Smith and Bell’s ‘America’

G.E. Smith and LeRoy Bell. John Peden photo.

Guild Hall’s “Portraits” series is back with two special performances by G.E. Smith, LeRoy Bell this weekend. The first on Thursday, August 27, at 7:30 p.m., is a streamed program that can be accessed from the comfort of your own home. Joseph Arthur, who is best known for being discovered by Peter Gabriel, will open the show. The second performance will be held live in the John Drew Backyard Theater at Guild Hall on Friday, August 28. There will be two seatings, at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Hosted by John Loeffler (BMG Creative), the concerts celebrate the release of Smith and Bell’s new album “Stony Hill.” Among the hits to be played is the stirring new song, “America.” The track is a mellow blues tune that moves with a heavy groove and allows Smith to peel off plenty of intricate guitar licks. They will showcase a stripped-down acoustic set of their R&B song collection, and with Bell’s smart lyrics “Mass confusion, our constitution — they’re tryna burn it down,” or the Motown nod, “Let the Sunshine.” They will leave you, without a doubt humming, their hooky tunes and wanting more.

“You will witness an amazing singer, the one I’ve been looking for 30 years, and how we came to make this amazing project,” said Smith.

Tickets for the virtual program on Thursday, August 27, are $65 per household. A streaming link will be sent 24 hours prior to show time. The Friday, August 28, concerts are $200 per lawn square (seats one or two) for either the 7 or 9 p.m. show, $250 includes the virtual concert as well. All lawn circles are six feet in diameter and are distanced six feet from other parties. Please bring your own blankets or beach chairs. For more information, visit