PORTSMOUTH — Not even a pandemic could stop music lovers from enjoying another year of The Boneyfiddle Project’s Final Friday concert series which is set to resume its monthly occurrence beginning June 26.
Many outdoor concert venues and shows have been canceled due to either concern in the coronavirus pandemic or monetary restrictions by having budgets set on ad-generated funds — not The Boneyfiddle Project. Instead, Rob and Julia Black, founders of The Boneyfiddle Project, are in the final stages of preparation for their 27th Final Friday concert throughout the last five years, one they’re calling “Mothman goes viral in Boneyfiddle.”
“We plan on having a full season,” Rob Black said. “We had our budget already established and set by the time COVID-19 hit. We do our fundraising in January, February, March and then it hit.”
The newest ad for the first in person Final Friday of the year was designed by Brooke Moore, a friend of The Boneyfiddle Project. The featured band in the June 26 live concert will be Mothman, a band established in 1990 that plays cover songs as well as their own original music.
Playing along with Mothman will be several artists that were hand-picked by Todd Martin, lead singer of Moth Man. These acts include Nathan Marshall, Moving Target, Ronnie C. Pierce, and Fallout.
“We decided that what we were going to do was put on the best concert we could put on,” Black said.
Rather than risk exposure during their scheduled Final Friday event in May, Black made the decision to livestream the concert in Facebook so that people at home could watch a show they would otherwise be doing in person.
During the May concert, Taylor Boldman, owner of Brooks & Willow, was awarded the Boneyfiddle Beautification Award for May 2020. The award was presented to Boldman by WNXT radio personality Holly Gail who also performed at the May concert.
“Despite being moved inside due to the threat of rain, we were able to successfully pull off a fantastic concert in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” a statement from the Boneyfiddle Project website says. “By combining our efforts of social distancing and offering a Facebook livestream for those who preferred to stay at home, we were able to serve our community and abide by current guidelines.”
Although May’s online concert was unique in its’ nature, Black is indeed happy to see people out and about, serving their communities and visiting local businesses.
“It’s good to see when you drive down Second Street or you drive past these restaurants, it’s good to see people out,” Black said.
The acts scheduled for the June 26 Final Friday will begin around 5:30 p.m. at the Three Bridges Outdoor Music Venue and should conclude around 9 p.m.
Vendors will be set up to sell food during the concert and guests are allowed to bring their cooler during the show. The Boneyfiddle Project will also be selling their custom t-shirts at the June 26 show, including a new design featuring a depiction of Portsmouth native Rich Moon. These t-shirts are also for sale online or at Charm Boutique in Portsmouth.
In addition to visiting the concert, Black encourages concert-goers to consider visiting some of the restaurants in the Boneyfiddle area of Portsmouth, a stance that fits in exactly with the purpose and mission statement for The Boneyfiddle Project.
“The Boneyfiddle Project that puts this on, the nonprofit that we’ve formed, our mission statement is to enhance commerce in the historic district through music,” Black said. “That’s what we do, that’s what we’ve been doing for the last five years. If we can get people to come back down and start spending money, that’s great. We’ve fulfilled our mission statement if that’s the case.”
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT © 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved