NRG Family Stage To Add Jazz, Blues Flavor To Harborfest

Submitted Article

OSWEGO, NY – The comfortable, shaded atmosphere of Oswego’s East Park will be filled with music once again as NRG Energy brings back the Family Stage for Harborfest 2008.

Sponsored by NRG the NRG Family Stage will showcase the sounds of both local and nationally known jazz and blues artists.

Geoff Achison, pictured, and his band The Souldiggers and the Laurence Elder Project will be the headliners as the NRG Family Stage in Oswego’s East Park comes to life as some of the finest jazz and blues performers in the nation join regional and local talent for three days of live performances during Harborfest 2008.“We are happy to welcome NRG Energy back to Harborfest.  For the past decade the management and employees of NRG Energy have been faithful supporters of Harborfest.  We are grateful for their participation and for once again helping Harborfest bring some great jazz and blues entertainment to East Park,” said President of the Harborfest Board of Directors, Kim Cloonan.

Cloonan said that Harborfest has booked several nationally recognized jazz and blues artists as well as many talented regional and local bands for performances on the NRG Family Stage including:

Laurence Elder Project – Originating at the University of Miami where he earned a Master’s Degree in music, Laurence performed at a sold out CD release party in Miami Beach and regularly performs before large audiences.  According to Modern Drummer Magazine, Laurence plays piano and sings with originality and four-star talent.

Geoff Achison & The Souldiggers – This talented, Australian-born guitar player has developed his own unique blues/funk style that can be delicate one moment and explosive the next.  He is also an award winning songwriter and possesses a soulful voice. His live performances feature an infectious mix of catchy original tunes, improvised jams and inspired versions of blues and soul classics.  Geoff Achison & The Souldiggers have toured around the globe and have won honors on three continents. He has shared the stage with such notable performers as Jorma Kaukonen & Hot Tuna, John Mayall, Tommy Emmanuel, Clarence ‘Gatemouth’ Brown and John Mayer.

Oswego Jazz Project – The brainchild of Robert Auler along with Eric Scmitz, the Oswego Jazz Project serves as community outreach, a way for current students to gain experience and a potential recruiting tool for prospective students. Rotating a cadre of singers and side players into a core quartet, the Oswego Jazz Project performs a variety of jazz standards such as “Autumn Leaves,” “Summertime,” “All of Me,” and “Night and Day.” A local favorite with a loyal following, the Oswego Jazz Project recently released their well-received first CD and is looking forward to Harborfest performance.

Hard Logic – Showcasing a mix of electric and acoustic guitars, bass, keyboards and of course percussion, Hard Logic brings a mix of high energy and smooth jazz to the NRG Family Stage. Featuring composer and sax man Paul DeLoria, Hard Logic’s sound is influenced mainly by The Rippingtons, Spyro Gyra, and the Brecker Brothers.

“The NRG Family Stage will host performances on Friday, Saturday and Sunday during Harborfest weekend,” added Cloonan. “This would not be possible without the support of NRG Energy. Their support is greatly appreciated.”

“Harborfest is a great celebration of entertainment, food, family and fun for the Oswego community and we are proud to be a continuing sponsor of this tradition,” said John Ragan, NRG’s Northeast Regional President. “Each year we look forward to working with Harborfest to make this festival a success.”

NRG Energy, Inc. is a wholesale power generation company, primarily engaged in the ownership and operation of power generation facilities and sale of energy, capacity and related products in the United States and internationally.

The company operates the NRG Oswego Harbor Power Generation Station in Oswego.

Oswego’s 21st annual Harborfest celebration will be held July 24 – 27, with the Entergy Fireworks Spectacular over the Oswego harbor set for July 26.

The 2008 edition of Harborfest will feature plenty of food, fun and entertainment as venues on both Oswego’s east and west sides will be used to deliver the excitement.

A wide variety of entertainment will be featured on stages throughout the city of Oswego including, the NRG Family Stage in East Park, the Budweiser Rock Stage on East Second Street, the Veteran’s Stage on West River Walk, and the Labatt Lakeview Stage in Breitbeck Park.

With the Route 104 bridge closed for repair this summer, be sure to plan accordingly so that you don’t miss the events you want to see.

The Utica Street bridge will be open as will the pedestrian walking bridge located just north of Utica Street.

For more information you may contact the Harborfest office at 343-6858 or visit the Harborfest website at for the latest information regarding transportation options and performance schedules.