This little gem might be a bit easily overlooked in Houston’s typical bar scene, but that’s because it’s an entirely different kind of place. McGonigel’s Mucky Ducky is an Irish pub that features a very popular open mic night every Monday at 6:30 p.m. (sign up by 6 p.m.)
You’ll hear plenty of folk, country and acoustic renditions by performers that spent their afternoon in classes at Rice or a long day at the office. Not only does the pub feature an impressive array of live music almost every night, but the Mucky Duck has been listed by Billboard Magazine as one of the 20 best acoustic venues in the country. - CBS Houston
Sign up at 6pm. Music begins at 6:30
The Village Voice calls Miss Tess and the Talkbacks the perfect instance of “Nashville meets Brooklyn”. With their honey-coated vocals and edgy prowess, it’s an apt description of the quartet.
Miss Tess backs up the wry wit and 1940s glam with a solid backbone of musical talent, drawing comparisons to everyone from Patsy Cline to Tom Waits to Bette Midler
Board games are hot right now — whether it’s the new Euro-style games like Settlers of Catan, Carcassonne, 7 Wonders or Power Grid, or you’re kickin’ it old school with traditional games like the Trumpesque, land-grabbing Monopoly. For a great midweek diversion, head on over to the Mucky Duck for a pint and a little tabletop competition; they’ve been at it for almost 25 years. We checked in with Stevie Hazlewood, day manager for McGonigel’s Mucky Duck, and she says the club stocks a nice selection of titles for the Wednesday night Game Night and Irish Session.
“It runs the gamut from Connect Four, to Scrabble, Yahtzee, Risk, three different versions of Monopoly, Scattergories, Cards Against Humanity,” says Hazlewood. Play one of those games or bring your own, and scarf down pub snacks like fish and chips, Welsh rarebit and the club’s famous shepherd’s pie.
Best of all, there’s no cover. 7:30 p.m.
By Susie Tommaney - Houston Press
QandA is a Houston band, their music is written and recorded in Houston, and they sound their very best at McGonigels Mucky Duck. Their third album, Goldfish in a Glass, was released in January and people are saying nice things about it.
“I was really mesmerized by this. The writing, the playing, all of it really came together.” – Sandy Weinmann, Host of KPFT- FM’s Deadbeat show
“QandA sounds better than ever. The new CD is great.” – Roark Smith, Host of KPFT- FM’s “Wide Open Spaces”
QandA are musical mutts equal parts true Texan, tough talking Yankee, Latin lover, rocker, singing-songwriter, and groove-slinging purveyor of funkadelic Americana. The band will have you dancing in your seat, whooping and hell-yeahing, singing along, and wiping away a choked up tear all in the same show.
It’s been said that High Plains Jamboree is a bluegrass band west of the Mississippi and a country band east of the Mississippi.
The songs of mandolin player Brennen Leigh have been recorded by country stars Sunny Sweeney and Grammy winner Lee Ann Womack. Leigh has a cult following in Scandinavia, and has performed and recorded with the likes of Charlie Louvin, Robbie Fulks and Jim Lauderdale.
Fiddler Beth Chrisman brings her award winning songwriting (Independent Music Awards “Country Song of the Year”) to the band. While a member of the Carper Family, Chrisman performed on Mountain Stage and A Prairie Home Companion. In the past, she has worked with Alice Gerrard, John C Reilly, James Hand and The Heartless Bastards.
Guitarist Noel McKay was discovered by Guy Clark in 1993 while performing at the Jimmie Rodgers Festival in Kerrville, Texas. Clark and McKay’s co-write “El Coyote” went on to win a Grammy for “Best Folk Album.”
Bassist and old time banjo player Simon Flory performed throughout the mid south with his mentor, bluegrass legend Donny Catron (Tennessee Gentlemen, Jesse McReynolds, Doyle Lawson). He also studied and taught at Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk Music.
While each musician’s resume is impressive in its own right, this new collaboration between long time friends has already gained national and international attention.
“High Plains Jamboree brings to the stage everything that we love about folk and roots music: a beautiful tapestry of homespun lyrics, instrumentation, and high lonesome harmonies.” –Jenni Finlay, Jenni Finlay Promotions, Eight 30 Records
With his unique voice, more unique song writing, and even more unique double necked “Guit-Steel” guitar, there has absolutely never been ANYONE like Junior Brown. He’s the American Original. Born in 1952 in Cottonwood, Arizona, Junior Brown showed an affinity for music at an early age when the family moved to a rural area of Indiana near Kirksville. In the following years, Junior began to experience Country music and remembers it as “growing up out of the ground like the crops – it was everywhere; coming out of cars, houses, gas stations and stores like the soundtrack of a story, but Country music programs on TV hadn’t really come along much yet; not until the late fifties.” Discovering a guitar in his grandparent’s attic, he spent the next several years woodshedding with records and the radio. Junior was also able to tap into music he couldn’t hear at home which older, college aged kids were listening to. This was possible due to his father’s employment at small campuses throughout the next decade as the family moved twice again. As a young boy he was able to experience the thrill of performing before live audiences, at parties, school functions even singing and playing guitar for five thousand Boy Scouts at an Andrews Air Force Base jamboree; then while still a teenager, getting the chance to sit in with Rock and Roll pioneer, Bo Diddley. Armed with this broad spectrum of influences, he began to develop a storehouse of musical chops.
Early on, Junior realized he had to keep his interest in Country music a secret; “it was like a secret friend I carried around, being careful not to tell anyone (especially girls) about my love for it because I thought they would laugh at me.” It wasn’t until the late 1960’s that Junior Brown would proudly explore the passion for the music he had loved since his early childhood in Indiana. With many prominent figures as his inspiration (Country legends, some who he would work with years later), he spent his nights in small clubs across the southwest. “I played more nights in honkytonks during the Seventies and Eighties than most musicians will see in a lifetime… I did so many years of that, night after night, four sets a night, fifteen minute breaks; I mean after that, you’ve gotta get good or you gotta get out. The early 1970’s California Country dance club scene was particularly competitive, but I learned professionalism and stage demeanor which has served me well to this day.” More recently however, Junior has shown himself to be equally adept at a wide variety of American music styles beyond Country. These include Rock and Roll, Blues, Hawaiian, Bluegrass and Western Swing.
There is a dependable consistency in Junior’s writing style (he writes nearly all his material) yet he’s always full of pleasant surprises. Though Junior always knew he could sing and play what he wanted, he had yet to explore his potential as a songwriter. “I realized no one was going to walk into a club and discover me…so I started hanging out with some songwriters who I’d played some jobs with, and they showed me how to support myself by writing and publishing.” With his writing coming together by the mid-Eighties, Brown upgraded his gear in a way that no artist had ever done. Struggling through each show, going back and forth plugging and unplugging guitar to steel guitar while singing, he had a dream one night about the two instruments mysteriously melding into one. The result was Brown’s unique invention, the “Guit-Steel”, a double necked instrument combining standard guitar with steel guitar. Built by Michael Stevens of Stevens Electric Instruments, the Guit-Steel allows Junior to switch instruments quickly in mid song while singing. According to Brown, his guitar and steel guitar playing became more his own around this time, with less imitation of others and more his own original ideas and licks. This maturation coincided with the development of a completely “Junior Brown” style of songwriting which employs subtle dry wit to some songs – others can be more overtly humorous, or just plain dead serious; like his playing, there is a wide range of styles that when combined can only spell Junior Brown.
In the early nineties Brown and his band (including wife Tanya Rae) relocated to Texas to the active Austin music scene and landed a weekly gig at the Continental club. Having worked as a sideman for many of the Austin-based acts over the years, Junior was already well familiar with the town. His unique and entertaining combination of singing, songwriting, instrumental and production skills led to a seven record deal with Curb Records that began with “Twelve Shades of Brown” in 1993. He later released two albums on the TelArc label. There were several Grammy nods, a CMA (Country Music Association) award for “My Wife Thinks You’re Dead”, movie and repeated TV appearances like Letterman, Conan, Saturday Night Live, Austin City Limits, SpongeBob, X Files, Dukes of Hazzard, Me Myself and Irene, Tresspass, Still Breathing, Blue Collar Comedy Tour 1 and 2, and more recently, Better Call Saul. And there were the Ad Campaigns; The Gap, Lee Jeans and Lipton Tea. As Junior became more well known, he began to collaborate on projects with some of his heroes. These include a duet with Ralph Stanley for which Junior received a Bluegrass Music Association Award (IBMA), a duet and video with Hank Thompson, as well as duets with video and record collaborations with the Beach Boys, George Jones, Leon McAuliffe, Ray Price, Leona Williams, Lynn Morris, Lloyd Green and Doc Watson. He even played guitar for Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys in a radio commercial.
Junior is currently finishing up recording on his latest album, “The American Original”. Release date is slated for mid-summer 2016. Junior’s performance on the promotional song, “Better Call Saul” was recorded and released both as a video on AMC as well as a flexible 33 1/3rd vinyl record included in the show’s box set from Season One. Junior, Tanya Rae and the band continue to tear up the highways and no doubt will be appearing in concert near you one of these days. Seeing Junior live is a definite must, so GUIT WITH IT ’cause he’s THE AMERICAN ORIGINAL!
CD release tour for “Transatlanticana” on Red House Records
Grammy nominated guitarist, singer and songwriter Bill Kirchen is one of the fortunate few who can step onto any stage, play those trademark licks that drove his seminal Commander Cody classic Hot Rod Lincoln into the Top Ten, and elicit instant recognition for a career that has spanned over 40 years and includes guitar work with Nick Lowe, Emmylou Harris, Doug Sahm, Elvis Costello and many more.
