Award-winning promoters/producers Vickie and Peter Van Ness have produced some of the most critically acclaimed concerts and festivals on Boston's North Shore featuring national recording stars and award-winning young artists. Vickie, Peter and their son John created gimmeLIVE, which became the area's premier independent, family-owned concert promotion and production company.
During 2021 and 2022, gimmeLIVE promoted dozens of shows at various North Shore venues, including The Gloucester Stage Company, The Regent Theatre in Arlington, Tuckerman Hall in Worcester, The Park Theatre in Jaffrey, NH and Kowloon's Outdoor Stage in Saugus, MA. For each of these shows, gimmeLIVE offered ticket swaps for all shows that were forced to cancel due to the pandemic.
On March 15, 2020, due to the pandemic, gimmeLIVE was forced to close 9 Wallis, which had become the North Shore's most intimate, elegant listeining room.
During the summer of 2020, gimmeLIVE presented safe, socially-distanced Drive-in concerts in the 100K sq.ft. lot behind the Manchester Athletic Club featuring 5-time Grammy-nominee Roomful of Blues, international soul sensation Barrence Whitfield, former Yardbirds guitarist Johnny A, J. Geils Band founding member Danny Klein's Full House, Boston legends The Fools, blues icon James Montgomery, SNL Band's Beehive Queen Christine Ohlman, Grammy Winner Paul Nelson, Megan Wolf's critically acclaimed Amy Winehouse revue and blues rocker Popa Chubby. GIMMELIVE offered ticket swaps to these concerts for all shows that were forced to cancel due to the pandemic.
Pre-pandemic 9 Wallis was the North Shore's most intimate, elegant listening room presenting live music every weekend with comfortable show seating at tables, award-winning food and beverage service featuring fine wines, local craft beers, specialty cocktails (including locally crafted liquors and all-natural juices) and top shelf spirits.
In August, 2018, Peter and Vickie won the Boston Blues Society's Keeping The Blues Alive Award. See Award Presentation here.
From 2012 through 2017, GIMMELIVE's critically acclaimed seasons at Beverly's three theatres -- The North Shore Music Theatre, The Cabot and The Larcom -- featured Grammy winners, Rock & Roll Hall of Famers and showcased emerging young talent you might want to keep your eye on -- Vickie & Peter have been known to spot stars in the making before.
In January 2016, after producing dozens of benefit concerts and festivals north of Boston, gimmeLIVE produced a Classic Rock Benefit Festival in Delray Beach Florida featuring Micky Dolenz of the Monkees, Felix Cavaliere of the Rascals, Mark Farner -- founder of Grand Funk Railroad, Steve Augeri -- Journey's former lead singer, John Cafferty & Michael "Tunes" Antunes of the Beaver Brown Band. The festival raised thousands of dollars for the educational programs at Old School Square.
In 2007, GIMMELIVE reunited the Pousette Dart Band to headline a Memorial Day Weekend Music & Arts festival that launched Celebrate Gloucester and the grand opening of Cruiseport Gloucester, the very first cruise ship terminal in the city of Gloucester, MA.
After co-founding Gloucester's wildly successful summer Block Parties they produced several other major charity events, including the GIVE BACK MUSIC SERIES in Cambridge, MA and Brooklyn, NY; Concert From the Heart featuring Fly Amero of the band Orleans, Allen Estes, David Brown formerly of Billy Joel's band, and American Idol finalist Ayla Brown, which raised money for a heart transplant that saved a local boy's life; and Celebrate Gloucester 2010 featuring Grammy-winner Charles Neville, Henri Smith, Roomful of Blues and local rising stars.
GIMMELIVE kicked off a Summer 2012 concert series at North Shore Music Theatre with Chris Isaak's U.S. tour, which introduced Chelsea Berry followed by Aaron Neville, with local singer/band-leader Henri Smith and the first Orleans concert in New England after original founder John Hall re-joined the band, featuring local legend Fly Amero.
In 2013, gimmeLIVE brought music to Beverly's historic Larcom Theatre for the first time since the days of Vaudeville, starting with a sold-out Mardi Gras benefit concert featuring Grammy-winner Charles Neville of the Neville Brothers with Henri Smith New Orleans Friends & Flavours followed by world-class artists, whose Larcom Theatre shows garnered rave reviews.
In December 2013, gimmeLIVE packed Gloucester's iconic UU Church Meetinghouse for the first of a highly successful benefit concert series featuring top local talent and major recording stars, including John Sebastian, the first Rock & Roll Hall of Famer ever to perform in the city of Gloucester, MA.
