singer-songwriter

To have been alive during the last sixty years is to have lived with the music of Paul Simon. The boy from Queens scored his first hit record in 1957, just months after Elvis Presley ignited the rock era. As the songwriting half of Simon & Garfunkel, his work helped define the youth movement of the '60s.

On his own in the '70s, Simon made radio-dominating hits. He kicked off the '80s by reuniting with Garfunkel to perform for half a million New Yorkers in Central Park. Five years later, Simon’s album Graceland sold millions and spurred an international political controversy. And it doesn’t stop there.

Simon has also lived one of the most vibrant lives of modern times; a story replete with tales of Carrie Fisher, Leonard Bernstein, Bob Dylan, Woody Allen, Shelley Duvall, Nelson Mandela, drugs, depression, marriage, divorce, and more. A life story with the scope and power of an epic novel, Peter Ames Carlin’s new book - Homeward Bound is the first major biography of one of the most influential popular artists in American history. 

  Tomorrow at 8pm, film composer and singer-songwriter Peter Salett and illustrator Michael Arthur will be at MASS MoCA in North Adams to perform Suite for the Summer Rain and Dance of the Yellow Leaf --two related song-cycles that will be accentuated and elevated through a collaboration of the artists that melds the live music performance with live illustration projected behind the band.

Living on a homestead in Homer, Alaska, singer-songwriter Jewel learned to yodel at age five, and joined her parents’ entertainment act, working in hotels, honky-tonks, and biker bars. Behind a strong-willed family life with an emphasis on music and artistic talent, however, there was also instability, abuse, and trauma.

At age fifteen, she moved out and tasked herself with a mission: to see if she could avoid being the kind of statistic that her past indicated for her future. Soon after, she was accepted to the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, and there she began writing her own songs as a means of expressing herself and documenting her journey to find happiness.

Jewel was eighteen and homeless in San Diego when a radio DJ aired a bootleg version of one of her songs and it was requested into the top-ten countdown, something unheard-of for an unsigned artist. By the time she was twenty-one, her debut had gone multiplatinum.

Jewel’s memoir Never Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story is out in paperback.

  Singer songwriter Josh Ritter performs along with The Royal City Band tonight at The Egg in Albany in support of his new album Sermon on the Rocks.

Two years after Beast in its Tracks, an emotional breakup album, the singer-songwriter is back with his eighth full-length album. Sermon on the Rocks 12 songs were recorded over two weeks at New Orleans’ The Parlor Recording Studio.

As its title suggests, the album is Ritter's foray into what he calls "messianic oracular honky-tonk." We were thrilled to have Josh Ritter join us at The Linda. 

  Kentucky singer-songwriter, Joan Shelley, will perform at Helsinki Hudson in Hudson, NY on June 9th at 8pm. She has been praised by Rolling Stone, NPR and Pitchfork, and the New York Times recently wrote that "her music is folky and pastoral, with a sense of scale that makes her humble about her place in mankind and the universe, and her songs are serene but never complacent."

Her latest album, Over and Even, is a collaboration with guitarist Nathan Salsburg and is available on No Quarter Records.

Moby's Memoir

May 25, 2016

  There were many reasons Moby was never going to make it as a DJ and musician in the New York club scene. This was the New York of unchecked, drug-fueled hedonism in pumping clubs where dance music was still largely underground, popular chiefly among working-class African Americans and Latinos.

And then there was Moby—not just a poor, skinny white kid from Connecticut, but a devout Christian, a vegan, and a teetotaler. He would learn what it was to be spat on, to live on almost nothing. But it was perhaps the last good time for an artist to live on nothing in New York City: the age of AIDS and crack but also of a defiantly festive cultural underworld. Not without drama, he found his way.

But success was not uncomplicated; it led to wretched excess and proved all too fleeting. And so by the end of the decade, Moby contemplated an end in his career and elsewhere in his life, and put that emotion into what he assumed would be his swan song, his good-bye to all that, the album that would in fact be the beginning of an astonishing new phase: the multimillion-selling Play.

Moby's new memoir is entitled, Porcelain.

  Johnny Gallagher has had an illustrious acting career. He won a Tony Award at the age of 22 for his performance in the Broadway musical Spring Awakening. He then went on to star in Green Day's American Idiot and then on the HBO series, Newsroom - created and written by Aaron Sorkin. He will appear on Broadway again this Spring in Roundabout Theatre Company's revival of Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night.

His debut solo LP, Six Day Hurricane was released in January on Rockwood Music Hall Recordings.

