Music on the River


Welcome back to Music on the River.  Summer is here and we cannot wait to sit by the River, on the beautiful lawn of the Goodspeed Opera House and listen to this year’s fantastic summer concerts!  The Music on the River Committee was busy screening bands and making plans to present another incredible concert series. It is hard to believe that East Haddam Parks & Recreation has been presenting the series for sixteen seasons now. Please visit our website to learn more about our upcoming season. We wish to express our deepest gratitude to Goodspeed Musicals for sharing their lawn every Monday evening with the Music on the River concert series and to the Gelston House for hosting our bands.  Many thanks for your participation in the Music on the River experience.  We couldn't do it without them.

The most important member of the series is YOU - our wonderful town supporters.  As you may know, these concerts are free.  We do not use any town funds to offer these concerts.  Music on the River is exclusively funded by community contributions and can only happen with your generous support.  If you are interested in making a donation to support Music on the River 2023, please send your check to East Haddam Park and Recreation, P.O. Box 385, Moodus, CT 06469.  You may also donate on our website at (account required).  Thank you in advance for your generous contribution.

         $10+     COPPER
       $100+     BRONZE
       $300+     SILVER
       $500+     GOLD
    $1,000+     PLATINUM



Music on the River 2023 Brochure.pdf  

Thank you for your inquiries and support.  Each season we strive to present a stellar lineup of concerts.  This year is no exception.  We are pleased to introduce bands who are new to the Music on the River stage; all award winning recording artists on tour to support their latest albums.

Once again - we are so thankful for all the volunteers who help with the event and the continued financial support from you. So mark your calendars - our first concert is July 17th - We'll see you down on the river!

Find us on Facebook!


All free concerts are held on Monday nights from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on the lawn of the Goodspeed Opera House (6 Main Street, East Haddam, CT).  Don't let inclement weather stop you from attending these amazing shows.  Join us either at the Nathan Hale-Ray High School auditorium, 15 School Road, Moodus, where you can experience an extraordinary performance in a concert hall setting or on the following Tuesday on the Goodspeed lawn.  Rain date schedule below:

                                                Rain Date      Location
7/17     Matt Nakoa                  7/17               NHRHS
7/24     Circus of Dreams        7/25               Goodspeed Lawn
7/31     Mile Twelve                  7/31               NHRHS
8/7       The Big Takeover         8/8                Goodspeed Lawn
8/14     Mighty Soul Drivers    8/15               Goodspeed Lawn
8/21     Canopy                         8/22               Goodspeed Lawn

If the weather is questionable please call the Recreation Office 860-873-5058, check or our Facebook page. Great food and drinks are available to purchase at the Gelston House or bring a picnic dinner.  Free parking is available in the Goodspeed Opera House parking lot.  Due to the closure of the Swing Bridge and no shuttle service from Eagle Landing, parking may be affected,  We urge you to car pool if possible. The Music on the River site is made possible through the generous support of Goodspeed Musicals.  Out of courtesy for the audience and respect for the Goodspeed property, we kindly ask you to honor these requests:

  • All children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult
  • No dogs
  • No smoking
  • No vendors on concert grounds
  • No soliciting at the concerts
  • No parking on residential streets
  • No children on river banks or dock

July 17, 2023 Matt Nakoa

Matt Nakoa is an award-winning songwriter, singer, pianist, and guitarist.  A modern troubadour, he makes his home on the highways and concert stages of America, touring regularly with folk music icon Tom Rush.  Nakoa trained to be a concert pianist before accepting a scholarship to Berklee College of Music as a vocalist.  He developed his dramatic songwriting style and guitar chops while playing with his art-rock bands and honed his skills in Manhattan's all-night piano bars and concert halls, developing an uncanny ability to command the attention of any audience.  "A hot-handed phenom who can go from Chopin to beer-drenched honky-tonk in one set...he drops jaws".  Boston Globe

July 24, 2023 Slambovian Circus of Dreams

The Slambovian Circus of Dreams has been expanding the borders of the Americana genre with their fantastic stories and performances since the late 90's in Sleepy Hollow, New York.  Led by the charismatic band leader Joziah Longo, presiding at center ring, their connection with audiences is captivating performance art.  The Slambovians create a show that is constantly evolving.  With a good dose of Woodstock era psychedelia framed in solid songwriting and musicianship, you have The Slambovian Circus of Dreams.

July 31, 2023 Mile Twelve

Mile Twelve, Boston's ultra modern string band, is back in motion from a restless pandemic induced hiatus, and is ready to take command of the stage. The band has earned an IBMA's 2019 Album of the Year nomination and 2020 New Artist of the Year Award; gaining them an international reputation as one of the most dynamic bands in contemporary acoustic music.  "Close Enough to Hear", their latest album, displays the vast creative potential of this quintet, expanding the range to a Bluegrass Nouveau.

August 7, 2023 The Big Takeover

Fronted by the charismatic Jamaican-born singer and songwriter Nee Nee Rushie, the seven-piece New York band, plays original music rooted in the genres and rhythms of Jamaican pop, reggae, rocksteady and ska.  They are devotees of the old school style of Desmond Dekker while simultaneously crossing lines and blending traditions like global pop fusion.  Their complex arrangements and big hooks connect with spirited Motown and 21st century retro soul and R&B.  Their tours have been a smashing success delivering outrageously infectious nuanced performances to capacity crowds.  Their current single "Rainboots" has scored big with the discerning tastes at NPR.  They have done several live performances on NPR and their music is in rotation at many NPR stations.

August 14, 2023 Mighty Soul Drivers

The Mighty Soul Drivers are New England's answer to the allure of Memphis Soul.  They mine deep Soul nuggets and breathe new life into them, exposing the cream of Memphis-styled music while creating their own soulful originals.  The MSD has performed at music festivals from Musikfest in PA, to the New England Blues Summit in Sturbridge MA.  Favorites at Hartford's Black-Eyed Sally's and Theodore's in Springfield MA, they were finalists in the CT Blues Society's Blues Challenge in 2012 and 2014; winning the 2015 Challenge representing CT at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis.

August 21, 2023 Canopy

With the belief that music is meant for taking risks, Canopy brings a raw, unfiltered approach to the live music scene.  Their sound combines the core elements of rock, funk, blues, and jazz and infuses them with deep psychedelia; wide open with tasteful improvisation.  Tight and loose in all the right ways, this dynamic power trio delivers a satisfying performance.

General Information
Recreation Director
Lisa Conroy
Phone Numbers
Fax: 860-873-5028
Emergencies: Dial 911
1 Plains Road
P.O. Box 385