During the summer of 2014, gimmeLIVE presented concerts at the Old Whaling Church in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard and in Gloucester aboard the Beauport Princess Cruise Ship and at the Waterfront Pavilion featuring artists of several genres -- from folk icon Peter Yarrow (of Peter Paul & Mary) to Ska pioneers The Toasters.
Later in 2014, Peter and Vickie co-produced That's When I Know It's Mardi Gras, a live CD recording at Beverly's Larcom Theatre featuring New Orleans vocalist Henri Smith with Grammy Award-winners Charles Neville and Amadee Castenell.
GIMMELIVE's 2014-2015 concert season at Beverly's Larcom Theatre featured award-winning, sold-out shows featuring music legends including Art Garfunkel, Leon Russell, Booker T. Jones, Jefferson Starship, Johnny Winter, Marshall Tucker Band and many more.
During the summer of 2015, Vickie and Peter presented a series of concerts featuring national recording stars and award-winning Boston area talent at the newly re-opened Cabot Theatre in downtown Beverly.
In January 2016, gimmeLIVE produced a Classic Rock Benefit Festival in Delray Beach Florida featuring Micky Dolenz of the Monkees, Felix Cavaliere of the Rascals, Mark Farner -- founder of Grand Funk Railroad, Steve Augeri -- Journey's former lead singer, John Cafferty & Michael "Tunes" Antunes of the Beaver Brown Band. The festival raised thousands of dollars for the educational programs at Old School Square.
In early 2017, gimmeLIVE took over the building adjoining the Larcom Theatre (at 9 Wallis Street), formerly owned by members of Le Grand David Magic Company and known as the Grand Salon. GIMMELIVE addded comfortable chairs and elegant tables, installed state-of-the art sound and lighting systems and booked award-winning national touring artists. In April, 2017 the building re-opened as 9 Wallis, and became the North Shore's most intimate, elegant listening room offering cabaret seating with food & beverage service, including fine wines, local craft beers, specialty cocktails (featuring locally crafted liquors and all-natural juices) and top shelf spirits.
Because of its beautifully restored, tremendously flexible space with the best dance floor on Boston's North Shore, 9 Wallis became a favorite venue for fundraisers, private parties and corporate events. Local charities have raised thousands of dollars at 9 Wallis (see examples). With world-class entertainment, events began as a cocktail party or fully seated dinner...then transformed into a nightclub-style dance party with concert quality sound and stage lighting.
Photos by Sheila Roberts Orlando
The Larcom Theatre's packed house rose to their feet and danced in the ailes to Boston rising stars Gracie Curran and Lydia Warren performing with the venerable Roomful of Blues Horns on April 5, 2014. Here's what T MAX, Editor of The Noise Magazine, says about the show:
Lydia uses no pedals to enhance her sound, just what comes out of the box--a little amp distortion and a dab of reverb ... A steady bass drum thump backs her goodbye words before she launches into "Turn it Up," a rocker that brings half the audience to its feet, pleading for more.
Next, seven-pieces line the stage that make up the High Falutin’ Band--double saxes, trumpet, keys, bass, drums, and guitar. While they’re getting into a blues rhythm, out bounds Gracie Curran, throwin’ her hands up in the air like she’s part of a raving gospel choir ...
When the group end the set there is a lot of noise (chair banging, and stomping) until the band returns with just bass and drums, and dim lights on Gracie. It’s a sweet dreamy number that moves on to warbling wah wah, floating keys, and a crazy trumpet solo accented with balls of light flying ’cross the room. Lydia Warren comes back out to rejoin the show for the second encore ...
A full standing ovation sends everyone home happily. The Larcom continues to build a good reputation for its rockin’ presentations.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
Photos by Sheila Roberts Orlando
In 2013, we started a Mardi Gras tradition in Beverly, MA by bringing New Orleans native Henri Smith to the Larcom Theatre with his band New Orleans Friends & Flavours featuring Grammy-Award winners Charles Neville and Amadee Castenell.
That sold out concert was so successful, we scheduled two shows in 2014 and recorded one of them for a live concert CD released later that year.
Once again, Henri Smith and his band thrilled the packed Larcom Theatre and set the stage for many more New Orleans Jazz and Blues concerts in Beverly, MA.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
Photos by Sheila Roberts Orlando (except where noted)
Seldom has there been more talent on one stage than this stellar evening featuring some of the Boston area's top musicians. Here's what New England Concert Reviews had to say about it:
I’d never been to the Larcom Theatre before, located in downtown Beverly. I went last weekend and was very pleasantly surprised; it was absolutely beautiful, both inside and out! ...
