Sunday, February 17, 2013: Barnaby Bright

BarnabyBrightLightWithFlare

Since the release of their first album, ‘Wake the Hero’ in 2009, Barnaby Bright has garnered high accolades for their songwriting and sound. Grand prize winners of the NY Song Circle competition, Barnaby Bright’s music has also been featured on national television to soundtrack heavy moments on shows such as ‘ER’ and ‘Days of our Lives.’ Their follow up EP ‘Gravity’ was named one of the top 100 records of the year by Amazon.com, keeping good company with the likes of Adele and Bon Iver. They continue touring in support of their brand new full length record, “The Longest Day,” gracing such notable stages as Lincoln Center and NPR’s “Mountain Stage” in West Virgina.

Nathan and Rebecca Bliss, the voices and the brains behind Barnaby Bright, are truly the modern day traveling troubadours, averaging roughly 200 shows and 40,000 miles traveled a year. You can find them on streets as far away as London or Amsterdam, and as remote as St. Paris, Ohio, toting their massive haul of instruments…multiple guitars, harmonium, banjo, ukulele, floorboard bass, thumb pianos and keyboards. Because of the great number of shows they’ve played in their world travels, as well as their unique instrumentation, powerful harmonies and thought-provoking, connective lyrics, this duo has mastered the original goal they set out to attain: to create a sacred, magical space for their audiences…a momentary escape from the outside world. Their songs deal with a diverse range of subjects as relatable as longing and love, and as dark as death and revenge. The resulting emotional journey Barnaby Bright takes you on during one of their shows is one you will never forget. Drawing inspiration from literature, human behavior, experiences shared with the fascinating people they’ve encountered on the road, as well as a hint of fantasy, Barnaby Bright is a classic vision of timeless indie folk rock in all its glory.

Nothing about the journey of this married duo has been accidental or without purpose…even the band name itself holds a myriad of meaning for them. The phrase “Barnaby Bright” is a medieval term for the summer solstice. In 17th century England, the longest day of the year was celebrated with a large festival to honor St. Barnabus, and all joined together in merry recitation of the limerick, “Barnaby Bright, Barnaby Bright, the longest day, the shortest night.” Nathan and Becky were instantly drawn to the name not only for its historical context, but also because of the many metaphors it represented to them: light and dark, good and evil, and the idea that though this innate, dualistic struggle is present in all of us, on the longest day of the year, light prevails over dark…goodness wins.

This dichotomy of the human condition is represented time and again not only in their songs, but in themselves. With over a decade between them, and drastically different childhoods and life experiences, Nathan and Becky find in each other so much of what the other is lacking, both musically and personally. They have discovered that their vastly different backgrounds give them each a unique approach to the world, and to songwriting. Perhaps that is why listeners find such depth and range of emotions in the songs of Barnaby Bright.

http://www.barnabybright.com/
https://www.facebook.com/barnabybright
http://www.youtube.com/barnabybrightmusic

Potluck and Socializing at 5:00 p.m. Music at 6:00 p.m.

For information and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-571-9178 or e-mail windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com.

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

Sunday, December 9, 2012: Bill and Kate Isles

Bill and Kate Isles

“Beautiful and heartfelt harmonies, great songs and musicianship… I’ve heard them sing Bill’s wonderful original song Hobos in the Roundhouse maybe a dozen times and it always makes me cry!” – Lisa Fuglie, Monroe Crossing

Bill & Kate Isles are an acoustic singer/songwriter duo based in Duluth, Minnesota. Using a wide variety of musical styles, their performances carry audiences through a broad landscape of experiences from metaphorical worlds to small town family stories and to zany comedy. Consummate performers, they are known for their catchy melodies and memorable songs. They have a deep-seated love for the audience, and each other, and it shines before, during, and after the performance. They tour nationally, presenting their profound songs for audiences large and small, from house concerts to festival stages and everything in between. Words like “Mesmerizing”, “Transcendent”, and even, “Hysterical” are common descriptions from audience reviews and audiences members feel that they are listening to stories of their own lives, told by two of their best friends.

We love Bill and Kate as friends and musicians and we’re thrilled to have them back for a Christmas show. Please join us for an evening of warmth, friendship and great music to kick off the holiday season!

http://www.billandkateisles.com/
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bill-Kate-Isles/41840768863
http://www.reverbnation.com/billkateisles

Potluck and Socializing at 5:30 p.m. Music at 6:30 p.m.

