Shawna Caspi, Sunday, April 29, 2018

Find out more about the Shawna Caspi show.

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee by email at lee@windycityhouseconcerts.org or at 312-810-3067

Free childcare provided (advance notice required)

I was introduced to Shawna when she played an Official Showcase at the FARM (Folk Alliance Region Midwest) conference last October. I was blown away by the combination of her finely crafted songs, achingly beautiful vocals, and masterful guitar playing. I had a chance to interview her at the Folk Alliance International conference this past February. Click to read the interview.

Toronto-based singer-songwriter and fingerstyle guitarist Shawna Caspi hadn’t done much traveling before tapering off a series of administrative jobs to start touring full-time. She had never even rented a car. She had never been camping before performing at the Blue Skies Music Festival in 2014.

Since then, Shawna has toured throughout Canada and the United States, including performances at the Ottawa Grassroots Festival, the Shelter Valley Folk Festival, the Summerfolk Festival (ON), and the Deep Roots Music Festival (NS), and concert series including the Calgary Folk Club, the Nickelodeon, the Northern Lights Folk Club (AB), the Greenbank Folk Music Society (ON), the Circle of Friends Coffeehouse (MA), On Your Radar (NY), and Six String Concerts (OH).

Shawna’s fourth album Forest Fire, released in September 2017, is a collection of songs about burning things down and building them up again. Engineered and produced by Don Kerr (Rheostatics, Bahamas, Ron Sexsmith), the elegant arrangements draw the listener into the depths of haunting, atmospheric tracks, then lift them out with airy, bluegrass instrumentation and hopeful narratives for brighter days. It’s dark granite stone with a shot of glimmering quartz through the middle. When the words get heavy, they are held up to the light of love, grace, and gratitude. With these songs, Shawna strives to be unafraid, to embolden quieted voices, to tell the truth above all else.

It’s an album about cycles, about playing the long game. That’s why it’s called Forest Fire – something that seems huge and devastating when it happens, but in the relative vastness of space and time, it’s just one small moment on a much grander scale, a necessary catastrophe that leads to new growth.

Shawna’s vocals are brewed by years of classical training followed by years on the road finding her own voice singing folk songs. She combines power, intensity, character, and closeness. She has a whole band under her fingertips, with a remarkable lyrical fingerpicking guitar style. Her performances capture audiences with grace and intimacy whether the setting is a living room, a festival stage, or the bar car of a passenger train.

“Some musicians make songwriting sound less of a craft and more of a life affirming obsession. Caspi’s compositions stand out as beautiful, complex and intricate even in an increasingly crowded folk scene.” – NOW Magazine

“Shawna taps into her Canadian folk roots to share songs with beauty, humor and a keen eye for the world around her. Add to the fact that she is a classically trained guitarist with a stunning voice, and you have an artist that is destined to be an important artist on the folk circuit.” – Ron Olesko, Sing Out! Magazine

“Shawna’s songs have a way of making you feel at home, no matter where you are.” – Lynda Norman, Executive Director, Kelowna Arts Council

http://www.shawnacaspi.com/

https://www.youtube.com/shawnacaspimusic

http://www.facebook.com/shawnacaspimusic

http://twitter.com/shawnacaspi

Alice Howe, Sunday, March 25, 2018

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at lee@windycityhouseconcerts.org
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required)

With her soulful, impeccably tuned voice and crafted poetry, Boston singer-songwriter Alice Howe is “at once of the moment and timeless, personal and universal” (Mark Walton, Americana UK). Her pure, distilled sound reflects a musical sensibility rooted in ’60s folk and ’70s Southern California songwriters. Alice’s 2017 EP You’ve Been Away So Long features her original song “Homeland Blues,” which debuted at #1 on the April Folk DJ chart and came in as the #7 song of the entire year. She was a 2017 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival Emerging Artist, and has performed at such venerable Northeast venues as Club Passim, Caffè Lena, and Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts.

