Sandy Connolly

Web Developer, Photographer, Musician

As you can see, I lead a triple life.

Number one, I work with my best friend and business partner Irene Liebler to create beautiful and effective websites in WordPress for our clients. Together we are The Hurricanes (Sandy & Irene) at Super 9 Studios, LLC. We are a match made in heaven for web development with Irene’s skills in graphic design and my bent toward hand coding in HTML and CSS.

Number two, we have both had cameras in our hands since we were small children and have been egging each other on ever since we became friends. You can see our work on our website.

Number three, I teach voice, piano, and music theory out of my own studio as well as RVP Studio in West Haven; I run three open mics (Donahue’s, Country Tavern, and RVP); I am the band leader, lead singer, and rhythm guitar player for my own band (Sandy Connolly Band), and I have recently become an impresario. God help me.

Commercial Photography, Design, & Video

My best friend and business partner, Irene Liebler, and I (a.k.a. The Hurricanes) are Super 9 Studios, a Connecticut commercial photography studio. Whether you’re starting a new company or launching a new product, we can help. Check out our website to find out more. We’re like Botox for your business image.

And you haven’t lived life until you’ve seen some of Irene’s personal work. Oh! And she happens to be married to John Liebler, world-renown medical and scientific 3D animator. The fact that I get to hang out with these two on a regular basis is astonishing to me.

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Teaching the Fundamentals of Music

I went to school to study music and managed to land a B.A. in Voice Performance at The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. There, I trained as a classical singer (yes, opera!) and painfully gained some chops in music theory and at the piano. How they ever beat it into me, I’ll never know, but it stuck, and now I’m stuffing it into the brains, hands, and voices of as many people who will sit still for even a moment. You could say I run a music studio and teach voice, piano, and music theory, but some might call it a boot camp. I’m continually developing my own material, Crescendo Music System, and trying it out on my students, and they help me find better and better ways to teach.

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Love this intro written by Brian Gille for my band homepage:

“Welcome to the Sandy Connolly Band, your day-break alternative to the usual cellar bands with their serious faces and distant gaze. Rise and shine! Throw open the shutters and take your Southern Blues, rock, and country sunny-side-up, fresh-squeezed and deliciously caffeinated.

“Expect appetizing arrangements of Big Mama Thornton’s “Hound Dog,” Al Green’s “Take Me to the River,” “Joan Osborne’s “Spider Web,” Kenny Wayne Shepherd’s “Blue on Black,” and a few originals. This Cinderella alto has sandpapered, pitch-perfect vocals with grit to soothe your hassle and a smile to melt your candelabra.

“The Sandy Connolly Band is brash without being rude, old-school without the cobwebs; originality brimming out the pot and on to your dancin’ gene. Subscribe to Sandy Connolly Band for information about events, CD releases, and gigs!

My friend Julie Christine Stoian wrote this for me:

“Sandy Connolly’s popular Open Mic Night events are one-of-a-kind on Connecticut’s shoreline. It’s a bad-ass version of that childhood talent show you always wanted to be in but couldn’t muster up the courage to perform. But no courage is necessary for this gig: one of the many things that sets Sandy’s Open Mic apart from other venues is the supportive environment for both new and experienced musicians of all styles.

“Great sound engineering is provided by the ever constant and fabulous donBriggsAUDIO!  He makes sure we all sound the best we can.

“Music usually begins at 7:30 pm, early enough to come in and grab some decent pub grub at great prices. Rick’s famous 9 oz killer bad ass burger is only $8 and beer is available on tap for $3.50.

“If you aren’t a musician, you should come on down anyway! The atmosphere of the tavern and music puts off a fantastic vibe that you’ll be hard pressed to find anywhere else.  You will get the chance to listen (and dance if you wish) to a lot of well-known and up-and-coming musicians all in one evening – in one spot.”

I host these open mics at Donahue’s with a SMOKIN’ HOUSE BAND that consists of Mike Savino or Chuck Beckmen on guitar, Chris Donahue on keys (including B3), Rob Liptrot ( The Mike & Mike Band, The Brotherhood, Freeplay, The Heavy Hitters, Chemical Z, and Triangulum) on bass, Ric Haddad (of Sugar & Hothouse bands) on drums, and Tiger Marion (lead singer and band leader for Shiny Lapel Trio & 16 Tons) on sound. I just started this gig, but the attendance is phenomenal with musicians coming in from all over the state. The music doesn’t stop until midnight!

I am developing the Shoreline Musicians website in an effort to document, celebrate, and honor the local music scene on the Shoreline in Connecticut. I love the local music scene. Why pay upwards of hundreds of dollars to see famous people from rows and rows away at the bigger venues when I can go to places like the Country Tavern or Shep’s in Guilford or out to Donahue’s in Madison and sit RIGHT IN THE FRONT ROW? The caliber of musicians can just as good, and I can even sit and have a conversation and a drink. How much more fun is that?

My long-term goal is to help breathe life into the local music scene, provide a place to celebrate the ones in the trenches, and get a few good photos in the meantime.

Am I doing too much stuff?