Named “A Titan of the Telecaster” by Guitar Player Magazine, he celebrates an American musical tradition where rock 'n' roll and country music draws upon its origins in blues and bluegrass, Western swing from Texas and California honky-tonk.
Singer/songwriter/guitarist, Ruby Rendrag, was born at Ochsner to a Houma Indian Mother and a banjo playing, West Virginian Father.
Ruby has been a part of the New Orleans music scene for 15 years performing as a solo artist and as a side woman with many local acts. She lives a life immersed in music.
As manager of Music Shed Studios, she helps local, national and international artists plan and execute their recording projects.
She infuses Ruby & The Rogues with lyrical immediacy, a percussive guitar style and her bluegrass-Led Zeppelin-80’s underground influences.
Enjoy folk, country and acoustic renditions by performers that spent their afternoon in classes at Rice or a long day at the office.
Although less common, other performers such as comedians, poets, jugglers and mimes are also welcome. - 365thingsinhouston.com
Members of the classic rock band, Spirit, The Staehely Brothers (Al and John) are hosting two very diverse shows on the same night for one ticket price. The first, at 7:30 PM, a cool collection of Staehely written acoustic numbers- some recorded by Marty Balin, Keith Moon, Bobbie Gentry, John Cippolina, Nick Gravenites, Patti Dahlstrom, Peter Cox of Go West and up and coming blues sensation, Annika Chambers- others recorded by Al and John when they left Austin in '71 to join the legendary West Coast group, Spirit. Also featured will be songs from the the Staehely Brothers Epic Records release, Al's solo recordings on Polygram and SteadyBoy Records, as well as new songs- some influenced by Al's travels to Brazil. John's guitar work makes clear why Robert Palmer, Bob Dylan, John Hiatt and Jo Jo Gunne chose him as their guitar slinger. Sitting in with the brothers is Evelyn Rubio, the beautiful and uniquely talented singer and sax player from Mexico City. A cameo performance by Al's son, Christian, featuring his compositions, will offer a glimplse of more to come from the Staehely millinneal.
At 9:00 PM Al and John will rock the Duck along with Texas Music Hall of Fame drummer, Freddie Steady Krc, and keyboardist Mike Robenbaum with an electric set including songs from their Spirit days like "Nature's Way", "I Got a Line on You" and "Cadillac Cowboys". The Staehely Brothers are not only contemporary artists but they are also a part of America’s musical heritage. Merging their Texas style with West Coast rock they took their music on the road headlining Carnegie Hall as Spirit members and touring the U.S., Canada, Australia, Europe and Asia. On November 1st, they bring it all back home to Houston.
Reservations are highly recommended for this two show, one ticket, one night special event.
with special guest, Evelyn Rubio
Eden MacAdam-Somer is one of the most exciting and versatile young musicians performing and teaching today. Her music transcends genre through soaring violin and fiddling, vocals, and percussive dance. She has been a featured soloist with symphony and chamber orchestras, jazz and swing bands, and Eastern European and American folk ensembles.
As an educator and composer/improviser, Ms. MacAdam-Somer has been a guest artist at such institutions as the Afghanistan National Institute of Music and the Dundalk Institute of Technology, and a featured performer at theEastbourne and Beijing International Music Festivals, in addition to maintaining a full-time studio at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. With her contemporary duo, NotoriousFolk, she has toured across the continental United States, and performed and taught in Alaska, Hawaii, India, Iceland, the UK, and Afghanistan.
Beginning her classical studies at the age of four, it was not until her teenage years that Eden became an active member of the traditional music and dance community in Houston, Texas. This led to years of playing and singing with American and International folk bands, jazz and swing groups, and early music ensembles.
Eden also continued to develop her skills as a classical violinist, attending Houston’s renowned High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, winning the Music Teacher’s National Association State Division and the Lennox Young Artists Competitions, and, eventually, earning her BM and MM degrees in classical performance from the Moores School of Music at the University of Houston as a student of Fredell Lack, and the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University as a student of Kenneth Goldsmith.
"Lovelorn resignation is true to the spirit of this album, a healthy dose of the new oldfangled country and Michaela Anne’s self-confident first statement since moving from Brooklyn to Nashville two years ago. A former military brat with a sweet, steady voice and a songwriter’s alert emotional intelligence, she’s a formalist but not inflexible — unbroken even when her songs run bleak or bittersweet, which is most of the time." - The New York Times
"A collection of honky-tonkers and poignant ballads, the record evokes the country-rock sound of the Eagles and the emotional vocals of Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris." - Rolling Stone Country
"On her latest album, Bright Lights And The Fame, Michaela Anne works through weepers and hits the honky-tonks as every great country singer should. Song after song, her confidence and conviction shine through without casting a shadow on her craft. Rodney Crowell even makes a cameo appearance on "Luisa," further solidifying her dirt-road cred." - NPR
Clandestine is hard-driving, toe-tapping Texas Celtic sound. Formed in 1991, the band is known for their brand of blasting tune sets and fresh songs.
Piper EJ Jones and fiddler Gregory McQueen lead the tunes with the full force of their individual musical energies.
Al Cofrin brings cittern and occasionally another set of bagpipes to the mix.
Percussionist and singer Emily Dugas captivates with her original song collaborations with Al, as well as her singular interpretations of songs in the Celtic genre. EJ and Al also join Emily on vocals, with many songs now set in three-part harmony.
Clandestine is a regular feature at the Texas Scottish Festival and the North Texas Irish Festival, as well as their home pub, McGonigel’s Mucky Duck in Houston. The band has toured the US extensively and had successful stints in Canada and France. Now, Clandestine is poised to tour widely again.
Piper Jones band combines the talents of Mucky Duck favorite piper EJ Jones of Clandestine and recent regular of the Grand Ole Opry, Houston native Frances Cunningham.
As the Piper Jones Band, EJ and Frances will join pipe band drummer Dean Atkinson for a night of brilliant bagpipe tunes and Celtic songs.
“[Kim Richey] would rule the charts in a land where Marshall Crenshaw was king, Aimee Mann queen, and the The Beatles never put out another record after Revolver.” Steve Horowitz, popmatters.com
“Richey entices you with sad and unembellished music that reveals an original spirit - and then she ensnares you for keeps by making you consider all the noiseless sensations that no songs can ever contain.” Timothy White, Billboard Magazine
Those artists who find themselves stuck in the deepest of ruts two decades into their careers could learn a thing or two from veteran singer-songwriter Kim Richey. She’s never been afraid to go where the inspiration is.
Two-time Grammy-nominated Kim is a storyteller; a weaver of emotions and a tugger of heartstrings. Tender, poetic and aching with life’s truths, Kim’s songs transport you to her world, where words paint pictures and melodies touch the soul.
And then there’s her voice. Pure, arresting and honest, it makes you take notice; Kim has the kind of voice where if emotions were ribbons, they’d be streaming in rainbow colours from your iPod.
Dead Soldiers is an American Roots Rock Band from Memphis, Tennessee. Much like The Band and Tom Waits, they draw deeply from influences ranging from Rock, Soul, Outlaw Country, and Bluegrass to Blues to carve out their own dark perspective on what it means to live and die in the American South.
Songs about anxiety, poverty, politics, history and death, are lifted by three and four part vocal harmonies, and paired with detailed instrumentation to create a dynamic musical identity with an energy and irreverence that sets them apart from what the world has come to expect from today's crop of soft-handed "Americana Artists."
They are a group forged in a city that is synonymous with musical innovation. Profoundly affected by the legacy of studios like Sun and Stax, and the way Memphis had become a mixing pot for the wide ranging musical styles of the delta to collide and evolve, Dead Soldiers are more interested in building on this foundation than simply paying homage to it.
They're more interested in capturing the outlaw spirit of the collaborations that defied the social structures of the Jim Crow south and later the music establishment to make something new, rather than purely emulating the styles of the past.
“One of the brightest young fiddlers around today.” — Brian O’Donovan, host of WGBH radio’s “ A Celtic Sojourn”
“Particularly impressive” — The Boston Globe
“Superb, inspiring, and unforgettable! Her magic is such that she sweeps audiences along with the sounds she and her instrument make.” — Willie Ruff, Director of the Ellington Jazz Series, Yale University
“Mari Black is an extraordinary musician; her sound is musical enthusiasm personified.” — Dr. John Turner, 10-time U.S. National Scottish Fiddle Champion
Multistyle violinist and champion fiddler MARI BLACK is rapidly building a reputation as one of the most dynamic young artists of her generation. Her energetic playing, engaging stage presence, and commitment to bringing people together through music have made her a favorite with audiences across the country and around the world. Equally at home in a wide variety of musical traditions, Mari is the 2015/2013 U.S. National Scottish Fiddle Champion, 2014 Glenfiddich Scottish Fiddle Champion, 2014/2012 Canadian Maritime Fiddle Champion, 2011 Canadian Novelty Fiddle Champion, 1st Prize Winner at the 2010 American Protégé International String Competition, and 2-time laureate at the American String Teachers’ Association Alternative Styles Awards.
On stage, she creates shows that draw on elements from many different styles including jazz, tango, folk, Western classical, as well as Celtic, American, and Canadian fiddling. Her performances take listeners on a musical journey exploring the diversity and celebrating commonalities in the dance-driven folk musics of the world.
