DCCA News: Casually celebrating power of music


The casually communal coffeehouses of the 1960s and 1970s showcased thoughtful ideas and ideals in addition to music and poetry; Scott Ainslee adheres to that tradition with his music and stories.

He believes that music connects our brains with our spirits in a way words cannot; his performances unite artist and audience in universal celebration of the power of music to communicate, to entertain, to inspire. This concept, rooted in the past, maintains relevance today and will continue into the future as long as sincere believers participate in its magic.

Scott Ainslee has been making music since he was 3 years old, when his mother found him picking out melodies on the piano.

“I’ve been a musician all my life,” the bluesy folk artist states, going on to humbly explain his successful career as “doing the only thing I’m really good at.”

Scott is the quintessential coffeehouse artist, sharing his appreciation for American roots music and its history with audiences around the country. Darke County Center for the Arts will present the Vermont-based Ainslee as part of its Coffeehouse Series on April 20 at the Arts Depot in Union City, an intimate venue with its own unique charisma adding to the appeal of the show.

This masterful musician will bring the sounds of America alive as he performs hauntingly beautiful and brashly gritty songs with power as well as charm. Scott studied music in college, but also was schooled in traditional Southern Appalachian music as well as black gospel and blues by elder musicians. He spent six years transcribing the recorded work of blues icon Robert Johnson, and has published a well-regarded book on the Delta blues legend.

When Scott Ainslee takes the stage with his plethora of stringed instruments, he knows what song will start the show as well as how he plans to end the set. What happens in between depends upon his instinctive reaction to the relationship established with his audience. “We are in this together,” he declares, succinctly stating a long held coffeehouse tenet that contributes to a memorable experience.

If the past is any guide, the Arts Depot audience will hear “songs polished by tongues of a thousand singers,” according to Ainslee. Those songs might include “Crossroad Blues” or “Come On In My Kitchen” by Robert Johnson, or Irving Berlin’s “Say It Isn’t So,” as well as some of Scott’s original compositions which convey the composer’s deep appreciation for cultural roots and tradition. His promotional materials boast that Scott Ainslee’s performances “present a wonderful palette of sounds and stories that will delight the ear, awaken the mind, and satisfy the heart,” a seductive pitch pretty much describing the hoped-for effect of a DCCA Coffeehouse show.

Tickets for the concert by Scott Ainslee are $10, and can be reserved by contacting DCCA at 937-547-0908 or [email protected], or purchased at DCCA’s office located within Greenville Public Library or online at www.CenterForArts.net. If any remain by showtime, tickets will also be available at the door. The show starts at 7 p.m.

By Marilyn Delk


Marilyn Delk is a director of the Darke County Center for the Arts and can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

No posts to display