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April 11, 2013

Testing the waters

Scottish fidddler brings new songs to Port concert

(Continued)

Currently touring the West Coast, Cassel will be hitting the studio to record her fifth solo album in May and plans to break out some of those new songs for her Newburyport gig at St. Paul’s Church.

“In the last few months I’ve been playing a lot of the stuff that we’re going to put on the album,” Cassel said. “I’m testing the waters and testing out arrangements. It’s fun to play new material and we certainly hope the crowd likes it.”

Accompanying Cassel will be cellist Mike Block, who was a member of Yo Yo Ma’s Silk Road Project.

“He’s a great player, he plays all kinds of different styles,” Cassel said of Block. “He’s an incredible classical player, but he also plays all kinds of styles of folk music.”

Christopher Lewis will be joining in acoustic guitar.

“I’ve known him since I went to Berklee,” Cassel added. “He has more of a rock background but he plays acoustic. I think because the rhythm is so important, it’s good to have a rocker.”

While Cassel has been bringing Scottish fiddle music into the 21st century, she’s delighted to be playing in the 150-year-old Newburyport landmark.

“We plan to use it in a really distinctive way,” Cassel said. “It’s one of my favorite places to play, these kind of old buildings.”

The concert is presented through the Heptunes Celtic Heritage Series in association with the Newburyport Chamber Music Festival.

IF YOU GO What: Hanneke Cassel with cellist Mike Block and guitarist Christopher Lewis When: Saturday, 8 p.m. Where: St. Paul's Church, 166 High St., Newburyport Tickets: $28. To purchase, www.HeptunesConcerts.com.

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