Godfrey’s Board of Directors Annual Planning Meeting

Yesterday, our Godfrey Daniels board of directors held its annual retreat and planning session, at Lehigh University. We wish to thank Ramona LaBarre, Joe Scull, and a fine staff of volunteers, for keeping the music thriving. This is what we call #godfreydanielscommunity.

Here’s a quick look at the Year in Review
• New Speakers were installed, thanks to a grant
• Volunteer staff started using SignUp Genius
• Live From Godfrey Daniels on WDIY is thriving
• New (gently used) computers received thanks to donation
• Archives collaboration with Lehigh University
• Music Series are all gaining ground: Charter Arts, Dave’s Night Out, Homegrown, First Friday
• Partnerships continue with WDIY, Ice House Tonight, Southside Film Festival, Lehigh Valley Storytelling Guild, Musikfest, Mayfair, Muses in the Vineyard
• Grants, gifts and other donations are up

GD BOD 2014

(l-r): Fred Bonsall, Jeff Huff, Chuck Schubert, Mary Radadovits, Dina Hall, Dave Fry, Bernie Toseland, (bottom) Bill George. (not in photo: Andy Bollinger

Dina’s first visit to the Philadelphia Folk Festival

by Dina Hall



Dave Fry shares memories of performing and emceeing at the festival main stage. — at Philadelphia folk fest.

I had the great privilege of spending yesterday with my good friend Dave Fry, at the Philadelphia Folk Festival. It was my first time at the fest (I know, What?!) and I couldn’t have asked for a better way to make that memory. As we toured the grounds, Dave introduced me to some of the Philly Folk Fest ‘royalty’, gave me a sneak peek into the backstage operations, and shared his memories of his early days as a performer and emcee at the festival.

I also reconnected with some friends that I haven’t seen in quite some time. Dave and I talked about the local music community, and the greater folk community and how good artists cross that bridge and how they do it well. At the end of the day, we snacked on peach pie, and enjoyed a couple of the main stage acts. Our favorite act of the day was 10 Strings and a Goatskin, from the North Shore of Prince Edward Island. (side note: Steep Canyon Rangers blew my mind!)

If I can make a simple point here it is this: It is only when I’m in these situations that I remember what an honor it is to be at the helm of Godfrey Daniels. Godfrey’s is part of the history of folk music in the northeast United States. It is respected and revered by internationally touring artists, and national and regional ones as well. We have a treasure here on the southside of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and we must do our best to preserve that.


Ansel Barnum talking during a harmonica workshop.

Dave Fry gets to chat with young fans.










Thank you to Dave, for sharing all of this with me. And thank you to all of the Members, Volunteers and Artists who keep the music alive! We are a strong community, and a happy one at that.


We wore these in honor of Mike Space.

If you’ve never been to Godfrey Daniels, here’s a link to the website. (http://www.godfreydaniels.org) I hope you can visit soon.

– Dina







Cymbals are missing

Hi Folks,

A few months ago, we noticed that some of the pieces from our house drum kit have been missing. We’ve looked high and low, but haven’t been able to recover them.

As you know, we are a non-profit organization, operating on a very tight budget, so we’re appealing to you – our community – to help us replace these pieces.

Here’s what we need:
(2) 16″-20″ cymbals (one ride cymbal, one crash cymbal)
(1) cymbal floor stand
(2) ball clamps for mounting tom-toms

Maybe you’re a drummer and have spare equipment, or maybe you’re a generous member and would like to donate money to cover the cost of this equipment. Either way, please call 610-867-2390 if you’re interested.

Thanks so much for your ongoing support.


*** Follow-up: The cymbals were replaced by a small group of generous friends. We thank you very much.

Annual Board Retreat today

The Godfrey Daniels Board of Directors met today for their annual planning retreat. We brainstormed programming ideas for the upcoming year, explored fundraising and sponsorship programs, and considered ways to sustain our mission.

We continue our commitment to the community, and we appreciate your support in return – both physical and financial. Help us to spread this concept, by using social media to share your experiences at Godfrey’s. Please use the hashtag #‎godfreydanielscommunity‬.

