Club Passim – May Schedule
Established as Club 47 in 1958 and incorporated as a nonprofit in 1994, Passim in Harvard Square is a cornerstone of the arts community of New England, fostering both performers and audiences alike. Since its beginning, Club Passim has been known as a premier listening room, presenting both new and established performers from a wide range of genres. The historic music venue presents over 400 shows per year to an audience of over 30,000.
Tickets can be purchased in advance by calling (617) 492-7679, or online at: www.passim.org
Tuesday, May 1, 7PM: Open Mic Night
Non-members: $5/ Passim members: Free
Wednesday, May 2, 8PM: Sweet Wednesday CD Release
Non-members: $15/ Passim members: $13
Singer/songwriters Dave Falk and Lisa Housman write and perform in the roots rock, folk, alt country genres, combining elements of comedy, tragedy, and haunting beauty into their writing. Since putting out their first record, “Wherever You Go” a few years ago, Lisa and Dave have toured in the U.S. and Europe, performing live at colleges, festivals, clubs, coffeehouses, radio stations, and television stations. Songwriting awards include First Place in the Great American Song Contest, First Place in the Dallas Song Competition, and Runner-Up in the John Lennon Song Contest.
Thursday, May 3, 8PM: Caravan of Thieves
Non-members: $15/ Passim members: $13
Driving gypsy jazz rhythms, acoustic guitars, upright bass and violin lay the foundation for mesmerizing vocal harmonies and fantastic stories. It’s theatrical and humorous. It’s musical and intense. It entertains, dazzles and defies classification while welcoming the spectator to join the band throughout the performance in momentary fits of claps, snaps and sing-alongs. If Django Reinhardt, the cast of Stomp and the Beatles all had a party at Tim Burton’s house, Caravan of Thieves would be the band they hired.
Friday, May 4, 8PM: Michael Chorney’s Dollar General LP Release
Non-members: $15/Passim members: $13
Michael Chorney is a self-taught musician, composer, and arranger who has lived and worked in Vermont for 30 years. He has been called “one of the Green Mountains’ most inventive musician-composers.” As a bandleader, Michael has created and led viperHouse, Magic City, Orchid, 7 Deadly Sins, and his newest ensemble, the Michael Chorney Sextet.
Saturday, May 5, 8PM: Mark Erelli
Non-members: $20/Passim members: $18
Discovered at an impromptu 3AM hotel room jam at a music conference when just 23 years old, Mark Erelli finished up a graduate degree in evolutionary biology shortly after his self-titled debut was released in 1999. He has won several prestigious awards, from the Kerrville New Folk contest in 1999 to the 2006 International Song Contest, where a song he co-wrote with Catie Curtis bested 15,000 entries to win the grand prize. For the past 10 years, he has maintained a rigorous, international touring schedule, sharing the stage with Dave Alvin, Gillian Welch, John Hiatt and others, as well appearing at many major folk festivals, including Newport, Philadelphia and Shrewsbury (UK). In recent years, Erelli has gained notoriety as a multi-instrumentalist sideman, accompanying artists such as Lori McKenna and Josh Ritter everywhere from Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry to London’s Royal Albert Hall. Washington Post says ““No need to read between the lines when singer-songwriter Mark Erelli vents on “Delivered”…The prolific New England-based tunesmith makes his case with clarity and conviction. Even listeners who don’t share Erelli’s views might find it difficult to dismiss the quality of his songcraft or his ties to the likes of Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie.”
Sunday, May 6, 8PM: Nuala Kennedy Band
Non-members: $20/Passim members: $18
Currently working on an album entitled ˜Noble Stranger”, her third solo release on Nashville’s Compass Records Label, Nuala Kennedy is an Irish singer and flute player with hauntingly beautiful vocals, adventurous instrumentation, and an imaginative mix of influences. Nuala Kennedy’s singing and flute playing springs from the traditional music of Ireland and Scotland, and from the fathomless realms of her own imagination. A consummate performer with a buoyant personality, her music has been described as unique, evocative, and soul-satisfying. Kennedy doesn’t so much imbibe or inhale as swallow, whole and unadulterated, melodic and rhythmic influences from beyond her kith and kin. A delicious mix of influences abound, without ever sacrificing musical identity.¨ The Irish Times
Equal parts sincerity and strength, Colleen Sexton has ably established herself as a respected artist and performer. Combining the sweet sounds of the front porch in summer with the soul of a vintage Harlem night, she delivers the goods. Colleen migrated to New England from Syracuse, NY to attend law school, but instead quickly discovered the fertile Boston singer-songwriter scene. She stayed in law school only two days, but has been touring throughout the United States and Canada for four years. Critics have described her performance as “smoldering, sincere, and captivating”: and her songs as “intelligent” and “passionate.” With her versatile voice, memorable songs, and quick wit, Colleen is heating up rooms large and small.
