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August 6, 2009

Be part of a live album this weekend

First Congregational Church of Rockport is starting coffeehouse performances, with the first taking place this weekend with the local band, What Time Is It, Mr. Fox?.

The band will perform at the concert for all ages tomorrow at 7:30 p.m.

What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? will record the live concert of their favorite songs by Leonard Cohen, Johnny Cash, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Prince, Bob Marley, Annie Lennox and many others at the church at 12 School St. in Rockport.

In 2001, local singer-songwriter Brian King was invited to an impromptu jam with violinist Nathan Cohen on a street corner in Lanesville. As King strapped on the guitar, he asked Cohen if he had ever heard the traditional folk song "Sail Away, Ladies." As fate would have it, it was Cohen's favorite song.¬ The two haven't stopped making music together since that day.¬ And along with Mike Leggio on stand-up bass, "Sail Away, Ladies" is just one of the songs the trio will perform tomorrow in celebration of their years of playing together.¬ 

Since that day in 2001,¬  What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? has gone through numerous changes, adding drums, Hammond organ, cello, singing saw and accordion to the mix.¬  The band recently released an acclaimed full-length CD of original songs, "And Other Stories."¬  But from the beginning, the band's sound has been rooted in the many hours the core trio has performed at various bars in Gloucester, with weekly residencies at Captain Carlo's and The White Rainbow (now the Dog Bar).

It was during these long sets that the band members would experiment with recreating songs by their favorite artists.¬  From their down-tempo, country version of Prince's "Little Red Corvette" or their folk jazz take on the '80s anthem "Tainted Love," Mr. Fox loves to put its own spin on classic favorites.¬ Up to this point the band has never documented its successes.¬  At tomorrow's performance, the band will perform its most requested covers, such as Leonard Cohen's "Famous Blue Raincoat," Joni Mitchell's "Carey,"¬  and numerous others from Sarah Vaughan and Billie Holiday to Madonna and Fleetwood Mac.¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ 

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