Sunday, August 11, 2019 – 7:00 pm
An evening with David Jacobs-Strain with Bob Beach
Change of Date – This concert was originally scheduled for Friday, August 9
David Jacobs-Strain is a fierce slide guitar player, and a song poet from Oregon. He is known for both his virtuosity and spirit of emotional abandon. David displays a range that ties him to his own generation and to guitar-slinger troubadours like Robert Johnson and Jackson Browne. Bob Beach’s career has spanned more than 45 years. With his roots in blues, rock and folk, his innate feel for the music transcends genre, and can be integrated into everything from hip hop to bluegrass to kids’ cabaret and more. David and Bob have been performing together since 2010. They currently perform between 70 and 100 shows a year on both east and west coasts. Their live show moves from humorous, subversive blues, to delicate balladry, and then swings back to swampy rock and roll.
Sunday, August 18, 2019 – 7:00 pm
An Evening with Roscoe & Etta
With ornery tuning keys and rattling fret boards, Roscoe and Etta are a pair of aged arch top guitars possessing wills of their own. Maia Sharp and Anna Schulze are two singer-songwriter-producers who play these instruments and claim title to their names as Roscoe & Etta.
Both artists maintain vibrant careers as artists and songwriters. Anna, originally from Minnesota, has released five well-regarded solo projects, placed songs in the Oscar-winning documentary Icarus and the MTV series Awkward. Maia has been acknowledged as “a songwriter’s songwriter”(The Chicago Tribune) with writing credits for a roster of platinum artists that includes The Dixie Chicks, Bonnie Raitt, Cher, Lisa Loeb and Trisha Yearwood, and has produced projects with Edwin McCain and Art Garfunkel. In addition, she tours extensively behind her seven solo releases, and performs on with artists like Bonnie Raitt, Patty Griffin and Keb Mo.
The harmonies of Roscoe & Etta pair Anna’s bright tonalities against Maia’s darker alto. “When both of us are singing, it feels like each voice is the melody,” says Anna. Adds Maia, “If you find the right person to sing with, you’re working half as hard and getting twice the power. It’s a resonance that lifts you both up.”
Friday, September 13, 2019 – 8:00 pm
An Evening with Jon Shain with FJ Ventre
Jon Shain is a veteran singer-songwriter who’s been turning heads for years with his words, his fiery acoustic guitar work, and his evolved musical style – combining improvised piedmont blues with bluegrass, swing, and ragtime. Jon Shain is a veteran singer-songwriter who’s been turning heads for years with his words, his fiery acoustic guitar work, and his evolved musical style – combining improvised piedmont blues with jazz, swing, bluegrass, and ragtime. He grew up in Haverhill, Massachusetts – a mill-town that had seen its better days by the time he was a child. It was here that he began to discover his love of American roots music and songwriting, specifically drawn to the narratives about regular people and themes of social justice. He continued his musical journey while attending college at Duke University. In addition to studying jazz, he also had the good fortune to learn the piedmont blues tradition firsthand by playing in Big Boy Henry’s backing band. It was at this time that Shain also got to meet and play with a number of the great older NC blues players.
Saturday, October 5, 2019 – 7:30 pm
An Evening with Malcolm Holcombe
Malcolm Holcombe grew up in western North Carolina, home to some of the planet’s oldest mountains and some of America’s deepest musical traditions. Radio and TV fueled Malcolm’s musical passions as a kid, and music became even more important after he lost both his parents relatively young. He toured with bands and landed in Nashville, where he took up an inconspicuous station at the back of the house – the very back – at Douglas Corner, one of the city’s best singer/songwriter venues. Stories began to circulate about the mysterious dishwasher with the subterranean voice and oracle-like talent. Sadly so did stories of wildly inconsistent behavior – profound sweetness crossed by bouts of stunning abrasiveness. He flirted with an official music career. But his stunning debut album made for Geffen Records was abruptly shelved, producing melodrama that only exacerbated Malcolm’s drinking and depression. A business that once had a place for complicated genius turned its back on him, and he teetered near the edge.
