Arts & Entertainment

Concerts in the Park Return to Olean

The city’s annual summer concert series returned Thursday with a two-hour performance by Toucan Jam. Credits: Richard Lee
Nancy "Bea" Antonelli plays on 6- and 12-string guitars, mandolin, harmonicas, kazoo and egg shaker for Toucan Jam. Credits: Richard Lee
Rich Gardner plays guitar, keyboards, harmonicas, train whistle and penny whistle for Toucan Jam. Credits: Richard Lee
More than 50 people turned out to hear Toucan Jam at Lincoln Park. Credits: Richard Lee

OLEAN, NY -- The city’s annual summer concert series returned Thursday with a two-hour performance by Toucan Jam. More than 50 people turned out to hear the duo at Lincoln Park.

Onstage, the two Toucan Jam members – Rich Gardner and Nancy "Bea" Antonelli – played a wide variety of material that included familiar tunes such as Van Morrison's “Brown Eyed Girl,” Neil Diamond's “Sweet Caroline” and Elton John's “Daniel.”

But they also ventured into unexpected areas for an acoustic duo, performing the Jefferson Airplane's “Somebody to Love,” Martha and the Vandellas' “Dancing in the Streets” and “I’m Your Venus,” the only hit by the Dutch rock band Shocking Blue.

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At times. the unusual selections appeared to amuse the two performers. “We got away with this,” Gardner quipped at the conclusion of a unique arrangement of Pat Benatar’s “Hit Me With Your Best Shot.”

Given the diversity of their material, Toucan Jam’s choice of John Sebastion's  “Do You Believe in Magic?” as their final song was apropos. As the lyrics say, “If you believe in magic, don't bother to choose. If it's jug band music or rhythm and blues, just go and listen ...”

The concert series will continue on Thursday nights through Aug. 24. The next show will feature the LTM Trio on June 29. The remainder of the schedule includes:

  • July 6: Olean Blues Brothers & Generations
  • July 13: Larry Lewicki Band
  • July 20: Kokomo Time Band
  • July 27: Coyote Moon
  • Aug. 3: Dave Dorson
  • Aug. 10: Allegany Alumni & Friends Band
  • Aug. 17: Crusin
  • Aug. 24: Twin Tiers Community Band

All concerts are scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Lincoln Park at the intersection of East State and South Union streets. In the event of rain, the shows will take place inside the John J. Ash Community Building on North Barry Street.

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