Here’s to a great year ahead.

– Dina Hall, president, Godfrey Daniels

A profound sadness amidst the celebration of music.

by Dave Fry

How does one define Space? It has no boundaries, to begin with.


We lost our immediate personification of Space when we lost our own Mike Space this week, who passed in his sleep in his new home in the Caribbean.  He was recreating another chapter in his active and creative life with his soul mate Judi Space, off on the island paradise of Vieques.



When Mike and Judi moved up to the Lehigh Valley from Philly, he brought with him his love of folk music, art, good food and general large living, along with his hands-on skills as a mechanic. And it was his love of getting under the hood that made him invaluable as he began his career as a folk-music promoter, sound man, and radio DJ.

Personally, he was the right man for the big job of Artistic Director at Godfrey’s when he took over for me when, in 2000, I stepped away and resettled in CT with my family after 25 years on the job. It was important for me and for the club to trust in someone who recognized the continuity necessary, and could take the club in new directions. Mike did that in spades, brought back the favorites and, importantly, introduced new artists to our stage, folks who shared his sense of humor and arcane entertainment tastes.


Mike Space, Cindy Dinsmore, Paul Geremia, at Godfrey Daniels Sep. 2008


Mike Space at Godfrey Daniels after 2012 Zen For Primates Christmas Show

He and Judi also opened their home Space Mountain to traveling musicians, including myself, returning to the Lehigh Valley for gigs. We were always grateful for their graciousness and hospitality and for the stimulating conversations over their communal table. Mike also expanded on this concept with a series of amazing house concerts, extending this hospitality to neighbors and friends. The 2014 Spring series he lined up is amazing, and bears his signature.

Mike Space used his expansive musical knowledge as he became involved with WDIY and public radio. He was there in the beginnings of Live From Godfrey Daniels, an important way of getting folks “in the door” at the club, introducing Lehigh Valley ears to the magic that happens at our live shows. And then he hosted The Blend, the afternoon potpourri of contemporary Americana, rare gems from our hippie past and various other cultural curiosities. He owned his show and folks came to cherish his Tuesday afternoon explorations and sly commentaries.


Mike and Luna visit Godfrey’s during the Southside Bethlehem Spring on Fourth Celebration in Apr. 2005.

Mike also put in the long hours and hard labor as a volunteer at the Philly Folk Festival, doing what had to be done to set up and break down this huge event, while enjoying the behind-the-scenes community of Festers who gather each year to stage this internationally recognized celebration of Folk Music.

Mike was a man who smiled, laughed, pitched in and created, always with open arms and an open heart. We are proud to have been in his presence all these years, and the folk music community at large will miss his spirit and humor. I’m sure he is setting up house concerts on the other side of the Pearly Gates, doing sound, emceeing, and welcoming friends and musicians to sit a spell and celebrate our community with some of the finest in Folk Music.


The last three photos are courtesy of Joe Cassano.

‘Tis the season for community, in a culture of Connections.

by Ramona LaBarre


For over 20 years, Craig Thatcher has been bringing all manner of exciting band configurations to Godfrey Daniels’ stage.  For those who don’t know him, Craig is a Lehigh Valley native, who is an ambassador/clinician for Martin Guitar.  He is an accomplished blues guitar artist and besides playing regularly in many different regional venues, he tours the world with his powerful and stellar shows.

thatcher boak

For his November 24 acoustic show at Godfrey’s, Craig brought in long-time friend and special guest Dick Boak, Director of Museums, Archives and Special Projects (for those of you who might need an introduction) at Martin Guitar.  Dick’s history at Godfrey Daniels goes all the way back to the early days in the 1970s.

Image 2The convergence of long-time friends Craig, Dick, and Godfrey Daniels founder Dave Fry made for a magical evening indeed.  Dick played and sang with Craig and the band, and so did Dave, with a selection from his upcoming album, Playground.  And the evening was kicked off by Dick presenting a monetary gift of support from The Martin Guitar Foundation, to Godfrey Daniels.

 dick boak

The connection between artists and audience was, as usual, palpable.  Another extraordinary evening of music in your original live music listening room.