Moving back to the North Carolina hills proved a powerful tonic. Holcombe let in help where before he’d pushed it away. With deep faith in God and a commitment to his art, Holcombe repaired himself and his career. And that’s a pretty good nod to the effect of hearing Holcombe sing. If you’ve not seen him in a live setting, this is what you have to do. His presence is spooky and timeless, as one imagines it was like to see Son House or Leadbelly. No emotional stone is left unturned. While you plan for this important experience, collect Malcolm Holcombe albums… He is cryptic, demanding, polarizing, bold, passionate and free, a combination badly needed in our time of infinite trivia. He’s even more interesting for having made a remarkable journey of recovery and discovery.
Friday, November 15, 2019 – 8:00 pm
An evening with the Heather Pierson Acoustic Trio
The Heather Pierson Acoustic Trio are a rare bunch – three musicians from three very different backgrounds, bringing their skills, their quiet charm, and their down-to-earth honesty to bear on songs that bring to life the sounds of the streets of New Orleans and the valleys of Appalachia. Their recordings (2015’s Still She Will Fly and 2017’s Singin’) and live performances feature Heather’s multi-genre songwriting, their instrumental virtuosity, and stirring three-part vocal harmonies.
Saturday, January 11, 2020 – 7:30 pm
An Evening with the Eric Scott Trio
Washington, DC singer/songwriter and bassist Eric Scott has thus far had an interesting musical and life journey. As an artist and sideman, he has toured internationally, sharing the stage with B.B. King, Mavis Staples, Aaron Neville, REO Speedwagon, Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, and many more. He’s written, produced, and released 6 solo albums. His music has been featured on various TV programs and motion pictures, and his singing voice has been featured in international and regional ad campaigns for DC Lottery, HGTV, National Geographic, and numerous others. He is a 15-time Wammie winter as awarded by the Washington Area Music Association.
His “Modern Soul” sound continues to evolve, yet remains funky, upbeat, socially aware, and ever soulful. Pop tunes and hooks meld seamlessly with groovy RnB, funk, and the introspective lyrical approach of a singer/songwriter that examines relationships and the world we live in.
Saturday, March 7, 2020 – 7:30 pm
An Evening with The Young Novelists and Piper & Carson
The Young Novelists create contemporary folk songs that marry their effortless harmonies with darkly poetic lyrics and exquisitely crafted hooks. Their third album In City & Country features songs about 10 small towns in Ontario, and has been described as “a lush-sounding feast” (Penguin Eggs) and “emotional, melodic music that variously reminds me of the Jayhawks and Richard and Linda Thompson.” (No Depression) Their previous album landed them a Canadian Folk Music Award for New/Emerging Artist, a nomination for Vocal Group of the Year, and multiple songwriting awards. They have toured across Canada, the United States, and in Europe, often with their young son in tow. Their signature show features confessional storytelling about their songs and travels, singalongs, and the unique sound of bowed glockenspiel.
Born in New York, raised in Toronto, and now residing in Hamilton since 2015, critically acclaimed folk/roots singer, songwriter and social activist Piper Hayes is truly authentic. Hayes released her debut full-length album ‘Piper & Carson.’ in December 2017. Nowadays, Hayes (who is a two-time nominee for the Colleen Peterson Songwriting Award, 2017 and 2018) performs and writes closely with her partner Carson Ritcey-Thorpe and, after a 2017 western Canada tour, many prime showcases at Folk Music Ontario, and Folk Alliance International. Hayes got her start in some of the legendary venues in Toronto. She has toured all over Canada and the USA, headlined three international tours, performed many times on VIA Rail’s national ‘Artists on Board’ program. Piper also teams up with the Canadian Mental Health Association (going into schools and outreach programs to dispel stigma around mental illness), she established a music-therapy-based class for Hamilton Adult Community Support Program and gives workshops on mental health, well-being, music and songwriting.
Friday, July 24, 2020 – 8:00 pm
An Evening with Grace Morrison
In a world where we are urged to limit descriptions to hashtags and sound bites it is tempting to describe Grace Morrison as simply: singer-songwriter. But she is so much more. She is pop; she is folk; she is roots; she is country. Hear her music and you’ll be hooked. See her live and you’ll be left wanting more. It has been said that her storytelling “can make you cry; it can make you sing.” With a career that began as a backup singer for rock icons like Eddie Money and Joey Molland (of the band Badfinger), Grace Morrison has become a regular on the national festival and touring circuit. She has won a number of prestigious awards including the Grand Prize of the New England Songwriting Competition and the Big Break contest where her music video was played on the season finale of American Idol.