“A gem…at once of the moment and personal, timeless and universal.” – Mark Walton, Americana UK

“Up there with the very best of Mary Chapin Carpenter, Gretchen Peters and Dar Williams” – Folking.com

“These are well crafted songs” – Country Music People (UK)

“This music is visceral, real and simple” – Folkwords

“…I could listen to her sing for hours. Her voice is beautiful as a bell, classic in that Joan Baez way, transporting, wistful…her vocal mastery and musicality are beyond her young years and her songs stay in my head for days.” -Antje Duvekot

“How can a singer-songwriter have a voice like a broken angel’s bell and write songs that could be a week or a hundred years old all at once? Alice Howe, that’s how.” – Vance Gilbert

“Classic emotive folk reminiscent of Kate Wolf, Alice Howe’s earnest lyrics and heart-melting vocals might be the musical equivalent of lying in the dark beneath a clear sky of stars.” – Robby Hecht

https://www.alicehowe.com/
https://www.facebook.com/alicehowemusic/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX8jC6IrUVOuqnyOs2fIs9g
https://alicehowe.bandcamp.com/
https://meandthee.org/interviews/alice-howe/

Abbie Gardner (from Red Molly), February 11, 2018

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at lee@windycityhouseconcerts.org
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required)

Abbie Gardner, the fiery Dobro player with an infectious smile toured with Americana darlings Red Molly for eleven years. After gracing stages from Denver to Denmark, from Australia to Austin, the band took an indefinite hiatus in 2015, so Abbie is having a blast stepping out into the spotlight for her own gigs! No stranger to solo performing, she has three CDs to draw from, each with award-winning songs. Tales of love and loss, both gritty and sweet, ride the back of her by-now familiar, formidable slide guitar licks. She channels Lucinda Williams and Bonnie Raitt but remains pure Abbie. 

Always keen on following the vocal part and trying to find the one really perfect note, instead of a dozen okay ones, Abbie is quickly compiling an extensive discography of recording credits. Her own CDs include Honey on My Grave (2006), Bad Nights/Better Days (2008, with Anthony da Costa), and Hope (2011), which features three different kinds of slide guitar (dobro, lap steel and National bottleneck). Abbie has been recognized as an award-winning songwriter, with such accolades as; 2006 Rocky Mountain Folks Festival Songwriter Showcase (2nd place), 2008 Lennon Award Winner (folk) for “The Mind of a Soldier” and 2008 American Songwriter Magazine Grand Prize Lyric Winner for “I’d Rather Be.” “The Mind of a Soldier” was also featured on Lufthansa Airlines in 2010.

Abbie has had the honor of being part of the songwriting faculty at the 2010 and 2011 Swannanoa Gatherings and assisting at Reso Summit, Nashville’s Resonator Conference, for the past several years. She wrote and released a song per week for a year as part of the 2013 Real Women Real Songs project and continues to attend Jack Hardy’s Monday night Songwriter’s Exchange in NYC to hone her writing skills. She has been having a blast doing gigs with different bands, backing up her friends and stepping out into the spotlight for her own gigs. Abbie has a brand new solo CD ready to release in January of 2018 and is excited to tour as a solo act in support of that CD.

“Abbie Gardner shows her prodigious writing chops in her album, Hope. Tales of love and loss, both gritty and sweet, ride the back of her by-now familiar, formidable slide guitar licks. She channels Lucinda and Bonnie, but remains pure Abbie.”
— Richard Cuccaro, Publisher, Acoustic Live

http://www.abbiegardner.com/
https://www.youtube.com/user/SlideSessions
https://www.facebook.com/pg/abbiegardnermusic

Cosy Sheridan, Sunday, January 21, 2018

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required)

Cosy Sheridan has been called “one of the era’s finest and most thoughtful singer/songwriters” She first appeared on the national folk scene in 1992 when she won the songwriting contests at The Kerrville Folk Festival and The Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Since then she has released 10 cds, written a one-woman-show and her music has appeared in books and film. She has taught songwriting, guitar and performance workshops at music camps for the past 15 years, including The Puget Sound Guitar Workshop and The Swannanoa Gathering. She is the director of The Moab Folk Camp in Moab, Utah.