For information and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-571-9178 or e-mail windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com.

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

Friday, April 27, 2012: Jeni and Billy

Jeni and Billy

“This is either the most sophisticated simple music or the simplest sophisticated music I’ve ever heard.”

That comment, heard after a Jeni & Billy performance, sums up the appeal of the duo’s “New Old Music.” With exquisitely spare accompaniment and performances that are never rushed, Jeni & Billy’s harmonies harken to a lost time and reverberate with a rare honesty, as they inhabit the lives of miners, preachers, ramblers, lovers, and plain-living folks.  Their music is quiet enough to be heard and just loud enough to be unforgettable.

Sharing the duties of songwriting, arranging, and performing, Jeni & Billy bring to the work very distinct musical backgrounds that both draw from the deep well of Appalachian roots music.

In recent years it’s been practically considered a given that the writing of coal-mining songs is a thing of the past, but lo and behold, along comes an album of new songs related to, or inspired by, the coal-mining lifestyle. Jeni Hankins is the granddaughter of coal miners, so she is well steeped in the tradition. Her mournful vocals compare favorably with other Appalachian old-time folks singers . . . the accompaniment is always very spare, and the performances are never rushed . . . Jewell Ridge Coal is a very worthy addition to a genre that may not be so antiquated after all. – Paul-Emile Comeau – Dirty Linen

Jeni and Billy call their music “New Old Music” on their facebook page and that is just what it is. Jeni and Billy write their own songs, but in the style of traditional country, Appalachian, old-time, country blues, bluegrass and folk music. Jeni was born in the coalfields of Southwest Virginia and traces her vocal style to Virginia Lowe, the blind music minister of the Friendly Chapel Church on Smith Ridge, VA. Billy grew up in Baltimore but spent his weekend nights high atop a hill in the nearby community of Oella — the home of Appalachian migrants who came to the city looking for work in the mills. There, among people much like Jeni’s grandparents, he fell in love with country music.

Steeped in roots of traditional music, Jeni and Billy perform their songs and tell their stories with heartfelt grace and genuine warmth that will reach anyone who hears them.

I first discovered Jeni and Billy online and then got to hear them in person at Folk Alliance, both in Memphis and at FAR-West, the Western Regional Folk Alliance conference. Regular attendees of house concerts know the close connection between musicians and audience members in general. Jeni and Billy exemplify that warmth. When I first met them in person, it felt like we had been friends for a long, long time, instead of just online correspondents.

Please join us for an evening of wonderful, unique music and warm friendship and camaraderie. You’ll be glad you came.

Listen to Monica Gomez’ October 2, 2010 interview with Jeni on her “State of the Arts” show on KTEP-FM.

https://www.facebook.com/jeniandbilly
http://www.jeniandbilly.com

Suggested artist donation $20

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 575-571-9178 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.

March 31, 2012: Tumbledown House

Tumbledown House

Gambling. Murder. Booze. Bicycles……

The music of Tumbledown House has been described as “gritty saloon jazz”, “modern speakeasy music”, and “Tom Waits in a cocktail dress”. Sultry vocalist Gillian Howe and the eclectic indie-jazz guitar work of Tyler Ryan Miller are Tumbledown House. Their music could provide the soundtrack for raucous, prohibition-themed parties and has “quickly ascended as one of the new, promising acts of the Rocky Mountain region” (Pop Rocket Press). I got to see their premiere showcase at Folk Alliance – I guarantee a rollicking fun time!

Tumbledown House has a brand new release (their second) called “Fables and Falsehoods”. The new album explores diverse subject matter (one song is based on the original story of Pinocchio written by Carlo Collodi in 1883, another describes the only consecrated shrine dedicated to unrepentant sinners, which still stands in Tucson, Arizona) and showcases the duo’s talent for creating something vintage and familiar, yet refreshing, distinct, and exciting.

http://tumbledownhouse.com

http://www.reverbnation.com/tumbledownhouse

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tumbledown-House/98240668904

Suggested artist donation $15

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

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

For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-571-9178 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.