The lovely, lilting voice of Boston-based singer/songwriter Carrie Cheron is an art-form all to itself. With a sound that is as warm and rich as velvet, this gifted songwriter and master song interpreter is absolutely mesmerizing.
Ms. Cheron is creating a solid ground on which to stand in Boston’s folk music scene — her song “Indiana” was featured on Bay State Sound’s Best of Boston Songwriters, Showcase CD, Volume V, and her song “How I Loved” received an Honorable Mention from the John Lennon Songwriting Contest. She received an Honorable Mention from both the 2011 Rocky Mountain Folks Fest and the Connecticut Folk Festival Songwriting Contests. “Carrie Cheron sings with the voice of an angel. Her prolific songwriting is honest, touching and memorable” -Christie Leigh, CNC Music Productions
Tuesday, May 8, 8PM: Mary Gauthier
Non-members: $30/Passim members: $28
It is said that the master songwriters – the “truth tellers,” as Mary Gauthier refers to the likes of Bob Dylan and Neil Young, Leonard Cohen and Patti Smith – those writers always put a piece of themselves into every song. They first shined bright light on the truth and lies of her world before she began to put pen to paper herself, and it’s up to the listener to imagine what is real and what is a dream. This sense of autobiography has always loomed large in the work of Mary Gauthier. On her most recent album, The Foundling (released May 2010), her first concept album, Mary opened the door on the defining circumstance of her life, the emotional journey and aftermath of finding the mother who abandoned her in New Orleans after her birth. The story of The Foundling resonated across the country, literally, and was named in many year-end Top Album lists. Critic James Reed ranked the album at the top of the Boston Globe’s boston.com survey, describing it as “by far her most revealing album… a heartbreaking work of powerful storytelling, a blueprint for how modern country records could – and should – sound.”
Wednesday, May 9, 8PM: Tricky Britches
Non-members: $12/Passim members: $10
Tricky Britches is a high-energy string band hailing from Portland, Maine. From their roots of playing heel-stomping old-time fiddle tunes they have progressed into a fusion of classic bluegrass, country, and folk rock. The band consists of Tyler Lienhardt on Fiddle, Seth Doyle on Mandolin, Jed Bresette on Bass, Ryan “Bear” Wilkinson on Banjo, and Nick Wallace on Guitar. Tricky Britches has recorded a new 12 track EP, Hop on a Train, at Portland’s own Acadia Recording Company. In the summer of 2010 the boys successfully toured thirteen countries in Europe, over the course of three and a half months.
Thursday, May 10: Christopher Williams
Hailing from Nashville, but nothing like your typical Nashville songwriter, Christopher Williams is a songwriter, storyteller, and entertainer – offering songs that are honest and confessional, yet never overbearing; and performances that engage audiences with an appealing mix of intense passion and humor. With “lush guitar work, and sweet soaring vocals,” (Boston Phoenix) punctuated by the percussive vulnerability of a single African djembe hand drum, Williams is a “hard-touring singer-songwriter and a master at spreading his personal energy out into a live audience.” (Madison Isthmus) Touring nonstop nationally for the last ten years at a pace of more than 130 shows a year, Williams has built a faithful following of listeners around the country and is a true independent artist, releasing eight records on his own label.