Cosy Sheridan first caught the attention of national folk audiences in 1992 when she won the New Folk songwriting contests at The Kerrville Folk Festival and The Telluride Bluegrass Festival; The Boston Globe wrote “She is now being called one of the best new singer/songwriters.”
She has been on the road ever since, playing clubs, concert halls and coffeehouses from Seattle to Berkeley and across and across I-80 to Omaha, Chicago and then to Boston where she now makes her home. On her new CD, Sometimes I Feel Too Much, she writes of these years on the road in her song Woody Guthrie Watch Over Me.

A Cosy Sheridan concert is a wide-ranging exploration: love songs for adults – and practical philosophy for a complicated world. She has written about the stock market crash of 2008 and fall-out from uranium mining in the American southwest. She has re-written greek myths: Persephone runs away with Hades the biker. And then there are her signature parodies on aging and women.

Backed by the strong rhythms and harmonies of her bass player Charlie Koch, Sheridan’s concerts are full of energy and emotionality. Her songs are carefully crafted – and often shorter than the average folk song. “Cosy writes intelligent and clever lyrics with stickable melodies,” wrote Sing Out Magazine. She plays a percussive bluesy guitar style – often in open tunings and occasionally with 2 or more capos on the guitar.

Throughout her 25 year career, Cosy has continued to win fans and also rave reviews: her 2014 release, Pretty Bird, was chosen as one of Sing Out Magazine’s “Great CDs of 2014.” For the past 20 years she has taught classes in songwriting, performance and guitar at workshops and adult music camps across the country. In 2008 she co-founded the Moab Folk Camp in Moab, Utah.

A buddhist monk in a 12-step program trapped in the body of a singer/songwriter – The Albuquerque Journal

Sheridan is frank, feisty, sublimely and devilishly Funny. She fuses myth with modern culture, Persephone with Botox – Cornell Folksong Society

http://www.cosysheridan.com/
https://www.facebook.com/cosysheridanmusic/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEKO7FbtLAC5QiYK6XqfoTw

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

* All funds go to the musicians

Escaping Pavement, Sunday, December 3, 2017

Escaping Pavement

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required)

Fresh from their fine Official Showcase at FARM (Folk Alliance Region Midwest), Escaping Pavement
brings their lively and exciting show to Windy City House Concerts!

Hailed as “One of the most dynamic Americana groups out of Detroit, Michigan” Escaping Pavement masterfully blends and blurs the lines of Bluegrass, Folk, and Americana. Their unique joint front person arrangement, with Emily Burns and Aaron Markovitz sharing equally in singing, songwriting, and guitar playing allow for astounding, harmony-driven, musical interplay. With over 500 shows under their belt, a new EP composed of music inspired by the National Parks, and a non-stop touring schedule, this Detroit-Music-Award-winning duo is ready to spread their roots-based message, far and wide.

From Detroit to Pasadena, to the high seas and then back to Detroit; it’s only when the Detroit-Music-Award-winning duo escaped the neon blitz and car-strewn concrete of the city that they discovered how well their music could bloom when they brought it back to the roots. There is so much life and vitality in the Americana-folk journeys of Escaping Pavement, sprung entirely from acoustic guitars, a mandolin, a ukulele, and two voices. With fiery passion, wistful reflection, awestruck adventurousness, and heartstring-plucking poignancy, the duo takes listeners through the range of human emotion and celebrates the purities of what we’ve left behind for the artifices of tech trends, drug stores and cacophonous city centers.

This Ferndale (MI) based duo is one to watch. The minimalist pair (Emily Burns & Aaron Markovitz) demonstrate a superb sense for harmony between their vocals and their strums on the mandolin and baritone guitar. It’s bluegrass-Americana revivalism that warms the heart. – Detroit Free Press – Jeff Milo

Dual gender vocals that embrace Americana, country and roots rock feelings, with banjo fills and a semblance of twang Uprooted surprisingly steers more toward a folk spirit than anything else. Rustic and graceful, there’s still plenty of playfulness with blues ideas, as these old souls in young bodies pen warm, sincere songs that digest so easily. – InForty Music Blog