Mari holds the champion’s quaich, moments after winning the 2014 Glenfiddich Scottish Fiddle Championship
An internationally-recognized performer, Mari can be seen playing in all corners of the musical world. She has been featured at Scottish Highland Games, Celtic festivals, celebrated folk venues, jazz concert series, Argentine tango festivals, and world-famous classical concert venues including Carnegie Hall. Mari has appeared with such diverse artists as Irish fiddle champion Liz Carroll, Americana master Mark O’Connor, and jazzman Willie Ruff.
There are only a couple of writers who consistently catch my ear and remind me of the subtle joy that great songs can bring. Adam shows the gold in life’s little details, as he follows the humble characters you don’t see in the movies, like the accordion-playing convict on furlough or the senior citizen country star.” Slaid Cleaves, Songwriter
“Adam Carroll gives the characters on Let It Choose You freedom to walk into its songs seamlessly, not missing a step between real lives and the tale. They come into the songs with all their emotions fresh, both wounds and wit displayed in real time.”
Danny McCloskey, The Alternate Root – Read Full Review Here
“Let It Choose You is tinged with a touch of the swamps in Louisiana, the beaches of Galveston, the mosquitoes in Houston, and the twang that makes Austin country great layered over Carroll’s understated approach to songwriting. It’s the sort of album that makes you think you’ve heard it before on your first time through it.”
– Romeo Sid Vicious, Nine Bullets – Read Full Review Here
“Eight albums into his career, Adam Carroll still paints vignettes in the simplest terms while making them sound like he’s filming in Technicolor…Long compared to the likes of John Prine and Townes Van Zandt, Adam Carroll proves he’s beyond compare.”
– Jim Caligiuri, Austin Chronicle – Read Full Review Here
Graham is constantly reinventing himself. His new album #BecauseOfYou released in June of 2016 leans heavily upon his reggae influences while seamlessly combining them with his love for rock n' roll and hip-hop. It features Adrian Quesada of Groupo Fantasma, Trevor Nealon from Band of Heathens, the Tijuana Trainwreck Horns of SHINYRIBS, as well as a rootsy, folk-country duet with Katie Shore; the fiddle player from Asleep At The Wheel.
Graham was recently selected to be in a new documentary for PBS about the person who wrote "I'll Fly Away"; Albert E. Brumley. Albert's granddaughter who runs their nonprofit ~http://illflyawayfoundation.org ~ has asked artists from across the globe to put into song his notebooks of words that have no music. The documentary will be filmed mid September 2016 in Austin, Arkansas & Nashville with collaborating artists Jim Lauderdale, Dawn & Hawkes, as well as others from Austin, England, Nashville, Australia and more. Stay tuned for more updates to come!
Born in Texas, the son of a preacher and school teacher, Graham was raised on the importance of family and service to others. Over the last 7 years, Graham has independently booked himself to the sum of nearly 200 shows a year; while also being a dedicated father, husband and family man of three wonderful daughters (one in college as well as twin 6-year olds) & two dogs. The line in his song “Laugh Until Life Makes Sense” sums up a message of positivity and love that Graham strives to exemplify and share through his music and home life.
The single "FOCUS" off of his 2011 release "the spiritual accessories ep" made it all the way toMTV.com and remained the #1 Most Shared, Most Commented On, & Most Viewed for over a week; all done as a completely independent, unsigned artist. All of this is on the foundation of his 2009 release "YEARBOOK" which featured Alejandro Escovedo & Hayes Carll.
In between recording, family time, & touring he has opened for such national acts as G. Love, Trevor Hall, The Gourds, Johnathan Tyler & the Northern Lights, Soul Rebels Brass Band & Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Hayes Carll, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, Greg Brown, Alejandro Escovedo and dear friend Kimya Dawson.
Graham Wilkinson has been named one of Black Fret’s inaugural nominees for their 2014 grant cycle. Black Fret believes local music is art, worthy of community support and patronage. To support Graham and musicians like him while attending amazing house parties and musical events, please visit Black Fret.
"In a city like Los Angeles, home to musical stars in nearly every known genre, handing out the Best Live Band title is not easy. But the free-thinking local collective Dustbowl Revival's upbeat, old-school, All-American sonic safaris exemplify everything shows should be: hot, spontaneous, engaging and, best of all, a pleasure to hear. " - LA WEEKLY
"It was an old-time medicine show featuring the kind of roots music that normally isn't my cup of twang, except it offered great bands like the Dustbowl Revival, whose Americana swing was so fun I went back to see them again the next day." -ROLLING STONE
"A nine-piece band replete with tuba, washboard, accordion, fiddle, mandolin, trumpet and guitar joyously pumped out early 20th century standards and original tunes that would have sounded utterly at home within the hallowed confines of Preservation Hall in New Orleans' French Quarter. The seven men, most with suspenders attached to well-worn trousers, broad ties and vests and some sporting 1930s-vintage newsboy caps, and two women in flapper-inspired dresses, are members of a ragtag outfit called the Dustbowl Revival, strumming, sawing and puffing enthusiastically as smiling listeners on the dance floor swung their partners infectiously." -THE LOS ANGELES TIMES
We've been asked repeatedly, "When is Robyn coming back to the Duck?" and finally the answer is "now!" Get your tickets, come early, have dinner and settle in for a real treat.
Robyn's 2014 Release Little Rain, produced by Gurf Morlix, crowned Robyn the “Queen of Modern Texas Country Soul” by No Depression and “The Best of Americana and The Best in Texas”.
Tom Russell songs have been recorded by such icons as Johnny Cash, Dave Van Ronk, Jerry Jeff Walker, Doug Sahm, Joe Ely, Nanci Griffith, Iris Dement, and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, among others. No less than Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the legendary poet, has said that he shares “a great affinity with Tom Russell’s songs, for he is writing out of the wounded heart of America.”
Tom's 52 Track, double record "The Rose of Roscrae" - A Ballad of the West, is to be released April 14, 2015…with guest artists: Johnny Cash, Leadbelly, Ramblin' Jack Elliott, Guy Clark, Dan Penn, Gretchen Peters, Ian Tyson and dozens of others…the reviews are piling in:
"The Rose of Roscrae: A Ballad of the West is the third in a series of extraordinary concept albums Tom Russell has delivered...yet another masterwork. It is a work of rare ambition and rare brilliance that is beautifully and artfully executed...Tom’s performances are riveting throughout the long piece. So, too, are the other singers who take on various roles in the folk opera...There is an embarrassment of riches among the songs Tom composed for The Rose of Roscrae...Mike Regenstreif, Folk Roots"
Robyn Hitchcock is one of England’s most enduring contemporary singer/songwriters and live performers. A surrealist poet, talented guitarist, cult artist and musician’s musician, Hitchcock is among alternative rock’s father figures and is the closest thing the genre has to a Bob Dylan (not coincidentally his biggest musical inspiration).
Since founding the art-rock band The Soft Boys in 1976, Robyn has recorded more than 20 albums as well as starred in ‘Storefront Hitchcock’ an in concert film recorded in New York and directed by Jonathan Demme.
Blending folk and psychedelia with a wry British nihilism, Robyn describes his songs as ‘paintings you can listen to’. His most recent album THE MAN UPSTAIRS is a bittersweet love letter to a vanishing world. Produced by legendary folk-rock svengali Joe Boyd (Pink Floyd, Nick Drake) the album was critically acclaimed by MOJO, UNCUT and THE QUIETUS.
“A gifted melodist, Hitchcock nests engaging lyrics in some of the most bracing, rainbow-hued pop this side of Revolver. He wrests inspiration not from ordinary life but from extraordinary imaginings…” – Rolling Stone
“As a performer, he’s as much a wandering bard as a rock star.” – The Believer
“Some spectral, lingering, emotional thundercloud hangs over The Man Upstairs…harks back to that infinitely distant yet eternally resonant emotional big bang”— UNCUT
Celebrate Dan's 75th birthday with us at this Duck show!
Acclaimed singer/songwriter/producer Dan Penn just released Junkyard Junky on his own Dandy Records label July 29. Junkyard Junky continues an intimate "behind-the-scenes" portrait of this master songwriter that began in 2001 with Blue Nite Lounge, the first offering in Penn's "demo series". The album features 14 songs written or co-written by Penn, many of which have never been recorded, and will be exclusively available on his Web site at DanPenn.com.
As the co-writer of such global classics as "Do Right Woman," "I'm Your Puppet," "Cry Like a Baby," "A Woman Left Lonely," "Dark End of the Street," and "Sweet Inspiration", Penn is often asked about his "other" demos---those that he recorded back in the heyday of soul, which have long been sought after by fans and collectors around the World.
Penn says, "People ask me all the time about those old Muscle Shoals demos. I called for a copy of all of them from EMI a few years back. They sent them, I heard them, and I just didn’t think they were good enough to release. They were good for one thing—and that was, to impress the artist they were pitched to. This they did very well. I guess they would be interesting to somebody, I don’t know, but I do know that these new demos are what I’m writing now, and I live on that, not on what I did 40 years ago."
A sultry country classicist with a tremble in her voice, Whitney Rose is partial to the magisterial gestures of the 1950s and 1960s. And so for her stately second album, “Heartbreaker of the Year” (Cameron House), she enlisted the Mavericks, keepers of that era’s flame, for backup duty, and its frontman, the silky Raul Malo, as producer.
Apart from two covers, Ms. Rose wrote all the songs here, and she is gifted with the eccentric detail: On “The Last Party,” a sweet Dusty Springfield-esque waltz, she implores friends to “go cover every jukebox, smash all the guitars,” and on the title track, she muses, “You must have taken a class in fading away.”
