Music: Halfway to Guitar Night with Shawn Persinger, Norman Plankey, Nancy Tucker and Robert Messore play Thurs., June 2

Robert Messore hosts an annual “Fabulous Guitar Night” every December 1st. But some things are so fabulous that they are worth doing more than once. So it is that Messore hosts “Halfway to Fabulous Guitar Night” at Best Video Performance Space on Thursday, June 2. Along with Messore, guitarists Nancy Tucker, Norman Plankey and Shawn Persinger will play. The show starts a half-hour early at 7:30 PM and the cover is $5.

Genre-Benders: Early each December, Robert Messore’s Annual Fabulous Guitar Night in New Haven gathers several of the state’s best guitarists from a number of styles of music. The event is well-liked enough that folks randomly walk up to Messore on the street throughout the year excitedly asking about the next one. So this year on June 2, Best Video hosts a “Halfway To Guitar Night” show for even more guitar loving goodness. The evening features Shawn Persinger, Nancy Tucker, Norman Plankey and Robert Messore, all of whom thrive on the multi-faceted love for all things guitar.

Robert Messore has passionately devoted himself to the guitar for 35 years. Voted Best Instrumentalist in a New Haven Advocate readers’ poll, Robert has been called the Heart of the New Haven Folk Scene for his vital and many-faceted contributions as solo performer, side man, recording artist, teacher and concert presenter (working on several concert series and the Connecticut Folk Festival). He also plays percussion and bass. Lately Robert performs with contra dance band Wry Bred, with singer-songwriter Chrissy Gardner, and he presents a program called Toddler Tunes, which is the largest weekly children’s sing-along in CT.

Robert Messore

Robert Messore

With a unique blend of acoustic folk, jazz, pop, classical, bluegrass, humor, and the avant-garde, New Haven, Shawn Persinger is Prester John has a sound that is entirely his own. The Chicago Tribune once said, “Prester John has made a career out of balancing technical prowess with pop accessibility (and) a dash of punk-rock rawness. One minute you’re hearing a pop/rock song in the tradition of Cat Stevens or Jack Johnson, the next you’re listening to music that could have been composed by Stravinsky or Frank Zappa. When it comes to traditional and mainstream styles Prester John’s authenticity is also difficult to match; their bluegrass repertoire sounds straight out of Appalachia (no doubt due to Persinger’s West Virginia roots) and their swing tunes recall the bygone days of The Hot Club of France. The ease and flexibility they display traversing and transcending genres is practically unheard of in this day and age (if ever).”

Shawn Persinger

Shawn Persinger

Nancy Tucker blends outrageous squeaky clean comedy, spirited guitar instrumentals and moving songs of human experience in her shows for people of all ages. Her music and comedy center around a passion for life and laughter. Her guitar instrumentals have been compared to those of Michael Hedges and Leo Kottke, with a flair for unusual and kinetic compositions using every part of the guitar, including a guitar attachment of her own invention. No matter what the venue, Nancy captures each audience’s imagination and heart with gentle invitation and contagious lunacy.

Nancy Tucker. Photo ©Marilyn Catasus

Nancy Tucker. Photo ©Marilyn Catasus

Norman Plankey is an in-demand accompanist/guitarist living in Oxford, CT. He currently plays regularly with Swing du Jour (Gypsyswing), The Fiddleheads (contradance), Norman and the Rockwellians (traditional jazz and swing), as well as The Brooklyn Swing Ensemble and One World Contra. A perennial favorite at Roxbury Pickin’ & Fiddlin’ contest, Norman has won many blue ribbons while pushing the envelope of what the judges might allow.

Norman Plankey

Norman Plankey

• Thursday, May 26. EXPERIMENTAL: ELECTRONHIC

• Friday, May 27. ACOUSTIC ROCK: THE BIRDMEN

• Thursday, June 2. HALFWAY TO GUITAR NIGHT: SHAWN PERSINGER, NANCY TUCKER, NORMAN PLANKEY, ROBERT MESSORE (7:30 START)

• Friday, June 3. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR

• Sunday, June 5. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Wed., June 8. INDIE ROCK: GUN SHY, SHIRESE

• Thursday, June 9. CABARET/SINATRA: RICH MORAN & FRANZ DOUSKEY

• Friday, June 10. ROCK: NOTHING SPECIAL

• Sunday, June 12. MARK SCHENKER: HOW TO READ A FILM—FOUR BY BILLY WILDER (“DOUBLE INDEMNITY”)

• Thursday, June 16. CHRISTOPHER ARNOTT & LYS GUILLORN CELEBRATE BLOOMSDAY

• Friday, June 17. SINGER-SONGWRITER: THE ANNE MARIE MENTA BAND

• Sunday, June 19. MARK SCHENKER: HOW TO READ A FILM—FOUR BY BILLY WILDER (“SUNSET BOULEVARD”)

• Thursday, June 23. INDIE FOLK: JACKET THOR, CAT THUMBS, PALE MOON PALE WITCH

• Friday, June 24. SOLO GUITAR: GLENN ROTH, ALT-COUNTRY: LINES WEST

• Sunday, June 26. MARK SCHENKER: HOW TO READ A FILM—FOUR BY BILLY WILDER (“STALAG 17”)

• Wednesday, June 29. JAZZ: JEFF FULLER & FRIENDS CD RELEASE SHOW

• Thursday, June 30. SINGER-SONGWRITER: EUGENE GALLAGHER, QUINN HARLEY

• Friday, July 1. POST-PUNK: TELEGRAM SCAM, SPECTRAL FANGS

• Sunday, July 3. FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Friday, July 8. SINGER-SONGWRITER: JOSÉ OYOLA

• Sunday, July 10. MARK SCHENKER: HOW TO READ A FILM—FOUR BY BILLY WILDER (“WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION”)

• Thursday, July 15. SINGER-SONGWRITER/INDIE ROCK: DANIELLE CAPALBO

• Friday, July 16. SINGER-SONGWRITER: KATH BLOOM, BOP TWEEDIE

• Sunday, July 24. INDIE, HIP-HOP: RUNNING LAPS & NATHAN CORP, THE FOREST ROOM, CHEF THE CHEF, ZAK G.

• Wednesday, July 27. DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS PRESENTS THE MUSIC OF ENNIO MORRICONE

• Thursday, July 28. INDIE ROCK: PAINTED FACES, BIG NURSE

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Wednesday, Aug. 3. INDIE ROCK: JELLYSHIRTS

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND, EARTHLINGS

• Friday, Aug. 19. SINGER-SONGWRITERS: PONYBIRD, FRANK CRITELLI, CHRISTOPHER BOUSQUET

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Friday, Oct. 7. BLUEGRASS/NEW ACOUSTIC: JOE WALSH & FRIENDS (A GUITARTOWN CT PRODUCTION)

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL