Updated Wed, Mar 5, 2014 3:52 pm
The covered bridge at Ohio University Lancaster has been the literal link between the campus and the Lancaster Festival for more than 25 years.
That’s one of the many reasons why a new name for a relatively new partnership between the Lancaster Festival and OUL, The Covered Bridge Music Series, seems to make perfect sense.
"The covered bridge at OUL is an icon on campus," said Lancaster Campus Dean Dr. Jim Smith. "It seems to represent both the festival and OUL and the collaboration that this music series is all about."
The partnership, which started about a year-and-a-half ago, brings up-and-coming artists to the campus twice a year. Three concerts have been performed on campus so far and all have careers that are on the rise as they make waves in the music business.
In November 2012, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit played in the Wagner Theatre with opening act, Amanda Shires. Isbell and Shires appeared at OUL just before their respective new releases were hailed by music critics everywhere.
Isbell’s Southeastern album was ranked the #1 best album by NPR rock critic Ken Tucker. Shires’ Down Fell the Doves received many mentions on top lists as well, including her song "Devastate" being named to American Songwriter's top 50 songs of the year.
In May 2013, singer-songwriter Joe Pug performed at OUL, followed by the series' first outdoor concert with The David Mayfield Parade, in September.
Now the series, which will operate under its new name The Covered Bridge Music Series, is about to welcome its fourth act. Elizabeth Cook will be performing at OUL on April 25.
"Elizabeth Cook has a distinct country music voice, most often compared to Dolly Parton or Loretta Lynn. She is a major talent that brings an eclectic mix of genres to the stage, crossing from country to honky-tonk to rockabilly and gospel, playing her guitar and singing from the heart," said Lancaster Festival Director Lou Ross. "Elizabeth is one of the best songwriters in Nashville today. She can make you laugh with her humorous lyrics and then rip your heart out in the very next song."
Cook is a relentless performer, touring worldwide, including more than 200 performances at The Grand Ole Opry. Cook currently hosts the show Apron Strings weekday mornings on Sirius XM’s Outlaw Country channel.
Her latest album, Welder, was on Rolling Stone's list of the 25 Best Albums of 2010. Welder was produced by Don Was (Rolling Stones, Kris Kristofferson) and features guest appearances by Dwight Yoakam, Rodney Crowell and Buddy Miller.
The concert will be held in the Wagner Theatre at Ohio University Lancaster. The evening will kick off at 6:30 p.m. with local music, beverages and a food truck. The Elizabeth Cook performance will begin at 8:30 p.m.
Tickets for the show go on sale Friday, March 7 and may be purchased at www.lancasterfestival.org.