Ms. Rose can be a slightly reserved singer, but it’s in those moments that the Mavericks come in handy, playing vintage country with high viscosity. And when Mr. Malo steps in to duet, like on “The Last Party” or the Ronettes cover “Be My Baby,” the two achieve a melancholy twinkle much like the one between George Jones and Tammy Wynette. - THE NEW YORK TIMES
If we’re honest, the true weight of any band or artist is chiefly determined by how they translate to us in a live performance setting. Can they breach that intangible border between the stage and the gathered onlookers?
Can they slip in like a steady rising state of inebriation, stealing our attention, controlling our emotions and ultimately drawing us into their world? Does their energy continue to vibrate within us well after the last chords have been played and our daily life comes to reclaim us?
These are probably some of the questions one writer from Rolling Stone Magazine had running through his head before he proclaimed The Statesboro Revue as one of the highlights of the 2009 South by Southwest Conference and Festival. The Statesboro Revue goes back to 2008, but the evolving vision of front man and primary songwriter Stewart Mann goes back much further. It’s a journey down many roads from Texas to Tennessee to California and back, all in a search for that perfect, unspoiled place for his music to grow roots.
Year after year in city after city, it became clear that those roots had taken hold on stage and from there grew into a groove oriented, old school rock and roll band, the likes of which have not been seen in quite some time.
True to her Texas honky-tonk roots, Sunny Sweeney has never been a singer of what you’d call “soft” country songs — the kind you might turn to for easy comfort and or quiet Sunday afternoons with the family. Hell, you can tell just by the titles of her first two albums — Heartbreaker’s Hall of Fame and Concrete — that she reaches straight for the hard stuff.
So when this woman sees fit to name her third album Provoked, you better believe she’s not about to start playing coy now. No, this is where the real hurtin’ starts, and Sweeney’s showing no mercy … least of all to herself.
If there’s a pedigree for a modern country music star, then Angaleena Presley fits all of the criteria: a coal miner’s daughter; native of Beauty, Kentucky; a direct descendent of the original feuding McCoys; a one-time single mother; a graduate of both the school of hard knocks and college; a former cashier at both Wal-Mart and Winn-Dixie. Perhaps best of all the member of Platinum-selling Pistol Annies (with Miranda Lambert and Ashley Monroe) says she “doesn’t know how to not tell the truth.”
That truth shines through on her much-anticipated debut album, American Middle Class, which she co-produced with Jordan Powell. Yet this is not only the kind of truth that country music has always been known for—American Middle Class takes it a step further by not only being a revealing memoir of Presley’s colorful experiences but also a powerful look at contemporary rural American life. “I have lived every minute on this record. My mama ain’t none too happy about me spreading my business around but I have to do it,” Presley says. “It’s the experience of my life from birth to now.”
"Took a whole lot of miles to know what I know now," sings Will Hoge on "Growing Up Around Here," the opening track off of his tenth studio album, Small Town Dreams. "I'm kinda proud of growing up around here." It's been a whole lot of miles, indeed: miles on the road, driving the bus himself from venue to venue since the nineties; miles to and from Nashville writing rooms, where he's spent countless hours penning songs – some for him, some for others; miles exploring lands outside of his native Franklin, Tennessee, chasing the spirits of his musical heroes. Roads meet, roads split, roads led to home. This is the album that follows them all, every twist and turn in Hoge's American journey – a journey that's positioned him as one of our keenest, most honest modern storytellers, telling both his tale and ours.
"It's a reflection of where I am currently in my life," says Hoge of Small Town Dreams, "but also where I grew up, and, ultimately, where I think I'm going." From the streets of the town where he was raised, to the sidewalks of cities a hundred times the size, we all have dreams; and these are the stories of growing up, looking back and passing on those dreams, told as only Hoge can. Nostalgia, in his hands, is truly magic.
An extremely prolific songwriter with ten albums under his belt and countless songs written for others (including a Grammy nomination for Eli Young Band's number-one hit, "Even If Breaks Your Heart," co-written with Paslay), Hoge saw this next phase of his journey as an opportunity to explore even deeper into both his country and rock & roll roots. Never fitting particularly neatly into a genre box, he's always just made the music that moved him – but it's safe to say that he feels more kinship with the country community than ever, particularly as a storyteller.
Like all troubadours, singer-songwriter Phoebe Hunt is a rambler. Recent years have seen the Texas native relocate from Austin to Nashville to her current residence in Brooklyn. This wanderlust is evident in the variety of projects she is a part of, moving in and out of multiple styles and genres of music with an effortless grace.
Having collaborated and toured with such inspiring artists as Ben Sollee, Shakey Graves, The Belleville Outfit, and The Hudsons, Hunt is never one to turn down the opportunity to create a new sound or be a part of a musical experiment, but it is as a band leader that she truly shines. In her musical project, "Phoebe Hunt Sings the New American Songbook", Phoebe presents a unique show nodding to the jazz and swing roots from where she came, by singing her renditions of the classics.
Austin-based singer/songwriter and guitarist Jimmy LaFave brings a passionate rock & roll energy to his original folk songs, whether he's playing solo or with a band.
Quite a fixture on the Austin music scene, upon his return to Texas in 1986, LaFave racked up critical accolades among not only Austin–based publications, but periodicals across the country and two Austin Music Awards, in addition to other laurels.
LaFave’s visibility on the musical radar increased with an appearance on Austin City Limits and at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame tribute to Woody Guthrie, where he was hand–picked by Guthrie’s daughter to appear.
Another "out of Duck" experience. Bob Schneider and the Moonlight Orchestra.
Are you ready? We are! Start your holiday season this year at the beautiful Wortham Center Cullen Theater when the Mucky Duck presents Bob Schneider and his annual Moonlight Orchestra Holiday show.
Join Bob and The Tosca String Quartet — along with Bob’s special guests — for a magical evening that will kick off your holidays in style. You’ll be able to enjoy your favorite holiday standards, but don’t worry, you’ll also be dancing in your seats to Tarantula and Bob’s other hits!
Her lyrics are bold and honest in that she unveils pure emotion. She can blow you away by the way her huge voice will rock you, hurt you when she sings the blues, and make you think you think when she's telling you exactly how she feels.
Her guitar playing is strong and sometimes she will take it where her ear goes, not trying to be something she's not, but rather someone in the zone.
Slaid Cleaves. Grew up in Maine. Lives in Texas. Writes songs. Makes records. Travels around. Tries to be good.
Slaid Cleaves lives with his wife of 21 years, Karen Cleaves, in the Hill Country outside Austin, Texas.
While Karen books the shows, the flights, the hotels, and the rental cars, designs, orders and sells the CDs and T-shirts, pays the band, updates the web site, answers fan questions, does the taxes and makes dinner, Slaid writes his little songs (and fixes things around the house).
They travel around the world together while Slaid plays for fans far and wide and gets all the glory.
If it wasn’t for Karen, Slaid would be carrying all he owned in a shoe box, scrounging around for a happy hour gig.
Greetings fellow Heathens!
To celebrate all of the good times we’ve had and raise a toast to the future, we’re playing a run of shows in Texas this November.
We hope you’ll join us in Houston, Dallas and Austin as we reunite with some members of the Heathen Alumni and make a grand old noise together.
Thank you for giving us this space to be a band and create and share our music with you, we are forever grateful!
Tickets are on sale now.
Sophia Johnson is a powerhouse triple threat British invasion of the Austin roots scene. With her lead guitar playing, singing and songwriting, she has found herself at home in a competitive music city in a short span of time. Johnson started off as a classical player and earned a spot in Birmingham Schools Guitar Ensemble, one of only ten students deemed worthy of the project.
This led to her working with Trio Gitano, whose debut jazz record “Who Ate All the Tapas” was named the No. 4 album of the year by the Sunday Times in 2005. Johnson fell in love with Bluegrass and she and sister Hannah convinced their father to form family band the Toy Hearts. As principle songwriter for the group, Sophia led them on extensive tours of the UK and Ireland, Germany, and the US.
The Toy Hearts recorded 5 albums and one EP, “Femme Fatale”, with Nashville’s David Mayfield, landing spots on BBC radio, an official showcase at IBMA, and opened for Chris Thile, Hot Club of Cowtown, Ricky Skaggs, the Quebe Sisters, and Robert Plant. The Toy Hearts band can even count Ronnie Wood as one of their fans!
As her interest and passion for Western Swing guitar grew Johnson realized she had to move to where the pulse of those rhythms seemed to emanate most: Austin Texas. Sophia Johnson now lives in the capital city of the Lonestar state, where she is in demand as a lead guitarist and backup singer for artists such as Whitney Rose, Jim Stringer, the Carper Family, and many others.
As the only British female to ever be featured in Flatpick guitar magazine, be assured that she is blazing trails with her flat picking siren and songstress skills. Look out for her first solo release of original music soon!
A diverse mix of acoustic rock, folk, and “country classics” from the ‘50’s to the 2000’s as well as a unique offering of "Texas-Americana" originals.
“While Radney Foster is no stranger to the country charts, both on his own and with the duo Foster & Lloyd, there’s not much Music City/Nash Vegas gloss on Everything I Should Have Said.
Foster’s songs are essentially country, but are charged with crackling Louisiana flavors and wiry, rootsy-rock a la The Band. Foster’s voice has a plainspoken quality akin to that of the late Levon Helm.” –Icon Magazine
“Like the songs of [Townes] Van Zandt, Foster’s music doesn’t jump up and down, wear fancy clothes, or beat around the bush. And like Van Zandt, Foster’s always trying to find that little piece of truth.” –Charleston City Paper
Atomic acoustic blues-funk-rock. Josh Alan’s first album in 15 years. Can you dig it?
