Upstate
Jul
19
8:00 PM20:00

Upstate

For Upstate, the last few years have been a time of profound exploration and self-discovery. As the band knocked off milestone after milestone on the road, their sound, their lineup, and even their name all underwent dramatic metamorphoses. Challenging and thrilling all at once, those changes have finally culminated in the band’s dazzling new self-titled album, a collection that showcases both their remarkable growth and their adventurous blend of folk, R&B, jazz, gospel, and rock and roll.

Recorded primarily over six days at the Clubhouse studio in Rhinebeck, NY, ‘Healing’ is the band’s first release with new member Allison Olender, their first with four contributing songwriters, and their first since shortening their name from Upstate Rubdown. It’s also their first project to be produced by Wood Brothers percussionist Jano Rix, who helped the group embrace their transformation and lean in to their unique lineup (three female vocalists, upright bass, guitar, and cajón, with mandolin and sax interchanged) without sacrificing any of the gorgeous harmonies, eclectic arrangements, and unforgettable performances that have defined the band since their earliest days.

Upstate first emerged from New York’s Hudson Valley in 2015 with their critically acclaimed debut, ‘A Remedy.’ The Poughkeepsie Journal raved that the group “need[s] nothing more than their voices to channel rhythm and stoke your emotions,” while Chronogram hailed their “infectiously sunny organic stew,” and The Alt called them “toe-tapping, contagious, and fun.” The album earned the band festival performances from Mountain Jam to FreshGrass, as well as a slew of national headline dates and support slots with everyone from The Felice Brothers and Phox to Marco Benevento and Cory Henry.

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Courtney Marie Andrews
Apr
27
8:00 PM20:00

Courtney Marie Andrews

Courtney Marie Andrews spent over nine months of 2017 on the road, with multiple trips across the US, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. That’s nothing new for Andrews, though. She’s been touring relentlessly since leaving her Arizona hometown at 16. It’s a life that inspired much of her 2016 breakthrough album, Honest Life. While that album’s themes spoke to the isolation and rootlessness inherent in a life on the road, most of its songs were actually written during an intentional, extended break. The success that followed its release, however, didn’t afford her the same break to write the material for her new album.

Although May Your Kindness Remain was predominately written on the road -- in the van, in hotels, and in the homes of family and friends -- it’s not a road record like its predecessor. That is, it’s not so much inspired by her life on the road so much as it is by the people she’s met along the way. It’s an inward reflection on the connectivity of their stories and her own. “More than anything,” she says, “it got me thinking about my childhood, and the people around me that I’ve known, and the stories that come from my family. It became clear how many people are struggling through the same issues.”

May Your Kindness Remain is full of vivid depictions of complex people and places with all too common struggles. Much of the album deals with the psychological and relational impact of the unrealistic picture of success that is so embedded in modern American culture.

“People are constantly chasing that bigger life. A lot of people are poor in America -- and because of those unattainable goals, they’re also mentally unstable, or sad, or depressed or unfulfilled. A lot of people -- myself included at some point in my life -- are loving somebody through this. That’s sort of the theme of the record: coming to terms with depression and the reality of the world we’re living in. Mental illness is a taboo in this culture -- or not taken seriously. I’ve grown up around it a lot, and sort of feel like I understand it from all sides.”

There are no simple answers in these songs. There’s just an acknowledgement of our shared hardships and a call for empathy. Despite its characters’ burdens, May Your Kindness Remain isn’t downtrodden. There’s a defiance built into its melancholy, a sense that even the most complicated problems are worth facing -- a sentiment that also explains why the album’s music refuses to stay within any rigid sonic boundaries.

While Andrews self-produced Honest Life, she knew this one had to be different. To record May Your Kindness Remain, her restless side took over. “It’s very characteristic to how I work -- I need to be shaken up,” she says. “I was like, ‘I need to change something, and create something different, and push myself in a different direction. I knew I wanted to make a more modern, unique sounding record.”

She found that direction thanks to a bit of serendipity. All at once, she began noticing Mark Howard’s name on several of her favorite records. She was consistently drawn to the resonant depth of the sound and tone in the albums he had done with luminaries like Lucinda Williams,Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris and Tom Waits. With nothing to lose, her manager messaged him about producing the new record.

The inquiry was a success: months later, Andrews and her band found themselves in a rented house in Los Angeles, overlooking the city’s skyline, making May Your Kindness Remain with Howard at the helm. “I wanted to make a record in L.A.,” she says. “In that house, overlooking a city that epitomizes both America’s diversity and also the commonality of very real struggles against often unrealistic hopes and dreams.”