  Singer-songwriter and pianist Marc Cohn burst onto the scene in 1991 on the heels of "Walking In Memphis," one of the most resonant songs to make the Top 40 in the last twenty years. The Best New Artist Grammy for 1991 soon followed.

Cohn's short-story songwriting style is heavily influenced by Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne, and he is often named among the most personal and introspective lyricists of his generation. 

He will perform at The Colonial in Pittsfield, MA on Thursday, February 25th.

Sarah McLachlan At UPAC

Nov 25, 2015
photo of Sarah McLachlan
sarahmclachlan.com

  Three time Grammy winning folk-pop singer and songwriter Sarah McLachlan is best known for her emotional ballads, including "I Will Remember You," "Sweet Surrender," "Adia" , "Possession", "Building a Mystery" and "Angel."

She founded the concert festival Lilith Fair, and has sold over 40 million albums worldwide. She will perform at UPAC in Kingston, NY on Sunday, November 29th.

  Singer-Songwriter, Martin Sexton, is playing The Calvin in Northampton, MA on Saturday, November 21st. Sexton's latest release is Mixtape of the Open Road. He is a walking blender of American music including soul, gospel, country, rock, blues, and rhythm and blues. His elastic vocal range, improvisational ability, scat singing, guitar solos, and finger-style guitar picking come along with a very comfy, varied, feel.

Sexton began his career busking in Harvard Square. After releasing two recordings on Atlantic Records he eventually launched his very own label.

He joined us at The Linda to talk about his musical inspirations and to play a few tunes.

  Brandi Carlile is playing the Palace Theatre in Albany on May 23rd. Her indie debut with longtime collaborators, The Hanseroth twins, The Firewatcher’s Daughter was released March 3rd on ATO Records.

It debuted in the Top 10 on the Billboard 200, NPR Fresh Air deemed it “her best yet," and it garnered raves from the NY Times, LA Times, Billboard, and more.

Here we share portions of a number of songs from the album and speak with Brandi about songwriting, touring, the Looking Out Foundation, and meeting the President.

Shervin Lainez

  Duncan Sheik will be performing in our region on April 10th at 7pm at the Drury Performing Arts Center at Drury High School in North Adams, MA. The concert was scheduled by students in the Performing Arts Management class at the school.

After breaking through in the late '90s with his Top 20 single "Barely Breathing", Duncan Sheik spent much of the subsequent decade taking a breather from the usual rock singer/songwriter rituals. His focus was on albums that broke with pop music conventions and, additionally, theatrical musicals like Spring Awakening, the Broadway sensation that won him 2 Tony awards and a Grammy.

    This Saturday, December 13, renowned singer-songwriter Dar Williams will celebrate the 20th Anniversary of her debut album, The Honesty Room at The Calvin Theatre in Northampton, MA. She will play present-day takes on the 13 singular songs featured on The Honesty Room, performed in its entirety for the first time ever. Jill Sobule will open the show.

Dar joins us to talk about the tour, the songs, and her upcoming "Christians, Pagans & Other Hipsters" holiday concert at The Bell House in Brooklyn on 12/26.

    Suzanne Vega is an American singer/songwriter with profound insight on the human experience which has earned her followers of all ages and walks of life over a nearly 30 year career yielding critical acclaim and hit songs like “Luka,” “Tom’s Diner” and “Marlene On The Wall” among many others.

Suzanne Vega will be performing at Barrington Stage’s Boyd-Quinson Mainstage next Friday night at September 12th at 8PM. Vega comes in support of her latest release, Close Up, a reinterpreted majority of her catalog in a close and personal manner.

    Gabriel Kahane is a composer/musician/singer/songwriter who divides his time between the club and the concert hall. He has been commissioned by, among others, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Carnegie Hall, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Kronos Quartet, and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. His musical, February House was produced by The Public in New York City.

His latest album, The Ambassador, is a meditation on the underbelly of Los Angeles seen through the lens of ten street addresses. We spoke with Gabriel Kahane about the album recently.

    Singer-songwriter, A. J. Croce - son of the legendary Jim Croce - will play The Guthrie Center in Great Barrington, MA on Saturday, May 17th.

    Alt-country singer-songwriter, Michaela Anne will perform at The Landis Arboretum in Esperance, NY as part of The Landis Acoustic Music Series by Desolation Road Studios on Friday, May 16th at 7pm. M.R. Poulopoulos is also on the bill.

