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Mikko Cowdery in concert at Evansville Art Center

The Evansville Art Center will present a free concert of Irish and American ballads on Friday, January 28 at 7 p.m. at the arts center.

The solo show will feature Mikko Cowdery, who will perform old pop tunes from the '40s and '50s, plus a few of the more memorable old Irish ballads.

Cowdery, a lead singer with the award-winning Skilly and Duff Irish Quartet, is giving a series of free "sing-along" concerts, because, he says, "Old songs are like old friends, and it does our hearts good to revisit them from time to time."

Cowdery's shows conjure up a time "when you could hum the tune and understand the lyrics," and include such songs as Fly Me to the Moon, All of Me, I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Pennies from Heaven, That's Amore, Wild Irish Rose, When Irish Eyes are Smilin' and others.

Cowdery's Irish band captured first place in the music competition at the Irish Fair of Minnesota in St. Paul in 2009.

Last year Cowdery, along with the Skilly and Duff band, did a musical tour of southern Ireland, and they are just back from this year's musical tour of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

There is no charge for the concert, but there will be a passing of the hat to buy new chairs for the arts center, and to defray costs for the musician.

Evansville Art Center is located on Main Street, just north of the old grain elevator.