Andrews recalls Howard saying that he liked “making records that you can live in.” To her, it felt intuitive, natural and spontaneous -- an extension of the songwriting process that went into these songs. Howard, Andrews and the band lived in that house for eight days, barely fitting it in between two tours. As is Howard’s custom, the house was the studio. He brought all the gear, recording everyone in the same room to a live board, live off the floor. “A lot of the record is either the first take or we did just one overdub,” Andrews says. “Nothing’s overthought.” The band set up in a circle, watching each other across the room as they played each song live.

As a result, the album sounds intimate and warm, as if listeners are in the house with them, watching it all unfold. While May Your Kindness Remain is Andrews’ fullest sounding record to date, the songs and her vocals are never eclipsed. “Mark’s really good about stripping the song down to the bones, and asking, ‘Where is the song in this? And how do we make the song come out while still having great instrumentation?’” Andrews recalls.

Still, the album’s arrangements are meticulous. Unlike the predominantly acoustic guitar based Honest Life, May Your Kindness Remain builds around Andrews’ songs with heavy lead guitar (Dillon Warnek) and keys riffs (Daniel Walker, Charles Wicklander). Having played with Andrews for years, the rhythm section (Alex Sabel, bass; William Mapp, drums, percussion) fills the sound as naturally as you’d expect. There was no click track for Mapp, adding to the album’s sentient, live feel.

Every instrument and sound on the album has their proper place, across diverse styles: proud piano ballads (“Rough Around the Edges”); easygoing, country-tinted rock (“Kindness of Strangers”); and biting, sarcastic folk gems (“I’ve Hurt Worse”). Gospel singer C.C. White adds backing vocals throughout, including on the stunning title track, a striking statement of purpose that blooms at the end thanks to layers of soulful harmonies. “When C.C. was singing her parts,” Andrews remembers, “I just laid there on the floor, both comforted and blown away.”

Andrews’ own vocals are notably more powerful and soulful -- especially on the organ-heavy blues number “Border”, with a ragged weariness that honors the immigrant’s resilience in the face of blatant thoughtlessness and racism; and “Took You Up”, a take on accepting love as a simple offering before any illusion of wealth or success. Her vocal performances reflect her recent listening habits, which include Motown and soul, as well as albums by the eclectic rock band Little Feat. They also point to her confidence and growing range as a live vocalist.

“I subconsciously started incorporating more vocal stretching in my songs, just because of how fun that was,” she says. “I’ve always been really inspired by soul singers. I can sing like that -- but I never really had before.”

In the end, May Your Kindness Remain finds Andrews at home in her restlessness, embracing her intuition. It has stretched her vocals, her sound and her songwriting to new depths and produced a brave record -- a record that is unafraid of addressing the complexities of life in order to find common ground and understanding, no matter how divided this world may seem.

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Margaret Glaspy
Apr
25
7:30 PM19:30

Margaret Glaspy

Born Yesterday is a bookend to New York singer-songwriter, Margaret Glaspy’s lauded 2016 debut Emotions and Math (ATO Records). “In releasing it, I feel set free to sink deep into my new inspirations while taking a break from the road and make something entirely new.” Glaspy continues, “These songs are the end of this chapter and mark a new beginning!”

Emotions and Math was featured on many Year-End lists when it was released in 2016, including The New York Times, NPR Music, Billboard, Mother Jones, and more. Glaspy toured the record intensely, playing countless shows throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. This season on the road birthed her new EP released on ATO Records, Born Yesterday. Margaret recalls, “I wrote these songs on the road, in my hotel, on the plane, and at soundcheck. They were the product of the little time that I had to myself - three songs about different sides of love: love gone wrong, love gone right, and love at a distance.” She continues, “Born Yesterday is a bookend on the adventure that was my last record, Emotions and Math.”

Glaspy self-produced the new EP, which frames these love stories in catchy choruses, dark harmony, and her ever evolving sense of the electric guitar. Her finely tuned ear for production and tone shine on Born Yesterday.

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Hiss Golden Messenger (Solo) with Special Guest Erin Rae
Mar
7
9:00 PM21:00

Hiss Golden Messenger (Solo) with Special Guest Erin Rae

Hallelujah Anyhow is the latest studio album from Hiss Golden Messenger, out September 22 worldwide on Merge Records. Its ten new songs, penned by HGM principal M.C. Taylor, were recorded with Brad Cook, Phil Cook, Chris Boerner, Josh Kaufman, Darren Jessee, Michael Lewis, and Scott Hirsch. Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, Tift Merritt, Skylar Gudasz, Tamisha Waden, Mac McCaughan, and John Paul White provided vocal harmonies.