Saturday, February 4, 2011: Hungrytown

Hungrytown

Hungrytown is the band name of celebrated musical duo Rebecca Hall and Ken Anderson. Their deceptively simple compositions are rooted firmly in folk tradition; “in fact, Hungrytown’s music offers such an aura of authenticity–in titles and in tunes–it could be easily mistaken for original trad transcripts,” declares Lee Zimmerman of Performing Songwriter, and Rachel Nones of the Feminist Review raves “Hungrytown is American folk music at its zenith.” Early reviews of the CD have landed the group daily airplay on XM Radio’s “The Village,” and Hungrytown songs are beginning to appear on playlists across the country, including Boston’s WUMB, New York’s WFUV and Philadelphia’s WXPN.

In Hungrytown, things are not always what they seem. In “Rose or the Briar,” a Carter-Family-style parlor ballad, a young man is drawn to a beautiful girl, but finds her lovely appearance offset by her prickly disposition. “One Morning in May,” conjuring ’60s-era folk rock, begins with a soldier marching confidently off to what he thinks will be an quick and easy victory, only to find himself mired in an endless and pointless war. The metaphorical heart of the album, “Hungrytown Road,” is a bluegrass waltz depicting a poor girl’s longing to discover her potential beyond the boundaries of her limited and difficult life. Indeed, each character in Hungrytown is a resident–the variety of musical styles reflect each of their personalities, trials and perils. Hungrytown is a place where many of us have been, and where many of us still live.

And now Hungrytown has a new CD out, “Any Forgotten Thing.”
Read all about it in this New York Music Daily review: http://newyorkmusicdaily.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/hungrytown/.

Please come join us for a wonderful evening of music and friendship. Ken and Rebecca are good friends (this is our third time hosting them) and you will enjoy their music and their warmth as people.

http://hungrytown.net
https://www.facebook.com/Hungrytown
http://www.myspace.com/hungrytown

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 and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.

Saturday, January 21, 2012: Hard Road Trio: Steve Smith, Chris Sanders and Anne Luna

Las Alturas House Concerts is proud to present The Hard Road Trio (Steve Smith, Chris Sanders and Anne Luna). Many of you are already familiar with the Hard Road Trio, or a least Steve and Chris. For those who have seen them recently, you already know they just keep getting better.

Steve is a virtuoso on mandolin, guitar and banjo and a fine singer and songwriter, internationally known as a performer and teacher. Chris is a singer and songwriter and guitarist and teacher, but that doesn’t convey the beauty of her soaring voice. Anne Luna is one of my favorite bass players, as well as a singer and songwriter. Her playing (on a full size acoustic bass several times bigger than she is) adds a rich, full sound to the trio, always tastefully supporting the music.

Steve, Chris and Anne are each fine musicians on their own. As a trio, they are even more than the sum of the parts. Regular touring over the last couple years has tightened up their playing. Beautiful harmonies, tight ensemble playing and blistering instrumental solos make for an exciting show.

We are looking forward to a great evening to kick off the last few shows at Las Alturas House Concerts. Please come share in the music and company. RSVP via email or phone and we will see you soon!

http://www.desertnight.com/steve-smith-and-chris-sanders.html
http://www.reverbnation.com/stevesmithandhardroad

Details:

Saturday, January 21, 7:00 p.m.

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.

Please RSVP to Lee at lasalturashouseconcerts@gmail.com
or by phone: 575-522-5197.

Suggested artist donation $20

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Saturday, September 24, 2011: Stephanie Bettman and Luke Halpin

Stephanie Bettman and Luke Halpin

Stephanie Bettman is a triple threat. An accomplished writer, she infuses her music with wit and wisdom, exploring the many facets of the human heart. Stephanie’s songs are sometimes sad, sometimes sassy, but always stunning. As a vocalist, she moves effortlessly from her up-tempo bluegrass originals (featuring her fiery fiddling), to a soothing honey-sweet ballad, to a rousing passionate anthem. While her first-rate fiddling combines elements of bluegrass and jazz, in her essence there is tribute to such masters as Stephane Grappelli, Byron Berline, and Johnny Gimble. One thing’s for sure, if Stephanie Bettman is on the bill, you are in for an unforgettable performance that will have you hooked from the first fiddle line to the last sweet harmony.

Touring with Stephanie is multi-instrumentalist Luke Halpin, who is equally adept on mandolin, fiddle and guitar. Inspired by the likes of Sam Bush, Tony Rice, and Mark O’Conner, Luke’s perfectly blended harmonies and his instrumental expertise together with Stephanie’s artistry and performance make for a dynamic experience audiences are discovering from coast to coast.