In the summer of 2010, this Boston-based duo was playing for spare change in Faneuil Hall Marketplace. In the year since, Tall Heights has performed alongside national acts like David Wilcox, Barefoot Truth, and Andrew Belle, and headlined packed houses across New England. They have independently sold over 2,000 copies of their debut album. On September 13th, Tall Heights unveiled their follow-up, completely independent project, Rafters, and sold 700 copies in the first 7 days. While many artists in their genre of late have retreated to the wilderness to record, Tall Heights stayed in the city. These five tracks were recorded over a few sweltering months in a small bedroom of their Boston apartment with little more than an SM58 microphone, an iMac, a guitar, a cello and their voices. “Fans of Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, fans of great music and art in general need to be aware of Tall Heights. What an incredible duo.” –Ryan Montbleau
Connor Garvey’s initiation as a modern troubadour came in 2008 by way of train; a 45 day, self-booked tour by Amtrak across the US. Now, many tours later, Garvey is finding his place as a seasoned folk-rock singer-songwriter on the national circuit. Through his rhythmic guitar foundations and a unique, clear voice, Connor encourages us to hope, grow, laugh, and see beauty in all of life’s metaphors. His recent release Where Ocean Meets Land (2011) is already garnering wide acclaim as it builds upon his 2009 release (Constancy of Stars) known widely due extensive Sirius XM satellite airplay-placing him in their top 6 new Singer Songwriters of 2010.
Saturday, May 12, 3:30PM: Nerissa & Katryna Nields Family Show
Non-members: $12/Passim members and children: $10
Saturday, Mary 12, 7PM: Nerissa & Katrina Nields
Non-members: $20/Passim members: $18
To the songwriter/musician who has neither burned, bailed nor sold out, there comes a time when he or she turns from writing about who they are in the current moment to writing about who they have always been, addressing head-on their roots, sources and influences. SISTER HOLLER, the newest and 14th career release from Nerissa and Katryna Nields, is a “roots album,” but with a difference. Rather than simply reinterpret or re-record the music what brung ’em, the sisters from Western Massachusetts, have decided in Sister Holler to retool, assimilate and flat out burgle the music they grew up with to create something new. They tell the listener right up front that they’re even going to lift entire lines from some of the best songs ever written, and then they do it, right before your very ears. The result is a delightful oxymoron of songs simultaneously familiar and surprising.
Sunday, May 13, 8PM: The House Jacks
Non-members: $25/ Passim members: $23
The House Jacks of San Francisco are the original “rock band without instruments.” Using nothing more than their five voices (and mouths), they deliver everything from blistering funk to screaming rock to heart-melting ballads for their ever-growing legions of fans. These pioneering musicians have performed thousands of shows and have shared the stage with some of the biggest names in music. Their radio spots for Rick Dees Top 40 have been heard by 50 million listeners on 330 U.S. radio stations and 50 other stations around the world. Their jingles for radio stations in Los Angeles and San Francisco have been heard by over 1.5 million listeners. Their music can also be heard in places as far-reaching as movie soundtracks and computer operating systems.
Monday, May 14, 7PM: BCMFest presents Celtic Music Monday: Celtic Ceilidh
Wednesday, May 16: Emily Elbert
At 23, Elbert has played over 450 shows throughout the US and around the world, from Peru to Palestine. Last fall, Glamour Magazine selected Emily as one of 2010′s Top Ten College Women. She’s also a winner of Scotland’s Burnsong International Song Contest, 2009 and was named the Best New Artist of 2008 by WUMB-FM in Boston. The Timberland Company selected her as their eco-friendly Artist of the Month for January 2012, and she was named to the top five of the 2010 Mountain Stage/NewSong contest in NYC. Music lovers have watched her YouTube videos in droves, and her YouTube channel has garnered more than one million views. Her third CD, a full-band live album entitled “Alive, In Love,” will be released in February 2012.