Sometimes, there is amazing music right in your own back yard, and you don’t even know about it. Such was the case with Escaping Pavement. Straddling many SeMiBluegrass genres, this vocal/instrumental duo has garnered not only local, but regional and national attention with their hard-driving, vocal-driven approach to acoustic music as exemplified by their superb new album, “The Night Owl”. There’s a LOT of bluegrass in this duo…from the fiddle-tune laced mandolin licks of Aaron Markovitz or the driving, pounding rhythm guitar work of Emily Burns–she even rips off a killer flatpick solo at the end of “Leave the Light On” that is one Lester Flatt G-Run short of bluegrass perfection! But this band has so much more to offer. Sandwiched in between the first and last songs on the album (which are acoustic/electric guitar-driven American numbers) are eight mandolin/guitar pieces that will blow you mind. – SeMiBluegrass Blog

http://escapingpavement.com/
http://facebook.com/escapingpavementband
http://instagram.com/escapingpavement
http://soundcloud.com/escapingpavementband
http://twitter.com/Escape_Pavement
http://youtube.com/EscapingPavement
https://www.sonicbids.com/band/escapingpavement/press/

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

* All funds go to the musicians

The Young Novelists, October 8, 2017

the young novelists

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Have you ever seen a glockenspiel played with a bow? Then you’ve probably seen The Young Novelists! If not, you’re in for a treat!

Toronto based Americana husband and wife duo The Young Novelists are known for their beautiful harmonies and songs culled from their small-town roots. After the release of their second full-length album “made us strangers”, they’ve been touring Canada and the US relentlessly, earning accolades wherever they go, including a recent appearance on Chicago’s own WFMT-FM Folkstage show. They were recognized as Emerging Artist of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards, won the Grassy Hill Songwriting Competition at the Connecticut Folk Festival, and were recently named finalists at the NewSong Music Competition.

The Young Novelists’ sound resembles but doesn’t mimic the Decemberists and Mumford and Sons. It’s original and quirky and it’s a delight to hear. Graydon James is the frontman and he’s been touring as a duo with his wife, Laura Spink. Their stage show is honest and pure and their rapport with each other and with the audience is as real as you can get. The newest record “hinges on interpersonal relationships” and has an underlying theme which includes both traditional and non-traditional ones — from brothers in a band to a torrid love triangle to a new father missing the sound of his son’s voice when they’re apart. The Young Novelists show is as engaging as it is endearing.

“Like the Decemberists but rockier and less quirky, like Americana but quirkier and rockier, a talented Toronto outfit.”
~ rock nyc

“beautiful, soaring, rootsy Canadiana”
~ herohill

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLrQTKdLeIj23G3xW8geVJ5m37lVtf9R9-

https://soundcloud.com/theyoungnovelists

https://www.facebook.com/theyoungnovelists

https://www.instagram.com/young_novelists/

https://twitter.com/young_novelists

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

* All funds go to the musician

Dayna Kurtz with Robert Mache, August 13, 2017

Dayna Kurtz

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required).

Over the past decade, the New Jersey born, now New Orleans (and seasonal Vermont) resident vocalist/writer/musician/producer has been bestowed with many awards and praises, including being named the Female Songwriter of the Year by the National Academy of Songwriters. Norah Jones and Bonnie Raitt have raved about her in interviews, and she’s performed on such high-profile radio shows as World Cafe, Mountain Stage and NPR’s Morning Edition and Tell Me More. She’s toured and opened for the likes of Elvis Costello, Richard Thompson, Mavis Staples, Rufus Wainwright, B.B. King, Dr. John, Richie Havens, Keren Ann, Chris Whitley, and the Blind Boys of Alabama.