Not since 2001’s Josh Alan Band (with “Strike A Match”). And before that, Blacks ’n’ Jews (1997) and the Ed Wood musical The Worst! (1994) and Famous & Poor (1991). And books like Tales of Times Square, Black Cracker and Warts And All.
“…a mix of precision and abandon.” – Houston Chronicle
“…Moore’s To Be Loved builds gracefully from soft swooning to soaring shouts.” – Parade Magazine
“(Moore is) another in the way too short list of artists that plays it as it lays, no digital gimmicks or sweetening to rob the recording of its soul. After hearing this one you’ll wonder why others try and make something so natural so difficult.” -Village Records
“A southside collective of songwriters modeled loosely on the template established by Saxon supergroup the Resentments a decade ago, the S.A.Moonlighters take a big step with “Burn & Shine,” their first studio album.
Former members of Mother Truckers, Stonehoney and Monte Montgomery’s touring band collaborate on an eclectic mix of rock, soul, funk, blues, country and more; whereas the previous live disc was highlighted by covers, they’re now bringing their own material to the fore. Highly Recommended.”
Bruce’s and Kelly’s holiday performance finds the husband-and-wife duo of singer-songwriters with a full band singing songs from their Christmas album Happy Holidays. But the show isn’t all about the holidays, it is also a showcase of the best of Kelly and Bruce’s solo careers which continue to flourish with their new CD.
Bruce says the shows each year are very special to the couple because of the way it brings back memories, “You think about the people you love, friends, family, how lucky you are to have known them.” He understands the wistfulness of the season and the dream of a Christmas that may have never been.
** Standing Room tickets do not include dinner.
“James writes like he's lived a lifetime.” —John Mellencamp
“The most vital lyricist in America today.” —Bob Harris, BBC 2 RADIO
“James McMurtry is a true Americana poet – actually he is a poet regardless of genre” —Michael Nesmith
“McMurtry might be the best topical writer performing right now and (Just Us Kids) finds him at his finest.”
—Patterson Hood, Drive-By Truckers
"America's fiercest songwriter" - CNN
“James McMurtry writes songs filled with characters so real that you're sure they're going to climb out of the speakers and look you in the eyes.” —VOICE OF AMERICA
“McMurtry aims for the jugular.” —DIRTY LINEN“A conservative,” Franklin Roosevelt said almost 70 years ago, “is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned to walk forward.” James McMurtry – work shirt tucked, fists clenched – turns those words into weapons on Just Us Kids. Think Steve Earle with an even more pointed – and sometimes sharper – vision. Essential listening at the height of election season.
– Brian T. Atkinson, RELIX
“The songwriting conscience of America,” —FOLK WAX
“As the years pile on, James McMurtry sings with ever more authority and deserved cynical grace...With each album, (he) finds more to say and a stubborn, uncompromising way to say it.” —iTUNES
“Music that's haunting but familiar, much like the struggles he depicts.” —WASHINGTON POST
“brave, smart, and pithy music that captures James McMurtry at the top of his game.” —ALL MUSIC
“more energized than ever.” —TEXAS MONTHLY
“His songwriting is clear and precise, and he proves once again that he is Not afraid to take on the powers that be.” —VINTAGE GUITAR
“McMurtry’s songwriting is in a class by itself.” —METROMIX
“Texastentialist panorama of gray-sky lucidity and neon highway jungles...” - THE VILLAGE VOICE
“The veteran Texas songwriter’s new album, Just Us Kids, features the slow burner ‘Cheney’s Toy,’ one of the sharpest musical indictments yet of George Bush.” —ROLLING STONE
“emboldened by the reception to 2004’s acerbic (and increasingly relevant) ‘We Can’t Make it Here,’ McMurtry ramps up the polemics on Just Us Kids.” —USA TODAY
“One of the best protest singers working today.” —TIME OUT CHICAGO
Annual Dinner Concert for the Holiday
Menu coming soon!
Austin singer-songwriter Trish Murphy and her brother Darin will flit between the kitchen and stage tonight.
She's assembled a menu to accompany the duo's Christmas show at McGonigel's Mucky Duck.
"We're sort of like executive chefs on the deal," she says. "We created and submitted a menu. We'll have some supervision and be puttering around the kitchen before we go onstage. But thank God we don't have to rip off our aprons and sing for our supper."
Murphy is no stranger to the kitchen. She keeps a well-maintained food blog on her Web site and she also teaches a cooking class at Austin's Whole Foods.
She and Darin — who grew up and cut their teeth as a duo in Houston — started cooking as kids. "We had a weird bohemian pace to our lives," she says. "Our parents were real young. But my mom was really traditional about family dinner every night. Everybody helped in the kitchen.
"It was a real egalitarian deal. She didn't serve anything off the stove. It had to be plated and on the right kind of dish. Glasses were filled with ice, tea poured, the ritual never varied. That gave us a kind of grounding in the kitchen that maybe other kids didn't get."
The cooking tonight will be well under way by the time Murphy and her brother show. But since the meal will be family recipes, they'll keep an eye on things in the kitchen.
"So much about cooking is tactile and you're using all of your senses," she says, "knowing by experience how things look or feel. We'll be able to get into there and give everybody a tactile frame of reference."
As for the songs, expect some originals, some holiday medleys and "some other things that are a little less worn out."
For country music trio Sister C, music literally runs in the family. Made up of real-life sisters Cirby, Carli, and Celbi Manchaca, these three young women blend their love of traditional country with an edgy twist for a unique and alternative style that gives their music a signature sound.
Thanks to a musical upbringing inspired by their singer-songwriter father, Sister C became equally comfortable onstage as they were in the studio. After gaining a sizable following during their time on The X Factor, the sisters packed up everything and moved to Music City to chase their dreams. Three years later, Nashville has provided them the opportunity to expand the boundaries of their music, which is heavily influenced by country music greats like Dixie Chicks, Merle Haggard, George Jones, Willie Nelson, George Strait, and Lee Ann Womack.
Sister C is a force to be reckoned with in country music. Each sister brings her individual talents, distinct voice, and personality to the group. Cirby’s natural energy and strong personality provides a perfect foil to Carli’s instinctive ability to push the limits lyrically and Celbi’s prowess on guitar. With all of their combined, organic talent, Sister C is a breath of fresh air. Regardless of whether they’re in the studio or onstage, when Cirby, Carli, and Celbi are together, magic is in the air.
Two of our favorite Texas artists, Carolyn Wonderland and Guy Forsyth, have teamed up to present the special irreverent magic of their annual holiday show at the Duck.
Featuring songs of the season in the style of blues, folk, rock, country and big band, all combined for a completely unique and engaging experience.
Before there was Americana, before there was Texas Country, Two Tons of Steel front man Kevin Geil and his original band, “Dead Crickets,” rocked a sound that blended the best of musical worlds and pushed the envelope of “Texas” sound with a signature brand of high-energy country meets raw punk.
The San Antonio-based group packed the small bars and local hangouts and quickly became the Alamo City’s most-loved band, earning them a spot on the cover of Billboard Magazine in 1996. It was the beginning of a twenty year journey for Geil and the 4-piece ensemble.
Two Tons of Steel’s reach extends beyond their live gigs. In 2003, the band was filmed during a “Two Ton Tuesday” gig for the IMAX film, "Texas: The Big Picture," which can be seen daily at the IMAX Theatre in the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin and has been seen as far away as Japan.
Evans' life journey has revolved around performing, whether on the football fields of Texas in his younger years, or on stage at venues scattered across America. His journey began by earning his keep and his education through athletics, and later by entering the realm of Texas roots rock music as he took to the road. When he isn’t songwriting or touring with the John Evans Band, Emily Bell or El Trio Grande, Evans is an award-winning producer who creates albums with an untouchable southern elegance, ranging from bluesy rock-n-roll to rootsy country music.
He has produced albums for Jason James, folk pop singer Ashley Monical, Jesse Dayton and Emily Bell in the past year alone. His production with Corb Lund (Cabin Fever) went to #1 in Canada knocking Justin Bieber out of that position. Evans also has several album writes and co-writes with Hayes Carll including mainstays, Take Me Away and KMAG YOYO. He is a true virtuoso whose sound and musical style cannot be defined by one genre or one project.
His latest endeavor is his new album Polyester, which tells the story of the journey he has led ever since the day he decided the life of a songwriter was the only path for him. He hasn’t looked back since. John has written over 400 original songs that can touch the soul of music fans from all genres, across all spectrums.
His songs are delivered as an outpour of emotion rather than merely singing; songs that make you want to get up and dance, or rock out in your convertible in the heat of a Texas summer. But he also offers the listener lyrics that can be transparent and vulnerable, reflecting what is moving him in his everyday life. Each song speaks to his life experiences, every one having a unique sound and revealing the most important aspect of his music - staying true to his artistry. Whether it be a punk song that comes from a place of anger, a tear-bending country song that stems from sadness, or a song that was just inspired by a longneck bottle, John’s music has the ability to connect with his fans and cut to their hearts.
Morrow sings hard, proving his smooth, fiery drawl has only gotten better with age. The music revels in a life full of love and purpose, drawing on gritty rock, thumping gospel, and Morrow’s signature juke-joint country. Many of the songs address faith and relationships, both human and holy, with urgency, gratitude, and wonder. “I think there has always been a thread of spirituality in everything I’ve done––I’ve always been searching for something more,” he says.
“But in the last five or six years, I’ve started to actually find it. And in the last three or four years, I’ve begun to come into really deep contact with it––to walk in it.”
