By Susan Marie:
Dreams need wheels and a rising local musical talent is putting that advice into action by leaving Buffalo in early February for a first tour.
A graduate of Robby Takac’s Music is Art’s, NYS-certified Music in Action – career skills training program, acoustic rock singer songwriter, Grace Stumberg will be touring in support of NYC-based duo Left on Red who headlined last summer’s Elmwood Festival of the Arts and is well known for building a career “busking” in NYC subways.
The tour mixes music with a message.
The Chocolate Revolution Tour 2011 visits high school classrooms during the days and clubs in the evenings, sharing music, career stories, and global business lessons about “Fair Trade” chocolate as a smarter alternative to Valentine’s Day. The tour grew out of a single event, conceived February of last year at Ani Difranco’s Babeville by Left On Red and Tanza Zabinski of The Elmwood Festival of The Arts. “Fair Trade” purchases, like coffee and chocolate, support small farmers and also reduce child-exploitation.
This year, that February 2010 single event has grown into a 6 city club tour and adds a school classroom feature in each city.
The tour departs February 2 to visit a few venues in the NYC area before stops in Albany, Syracuse, Rochester, Ithaca, and Buffalo (Babeville, Feb 11). Following these acoustic dates with Left on Red, Grace Stumberg travels with her full band for a featured showcase at the 15th annual Millenium Music Conference in Harrisburg on Feb 19, where Stumberg’s manager/guitarist Bob James will be a music industry panelist.
Stumberg, 21, is a South Buffalo resident who released her debut CD last June to growing critical support. She currently attends Villa Maria College, helps lead the “tunes4food” Food Bank music campaign that has raised over 40,000 meals since June 2009, attended a private invitation audition for NBC’s “Americas Got Talent” last November, and is in talks with the producers of Roadtrip Nation about use of her song, “to whom it may concern” in the new season. She is a regular workshop trainer at Music in Action school events across WNY.