On July 26, 2023

Bridgewater musician embarks on 60-show tour

Andrew Paul Prior a.k.a. Andy Prior a.k.a. Silas, a.k.a. Silas McPrior, a.k.a. Psylas (The P is silent, or is it?) has big adventures ahead. You might see him play solo or with one of his bands, Acoustik Ruckus and Cuzin It, which are both represented by his company Indigenous Entertainment. 

He said, “I’ve been reluctant to create a solo artist page because I enjoy playing music with other artists. That’s always been the focus of my music. I’ve always thought of music as a language to communicate with other musicians. The only reason I wanted to play music was to talk to other musicians, I was fascinated by it.”

I don’t think there’s a genre of music that Prior can’t play. There’s something for everyone. 

That reluctance is about to change. Prior was playing at Northlands and as he said it, “The right ears heard a couple of my originals.” 

That led to Psylas and this tour he’s about to embark on. Starting Aug. 10, he’ll be hitting 30 cities in 50 days playing 60 shows; he’s calling it  the “Psylas ALiGN Tour.” He will be all over the country, including New York, Michigan, Montana, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado, Texas, Illinois, North Dakota, Arizona, New Orleans and even British Columbia. 

He said, “It’s crazy that after 25 years in the game, I am starting all over from scratch. I am so excited to work with this new canvas. My team is the absolute best in the biz.” 

He’ll have some new singles dropping soon and an album is in the works, too.

You can find him on social media as Psylas and Indigenous Entertainment, you can also find some music on YouTube. 

If you’re like me and wondering about all his names, Silas started because of his middle name Paul, a biblical name.

Prior said, “Paul became Silas, which was like a rebirth for him, he took on a new form of evolution with the universe, hence my name Silas. [Silas, in turn]means ‘forest’ in Gaelic and I’m from the woods, so it makes sense. PSY means ‘mind’ and LAS means ‘illuminate’ in Irish. ‘To illuminate the mind’ is what Psylas signifies. Boom, that’s it in a package, it’s a very nice touch,” he said.

Prior is one of the busiest musicians I know, and he likes that. Before the tour, Acoustik Ruckus will be playing 11 shows in four days from Aug. 3-6. Included in that is three nights at the Troutstock Festival in Rutland, Massachusetts. 

Prior said, “It’s the highlight of my summer before I go on tour.”

If that wasn’t enough, ever since the flood hit our region, Prior has been playing everywhere and anywhere to raise money for Flood Relief. The very first night, he raised $1,000 for the Bridgewater Volunteer Fire Department as he busked from town to town. He now has a goal to raise $10,000 to rebuild his hometown of Bridgewater, Vermont. He’s well on his way after playing many benefit concerts in various towns. Acoustik Ruckus has pledged to do a free concert in every town in Vermont — except one. (I won’t call them out by name, but they did Psylas dirty by stopping one of his benefits.) That’s 249 shows in 249 towns. Prior has personally pledged to make sure this happens by 2024. That means he only has five months. Remember the “busy” statement I made? That’s now true, more than ever. 

Acoustik Ruckus is a trio made up of Psylas, Mando Hank a.k.a. Henry Clark, and Marc Edwards. Prior talked about the two of them and said, “Hank a.k.a. the Mando-lorian inserted himself as a member because Marc is super busy. In his spare time, he takes lessons on guitar from Mark Scofield. It’s absurd how good Marc is already and will be. Once he’s done with guitar, Marc will probably be one of the top 10 guitarists to come out of Vermont, ever. He’s that proficient at guitar. He’s recreated every work of Bach on an acoustic guitar.”

Indigenous Entertainment has recently been given its own stage, the Renegade Stage, at the Catskill Mountain Jubilee Aug. 11-13. You can expect to see Cuzin It, Acoustik Ruckus and Psylas, along with other Indigenous Entertainment acts. Prior will be opening the stage in traditional open mic format when there isn’t a scheduled performance. The festival is headlined by The Disco Biscuits and Twiddle. 

Prior said, “Indigenous Entertainment is going to be a dozen festivals next year, easy.”

Open mics is something Silas McPrior knows a thing or two about. He’s hosted Killarney’s on Monday night for the past seven years. He’s also hosted them at the Clear River Tavern, a few spots in Killington and other places in our region. 

On July 30, Psylas is part of the Celebration of Expressive Arts and is playing at The Inn in Montgomery, Vermont. At each event, a visual artist and performance artist present original work that always inspires and amazes. Psylas will be sharing the stage with poet Neil Shepard and St. Albans artist Jack Arthur Tremblay. 

Art Edelstein of the Times Argus newspaper wrote of him: “One of the few authentic blues musicians in Vermont, well worth the listen.”

The Humor part takes me to the next adventure of Prior. He is now officially a comedian going by the Instagram handle of IP.SO.FACTO. He just confirmed a 2024 show at the Burlington Comedy Club with a comedy tour in route to support his new comedy hour special called, “Where the F%#* R We Going?” 

He also came up with a podcast idea. Prior said, “I’m going to go find musicians in their natural habitat, have lunch with them and create an original song on the spot.” 

That sounds awesome.

You can follow the music listings in the Mountain Times to see all the places he plays in this region, plus follow him on social media to see all the places he plays outside of this region, and around the world. 

Prior said, “Psylas is a performance artist that combines the elements of improvisation, humor, intent, shred and fun. He is an algorithm of musical delights.” That is a spot-on description. I really dig the music he puts out and I could not be happier with his future ahead. Good luck!

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