Thanks to our friends at Martin Guitar, and thanks to Craig for always coming back to our stage.   And we gratefully acknowledge the presence of Michael & Sybil Stershic.  In the new tradition of Connecting, they shared the magic of the evening with a tweet and an Instagram photo on behalf of Discover Lehigh Valley.  Did you see that? ( < in the left-hand sidebar )

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!


Happy Summer.

Greetings to all,
Happy summer to you. I hope you’re relaxing and enjoying time with family and friends. It’s August, the crickets and the cicadas are making beautiful rhythm, and we’ve come to the close of another memorable season. While we take this short break, don’t forget to refer to the schedule on our website. It features some of the upcoming shows.
In case you haven’t heard all that’s going on, I’d like to briefly report on what’s happened lately.
In May, we welcomed some new folks to our board of directors, and they quickly settled in to very active roles. Loly Reynolds, Chuck Schubert, Fred Bonsall, and Bill George joined the board over the past year. Loly Reynolds took on the role of Membership chair – with great enthusiasm. Bill George comes to us with many years of experience and creative leadership at Touchstone Theater. He has become an animated member of our newly-formed Communications committee.
In April, three longtime board members stepped down after many years of activity in the organization. Mike Space, Gar Davidson and Scott Petersen all retired from their roles in Godfrey’s leadership. We appreciate all that they have done year after year. If you see them around town, please remember to tell them “Thank You”.
The board elected Loly Reynolds as vice president, and Chuck Schubert as treasurer. I’m honored to be the new president. It’s exciting to have this chance to lead Godfrey’s forward, into a new era of music and community. I think we all feel the changes taking place, and while we’ll keep doing what we do best, we’re also pleased to pass the torch on to a new generation. Thanks to Dave Fry and Cindy Dinsmore for continuing to guide us all in the right direction. And my personal thanks to Ramona LaBarre for managing and directing and reaching out and welcoming in.
If you’re a Member or a Volunteer – or both – thank you. And we hope to see you in September.

Dina Hall
President-Godfrey Daniels

A gift to our Members

by Ramona LaBarre

On Friday, March 22, a close-knit group of friends gathered to celebrate Godfrey Daniels’ 37th anniversary in our annual Spring event, our members-only concert, with our special guest artist, Bill Miller. We began these members-only concerts a few years ago, to give back to our members, a small token of all they have given to Godfrey’s over our lifetime of financial support.

below: Ramona LaBarre and Cyndi Reichard  Photo by Joe Ledva

901043_462355973835492_893236142_oWe often are asked, “Do we have to be a member to attend your concerts?” The answer is No (with the exception of our annual event) – Godfrey’s is not a private club. Godfrey’s is open to the public and welcomes audience members of all ages and musical interests, every time the doors are open. Our supporting membership program was started in the very early 1980s, in order to support our 501 (c) (3) non-profit status. We’re supported by membership in the same way public television and public radio are. And membership has its privileges.

Two years ago for our milestone 35th anniversary, our own John Gorka joined us in the celebration. We held a silent raffle, kicked off our annual Martin Guitar raffle, unveiled an anniversary hand-thrown collectible mug by Sommerville Pottery, and our annual celebration was for the first time ever, held off-premises, at Trinity Episcopal Church on Market Street, one mile from Godfrey’s. The venue is a perfect fit – Mother Laura and her husband Dave Howell, along with Trinity’s social worker Marcie Lightwood, are long-time friends of Godfrey’s; and the congregation at the church and our own audience at Godfrey’s overlap in great numbers.