A self-described military kid, Michaela Anne has moved beyond naval bases and barracks to settle in Brooklyn, NY.  A former unhappy jazz student with a passion for Patsy Cline and Otis Redding, Michaela Anne has claimed her place among singers who go their own way.

Her latest album, Ease My Mind, was released on April 8th of this year.

    

  Tonight at 8pm, Erin McKeown will play at Helsinki Hudson - supporting The Mountain Goats.

Erin is a Musician, Writer, and Producer based in Western Massachusetts.With 9 full length albums, 2 EPs, and numerous soundtracks to her credit, she’s a local, national, and international artist and activist and she joins us to talk about her stint as a host in WNYC, international audiences, teaching, and a few of her songs.

    “Songs and Stories, Together Onstage” features two esteemed artists, Steve Earle and Shawn Colvin, sharing a rousing night of song swapping, duets, storytelling, and stellar guitar playing. The evening promises a rich and inspiring musical experience as these two long-time friends and mutual admirers share music from their extensive catalogs, as well as some of their favorite songs by other classic songwriters.

Shawn Colvin joins us with a preview of the event at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall on Thursday, March 27th.

Peggy Seeger

Mar 18, 2014

    The Annual Berkshire Festival of Women Writers is a collaborative, multi-venue event sponsored by Bard College at Simon's Rock with many local partners, celebrated across Berkshire County in the month of March - Women's History Month.

This year, the festival features more than 150 women of all ages and from many backgrounds sharing their talents through readings, lectures, workshops, performances, and screenings held at 36 Berkshire County venues from Sheffield to Williamstown. All 58 festival events are open to the public and most are free.

  Dawn Landes is a Brooklyn-based folk singer-songwriter and accomplished music producer and engineer.

She’s recently released a new record entitled, Bluebird via Western Vinyl, and she’ll be opening for The Felice Brothers at Club Helsinki in Hudson, NY on March 17th. She joined us at The Linda to talk about her career, the new album, and how she snaps up sounds and lyric ideas wherever she goes.

    Ellis Paul is one of the leading voices in American songwriting and one of the top songwriters to emerge out of the fertile Boston folk scene. He helped create a movement that revitalized the national acoustic circuit with an urban, literate, folk rock style that helped renew interest in the genre in the 90's.

He is also writes folk music for kids and families and will be playing a free Little Folks Concert tomorrow at 11 a.m. at Caffé Lena in Saratoga Springs, NY. (He’s playing a show there tonight, too. It’s sold out. )

English folk-rock singer-songwriter Beth Orton was a pioneer of "folktronica," a style mixing elements of folk and electronica, whose pulse still can be felt in the underpinning groove of Orton's mostly acoustic music. After a six-year hiatus from recording, Orton released "Sugaring Season" last year, which was greeted with critical acclaim and superlatives such as "masterpiece."

She’ll play at Club Helsinki in Hudson, NY on Friday, Feb 7th at 9pm The Murphy Beds will open.

    In a career that spans five decades, some two-dozen albums and several Grammy awards, multi-talented singer/songwriter/guitarist Tom Chapin has covered an incredible amount of creative ground. In addition to his work as a recording artist and concert performer, Chapin has acted on Broadway, as well as working extensively in films, television and radio.

As a music-maker, Chapin has maintained two long and productive parallel careers, both as a highly respected contemporary folk artist and as a pioneer in the field of children's music. He will be performing a family concert at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall on Sunday, February 9th at 3PM.

    "Susan Werner [is] a clever songwriter and an engaging performer, [she] brings literacy and wit back to popular song." according to The New Yorker and the Chicago Tribune called her "One of the most innovative songwriters working today."

Her recent album, Hayseed, is a tribute to American agriculture and to her Iowa farm roots.

She will be performing this Thursday night at Joe’s Pub in New York City and then will play on Friday and Saturday at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival in Hillsdale, NY.

Tim Chaisson

Apr 17, 2013

    Tim Chaisson's U.S debut The Other Side was released on February 26, of this year and was called "a handsomely crafted piece of work" by The Guardian. The album won the East Coast Music Award for Roots/Traditional Solo Recording of the Year.

A few weeks ago, the native of Prince Edward Island, Canada, was scheduled to come play live and record an interview with me - but on that day - I all-but-lost my voice. Not wanting to subject Tim (or listeners) to an aggravated croak of an interview - we asked if he’d come in and just play.

What we have to share with you now, is the 4 song set Tim played at The Linda with his cousin, Cody Chaisson, joining him on mandolin.