Thursday, May 17, 8PM: Steve Tilston
Non-members: $20/ Passim members: $18
Celebrating 40 years as a professional musician! Ask anyone on the English acoustic scene who their favorite guitarist, singer, songwriter and entertainer is and nine times out of ten the same name will crop up in the top three of every department. Steve Tilston is one of our most celebrated song-smiths; widely recognised within the world of folk and contemporary music: the words, arrangements and subtle, quite superb guitar playing could be no one else. “…can stand shoulder to shoulder with any guitarist/songwriter in the world.” Dirty Linen
Friday, May 18, 8PM: Tish Hinojosa
Non-members: $22/Passim members: $20
Tish Hinojosa’s music crosses borders – between cultures, languages and musical genres. Moving with equal grace through folk, country, pop and latino styles, her music reflects contemporary America’s multicultural richness. Combining a vision that embraces all of these musical styles, with her characteristic warmth and a pure, soulful voice, this enchanting Texan singer-songwriter has gained a loving and loyal audience throughout America, Europe and beyond. “Her songs are richly detailed slices of life…Hinojosa’s is a strong, poetic, sensual, and conscious voice.” – SPIN MAGAZINE
Saturday, May 19, 3:30PM: Jake Hill & The Fretters
Non-members: $10/Passim members and children: $5
Jake Hill is a singer/songwriter from Plymouth, Massachusetts, from across the country, and from down the street. He has miles on his voice, blisters on his fingers, and stories to tell. Though born and raised in America’s Hometown, it was the American Southwest where he found himself. Then he came home. ake has released four full-length LP’s and a handful of EP’s, and has performed from Boston to Austin
With diverse influences that include Folk, Jazz, Blues, Rock, Bluegrass, Country and even Classical, Natalia Zukerman has been described by public radio as “an example of the finest Americana.” She combines her unique slide guitar playing style with seductive vocals, a painter’s observing eye, unapologetic writing, and sharp wit. Zukerman’s music is as riddled with urban restlessness as it is grounded in rootsy warmth – a welcome contradiction. “Natalia’s voice could send an orchid into bloom while her guitar playing can open a beer bottle with its teeth.” –The New Yorker
Auld is a memorable and uplifting entertainer. She’s a spontaneous comedienne and a writer of humorous, provocative and soulful songs. A touring songwriter, Audrey won the 2006 MerleFest Song Contest and performed her winning song ‘Losing Faith’ with Rich Brotherton (Robert Earl Keen) on guitar to a thrilled MerleFest crowd. 2011 saw the release of her finest work to date, Come Find Me, produced by Mark Hallman of Congress House Studios in Austin (Eliza Gilkyson, Ani DeFranco, Tom Russell). This fan-funded project earned a five-star review in the prestigious UK magazine, Country Music People.
Anne McCue describes her new album, Broken Promise Land, as “a bit dirty, a bit rockin’, a bit swampy and a bit bluesy, with a touch of mysteriousness to it. What isn’t mysterious is McCue’s musical talent and range. She was voted the Roots Music Association’s Folk Artist of the Year in 2008, performed in a Jimi Hendrix tribute at the 2007 International Guitar Festival and was included in the Four Decades of Folk Rock box set alongside of Bob Dylan and Wilco. She has played in Concert Halls all over the world including the Sydney Opera House. Heart’s Nancy Wilson has described her as “my Aussie clone,” while Americana icon Lucinda Williams had this to say: “Initially, her stunning voice hooked me in. Then I got inside the songs. The first chance I got, I went to see her perform . . . I was floored! The combination of her tomboyish beauty mixed with the precision and assertiveness with which she approached the guitar, her surrounding languid and earthy vocals created an intoxicating blend.”
Sunday, May 20, 8PM: Madison Violet CD Release
Non-members: $15/ Passim members: $13
Finding the good in goodbye is always bittersweet. JUNO nominated roots duo Madison Violet (Brenley MacEachern and Lisa MacIsaac) can attest to that with their latest release, The Good in Goodbye, out on September 6 (True North Records). An album born from their growth, both together and apart, The Good in Goodbye is an open diary of their personal and professional experiences together as friends and musicians, two very unique relationships that affect each other in profound ways. The duo has sold-out venues across North America and Europe, had the prestigious distinction of touring with Stuart McLean’s Vinyl Cafe, and has shared stages with contemporaries such as Chantal Kreviazuk, Ron Sexsmith and The Indigo Girls. With their newest effort, Madison Violet prove on they’re among Canada’s brightest singer/songwriters.
