Chad Elliot – Sunday, March 8, 2015

Chad Elliott

“Normally billed as a folk singer, Elliott’s songs all tell finely crafted stories and his mastery of written word is apparent on all of them. His vocals remind me of Townes Van Zandt or a possessed Rodney Crowell. Many of the songs have a very haunting feel to them and the sound meanders from straight folk to country with a splash of delta blues thrown in at times.” – Adam Dawson, Broken

Averaging close to 200 shows per year, Elliott has been on the road for nearly 20 years performing a blend of Americana, roots and country music. Elliott is currently working on his 20TH ALBUM traveling to Nashville to record with producer/drummer Ken Coomer (Wilco, Uncle Tupelo).

With a couple thousand songs in tow, Chad has also collected more than a few interesting stories, many of which end up crafted into lyrics. Perhaps the most surreal moment in his career happened in 2009 while he was portraying Buddy Holly for the Surf Ballroom on the 50th anniversary of the fateful plane crash which took the rock legends life. He was asked to sing Oh Boy with Buddy’s widow Maria Elena Holly. She whispered in Elliott’s ear after the song faded, “You’re my Buddy”.

He has also shared the music stage with great artists such as: R.L. Burnside, Odetta, Tom Paxton, Loudon Wainwright III, among other stadium acts like Counting Crows, Eric Church and Lonestar. Chad has also accumulated a string of awards and honors.

Awards and Honors

  • 2014 Newsong Contest – Midwest Finalist
  • 2013 Top 25 Albums on – So Sang the Crow
  • 2013 Iowa Blues Challenge – Winner Solo/Duo
  • 2013 Rising Star – Finalist
  • 2012 Show Me the Music Song Contest – Finalist – Americana
  • 2012 Int. Folk Alliance Conference – Official Showcase Artist
  • 2011 Iowa Motion Picture Awards – Best Original Music Score
  • 2011 Mixies Award – “Most Creative Tour” – One Horse Town Tour
  • 2009 International Songwriting Contest – 3rd Place Winner – Americana
  • 2009 Woody Guthrie Song Contest – 1st Place Winner
  • 2008 Kerrville New Folk – Finalist
  • 2006’s – Open Mic Winner
  • 2006 Just Plain Folks – Top 20 New Folk Songs

Music at 3:00 p.m. Light snack potluck and socializing at 2:00 p.m. Please feel free to bring a dish and/or beverage to share. Wine or beer are welcome. Water, glasses, dishes and silver provided.

For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee by e-mail at or at 312-810-3067.

Suggested artist donation $15-20. This is a voluntary donation — we welcome you and appreciate whatever you can contribute. All funds go to the musician and along with any CD and merchandise sales is how the musician gets paid.

To get emails about our shows, please click here to subscribe to our mailing list.

Jim Hurst – Friday, November 11, 2014

Jim Hurst

Steeped in bluegrass and country music, Jim Hurst embraces these genres but goes beyond their musical boundaries to create music both complex and sublime.

Jim Hurst’s dexterous guitar work and pleasing vocals can lead you down a path of a lovely ballad, get your feet stomping to a train song and ultimately leave you spellbound….in just one medley!

“Jim Hurst is one of the most versatile and tasteful guitar players I know. Whether he’s flailing the rhythm for an old time fiddle tune, laying down a funky groove, or finger picking a beautiful ballad, his playing is both impeccable and creative. Accompanying this instrumental virtuosity is a rich and expressive voice with a surprising range.” – Mark Schatz

Jim Hurst’s unique picking style and mastery of bluegrass guitar wows audiences and is revered by both novice guitar players and his musical peers. His eclectic career has made him a remarkable performer, an experienced instructor and a highly sought after session musician. His affability and gregariousness make him one of the most approachable musicians of his caliber.

The product of a musical family, Jim honed his musical style after being influenced by the likes of Tony Rice, Clarence White and Jerry Reed. He got national exposure with Holly Dunn’s Rio Band playing acoustic guitar and mandolin, and singing harmonies; followed by several high profile television and radio appearances while touring with Trisha Yearwood playing acoustic and electric guitar, and harmony vocals. Jim also experienced performances with Travis Tritt, and Sara Evans.

Craving to play more bluegrass, Jim joined Grammy-nominated Claire Lynch and The Front Porch String Band in 1995. Desiring greater freedom to create his own musical path, Jim left the Claire Lynch Band in 2010 to embark on a solo career. His shows meet with rave reviews as he astounds his audiences with his brilliant playing yet makes people feel right at home with his humble congenial and funny persona. Jim’s solo show, which allows his personal style and unique creativity to come through in spades, is what keeps his audiences mesmerized.

Music starts at 7:30 p.m. You’re welcome to join us from 6:30 p.m. for socializing and potluck supper. Wine or beer are welcome.

Suggested artist donation $20 (All funds go to the musician.)

For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee by e-mail at or at 312-810-3067.

To get emails about our shows, please click here to subscribe to our mailing list.

Friction Farm – Thursday, June 5, 2014

Friction Farm

Modern folk duo Friction Farm combine storytelling, social commentary, and humor to create songs of everyday life, local heroes, and quirky observations. From ballads to anthems, each song is filled with harmony and hope.

Blending country, folk and pop into a seamless package, guitarist/vocalist Aidan Quinn and bassist/vocalist Christine Stay bring a rare freshness and spontaneity to the stage. Their genuine warmth and enthusiasm is so contagious you won’t be able to help smiling and tapping your feet as you listen to them.

