Craig Harris’ busy year continues with several local events

Date: 7/2/2015

CHICOPEE – Photographer, writer and musician Craig Harris is having a busy year.

Harris, whose “Drum Away the Blues” program has been successful in schools and other venues, will have an exhibition of his photos at the Storrs Library in Longmeadow. The show opened June 30 and there will be an artist’s reception on July 15 at 6 p.m. Harris will perform at the library at 1 p.m. on July 8.

He has been presenting the “Drum Away the Blues” program for seven years and Harris explained to Reminder Publications, “It builds communities of all ages.”

The photos will be a sampling of Harris’s collection. He has taken photos of fellow musicians for years, but the exhibit will also include his work from the recent Great New England Air Show as well as other subjects.

The appearance at the Storrs Library will kick off a series of events for Harris. He will appear at “Stories, Songs and Rhythms of the River: Family Frolic Storytime” at the Gaylord Memorial Library in South Hadley at 10:30 a.m. on July 10.

On July 12, his band, the Gaea Star band, will perform an anti-gas pipeline event from 1 to 9 p.m. at the Singing Bridge Performing Arts Lodge in West Cummington.

The band’s first album will be released in October, he added.

Harris is also busy on several book projects. He has collaborated with Melanie Safka on her memoirs. The folk rocker known as Melanie who became a star in the 1970s with songs such as “Brand New Key.”

Harris has recently performed with Melanie, as well.

Harris also is finishing up “Heartbeat and Warble: American Indian Music,” he described as “a unprecedented examination of American Indian music.” He conducted more than 100 interviews for that project.

In the fall, Harris said he is starting work on a book about the classic rock a cappella group The Persuasions.