Monday, May 21, 8PM: Jo Henley
Non-members: $12/Passim members: $10
Jo Henley is not a person. Rather, Jo Henley is a Boston-based roots-rock band formed by longtime musical collaborators Andy Campolieto and Ben Lee, known for its exciting blend of rock, folk, country, and bluegrass that their fans affectionately refer to as “new roots.” Inspired by everything from Hank Williams to The Rolling Stones to Phish, Campolieto and Lee, along with drummer Mike Dingley and bassist Kent Stephens, combine traditional roots music with modern rock to create a sound all their own. Live, Jo Henley shows are spirited, high-energy events that showcase their carefully crafted songs and sparkling instrumental prowess.
Tuesday, May 22, 8PM: Berklee American Roots Music Series
Non-members: $10/Passim members: $5
Amy Petty’s sound and songwriting is a compelling, complex and original soundscape that weaves a lush tapestry of folk, pop, rock and blues ballad. Art, mystery, and spirituality influence and infuse her poignant, evocative and sensual songs. These sonic canvases showcase the heartfelt emotion behind her lyrics and provide a foundation over which her voice and choral harmonies soar. Often compared to Sarah McLachlan, Eva Cassidy, Alanis Morrisette and Jonatha Brooke, Amy Petty has a signature voice and style both familiar and stunningly rare.
Danielle Miraglia (murr-Ä L e a) comes armed with a strong steady thumb on an old Gibson, an infectious stomp-box rhythm and harmonica. Her tunes range from heart-felt to socially conscious and will move both your heart and hips. Danielle’s latest release “Box of Troubles” a bare-bones expression of all these attributes, explores the highs and lows that life has to offer and has already received rave reviews. Alternate Root says “Danielle Miraglia’s guitar work keeps Delta traditions alive. Her steady thumb and playing style trace a direct line to the blues of the field and chicken shacks. Vocally, Danielle’s voice digs in, twisting within the delivery, seeming to break but more likely soaring before the fall. ‘Box of Troubles’ balances good times with the bad, her characters roles’ defined and believable.”
Jen Kearney’s album, “The Year of the Ox” represents a different approach for Kearney. A rarity for so long, it’s an actual concept album. Taking a darker direction lyrically and musically, the concept is loosely based on The Ten Ox herding Pictures of ancient Buddhism. Jen found these after pondering over a zodiac placemat at a Chinese restaurant, and was taken by the simplicity of the herder taming the ox that represents the mind. Working again with Pete MacLean, Carl Johnson, Brian Coakley, Yahuba Garcia, Mark Mullins, Dan Abreu, and many special guests, recorded ably by Bob Nash of Wonka Sound, “The Year of the Ox “ is sure to be a thought-provoking meditation on our universal state of mind.
Thursday, May 24, 8PM: Jess Klein CD Release, Sarah Blacker opens
Non-members: $18/Passim members: $16
A folk troubadour whose talents have been lauded on the national and international scene for almost a decade, Jess Klein writes songs that tell the story of the soul – from wrenching heartbreak to finding the strength to pick up and move on. Klein moved to her current home, Austin, TX in 2008, inspiring her 2009 release, Bound To Love. Shining as Klein’s most confident work to date, Bound to
Love evoked the dusty roots of Texas songwriters and made her a household name in the Austin music world. Bound to Love took Klein across the globe, including a tour of Ireland supporting folk legend Arlo Guthrie. In between tours Klein found time to collaborate with some of Austin’s most talented artists: Jon Dee Graham, Randy Weeks, Jimmy LaFave, Slaid Cleeves, Matt the Electrician, Shelley King, Betty Soo and Oklahoma- based John Fullbright. Jess Klein continues to be best known for her compelling and passionate live show. The Boston Globe describes her as “Quite simply one of the most gifted performers this area has produced”.
Friday, May 25 through Monday, May 28: campfire.
Thursday, May 31, 7PM and 9:30PM: Chris Trapper
Non-members: $25/Passim members: $23
Chris Trapper began his career as the front man for late–90’s alternative rock band The Push Stars (Capitol Records). With four CD releases and several high profile national tours – including a run with Matchbox Twenty – The Push Stars served to establish Chris as an authentic talent. The New York Times calls his work “classic pop perfection.” Trapper’s live show is a favorite among fans of alt–acoustic music. His on–stage persona is warm and inclusive, his organic understanding of classic pop melody infectious. Audience members seem to particularly appreciate the lighthearted moments with the ukulele. They depart the venue at the end of the evening with the sense of having been truly entertained.