Friction Farm have been selected Kerrville New Folk finalists and Falcon Ridge Emerging Artists, honors that hint at their skill as writers and performers.

“Aidan and Christine command any stage they’re on. Their appreciable force is gently delivered with keen lyrics and beautiful melodies, with a hint of humor to mitigate the seriousness of some of their material.” David Engels, Emerald Concerts

“Friction Farm’s strong point is gorgeous harmonies, that thread nearly every song” Xtreme Folk Society, Philadelphia

“Friction Farm’s live performance is full of funny and poignant stories, spontaneous diversions, audience participation, good music, and lots of fun.” Pine Island Eagle

You can see live performances at the YouTube link below and listen to their latest album on bandcamp. Then you’ll understand why I’m a huge fan of their music and excited to be able to host Friction Farm.

Music at 7:30 p.m. Potluck and socializing at 6:30 p.m. Please bring a dish and beverage to share. Wine or beer are welcome. Water, glasses, dishes and silver provided.

For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee by e-mail at or at 773-334-5776.

Suggested artist donation $20 (All funds go to the musicians.)

To get emails about our shows, please click here to subscribe to our mailing list.

Sunday, September 15th, 2013: Jeni and Billy

Jeni and Billy Grinning

You have to watch where you sit at a Jeni and Billy concert, because that ordinary-looking chair might just turn into the back seat of a big ole Buick hurtling down the switchback of a coal truck road.

Or that chair might turn out to be the rock-hard sinners pew of a white-washed mountain church. That couch might be a marble stoop on a gritty street in Baltimore, and that velvet theater cushion could just be the well-worn driver’s seat of a wagon headed across the windswept Texas plains.

The high twang of a banjo starts it off — or maybe the mournful lilt of the mandolin. Then, a train comes barreling down the reeds of a harmonica. The guitar catches fire and lifts two voices into the high lonesome harmonies of the Appalachian Mountains, painting pictures of miners and millworkers, roustabouts and revival preachers, Buicks and beauty queens.

Asheville, North Carolina, antiquarian map dealer John Ptak captured the spirit of Jeni and Billy, “I knew within 10 seconds that you guys were for real . . . Jeni’s voice is that clear Mother-M kind of quality that I love. I like the music you two make — inspired, true-to-your roots, spare (excellent) guitar. I like silent places in music . . . Quiet, silent places give you time to listen, and also time to think — they are vastly underrated.”

Jeni and Billy bring together original traditional Appalachian ballads from Jeni’s home environment with modern folk performance to produce a unique sound — hearkening back to music from those hills and valleys but with a newer sense of musicality. As people and performers, Jeni and Billy radiate the warmth and open hearts of community, just perfect for the intimacy of a house concert.

This show will be our third time hosting Jeni and Billy and we are just tickled to have them back! We think you’ll love them, too! Check out their music at the links below.

Note: Since this is a Sunday show, we are starting half an hour early.

Music at 7:00 p.m. Potluck and socializing at 6:00 p.m. Please bring a dish and beverage to share. Wine or beer are welcome. Water, glasses, dishes and silver provided.

For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee by e-mail or at 773-334-5776.

Suggested artist donation $20 (All funds go to the musicians.)

To get emails about our shows, please click here to subscribe to our mailing list.

Friday, August 20, 2010: Gabrielle Louise

Gabrielle Louise photo by Jim Farnam

Gabrielle Louise returns to Las Alturas House Concerts with her new album just completed. She just keeps getting better – new songs, astonishing vocals and a range of songs from tender ballads to scorching hot torch songs.

“Articulate and gifted, Gabrielle Louise…is an artist who comes to music from a literary vantage point, first and foremost…But the lyrics standing alone are only part of the story…As a vocalist Gabrielle Louise dives deep into her songs, exploring them in a warm, sturdy voice reminiscent at times of Joni Mitchell…especially in the falsetto flights and lower register swoops…She executes a captivating balance of heartache and resolve.” -David McGee, has written for rolling stone, pro sound news, spin…currently the country music editor at

Suggested artist donation $15

Music starts at 7:00 p.m. Socializing from 6:00 p.m.

Light refreshments provided, BYO wine and/or potluck refreshments to share are welcome.

For more information, please contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at houseconcerts (at)

Saturday, November 14, 2009: Rachel Sedacca

Rachel Sedacca
Rachel Sedacca

Southern California is lucky to have singer-songwriter, performing, recording artist Rachel Sedacca call it home. Her country/blues songs and folksy ballads are full of colorful characters and stories of love and hope from her time on the road. She calls this blend bluesy folkabilly with a smile. We’re lucky to have her come and play for us!

Rachel’s diverse repertoire includes her Americana flavored originals, as well as some favorites that she says, “need to be sung”, including tunes from a variety of artists, including Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, Jimi Hendrix, Alison Krause, Dolly Parton, Paul Simon, Gillian Welch and others.. Inspired by the Janis of all trades style of Bonnie Raitt as well as the sounds of Lucinda Williams and Sheryl Crow, Rachel points to years of Grateful Dead shows steeping her in an eclectic musical tea, appreciation for the fusing of genres and the ways of the road. That big smile in her pictures reflects the energy and joie de vivre at the core of her being.

$15 artist donation

Music starts at 7:00 p.m.

Light refreshments provided, you are welcome to bring wine or refreshments to share.

Reservations are required. For more information, contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at houseconcerts (at)