If you heard them on one of their earlier visits to Las Cruces, you already know all of this. So mark your calendar and come join us. If you haven’t heard Stephanie and Luke, you are in for a remarkable treat.

http://stephaniebettman.com

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1079164746

https://twitter.com/#!/stephaniebettma

https://www.facebook.com/lukehalpinmusic

https://twitter.com/#!/lukehalpin

Suggested artist donation $15

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

Please bring potluck food and wine to share.

For more information, please contact Lee at lasalturashouseconcerts@gmail.com or by phone: 575-522-5197

Saturday, June 25, 2011: Jennings and Keller

Jennings and Keller on Porch Steps
Jennings and Keller is Laurie Jennings Oudin and Dana Keller, an acoustic duo based out of Miami, Florida. They bring a wealth of experience to their collaboration, from the Broadway musicals of New York to the honky tonks of West Texas. Their music is called “Fusion Folk Americana’ – a blend of many different elements that comes from their vast and wide-ranging musical backgrounds.

Laurie and Dana played Las Cruces at Judy Harmon’s Harmony House Concerts in June of 2008. I wrote a little review of their show at the time; it still applies and now you have another chance (or your first chance) to see them.

“Jennings and Keller just played my friend’s Harmony House Concert series in Las Cruces, NM this past weekend and put on a wonderful show. This duo from Florida plays and sings original songs of life, love and everything else. Laurie Jennings has a beautiful voice and plays a sweet guitar. Dana Keller plays outstanding dobro and sings very well. They put on a great show – great music and great sense of humor and interaction with the audience. I recommend them highly so please attend a show near you and/or pass the word to your friends.”

Check out their music at:

http://www.jenningsandkeller.com
http://www.facebook.com/jenningsandkeller
http://www.reverbnation.com/jenningsandkeller
http://www.youtube.com/jenningsandkeller

Suggested artist donation $15

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

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

Attendance is by invitation only. For more information and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.

Thursday, March 3, 2011: Bill and Kate Isles

Bill and Kate Isles

Bill and Kate Isles are wonderful musicians and performers. They are also two of the nicest people I know. It is a great pleasure and privilege to be able to host them again. They bring a personal warmth and romantic sensibility that will lift even the most cynical spirit. Their songs cover a variety of topics, most telling a story of life and its meaning.

Bill Isles (Duluth, MN) performed his first show of original songs in twenty-five years in February of 2000. Since that time, he has become one of the most well known singer/songwriters in the Minnesota acoustic scene and has been getting national and international attention.

His and Kate’s songs are poetic reflections of life experiences and often explore adventurous spiritual courses. Admittedly romantics, many of their lyrics focus on the joys of relationships, but others explore metaphorical worlds. Just when you conclude that a song is about Michelangelo’s first visit to scope out the project at the Sistine Chapel, you start to realize that, perhaps, this is also an artist’s perception of entering the “chapel” of his/her audience. But then, again, it also hints at personal interactions. It is this multi-layering that has drawn fans to listen over and over again. Words like “mesmerizing” and “transcendent” are common in descriptions of his live performances, not to mention, “very funny”, such as the response to “The Sutra (Comma) Minnesota Polka”.

Bill’s love of life has strong roots in his childhood, but his urgency to tell these stories comes from an experience in 1993 when, with just enough warning to drive himself to the hospital, his heart stopped beating. He arrived with just ten minutes to spare. After being defibrillated, and before the doctors had time to detect and open a blocked artery in his heart, he made a commitment to himself that, if he survived, he would begin to write again. Those paddles restarted more than his heart…

Highlights …
2001 – Winner of the 2001 Minnesota Folk Festival New Folk Songwriting Contest
2002 – Nominee for the 2002 Minnesota Music Awards Song of the Year for “I Can’t Take You Home” a duet with Becky Schlegel (From “Weightless” 2001)
2005 – Performance Alley Showcase Artist, Int’l Folk Alliance Conference, Montreal, QU
2008 – Main Stage Performance, Big Top Chautauqua, Mt. Ashwabay, WI
2008 – Formal Showcase Artists, Midwest Regional Folk Alliance Conference, Chicago, IL
2008 – Formal Showcase Artists, Far-Western Regional Folk Alliance Conference, Phoenix, AZ
2009 – WFMT-FM (NPR) FolkStage Concert, broadcast live in Chicago, replayed on XM Radio
2010 – “Matching Baggage” named one of “Top CDs of 2009” by multiple public radio stations

