Mark Erelli photo credit: Joe Navas

On Thursday, March 23, at 7 pm, the Jamestown Arts Center will host the Newport Live event: Mark Erelli’s concert and record release party, with opener, Americana singer/songwriter, Jobi Riccio. 

“Newport Live’s summer concert with Mark Erelli was sold out and was met with such enthusiasm that we had to bring him back. We recommend getting tickets early,” says Dick Lynn, Newport Live’s executive director.  

In his 2023 album, Lay Your Darkness Down, Mark Erelli turns adversity into finely embroidered rock songs that burn with urgency.

Over his two-decade-long career, Erelli has proven himself equally at home in producing albums for GRAMMY-winner Lori McKenna; serving as a guitarist for artists Paula Cole, Marc Cohn, and Josh Ritter; as well as writing and producing his own material, such as 2018’s “By Degrees,” for which he was nominated for Song of the Year at the Americana Honors and Awards.  

Erelli said, “I’m heavily influenced by full-bodied rock forebears like Tom Petty, George Harrison, and Roy Orbison; and my songwriting explores the unknown glories of this planet and love’s transformational power.” 

Recently, Mark has become an advocate for low-vision artists and works with venues to create accessible spaces. Written in the wake of his diagnosis with a degenerative retinal disease, his album, Lay Your Darkness Down, is the next step on Erelli’s journey, following up on 2020’s Blindsided, which garnered praise from Rolling Stone Country, the Associated Press, NPR, and The Boston Globe.

Maureen Coleman, Jamestown Arts Center’s executive director said, “Mark Erelli will perform in our 40-by-40-foot gallery, currently displaying 200 pieces of vibrant artwork. The exhibition, Outsider Art: Harnessing Color, is especially poignant because it showcases work created by artists with disabilities. The common thread is color, and we love surrounding the audience with such energizing art.”

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Opening for Erelli is Jobi Riccio, winner of the 2019 NewSong Music Competition. Sonically, Jobi draws on classic country craftsmanship and modern indie production to forge a lush, expansive sound that feels traditional and experimental. She has performed at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, Americanafest, and Queerfest in Nashville. Her debut album, Whiplash, will be out on Yep Roc Records this Fall. (

Lynn adds, “Newport Live started our collaboration with the Jamestown Arts Center last fall on our Women’s Voices Series. The concerts were incredibly positive experiences, in such a fantastic performance space; we look forward to the JAC hosting Mark’s record release concert, as well as other upcoming shows.”

Tickets are $35 for general admission and available here. Beer and wine will be for sale from sponsors at Ragged Island Brewing and Newport Vineyards. Lucy’s Kitchen will serve their soups and pastries. Non-alcoholic beverages will also be available. JAC facilities are accessible.