As a songwriter, Morrow has retained his token wit and self-deprecating humor, two traits that play well with the album’s loftier themes. His circle of collaborators continues to expand: Nashville aces Brian Keane and Mando Saenz, along with Texas troubadours such as Carter Beckworth, joined an existing cast of favorites that includes the sagacious Owen Temple.
“…a masterful approach to song craft reminiscent of John Hiatt and James Taylor… - NoDepression.com
“…an unforgettable album.” – SomethingElse.com
“Solid songwriting meets with soulful vocal delivery and a brilliant guitar tone…” -Roots Music Report
Renowned songwriter, singer, true believer, Alejandro Escovedo releases Burn Something Beautiful October 28th, 2016 on Fantasy Records
The new album, Escovedo’s first solo endeavor since 2012’s highly acclaimed Big Station, is in actuality, a highly collaborative affair. Teaming with Peter Buck (R.E.M.) and Scott McCaughey (The Minus 5) to co-write the album’s songs, Escovedo also enlisted the pair to act as the project’s producers.
Escovedo and company take some mighty big swings here. At once a celebration of the rock and roll life, a contemplation on mortality, and the healing power of love, Burn Something Beautiful connects repeatedly with Escovedo’s soulful heart and voice at its core. Recorded in April at Portland’s Type Foundry studio, the project coalesced with the help of an esteemed group of musicians who give the album a genuine band feel. They include guitarist Kurt Bloch (The Fastbacks), drummer John Moen (The Decemberists), vocalists Corin Tucker (Sleater-Kinney) and Kelly Hogan (Neko Case) as well as saxophonist Steve Berlin (Los Lobos).
In a trailblazing career that began with The Nuns, San Francisco’s famed punk innovators, to the Austin-based-based alt-country rock pioneers, Rank & File, to Texas bred darlings, True Believers, through countless all-star collaborations and tribute album appearances and finally a series of beloved solo albums beginning with 1992’s acclaimed Gravity, Escovedo has earned a surplus of distinctions: No Depression magazine’s Artist of the Decade Award in 1998 and the Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Performing in 2006, just to name two.
“You just do your good work, and people care,” Alejandro says. “I always believed, when I was a kid, that if you worked hard, you would find fulfillment. I think I got a lot of that from my father and my brothers. A working musician is all I ever wanted to be. Hard work, stay true to what you want to do, and then eventually someone would notice for that very reason.”
Co-producer Peter Buck says, “I’ve been a fan of Alejandro’s music for over 30 years, and recording with him was as good as I expected it to be. I think he, Scott McCaughey and I really extended our vocabulary as writers and musicians, coming up with something that is unlike anything we have done individually in the past.”
“I felt a real kinship with Alejandro since we first met in 1986,” Scott McCaughey says. “We bonded over our mutual love of the rock & roll circus. Making this record really meant a lot to me, and I think people will get that when they hear it.”
Burn Something Beautiful is Alejandro Escovedo at his very best. His many gifts are revealed across a lifetime spent in dedication to and faith in the hard work of life and music…and its possibilities. Refusing to go unnoticed.
New Year's Eve Dinner Dance
Supperclub service beginning at 7:00pm.Four course dinner, party favors.
"Despite his success and sense of history, Mr. Paul remains an artist with his eye on the future and an interest in discovering the transformative potential in his music." - The New York Times
Some artists document their lives through their music. Others chronicle their times. It’s a rare artist who can do both, telling their own story through songs that also encapsulate the essence of people and places who have helped define their era overall. Woody Guthrie comes to mind, and so does Bob Dylan. Bruce Springsteen certainly as well. Yet few others, for whatever genius they may possess, can relate their own history to the history experienced by those who find that common bond, be it in a coming of age, living through the same realities or sharing similar experiences.
Ellis Paul is one of those gifted singer/songwriters.Though some may refer to him as a folksinger, he is more, for lack of a better word, a singular storyteller, a musician whose words reach out from inside and yet also express the feelings, thoughts and sensibilities that most people can relate to in one way or another, regardless of age or upbringing. The exhilaration of the open road. A celebration of heroes. The hope for redemption. Descriptions of those things that are both near and dear. The sharing of love..., intimate,
“Austin’s got no shortage of indie blues musicians whose music sounds great from a coffeehouse stage, but it only has a few who can put together the total package of eclectic, soulful jams and a stridently powerful voice the way that Jackie Venson can.” (read the full article here) TEXAS MONTHLY
“With an astonishing mix of raw soul, superb musicianship and laid back grace it was easy to believe that we were participating in the origin story of Austin’s next great export — a Gary Clark Jr. level talent who speaks boldly through her guitar while simultaneously entrancing with her gorgeous smoky voice.” (read the full article here) AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN
For more than three decades, Texas singer-songwriter Shake Russell has been entertaining audiences throughout the region with his unique, Americana style of folk-rock. A prolific songwriter, Shake has written or co-written hundreds of melodies.
Through the years, Shake’s songs and albums have frequented the Billboard charts, with many, including “Deep in the West,” “You’ve Got a Lover,” “Put Yourself in My Shoes,” “One More Payment,” and “Our Kind of Love” being recorded by such distinguished artists as Waylon Jennings, Jessi Colter, Ricky Skaggs, Clint Black, and Carolyn Dawn Johnson. Ricky Skagg’s hit recording of “You’ve Got a Lover” has appeared on three of Ricky’s albums.
Shake is a favorite at the Duck and his shows sell quickly so get your tickets soon.
Come early for dinner and enjoy and beautifully poured pint and some of the best fish and chips in Houston.
Country music’s Brandon Rhyder has undoubtedly established himself as a fixture in the Texas Country/Red Dirt scene. Rhyder has released seven albums and boasts an impressive four #1 singles on the Texas Music Charts, along with a plethora of other milestones.
He continues to push boundaries and deliver fresh material, all while maintaining his signature sound that fans across the country have grown to adore.
The Peterson Brothers possess a uniquely modern blend of blues, soul, and funk. Alex, 17, on bass and vocals, and Glenn Jr., 19, on guitar and lead vocals, have grown up playing together since they were young kids.
They have opened for the likes of Gary Clark Jr., Los Lonely Boys, the late B.B. King, Willie Nelson, and Lisa Marie Presley. They have also played with Buddy Guy, Michael Burks and many of Austin’s finest musicians. The Peterson Brothers have also gained the attention of the one and only Bootsy Collins, who has become a true mentor.
Glenn and Alex are honing their chops daily, and are dazzling audiences playing gigs throughout the United States.
“The only thing missing from the Peterson Brothers Band is the word "amazing" at the front of the name.” - San Antonio Express-News
As a young man from Meridian, Mississippi, Steve Forbert traveled to New York City and played guitar for spare change in Grand Central Station. He vaulted to international prominence with a folk-rock hit, “Romeo’s Tune,” during a time when rootsy rock was fading out and the Ramones, Talking Heads and other New Wave and punk acts were moving in to the public consciousness. Still, critics raved about Steve’s poetic lyrics and engaging melodies, and the crowds at CBGB’s club in New York accepted him alongside those acts. “I’ve never been interested in changing what I do to fit emerging trends,” Forbert observes. “Looking back on it, I was helping to keep a particular American songwriting tradition alive at a time when it wasn’t in the spotlight.”
After his first two records came a plethora of well-crafted, unforgettable songs on such albums as Little Stevie Orbit, Streets of This Town, The American in Me, Mission of the Crossroad Palms and Evergreen Boy. His tribute to Jimmie Rodgers, Any Old Time, was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2004. In October 2012, 35 years after his first album, Steve has released an exciting new one, Over With You. Its ten fresh but mature songs pinpoint a wide range of emotions that color personal relationships — emotions that most listeners have undoubtedly felt and struggled to understand at some point in their lives. “This is an album that has taken a lifetime to make,” explains Forbert. “You don’t just pull these songs out of thin air — you have to live them.”
"Heard Market Junction for the first time about a year ago and since then have been a BIG fan". "Market Junction brings something different to the Texas scene and that's always a good thing."— Katie Key, Keymusicnews.com
"After all is said, or sung rather, and done, Market Junction leaves the listener with a sense of hope for the future and a feeling of freedom in the present." - The Daily Cougar
One year after releasing Soul Searching, his tribute to the musical histories of Memphis and Nashville, GRAMMY ® winner Jim Lauderdale draws influence from Texas for his 28th album, This Changes Everything.
Lauderdale has been an ambassador for the Americana genre for years, not only releasing more than two dozen albums of award-winning American roots music, but also emceeing the acclaimed radio show Music City Roots. Along the way, he's collaborated with legends like Buddy Miller, Ralph Stanley, and Robert Hunter. The WagonMaster award recognizes an Americana pioneer whose career continues to roll ahead, leaving a large legacy in its wake.
"I was already a fan of George Strait when he began recording my songs," says Lauderdale, "and his support really opened up a lot of doors for me. It helped allow me to make the kind of music I want to make, and release it the way I want to release it. It allowed me to create. This award is one of the most important things to happen to me, in my life and my career."
Lauderdale's latest creation, This Changes Everything, presents the songwriter's own version of the traditional Texas dancehall sound, filled with shuffles, rave-ups, plenty of sharp songwriting and appearances by a handful of genuine Texas legends. For a wagon master who's nowhere near the end of his journey, This Changes Everything marks the latest stop in a longer trek.
One of Houston's true roots-music icons, Jack Saunders can be described perfectly in one word: Integrity.