Our founder Dave Fry is our honorable Master of Ceremonies each spring. Dave is fond of reminding us all of the magic that happens in the room at Godfrey’s, between the artist and audience. While our annual Spring event has found a warm home at the church, the magic exists there as well, where the gathering consists of 100% of our supporting members. The community and joy are palpable. People know one another, not only from their visits to Godfrey’s, but from all over our arts-rich community. Notable community members such as Beall Fowler, Jodi Duckett & Wally Trimble, the music-loving Finelli Clan, Bill Stanford, and Loly Reynolds, to name just a few, were present this year.

dina pixtop left: Wally Trimble and Jodi Duckett chat with Dave Fry; top right: Jack Murray, Pat Finelli, Wanda Finelli, Terry Mutchler; bottom left: several items in the silent raffle; Rosalie Fry and Loly Reynolds  (photos by Dina Hall)

Dave Fry’s opening set was full of humor, seriousness, and gratitude, honoring our members and uniting every one in the room. He is our consummate entertainer, well-known, successful in his music career, and well-loved in our community. Following Dave, Bill’s show was reverent, as appropriate to the room. He has a long-standing history in Bethlehem, not only in concert appearances at Godfrey’s and other venues, but also back to his ancestry, some of whom are buried in Nisky Hill Cemetery.

Photo by Joe Ledva

Bill mixed his Native-American based original songs and his powerful vocals with his haunting flute music, and did some covers that still resonate with his philosophy. And his storytelling was a large part of his show, along with many compliments about feeling remarkable kinship with Godfrey’s and the Lehigh Valley in general. Bill also reflected on his first visit to Godfrey’s, when he opened for John Hartford for $60, eventually going out on tour with John, becoming close friends with him and the many friends of John on the folk circuit. Bill closed out his set with an invitation to Dave Fry to join him ‘for some rock’n’roll’ – and they covered J.J. Cale’s ‘Call Me the Breeze’ with much visible delight and powerful guitar licks. We know that was an honor for Dave, as it was for all of his friends there in the room.

The celebration could not have been better; and as is often the case with Godfrey Daniels shows, they really do just keep getting better as the years roll on by.


Dave’s Night Out at Godfrey Daniels

by Dina Hall

We’re embarking on a new project. Dave’s Night Out: A unique evening of stories, songs and banter amongst an eclectic trio of road musicians assembled by – you guessed it – Dave Fry.

DF Lehigh

Dave will invite two other professional players and friends to share Godfrey’s stage with him, sharing songs and stories of what makes them tick, what tickles them and their life as a musician.

Part jam, part interview, part audience interaction – an opportunity to get to know the musicians, how they craft their art, and hear some spontaneous acoustic music and humor shared amongst new friends.


So, mark your calendar and check our web site often.

Dave’s Night Out
Last Wednesday of each month
7:30 pm $10.50

Bringing the Past into the Future

by Dave Fry

I was asked to present a workshop at an East Coast Archive Convention held here in Bethlehem in 2010. These were heavy academic folks – Smithsonian, the Guthrie family, Moravian College, Martin Guitar, etc. and I was scheduled to share a session with the Philadelphia Folk Festival.  I felt like I would be the freshman at a senior prom.  But, the Philly Folk Fest rep couldn’t make it, so I stepped up with a Power Point presentation about all that Godfrey’s has accumulated over 35 years. It turned out to be the rebirth of the Godfrey Daniels Archives committee – Me.

With that, I faced piles of videotapes, DAT tapes, posters, newsprint, monthly Gazettes, Gene Mater caricatures, performer photos, and more.  So, I’ve been sorting a lot of print material, photos, posters, etc. and continue to come across some amazing items. Stay tuned to the blog!
The real good news to come out of that workshop at the Hotel Bethlehem was my introduction to the archivists at Lehigh University. Together, we’ll be able to take the Godfrey Daniels’ archives up to Lehigh for safe storage and future internet access for historical study.

The folks at Lehigh are interested in Godfrey’s archives on several levels beyond the club’s 37-year history. The collection reflects on the folk circuit locally and nationally, a recent chunk of the revival of Bethlehem’s SouthSide and the arts scene on Fourth St., and the Lehigh Valley at large – plus pictures of Cindy and me and Jade. Cindy Dave Jade


I finished up my presentation by singing John Gorka’s How Legends are Made – playing my Godfrey’s Edition Martin guitar.  It was one of the best set closers I’ve ever done in front of 20 people.