Shane & Emily cheerfully perform at the Mays Center for the year’s first Village Club Series performance. DREW PERLMUTTER/THE BATES STUDENT

The Village Club Series never fails to entertain the Bates student body. Held every Thursday evening at 9:00 p.m. in the Benjamin Mays Center, this event brings incredibly talented musical groups to campus to perform original songs in addition to covers of popular tunes. If the hot chai and cookies are not enough, the intimate and relaxed atmosphere fostered by VCS certainly attracts a large crowd week after week. On September 15, 2016, an acoustic duo by the name of Shane & Emily kicked off VCS for the year.

Shane & Emily have performed at multiple colleges and universities around the country in addition to theme parks, bars and restaurants. Their set list is comprised of multiple original songs as well as popular covers which added a refreshing sense of familiarity and the common “I LOVE this song” reaction to their concert in the Mays Center. According to their website, they “incorporate many different elements of diverse genres into [their] original music.” While their music and personalities emit a contagious positive vibe, they are not afraid of “diving into the darker emotions” in search of musical inspiration.

Bates was one of their first stops on their tour going on for the rest of the 2016 calendar year. Their future venues include colleges, universities and churches in New York, Pennsylvania, Canada and multiple places in Florida

Their personalities match every characteristic of what VCS should be like: calm, reflective, personal and intimate. Looking around the venue, it was the perfect environment to do homework, chat with friends and just enjoy some great live music before the weekend.

Becca Howard ’19 truly enjoyed the performance and believed it was a great way to start of a year of VCS. She said, “Shane & Emily are a very sweet couple who have a unique, accessible sound that seamlessly fuses several musical styles and eras.” Howard found this to be a clever way to “reach a broad audience of listeners.”

Emma Schiller ’18 also found the show to be extremely enjoyable and the perfect way to set the tone and standards for future VCS performances. “They were very strong performers with awesome harmonies. It was a great show for both musical and non-musical people all across campus. I’m really looking forward to seeing new acts we haven’t seen before and seeing some returners later in the semester.”

Howard mentioned that she wants to take advantage of these weekly performances by attending more often. “Free live music every Thursday, provided by super cool musicians and groups from within and outside of the Bates community. I think that is something special we are lucky to have,” she said.

Schiller agrees that she is looking forward to the future of VCS this semester. “I think this is something very unique to Bates and I hope more and more students get the chance to experience it.” Schiller performed in the student VCS show last year with Talia Martino ’18.

In the coming weeks, some of Bates’ favorite groups will be making an appearance, including Ryanhood on November 10 and Tall Heights on December 1. There will also be the student VCS performance on October 13.

Village Club Series is put on by the Campus Life office. Any student can get involved with the planning process of these performances by contacting Nick Dressler, Assistant Director of Campus Life.