'One Room School' trio celebrating 25 years together
The Sharecroppers, a trio of now-retired teachers from the Pasadena area, are celebrating their 25th anniversary with an
extensive tour of the island. — Submitted photo
“A hobby gone wonderful,” is how Mike Madigan of Newfoundland folk trio The Sharecroppers describe their longtime musical career together.
Madigan, Ed Humber and Guy Romaine, now retired, were teaching together at Pasadena Academy when they discovered their second calling.
“It was at a cabaret event at the school. The students had knocked on the door of the staff room, asking what the teachers were going to do for the show,” Madigan explained.
With Madigan on standup bass, Humber on guitar and Romaine on mandolin, the trio performed a couple of traditional Newfoundland tunes and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s “Long Hard Road – Sharecroppers’ Dream,” the inspiration for their band name.
Over the years, The Sharecroppers have performed at hundreds of events around the world and have earned an ambassador award from Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador.
They’ve released three CDs with songs like the popular “One Room School,” “Grenfell,” “The Hangashore,” and others. They’ve never, however, done a dedicated, full-on tour — until now.
The Sharecroppers are celebrating their 25 years together with their One Room School Tour, stopping in 12 communities across the island.
They’ll be performing most of their older hits, some traditional favourites, as well as a few new songs: one, for example, about Newfoundlanders leaving for Alberta for work.
As is often the case with the trio, many of their dates are fundraising events.
Tonight, for example, they’ll play in Lord’s Cove — it was meant to be the guys’ day off until they heard of a effort to raise money for a park in the town, and they agreed to add a gig to help the cause.
A gig next week in King’s Cove will go towards helping the community purchase a new firetruck.
“Newfoundland has been really good to us, we would like to give back,” Madigan said.
Upcoming stops on the One Room School tour include Marystown Friday night, St. John’s Saturday, then Clarenville, Gander, Grand Falls-Windsor, King’s Point, Corner Brook, Norris Point and Port aux Basques.
More information can be found online: www.thesharecroppers.net.