The Last Minute Trio

The Last Minute Trio performs for Socorro Sessions next Thursday. The band features (from left): Roger Adams on banjo, Francie Deters on guitar, and Jim Ruff on mandolin and bass.

The popular summer Socorro Sessions, featuring local bands playing on New Mexico Tech’s Macey Center stage, returns this fall in a different time slot. Offered by Tech’s Performing Art Series, the concerts will be live-streamed through Facebook, YouTube and Twitch.

The occasional concerts are planned between regular PAS season events. Begun this summer, Socorro Sessions give bands a chance to play in a professional setting to an audience eager for diversion during the pandemic.

“We had such a great response this summer I decided I would make the effort to get as many Socorro bands to Macey Center as possible,” PAS director Ronna Kalish said.

The sessions were moved from Sunday afternoons to Thursdays to bring a “happy hour” feel to the concerts while social gatherings are still limited. The schedule of bands is still being finalized with some special, added events, including a drive-in festival, planned for October.

“Keep checking our website for details,” Kalish said.

The next concert is Thursday, Sept. 24 at 6 p.m. featuring the Last Minute Trio. The band is a past winner of the Santa Fe Bluegrass Band contest. The Last Minute Trio features Francie Deters, Jim Ruff, and Roger Adams.

“We used to be Last Minute Bluegrass and the band was a lot bigger,” Deters said. “We play more than bluegrass. That’s why we’re the Last Minute Trio.”

Expect some country swing and folk-rock along with bluegrass tunes, she said.

“We’re just really good friends,” she said. The band formed some 17 years ago when Deters’ daughter was learning violin/fiddle at the age of 11 or 12.

Band member Jim Ruff is a familiar face on the Socorro music scene, having played in numerous bands. Although current limits on gatherings may have slowed some people, Jim found a way to circumvent that by hosting weekly open mic Zoom meetings on Wednesdays. He also hosts the website socorromusic.com, with an active list of musical happenings. With the Last Minute Trio, Jim plays mandolin and bass.

Roger Adams rounds out the trio. One of the frequent participants on Jim’s Zoom Wednesdays, Roger plays banjo and guitar.

Other bands to be featured on Socorro Sessions include Blue Monday, the Flat Note Society, Rhythm Prophets, 67 Seconds, Wredempshun, Mine Country Drifters, Celtic Fringe, Why Knot, Roon, and Tuesdays@2.

The live-streamed summer Socorro Sessions are still available through the PAS website and YouTube. Those bands are the Murillos, Doug Figgs Trio, Mine Country Drifters, and Suavecito.

All live-stream performances offered by PAS this season are free. Family memberships of $40 a year help pay for production expenses and provide members special benefits, including preand post-concert Zoom events and first reservations for any drive-in festivals and concerts.

For more information visit nmt.edu/pas, email pas@nmt. edu, or call 575-835-5688.