... That night was a meeting of prime rock and blues aficionados. McCann described the night perfectly, “Saturday night was a high-energy show with a lot of spontaneous moments; the musical camaraderie was contagious.” Read full review here.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
On January 31, guest presenter, M.E. Productions, presented rock-blues icon Johnny Winter to a sold-out, ecstatic crowd.
Here's what Blues Blogger A.J. Wachtel had to say about Johnny's set: Opening with "Johnny B. Good" the ... performance kept building momentum song after song. "Jumpin’ Jack Flash" and "It’s All Over Now", "Boney Maroney", "Got My Mojo Working"; "Highway 61" and "Dust My Broom" on slide were all done to perfection; and the packed house loved it... I also like the way they smile at each other mid-song deep in a tight groove fully aware of the great sound they are creating. And everyone in the crowd is smiling too. A great way to start the year. Fasten your seatbelts and enjoy the ride.
The show sold out a few days before, resulting in a sizable waiting list.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
On December 21, 2013, we started a new tradition in Gloucester. Many of the area's top talent from Classical to Celtic to Pop, Rock & Punk shared the stage for a celebration of the Winter Solstice and lifted a packed house at Gloucester's UU Church to a level of musical joy that many said they hadn't felt in years.
Plus we raised much needed funds to help restore the UU Church's iconic meetinghouse. You can see concert photos here.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
Once again Henri Smith and his all-star band, this time featuring Grammy-award winner Amadee Castenell and Toronto's Italian accordion sensation Carmen Spada got a packed house dancing in the aisles for 2 Christmas concerts on in December, 2013 to benefit The Musary!Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
Thanks to everyone who took the chance and filled the theatre for artists they'd never heard of, and music they'd never heard before!
The Slide Brothers had the entire theatre up, dancing and clapping to their inspirational music.
Rave reviews proclaim The Slide Brothers one of the best blues concerts of 2013 on Boston's North Shore.
Young rising star, Michael Thomas Doyle and his band revved the crowd up with hot sounds from the next generation on virtuosos.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few:
"It was a magical night!"
photos: Sheila Roberts Orlando (except where noted)
Dave Foley and the Fabulous Mustangs opened with a country swing that transported us straight to Nashville!
After Intermission, Allen Estes took the stage. Here's what Fly Amero of Orleans had to say about his experience:
Allen Estes Band
Larcom Theater, Beverly MA
Saturday, October 5, 2013
By Fly Amero
This is not a review. I would never presume to critique any single one of the great musicians we have here on the North Shore. Let's think of it more as a message to those out there who figure they've seen Allen Estes perform a number of times, and thus may have passed on tickets for this wonderful Beverly show. In a nutshell--too bad for you!
Forget that the historic Larcom Theater is a fully restored, gorgeous facility with hand-painted tin, beautifully designed curtains, world-class stage lighting and, well--the list could go on and on. Forget that the place is virtually next-door. Forget it all. This was about a truly incredible songwriter, centerstage at a venue which absolutely captures the nuance of his lilting voice and intelligent, heartfelt lyric. The sound (under the direction of Will Hunt) was nothing shy of spectacular, with its focus exactly where it should be - the lead voice. Allen's words were clear as a waterfall. His songs could be heard as they've never been heard before, and appreciated for the finely crafted works of art that they are.
But there was an unexpected knockout punch that came on with subtlety--and that was Allen's masterful orchestration of the entire set. Starting the show solo, he gradually, one by one, eased players onto the stage until ultimately finding himself backed by five of the finest musicians New England has to offer. I cannot for the life of me think of any place in the world I'd rather have been on Saturday night than right down the street from us all (not "up the line", which makes everyone think it's far, far away when it's really not) at the Larcom Theater, 13 Wallis Street, Beverly, MA.Allen Estes: vocals/acous. guitar
GIMMELIVE brought music to the Larcom Theatre for the first time in decades on April 6, 2013 for a sold-out Mardi Gras concert featuring Grammy-winner Charles Neville of the Neville Brothers with Henri Smith New Orleans Friends & Flavours.
Originally scheduled in February, the concert had to be postponed due to the major winter storm that forced the Governor to close all roads and declare a state of emergency.
Performers and fans were undaunted as they packed the Larcom Theatre a couple of months later to raise money for the Y Teens Rebuild New Orleans 2013 trip and helped usher in a new era of top quality entertainment in the heart of downtown Beverly, MA.Missed the show? Don't miss the next few: