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Northern Current 2021 to feature a diverse set of musical acts

SARANAC LAKE – Despite COVID making planning difficult, this year’s installment of Northern Current will feature a lineup that’s diverse and danceable – a perfect way for locals to wrap up a summer in which they are finally able to get out and enjoy the world again.

The daylong community music festival on Sunday, Sept. 5, will be headlined by the Mallett Brothers Band, with support from Underground System, Paris Monster, Folkfaces and Giovanina Bucci & Co.

The Mallett Brothers Band is a nationally touring five-piece from Maine that weaves alt-country, Americana and rock into a musical experience that can feel like a jaunt through the history of American roots music. The audience can expect to hear strings ranging from acoustic and electric guitars to a dobro, mandolins and fiddles.

With a larger-than-life stage presence, Underground System is a six-piece act out of New York City that mixes dance club vibes with Afrobeat, Latin-style tunes and other musical themes from around the world. The group started in 2018 with a reimagining of Fela Kuti’s work, and grew into an internationally touring indie dance band. Expect flute, congas, sampling, and hypnotic, infectious grooves.

A duo called Paris Monster will amaze the audience with how much they can do with two people. Josh Dion plays keys and drums while also belting out vocals, and Geoff Kraly plays his bass through a synthesizer. The two-man psych-funk orchestra hails from New York City.

Folkfaces are playing Party on the Patio on July 15 and will again head to Saranac Lake for a slot at Northern Current. The Buffalo-based quarter specializes in “rowdy jazz and bluesy roots.”

A Plattsburgh native, singer-songwriter Giovanina Bucci now lives in Burlington and heads up the acoustic trio Nina’s Brew. She released a new solo album called Storytellers at the end of June with the help of a dynamite group of Burlington-area musicians and produced by well-known singer-songwriter Ryan Montbleau.

Northern Current is made possible in part with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts. Additional support is provided by our event sponsors — North Country Community College, Little Italy Pizzeria, Adirondack Health and the Waterhole — and musician sponsors — Adirondack Frontier, the Fiddlehead Bistro, Cape Air, Casella, Edward Jones, Nori’s Village Market, Tops Friendly Markets, and Grizle T’s and the Scullery. To become a sponsor or learn how to support Northern Current, email

Held at Riverside Park in Saranac Lake, Northern Current is a free, daylong music festival that succeeded Hobofest when its organizers retired. The first Northern Current was in 2019, and after being forced to take a year off from COVID, the festival’s all-volunteer organizing crew is jazzed to create a day of dancing for the Saranac Lake community.

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