Pete Lancaster to perform at Highline for First Friday

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

First Friday in Greencastle Nov. 5 welcomes blues musician Pete Lancaster. This Greencastle resident is being sponsored by Highline Coffeehouse and Café, 101 W. Baltimore St., and will be performing there from 5 to 8 p.m.

Lancaster, a Bowie, Md. native, started his music career and lifelong love of the blues in Cleveland, Ohio. He was a one-man band singing and playing acoustic guitar and harmonica, and keeping the beat by stomping on a tambourine-filled crate. Scene magazine described him as a “One Man Blues Army.”

From Cleveland, Lancaster moved to Hagerstown where he immersed himself in the music scene. He participated in the last Hagerfest music festival and immediately began playing solo around the area. Soon, he and neighbor Carl Disque formed the duo 2Blue. When Disque wanted to start a Blues fest in Hagerstown, Pete was on board. And so, the idea of the Western Maryland Blues Festival was formed.

To drum up interest in the festival, Disque and Lancaster began reaching out to the public and providing an education in the Blues. Disque would set up engagements with local organizations, and Lancaster would perform, explaining and playing different styles of the blues, such as Delta, Texas, Piedmont, Louisiana, and “train ride to Chicago” or electric Blues.

Lancaster also put out the call to his fellow blues musician and was able to line up several blues greats for the first festival-first generation blues artist Robert Lockwood, Jr. (stepchild of the legendary Robert Johnson who allegedly “sold his soul to the devil”), The Nighthawks and Mr. Downchild.

Lancaster also has three albums to his credit-Decision Gate; 2Blue Ensemble; Scraps of History with Alan Mason; and Scraps of History, Stack O' Blues

Currently, Lancaster performs with his band, Stack O' Blues. Members also include Arnie Helmick on bass, Alan Mason on guitar and keys, Bart Lay on drums and Duane “D.C.” Carnes on guitar.

Jazzy Java

The November First Friday event is being billed as a Jazzy Java event.

Highline Coffeehouse and Café, Willowtree Gifts and Flower Boutique, Bentley's Old Mill Bakery and Barbeque, Greencastle Coffee Roasters and Pure & Simple Café will have coffee samples .

For a special shopping experience, the downtown merchants will be holding their holiday preview kickoff in preparation for their Holiday Open House Nov. 12 and 13.

Many artisans will be participating this month with handmade cards, jewelry, barn wood birdhouses, pottery, nature photographs, expressionistic paintings, watercolors, pastels, oils and polymer clay critters.

In addition to the artists at each shop, Gallery 7 will be open at 107 E. Baltimore St. and will be showcasing the work of even more talented artists in the area.

Lots of food will be available for dinner or a snack. In addition to the downtown restaurants, Mrs. Gibble's Restaurant will have free samples of its popular items, and Mikie's Ice Cream will be selling sundaes and sandwiches. Tuscarora Mountain Winery will have samples of its wine at the  new shop on Baltimore Street, and Tracey's Orchard will be on the square selling seasonal produce and fall treats.

Coffeehouse Poetry Night has found a new home at the Highline Coffeehouse and Café and will meet from 6:30 to 8 p.m.