The Adelphia Music Hall is certainly putting on a dinner and a show this Friday. The music hall, 203 2nd St., Marietta, is putting on their very first episode of The Southeastern Sessions with Craig Heath, Megan Bee and John Walsh.
“It will be a sit-down dinner show with an amazing menu,” Bee, a singer/songwriter, said. “It's an amazing restaurant. And me, John and Craig will be performing in a Nashville-style in the round performance where we each take a turn playing a song, so you'll get a big variety with the three of us all taking turns playing.”
Walsh is the organizer of the event and also one of the performers. Walsh’s day job is at Alliance Industries, which is a collection of companies that do everything from manufacturing heavy equipment to owning and operating The Galley and Adelphia Music Hall.
The music hall opened in 2010. Walsh feels it’s a cool venue with the stage, balcony and malleable floor.
“In other words, we can move tables around, and now, in the socially distance format, that's pretty handy,” Walsh said.
When the venue opened back up from previously being closed because of the pandemic, Walsh wanted to do a singer/songwriter series because he knows a lot of great songwriters in the area. He wants to do the series every six weeks or every other month. Walsh wants to focus on local music with the event.
“…it'll be kinda an acoustic/unplugged format of show,” Walsh said. “It'll be limited seating and kind of a dinner show thing. It's worked out pretty well. You max out at 50 people in the whole place…which makes it kind of a real intimate atmosphere. It's a great vibe.”
Walsh has also been a lifelong musician longer than he’s been anything else.
“I've been pretty active in the Mid-Ohio Valley music scene for, I guess I could say decades,” Walsh said. “I've been playing guitar since I was 11 years old. That was 1974, so that's about 46 years of practice.”
He describes his style as acoustic rock and got his inspiration from Dan Fogelberg, Jackson Browne and James Taylor. Walsh also heavily admires the other singers and their sound.
“Craig has a beautiful, unbelievable singing voice in addition to being a really talented songwriter,” Walsh said. “He's got kind of a Celtic flavor along with some Gospel. He plays keyboards, as well as guitar. (There’s) a really smooth sound coming out of Craig and interesting points of view and stories. And then Megan is the troubadour of the group. She's out there traveling around and making a living, singing her songs. She has a real rootsy sound. I think it's gonna be interesting because it's all acoustic-based music, (but) there's three distinctly different styles.”
Bee is also performing at the Adelphia Music Hall. She describes her sound as folk Americana. She has been performing as Megan Bee for about five years and she had a trio for around another five years before that.
“I have a background in environmental education and farming and traveling, and so that seeps into my lyrics a lot,” Bee said.
Bee is really excited to do the show with Walsh and Heath, who she feels are great regional songwriters and performers.
“The venue’s doing everything they can to adhere to the CDC guidelines and they're encouraging reservations, and they're really spacing it out,” Bee said. “I felt confident that the venue has taken every precaution.”
The music venue scene has taken a hit because of the pandemic. The event Friday night is a rare chance to sit down and listen to some tunes.
“This year has been incredibly interesting because so many venues have shut down or discontinue music for the time being,” Bee said. “I've had some outdoor events this summer, some winery gigs and a couple of patio shows where they have the ability to space people out. But really, most musicians, a lot of my musician friends aren't playing at all, so it's a really rare event to get to have a seated show indoors this year. That has not been happening at all.”
Students are excited about the event and think it’s a fun opportunity.
“This event looks like a great opportunity for anyone seeking a bit of ‘normalcy’ because you can go out and listen to music safely and just enjoy the night!” Leslie Aguilera, a senior studying pre-law, said.