Kate Isles was a closet singer/songwriter, full-time wine representative and dedicated single-mom when she came to a CD release concert for Bill’s first CD, “Weightless” after hearing a radio interview. She bought the CD and signed up on his e-mail list. (“Grounds for marriage!” quips Bill)

Their relationship began soon afterwards with afternoon sessions with guitars, harmonies and coffee. They’ve been together ever since, marrying in May of 2004. While Bill initially toured solo, Kate is becoming an integral part of the act, with extensive duo touring planned for 2008 to support their upcoming duet album, “Matching Baggage” which will include several songs that they’ve co-written. The response has been very positive with many comments about the “perfect blend of two voices”. “I’m honored to hear such things,” said Kate, “it reflects the wonderful relationship that we’ve enjoyed.” They have toured as a duo full time, nationally, since early 2007.

Please join us for an evening of music and friendship.

http://www.billandkateisles.com/
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bill-Kate-Isles/41840768863
http://www.reverbnation.com/billkateisles
http://www.myspace.com/billisles

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 and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.

Thursday, January 27, 2011: Lynne Hanson and Lynn Miles

From north of the border, two award-winning Canadian singer/songwriters will bring us an amazing evening of songs and stories. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to hear a two of Canada’s top performers.

Lynne Hanson and Lynn Miles

Lynne Hanson

As the youngest in a musical family of eight children, Lynne was exposed to a diverse array of musical eras and styles as she grew up. Older siblings were quick to pawn off their babysitting duties to stacks of records and tapes, Lynne being only too happy to sit and sing along for hours with the likes of Johnny Cash and Bruce Springsteen. The result is a hybrid brand of eclectic roots music that Lynne can truly call her own merging her thought-provoking lyrics with heart-felt soul-country.

Hanson’s early love of jazz was later replaced by bluegrass and traditional country , while teenage years included singing and playing Neil Young songs at home. If pressed, Lynne will describe her sound as “porch music with a little Texas red dirt. I write these songs on acoustic guitar in my kitchen. I want them to sound like the original concept, except with a band. I call it porch music, as it’s like everyone in the neighbourhood comes over and brings their instruments.”

With an open heart and not a hint of sentimentality, Hanson sings simply and honestly about loss and the search for redemption. That redemption comes at her live shows. No one leaves a Lynne Hanson concert feeling heavy-hearted. Onstage Hanson is a happy-go-lucky storyteller with a gift for the gab and a wink in her eye, engaging her audience just as much with her stories and one-liners as she can with her music. She’s intimate with her audience, as if she were shooting the breeze with old friends at her kitchen table. Or her front porch.

Which brings us back to that Texas red dirt…

“Any listener thinking Hanson couldn’t have been born north of the Mason-Dixon Line is forgiven.” – Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange

Hanson grew up seeing more white Canadian snow than Texas red dirt. She grew up in Ottawa, a quiet, conservative government town with bone-chillingly cold winters. Unlikely breeding ground for a southern-style roots musician? Perhaps. But anyone who can live through a lonely Ottawa winter just might emerge in springtime singing the blues. And that’s exactly what Hanson did.

For years, Hanson was a self-described “closet kitchen musician” until 2006 when everything she’d kept inside spilled out onto her acclaimed first CD, Things I Miss.

Things took off pretty quickly with the release of her second CD, Eleven Months. Word got out about an earthy singer-songwriter from Canada and Hanson was invited to showcase stages from Austin, Texas to Memphis, Tennessee, a European tour, a few more stops in Texas and a Canadian Folk Music Award nomination.

It’s been a busy few years for Lynne Hanson. And with a nonstop touring schedule she’s not taking any breaks just yet. Well, maybe just a few. On her front porch. To kick off her cowboy boots, grab her guitar and write some more unforgettable songs for her third CD.

They say everything’s bigger in Texas. With a little Texas red dirt under her heels, Hanson might have to consider building a bigger front porch to fit in more fans.

Since I first got to see Lynne at Folk Alliance, I’ve been one of those fans. We agreed she should do a show at Las Alturas House Concerts a while ago but Ottowa, Canada isn’t right around the corner from Las Cruces, so it has taken us a while to get her here. I assure you she was worth the wait.