“I see the dark clouds. I was designed to see them. They’re the same clouds of fear and destruction that have darkened the world since Revelations, just different actors. But this music is for hope. That’s the only thing I want to say about it. Love is the only way out. I’ve never been afraid of the darkness; it’s just a different kind of light. And if some days that belief comes harder than others, hallelujah anyhow.” —M.C. Taylor

Erin Rae

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Hiss Golden Messenger (solo) with Special Guest Erin Rae - Early show
Mar
7
6:00 PM18:00

Hiss Golden Messenger (solo) with Special Guest Erin Rae - Early show

Hallelujah Anyhow is the latest studio album from Hiss Golden Messenger, out September 22 worldwide on Merge Records. Its ten new songs, penned by HGM principal M.C. Taylor, were recorded with Brad Cook, Phil Cook, Chris Boerner, Josh Kaufman, Darren Jessee, Michael Lewis, and Scott Hirsch. Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, Tift Merritt, Skylar Gudasz, Tamisha Waden, Mac McCaughan, and John Paul White provided vocal harmonies.


“I see the dark clouds. I was designed to see them. They’re the same clouds of fear and destruction that have darkened the world since Revelations, just different actors. But this music is for hope. That’s the only thing I want to say about it. Love is the only way out. I’ve never been afraid of the darkness; it’s just a different kind of light. And if some days that belief comes harder than others, hallelujah anyhow.” —M.C. Taylor

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Liz Cooper & The Stampede
Feb
28
7:00 PM19:00

Liz Cooper & The Stampede

“A nugget of 50-years-late-breaking psychedelia out of Nashville, ‘Hey Man’ circles through four chords and flaunts a distorted guitar hook, jazzy drumming and an elaborate but transparent throng of voices and guitars behind Liz Cooper’s straightforward come-on.” —The New York Times

“A gorgeously arranged and performed bouquet of psychedelia-tinged folk-rock…”
“…to draw a line from Window Flowers to any period of rock and roll, it would be that of the Paisley Underground and bands like The Dream Syndicate, where beautiful and languid psychedelia met moody folk and rock based songs. Cooper taps into this and more on her debut, wrapping her reverbed vocals in swirling, warm echoes of sound and nuanced musical lushness thanks to the addition of keyboards, pedal steel, a glockenspiel here and a banjo there.” –NPR Music

“Call it psychedelic, call it classic or call it the sound of new Nashville. Liz Cooper & The Stampede are leading the rock pack in Tennessee right now…[Window Flowers is] one of the summer’s most refreshing listens.” –NPR World Cafe

“Sharpening up her guitar attack, Cooper pushes her strand of folk rock deep into psychedelic territory by merging her idiosyncratic vocal style with swirling, droning guitar effects and lacerating solos that feel dusted with otherworldly magic…yearning for natural beauty and transcending one’s surroundings permeates Window Flowers…”  —Rolling Stone

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Celia Woodsmith and Friends
Feb
2
8:00 PM20:00

Celia Woodsmith and Friends

Celia Woodsmith is a Grammy-nominated performer and songwriter from Kittery, Maine. As lead singer of the highly acclaimed Bluegrass ensemble Della Mae, she has toured extensively all over the world. Described by The Boston Globe as "Unvarnished and intimate...but then sounds like she's about to part the Dead Sea" Woodsmith has opened for and played with artists such as Taj Mahal, Leon Russel, Peter Rowan and Amy Black of the Indigo Girls. You can find her performing in New England with Joe K. Walsh on Mandolin and also in her Rock and Roll project Say Darling.

Jenni Lyn Gardner - Della Mae (Mandolin, Vocals)

Ella Jordan - (Fiddle)

Zoe Guigueno is a bass player and singer based in New York City. She is a member of Grammy-nominated Americana band Della Mae, an alumnus of string band Joy Kills Sorrow, and a regular in the New York klezmer scene. A graduate of the jazz program at Humber College in Toronto, Zoe is originally from the west coast of Canada.