Saunders has been at this so long he cuts straight to the chase. This isn't some over-thought, let's-play-at-folk-rock schtick that numerous young bands have, this is a full-grown pro matching sounds and words -- "I say goodbye to gravity when you come around" -- with all the precision of someone who's been at his craft 40 years. This one is Houston proud. - Houston Press
Tres Bourbonnais = Texas Jazz & NoLa Blues! Centerpiece Sharon Bourbonnais; pianist, songwriter and seductive vocalist ... take equal parts Diana Krall, Marcia Ball add splash of Bonnie Raitt and Peggy Lee for a soulful Texas-Louisiana style jazz.
“If you are looking to be blown away by raw talent, then look no further than Griffin House.” —American Songwriter
It is a true, and nowadays rare, musician who writes lyrics so vulnerable and authentic that an audience is irrevocably captured by the powerful experience of sharing the journey. An album that is essentially an autobiographical account of personal mistakes, change, and growth, offers listeners a chance to reflect on their own experiences and connect with another’s story.
With Griffin House’s upcoming album, So On and So Forth, it is clear the artist digs deep and offers up his narrative after much reflection. House is now a young family man and artist who is choosing sobriety and celebrating the path to his success, through songs which share his perspective on how people remember the past with rose-colored glasses, how we grow up and realize what we deeply need, and how we must find happiness in ourselves in the present.
“The record has a lot to do with recognizing the ego in one’s self and letting it die. It can feel like your whole identity is being wiped away, and you don’t even know who you are anymore. For the person singing these songs, holding on to one’s own individuality in order to remain special or important in the world has started to became far less important than being content with being a good, decent, and loving person. But old habits die hard,” adds House.
The project was tracked last summer at Lakehouse Recording Studios, in Asbury Park, New Jersey. House’s ties to Asbury Park go all the back to 2004, when he was invited to tour with Patti Scialfa. His first show in the boardwalk town was opening a show for Scialfa at the Paramount Theatre. It was there that Griffin met her husband, Bruce Springsteen, and all the wonderful characters in their crew and band. Those memories and experiences made returning to Asbury Park over a decade later to record So On and So Forth feel like a full circle moment in his career.
House recorded the essentially live project with no click track and very little overdubbing. Lakehouse owner, Jon Leidersdorff, helped assemble the band. Prior to walking into the studio, House had never met the musicians and had no idea how the songs would turn out. He adds, “The experience ended up being one of the most fun and positive of my career. The process was stress-free and freeing.” The resulting album reflects this journey — a leap of faith with triumphant results.
Recording and performing for over a decade, House has toured with Ron Sexsmith, Patti Scialfa, Josh Ritter, John Mellencamp, Mat Kearney, and The Cranberries. He received early critical acclaim on the CBS Sunday Morning, and his songs have since been featured in countless films and television shows such asOne Tree Hill, Army Wives, and Brothers and Sisters. He has also appeared on Late Night with Craig Ferguson. Most recently, CNN Newsroom invited House to perform “Paris Calling,” from So On and So Forth, live on the air, and the song has been picked up by radio prior to being serviced. House has released ten albums and continues to headline his own national tours. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee with his wife Jane and their two daughters.
Bridging the gap between generations of music-lovers and redefining blues-based American music for a contemporary audience, Loomis created his own path and built a loyal following by blending myriad influences, clever songwriting, and an expressive voice into a sound that defies description.
Feeling his current style, layered onto his bluesy foundation, will attract a new generation of fans, Loomis looks forward to the appeal GIVE IT BACK will have on today’s young listeners.
Miranda Dawn and Chris Hawkes first met in 2010 when he crossed an Austin barroom floor and asked her to dance. A modest beginning became an undeniable attraction the first time they sang together.
“Undeniably intimate” - Texas Monthly
"Impeccable vocal harmonies and instrumentation” - Acoustic Guitar
“Outstanding musicians individually, they are absolutely magical together.” - Houston Press
"Transcendent alternative-folk - you will find yourself craving more from this amazing, dynamic duo" - Huffington Post
Fred Eaglesmith is Ontario's roots-country original! There are other songwriters who populate their creations with small-time crooks, small-town loners, and working-class heroes.
But Fred Eaglesmith's songs stand out for their edge of desperation and their raucous yet bemused humor—and for the incredible energy and on-the-edge quality of his live shows. Circulating on tour from his Ontario farm, Fred harks back to an earlier era of roots music with his raw, driving country soul.
Fred's 20th album, "Tambourine," draws on the spirit of pure 1960s rock and roll.
This is a duo show from Fred, backed by Tif Ginn of The Ginn Sisters
With a John Denver grin and mind full of Alabama attitude, Adam Hood knows the beautiful mess of blue-collar love and everyone on Music Row wants in.
Tracks from his critically acclaimed 2011 album The Shape of Things have been cut by Little Big Town, David Nail, Josh Abbott Band, Brian Keane and John Corbett. The legendary Willie Nelson and Leon Russell have each picked Hood for respective national tours.
Three Women and the Truth: Mary Gauthier, Eliza Gilkyson and Gretchen Peters
Three women, three guitars and the words, music, and hard-won wisdom from three lifetimes spent in pursuit of the song. Three Women and The Truth is a trio of accomplished, richly talented, multiple award winning female songwriters whose songs cut through the murky layers of life's complexities. Writing from their own experience, these songwriters are skilled in balancing personal tales with classic underpinnings, which hint at the evocative idea that all our lives are full of events and incidents that touch on the mythic and the timeless.?
Mary Gauthier is a singer songwriter whom the Associated Press named one of the best songwriters of her generation. Voted 2005’s New Artist of the Year by The Americana Music Association, she has been praised by both Dylan and Waits, and her songs have been recorded by dozens of artists, including Jimmy Buffett, Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw and Candi Staton. Her songs have been used in film and television, most recently on the ABC hit show Nashville, HBO’s Banshee, and Masterpiece Theater’s Case Histories. She has released six studio albums. Her third album, Filth and Fire, was named #1 Best Independent CD of the year by Jon Pareles of the New York Times. Her following three releases have been named in the LA Times and New York Times top three releases of the year. Her record Mercy Now was named in the top 5 records of the decade by No Depression magazine.
“With songwriting as powerful as hers, there’s no need to go looking for qualifiers…[Mary Gauthier is] a unique, intrinsically valuable musical voice. And there’s never a surplus of those.” – Randy Lewis, Los Angeles Times
Eliza Gilkyson is a two-time Grammy nominated singer, songwriter and activist who is one of the most respected musicians in Folk, Roots and Americana circles. Her songs have been covered by Joan Baez, Bob Geldof, Tom Rush and Rosanne Cash and have appeared in films, PBS specials and on prime-time TV. A member of the Austin Music Hall of Fame, she has won countless Folk Alliance and Austin Music awards, including 2014’s Songwriter of the Year. In 2014 she received a Grammy nomination for her Red House Records release, The Nocturne Diaries. On stage, Eliza presents a vibrant mix of laugh-til-you-cry storytelling, political diatribe, and love songs ranging from the global to the most intimate.
“Whether she looks into darkness or light, Eliza Gilkyson’s vision is impressive, and she’s given us another remarkable glimpse at her gifts as a vocalist and songwriter on The Nocturne Diaries.” – All Music Guide
Gretchen Peters - Twice Grammy-nominated and CMA Song of the Year winner for the groundbreaking “Independence Day” (Martina McBride), Gretchen Peters has cut her own artistic path, touring continually in both North America and the UK and Europe, and releasing nine critically acclaimed albums on the way. Born in New York and raised in Colorado, the 25-year Nashville resident has accumulated accolades as a songwriter for artists as diverse as Etta James, Trisha Yearwood, Bonnie Raitt, The Neville Brothers, Patty Loveless, George Strait, Bryan Adams and Faith Hill. Her album Hello Cruel World (2012) landed in the top 5 on the Americana chart and maintained the #1 position for a record-breaking 2 months on the EuroAmericana chart. It was described by NPR’s All Things Considered as “the album of her career.”
“[Peters’ Hello Cruel World is] lean and poetic, unafraid to tackle the deep, poignant stuff, yet strongly melodic too… an affecting, beautifully measured, very grown-up affair.” – Q Magazine
Peeling the faces off the unsuspecting since 1999, we revel in string-band music from the 20s and 30s, mixing early jazz, hokum, vaudeville, ragtime, western swing and hillbilly, yet unleashing the gutterous underbelly of a pseudo-rock world gone wrong. YEE HAW!
Imagine a smorgasbord of Cab Calloway, circus sideshow, KISS, cabaret, Hee Haw and Robert Johnson served up at Andy Kaufman's bat-mitzvah. A joyous mixture of the absurd and sublime, the five-piece ensemble gracefully blends a musical amalgam of Hokum Blues, Hillbilly Swing, Country and Hot Jazz.
Winners of over 10 Austin Music awards, the band's forte has always been the ability to morph and suit itself to virtually any occasion, from the rowdiest of juke joints, to a 5 year old's birthday party, whilst leaving everyone with a big smile!
This may be your last chance to see Sara perform at the Duck. As most of you know, Sara is retiring from live performances next year.
Since she started performing at the age of seven, Hickman has been embraced by both followers and critics. The Associated Press proclaims, “Seek out her albums and club shows for her melodic sense, excellent guitar playing, rich voice and mix of sunny optimism with heartache.”
John Doe was born in 1977 when he arrived in Los Angeles. His previous life in Tennessee, Wisconsin & Baltimore was a great & fertile time but new music and social changes led him to events that created a life in art. He graduated from Antioch College in Baltimore in 1975, worked as a roofer, aluminum siding mechanic, and ran a poetry reading series. Ms. Meyers was his landlord in the rural black community of Simpsonville , MD.