2009 Canadian Folk Music Award Nominee – New/Emerging Artist of the Year
2009 Southwest Regional Folk Alliance Official Showcase Artist
2009 Kerrville New Folk Finalist
2009 Rose Garden Coffeehouse Performing Songwriter Finalist
2008 FAR West Official Showcase Artist
2008 Mountain Stage New Song Canadian Finalist

http://www.lynnehanson.com
http://www.reverbnation.com/lynnehanson
http://www.myspace.com/lynnehanson
http://www.facebook.com/lynnehansonmusic

Lynn Miles

Born outside Montreal in Sweetsburg, Quebec, Lynn Miles grew up in a musical home. Her father played the harmonica and listened to his jazz collection while her mother was a lover of both opera and country music. Miles’ mother recalled once that she knew when Lynn had finally fallen asleep in her crib: Lynn stopped singing. During her elementary school years, Miles learned guitar, violin, flute and piano. She began performing in public at around the age of sixteen and when she was in her early twenties she studied with an opera singer to strengthen her voice and enrolled for a time at Carleton University in Ottawa where she studied classical music history and theory. Years later, Miles put this training to good use while serving as a voice teacher at the Ottawa Folklore Center. While at the center, she taught voice to many students including a then fourteen-year-old Alanis Morrisette. The lessons came just prior to the making of Morrisette’s first album.

Though Miles had been writing her own songs since the age of 10, she didn’t end up recording any of her own material until 1987 when she cut 9 original compositions for a demo at Happyrock Studio in Ottawa. An avid reader and music-lover, those early recordings were inspired by the books she loved to read, and the music she listened to on the radio.

Miles continues to draw inspiration from music and literature to this day. On her latest album (Love Sweet Love) for example, the opening track, “Flames of Love,” was inspired by a long period of reading Sufi poetry. “I’m fascinated by the way the Sufis write about love,” Miles says. “Their love is spiritual, and I reinterpreted it and wrote ‘Flames of Love,’ about jumping in the fire, Lynn Miles letting go and not being afraid and letting it get hot and not caring about what other people think. Just really going for it.” The idea – and the song itself – is exhilarating and exciting, yet full of hidden corners and alleyways from where the joy can be blindsided without notice. But as Miles notes, “You don’t learn from happiness.”

If that’s true, one gets the sense that Miles has learned a lot. In a career that has seen her move from Ottawa to Los Angeles and back to Ottawa, and release albums as varied as the slick Night in a Strange Town (co-produced by Larry Klein, of Shawn Colvin and Joni Mitchell fame, and featuring renowned west-coast studio musicians David Piltch, Dean Parks, John Cody and Tal Bergman) and the stark Unravel, Miles has consistently been unflinching in putting it all out there: the unbridled ecstasy of new-found love, the fragile process of sweeping up the pieces when it breaks.

The accolades, meanwhile, continue to pour in. Her 1996 album, Slightly Haunted, was a Billboard Top 10 Pick of the Year. Unravel (released 2001) was praised by critics – All Music Guide describing it as “sounding as if it’s been produced by Daniel Lanois in an Appalichian town” and “a diamond in the rough.” Canadian folk-music icon Valdy once said, “I’m sorry for all the heartache she has to go through in order to get those juices going, but, yeah, she’s marvelous.” The New York Times may have said it best: “Lynn Miles makes being forlorn sound like a state of grace.”

Therein is the powerful secret behind Miles’ music – her astute observations of life, its trials and triumphs, are the hallmark of sincerity in her music. The gritty honesty of her music never falters – neither does her unshakeable ability to make even the most melancholy lyrics sound as if they are brimming with hope and grace. “Little Bird” infuses her lyrics with an assertive and encouraging voice. “I wrote this song after reading “In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts” by Gabor Mate. It’s the best book on addiction and articulates the need for compassion when dealing with addictions. The song about what I call The X Factor, the initial source of pain that can cause a person to seek solace in alcohol and drugs.”

Lynn Miles is a musician in the rarest sense of the word, an unmistakable talent, with an eye for both the subtle and sweet that can only be unearthed with experience.

Seven albums
2005 Winner Canadian Folk Music Awards – Best Singer Contemporary
2005 Winner Canadian Folk Music Awards – Best Songwirter – English
2003 Winner Juno Award for Roots & Traditional Solo Album of the Year

http://www.lynnmilesmusic.com/
http://www.myspace.com/lynnmilesmusic
http://www.facebook.com/lynnmilesmusic

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 and an invitation, please contact Lee at 575-522-5197 or by e-mail at lasalturashouseconcerts (at) gmail.com.