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Lula Wiles with Mary Elaine-Jenkins
Nov
17
8:00 PM20:00

Lula Wiles with Mary Elaine-Jenkins

Lula Wiles is a band deeply rooted in traditional folk music, but equally deep is their devotion to modern songcraft. Their songs span from heartbreak-drenched acoustic ballads to honky-tonk swagger to contemporary grit and back again, all anchored by powerful three-part vocal harmonies. Their lyrics are fiercely honest, littered with reinvented folk tropes and evocative images – a rainy field of daisies, a dusty bar lit by Christmas lights, an unmade bed. They deliver love songs that are at once defiant and heartsick, as well as new contributions to the folk ballad canon and timely explorations of what it means to live in America today. Drawing from the deep wells of traditional old-time music, classic country, and contemporary indie-folk-rock songwriting and arranging, Lula Wiles melds diverse influences to create a sound all their own. The three band members deftly swap instruments and frontwoman duties, with Ellie Buckland (vocals/guitar/fiddle), Isa Burke (vocals/guitar/fiddle), and Mali Obomsawin (vocals/bass) each contributing their own singularly expressive vocals, instrumental lines, and songwriting. Onstage, the band gathers tightly around a single microphone for a spirited and emotionally resonant live show.

Mary Elaine-Jenkins has a new record out on September 28th. We're digging everything we've heard and are excited to bring this new artist to your attention!

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10 String Symphony with Carling and Will
Nov
2
8:00 PM20:00

10 String Symphony with Carling and Will

“They do things with fiddles you wouldn’t expect” NPR All Songs Considered “The Newest and Most Promising Voices in Americana”

“…a dynamic musical stew that covers a wide spectrum of acoustic-based roots music, hitting on old-time, folk and bluegrass, all delivered with a dash of rock and roll spunk.”
American Songwriter Magazine

“When each song ended, the two pressed tight into their microhphones, savoring the last strains of the harmony – and even the bartenders seemed to be leaning forward breathlessly, awaiting someone to clap first. Their self titled recording aptly demonstrates the power of a spare, tightly-connected acoustic performance that is given room to evolve – for bluegrass fans, the lightning fast harmonic runs on dueling fiddle is worth the price of admission alone. But it’s the off-road experiments, especially from Christian’s biting bow strokes that will make future audiences take note.”
The Bluegrass Situation

“…Stirring together Old-Time flavors with the broader range of influences brought by an omnivorous musical appetite”
The Nashville Scene

Carling & Will are a traditional folk duo based out of Southern Vermont with Carling Berkhout and William Seeders Mosheim. Both are multi-instrumentalists combining unique melodic instrumentation with an old-time sound.

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Mipso
Oct
27
8:00 PM20:00

Mipso

Chapel Hill’s indie Americana quartet Mipso – Jacob Sharp (mandolin, vocals), Wood Robinson (bass, vocals), Joseph Terrell (guitar, vocals), and Libby Rodenbough (fiddle, vocals) – release their fifth album, Edges Run, on April 6th, 2018 via a newly inked record deal with AntiFragile Music. Influenced by the contradiction of its progressive home and the surrounding rural southern landscapes, Mipso has been hailed as “hewing surprisingly close to gospel and folk while still sounding modern and secular” (Acoustic Guitar) and was recently recognized by Rolling Stone as an “ Artist You Need to Know.” The band brings a distinctly unique sound – full of wistful beauty, hopeful undercurrents, and panoramic soundscapes. Venturing ever-further from its string-band pedigree to discover a broader Americana where classic folk-rock and modern alt-country sounds mingle easily with Appalachian tradition, Mipso’s music is lush and forward moving, with lyrics that sear and salve in turn. Look for Mipso on tour this spring in support of their new release, Edges Run.

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Courtney Hartman and Taylor Ashton
Sep
29
8:00 PM20:00

Courtney Hartman and Taylor Ashton

A recording is simply a snapshot in time. Courtney Hartman & Taylor Ashton embody this philosophical approach on their quietly stunning debut Been on Your Side. Fascinated by the life of songs—how they change and evolve as one’s life does—the duo has captured twelve tracks full of ephemeral charm. Courtney Hartman, known for her work with Della Mae, is one of the most compelling young guitarists today, possessing a virtuosity of sensitivity.

Ashton has enraptured listeners with his Canadian roots group Fish & Bird, and his pulsing clawhammer banjo is an integral part of this new project. While recording Been on Your Side, the duo sang rich, entwining harmonies into old ribbon mics mere feet from each other—just as they wrote these songs. The result is an intimate dialog between two musicians who are committed to refreshingly honest music making, and who push one another to greater heights.

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