John met Exene Cervenka at the Venice poetry workshop Nov 1976 and he started working with Billy Zoom around the same time. When DJ Bonebrake joined X in mid-1977 the line up was complete. They released six studio records, five or six singles and one live record from 1978-1993. Five of X’s records have been re-issued along with two compilations. The Unheard Music documents their lives and progress as a band from 1980-83. In 2009 the film was included in the Sundance UCLA Archive of greatest films of all time. They appeared several times on American Bandstand, Solid Gold and David Letterman. As one of the last original punk rock bands standing, they continue to tour. The day that X played a free noontime concert in Fullerton, CA, they caused Orange County’s greatest high school truancy rate to date.
In 1988 John started a family and lived in the Tehachapi Mountains, near the “Grapevine” of Highway 5, which separates southern and central California. He has recorded 8 solo records w/ numerous renowned singers and players, more recently including Patty Griffin, Dan Auerbach, Aimee Mann, Don Was, Kathleen Edwards and Greg Liesz. He has appeared in over 50 films and television productions, with some of his most notable roles in Road House, Georgia, Roadside Prophets, Great Balls of Fire, Pure Country and Roswell. He continues to act these days but more sporadically as his touring schedule has become more demanding.
Other musical side projects include work with the Knitters, Jill Sobule and The Sadies. He continues to write poetry and has even taught workshops from time to time. He currently lives north of San Francisco, California.
Butch and Jimmie Dale are, individually, excellent songwriters and performers in a "high lonesome" style.
Together they are dynamite."
Jimmie Dale Gilmore synthesizes so many different forms of music," says Nicholas Dawidoff, author of "In the Country of Country: People and Places in American Music" (Pantheon), which devotes a full chapter to The Flatlanders."He has taken the traditional country music he grew up with, Hank Williams and Bob Wills, and made it more modern.
He's very interested in the blues, he's interested in rock 'n' roll and rockabilly, and I guess to some degree he's also interested in Eastern music. And by incorporating these apparently disparate forms of music, you get his brand of country music. " Rolling Stone magazine described him as "a raspy-voiced West Texas mystic with an equal affinity for romantic border balladry and Zen paradox."
Along with Lubbock bred childhood pals Joe Ely and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Butch Hancock has been active in their group work as The Flatlanders. They have appeared on Letterman and Imus in the Morning. He is a member of the Buddy Holly Walk of Fame and the Texas Music Hall of Fame.
It is the smile that is the key for reading the musical universe of Beppe Gambetta. An open and disarming smile that is also the contagious and unresistable smile of a person who invites you to a musical journey with light heart and curiosity. The destination, as for any traveller, is not totally defined because it is beautiful, at the very last, to find ourselves where we never would expected to be. With the horizon's line as a challenge and attraction, Beppe is continually composing his personal mosaic of sounds and flavours.
From his unique background as an Italian musician in love with both American roots music as well as the music of his native country, Beppe has travelled the world and even crossed the “Iron Curtain” to dazzle and charm music enthusiasts everywhere. After eleven CDs, DVDs, teaching books and collaborations with many other top-flight musicians, Gambetta is increasingly known as one of the true live master innovators of the acoustic guitar. While Beppe still lives in his native Genova, he travels to North America at least three times each year.
His reputation in the U.S. and Canada is reinforced by his participation in prestigious festivals like the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas, Merlefest in North Carolina, the Four Corners Festival in Colorado and Canadian Folk Festivals in Winnipeg and Edmonton, as well as events like the radio shows “All Things Considered” and “E-Town”. Beppe has performed in prestigious rooms like the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
In his career he has performed with some great heroes of the folk scene like David Grisman, Gene Parsons, Doc Watson, Norman Blake and with the band Men Of Steel: an international guitar summit (Dan Crary, Tony McManus and Don Ross) of different guitar schools with complex musical interactions. In a world dominated by the trends and logic of the market Gambetta's playing and singing stand out for their intimate emotions, communication, research in tone, sobriety and humour.
An inspired music thatt modestly avoids relying solely on his high level of technical excellence, but also reveals the innermost feelings of a brilliant, playful mind that is always exploring and innovating while staying firmly routed in tradition. With America in his heart and his roots in the sun and the olive trees of the Mediterranean sea, he naturally and seamlessly bridges the shores of the two continents, creating in spite of the interposed ocean a musical "koiné" (fusion) where American root music and Ligurian tradition, emigration songs and folk ballads, steel string guitars and vintage harp guitars not only co-exist but interact, weaving a deep dialog unaware of any rigid classification.
Music on its way, proud of the past but looking to the future, able to talk to us in the present because it is rooted in the history of generations of men and women so different but so equal to us. Strolling music, intolerant of frontiers and passports, exclusions and obsessions. Vital music, passionate but sober. It is waving to us. Let's follow it.
Three chords and the truth.
That was Harlon Howard, the King of Music Row, deftly prescribing the formula of the perfect country song. It’s been a catch-cry for the folk musician ever since.
Before then, it was the psalmist’s motto. The Bible poets wrung it from every note. It was hallowed as the great expositor, the songwriter’s muse - wisdom’s bride, calling faint from heaven’s faraway home.
And it’s still the songwriter’s holy grail today. From the bluesman to the politico-punk poet, to the strung out folk prophet, truth is always the muse and the horizon. The volatile partner at the end of each verse.
Growing up on strains of Dylan and the rich mine of the old Christian folk troubadours, Strahan seemed always destined to seek the truth. His songs speak of that moment where “poetry kissed reality”, his modern Psalms wrestle with that same world that David did, the world that struggles to reconcile the face of heaven in this constant economic, political and spiritual upheaval.
His first foray into folk theology, 2011’s Water & Fire provided a refreshing salve of imagery and language. A free gift downloaded by fans in over 22 countries, the E.P’s track “Heaven” charted on radio in New Zealand and garnered radio play in Australia. He then embarked on an intimate nationwide living room tour in 2012, a pilgrimage which armed him with journals of stories and melodies. When it came to his debut full-length Strahan knew his new album Posters had to delve deeper.
And it does. Like the old psalmist, he reaches to nature to find the face of the divine, wrestling with truth as insistently as the tide claiming the shore. Like the old folk man, he stares through a dim glass and sees a broken world caught in that age old tension. Hallelujahs. Laments. Death. Life. All is beauty.
And that old familiar catch-cry. Chords and truth. These old worn songs that carry hints of the divine.
Jimmie Dale Gilmore is a native of the Texas Panhandle, born in Amarillo, Texas and raised in Lubbock. Early musical influences were Hank Williams and the honkytonk brand of country music. In the 1950’s he was exposed to the emerging rock and roll of Texas greats Roy Orbison and Buddy Holly, as well as to Johnny Cash. He was profoundly influenced by the Beatles, Bob Dylan and the folk and blues revival in the 1960’s. In the early 1970’s he founded The Flatlanders, who have been performing as a group off and on for more than four decades. He has also had a prolific career as a solo artist.
Jimmie Dale Gilmore is coming to the Duck with his son, singer/songwriter Colin Gilmore. They will perform the progressive, alternative country music that Jimmie Dale and fellow Flatlanders band members Butch Hancock and Joe Ely first introduced in 1973. As a solo artist, Rolling Stone named Jimmie Dale Gilmore “Country Artist of the Year” two years straight and he received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Folk Artist of the Year.
Colin Gilmore is a fine songwriter in his own right. He has been a touring musician for 14 years, has several albums to his credit and has played venues all over this country and in Japan and Italy. He also enjoys the opportunity to perform with his dad from time to time.
"Potenza is to the blues what Alele is to pop” - Rolling Stone
After Potenza's spellbinding blind audition yielded a four-chair turn on NBC's The Voice, a visibly moved Pharrell Williams told her she was "giving this generation something they've never seen before." Potenza is to the blues what Adele is to pop: a colossal-voiced singer who merges her old-school influences with a modernistic sound. Her new album, Monster, solidifies endless Janis Joplin vocal comparisons but also colors between the lines of Memphis blues, Nashville Americana, New Orleans funk and L.A. punk. Its lyrics are personal and personally therapeutic, as she empowers herself through tunes denouncing industry naysayers and embracing her fuller-figured, boisterous self.
“Sounding like no other singer of her generation” (Allmusic.com), Mary Fahl is an expressive, emotional singer/songwriter who first achieved fame as lead singer and co-founder of the mid-1990s NYC- based chamber-pop group October Project. The hallmark of their sound was Mary Fahl’s awe-inspiring power vocals over gorgeous melodies played with passion and sophistication.
As a solo artist, Mary has released several compelling albums, including the fantastic re-working of Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” for V2 Records and her wonderful, original studio album “The Other Side of Time” on Sony Odyssey. She has also written and performed songs for several major motion pictures, including the lead song (“Going Home”) for the Civil War epic Gods and Generals.
Her most recent album “Live at the Mauch Chunk Opera House”, winner of the Indie Acoustic “Album of the Year” award, is a collection of twenty-four tracks recorded live at one of America’s oldest vaudeville theaters that captures the soaring, soul-permeating vocals and musical breadth that makes the Mary Fahl concert experience what the Portland Press called “soul-permeating”.
The show was filmed for PBS and is currently airing on PBS affiliates around the country. Fahl’s elegant, cinematic songs draw on classical and world music sources, American art song, as well as thinking man’s folk-pop which she performs with an earthy, viscerally powerful contralto that Boston Globe critic Steve Morse calls “a voice for the gods that can transport listeners to other realms”. Her music appeals to a wide range of musical enthusiasts, including a large, loyal fan base of Mary Fahl evangelists.