.

Gorka got his start in eastern Pennsylvania as a student at Moravian College. He traveled to New York City, where Jack Hardy’s legendary Fast Folk circle (a breeding ground for many a major singer/songwriter) became a powerful source of education and encouragement. Folk meccas like Texas’ Kerrville Folk Festival (where he won the New Folk Award in 1984) and Boston followed, and his stunningly soulful baritone voice and emerging songwriting began turning heads.

Many well-known artists have recorded and/or performed John Gorka songs, including Mary Chapin Carpenter, Nanci Griffith, Mary Black and Maura O’Connell. He also started sharing tours with many notable friends: Nanci Griffith and Mary Chapin Carpenter among them. John also graced the stage of Austin City Limits, appeared on CNN, and has been the subject of other national programming.

Now with this, his 11th studio album, he returns to his roots with So Dark You See, his most compelling and traditional album to date. It has been widely praised as some of John’s finest work. In addition to his 11 critically acclaimed albums, John released a collector’s edition box featuring a hi-definition DVD and companion CD called The Gypsy Life.

Tickets are $50, which includes food and drink, and may be purchased at www.stlawrencearts.org. 

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