“When Kurtz sings, one of two things typically happens. Either she lets out a deep, husky croon that seems to bubble up from her toes, or she unleashes a full-throttle roar that’s more inviting than imposing…There’s no logical reason why Dayna Kurtz is not a full blown star.” James Reed, Boston Globe

Dayna’s new disc (Here, Vol. 1 due March 2017), is a live record with career spanning tracks, culled from her 2016 Dutch theater tour with guitarist Robert Mache. It manages to capture the heart-stopping edge-of-your-seat mesmerized silence that Dayna Kurtz seems to magic from her audiences. “I began my career as background music in crowded beach bars,” explains Kurtz, “and I used to make a game of seeing what it would take to shut people up. I got good at it. Although there’s some tricks to it, it was really more a kind of witchcraft than anything – I learned to draw whatever power and attention there was in the room being sent my way and sent it back out again. Other people got caught in the loop and started paying attention too. And as long as the crowd wasn’t shitfaced or distracted by a TV I could usually get them. It was good training, even now that my audiences are more inclined to listening already anyway. I write music that requires some attention.”

On her work and friendship with Robert Mache (Continental Drifters, Steve Wynn) Kurtz says, “I’ve loved Robert’s playing for such a long time, and we’ve been friends longer than we’ve been touring partners – he was one of the first musicians to befriend me in New Orleans. That we had such undeniable chemistry has been one of the greater recent gifts of my life, and I just wanted to document it somehow, and quite a few people in my life including my label have suggested a live record. I’d been hesitant, only because there’s only a few live records I listen to with the devotion I’d give a beloved studio record. It’s notoriously really difficult to capture the feeling of being there in the dark experiencing it. Then the challenge of it intrigued me.”

“Dayna Kurtz is the kind of artist who inspires wild-eyed zealotry among her fans, and there are three reasons for it: One, she’s an artist’s artist, one whose whiskeyed, determined alto often earns her comparisons with Nina Simone; two, while Europeans adore her, she’s obscenely underappreciated in her own country; and three, her songs, which straddle a difficult space between jazz, rock, and folk, are pure poetry. Her latest release owes its artist instant stardom. If that’s unattainable, it should at least earn her the one descriptor all serious artists strive for: important.” – Tammy La Gorce ALL MUSIC GUIDE

“Dayna Kurtz’s diverse vocals feel both old and new, recalling Nina Simone of yesteryear…hypnotically haunting” – New York Post

http://daynakurtz.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Dayna-Kurtz-official-165422183479985/

Dayna Kurtz & Robert Mache – “Reconsider Me” (live @Bimhuis Amsterdam):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UO3XP9oQ8P4

Dayna Kurtz & Robert Mache – “It’s How You Hold Me” (live @Bimhuis Amsterdam):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNM9MdRxtTI

Dayna Kurtz & Robert Mache – “Amsterdam Crown” (live @Bimhuis Amsterdam):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJ6Ukh286_o

Dayna Kurtz & Robert Mache with the Frysk Harmony Orchestra on Noardewyn Live, radio show from Leeuwarden in The Netherlands:(br>
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kiqWkJqdE64

C. Daniel Boling, Sunday, July 9, 2017

Daniel Boling Banjo

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Free child care provided (advance notice required).

A 2014 Winner of the Grassy Hill Kerrville New Folk songwriter contest, Daniel shares experiences from a life well-lived in places as far-ranging as Okinawa, Japan, and Padre Island, Texas. Daniel is a balladeer/songwriter and delights audiences with his well-crafted story songs coast-to-coast in over one hundred shows a year in house concerts, listening rooms, theatres and festivals. For three decades Daniel was a gun-toting Park Ranger and Criminal Investigator in National Parks and Public Lands throughout the west and he started touring fulltime at 50.

Daniel’s songs tell interesting stories about a variety of characters, including himself, played on guitar, banjo and banjitar (a banjo/guitar hybrid) with a deft fingerpicking style. His clear tenor draws positive comparisons to John Denver and Pete Seeger, and folks say there’s a lot of Steve Goodman in his delivery and storytelling. Other songwriting awards include 1st Place at Woody Guthrie Folk Festival, Walnut Valley Festival, Santa Fe Bluegrass and Old Time Festival, and Albuquerque Folk Festival. You can’t help but relate to Daniel’s songs!

http://www.danielboling.com

https://www.facebook.com/daniel.boling.10

http://www.sonicbids.com/CDanielBoling

http://www.youtube.com/user/PerfectlyStableMusic

Joe Jencks, June 11, 2017

Joe Jencks with guitar

Music at 4:00 p.m.
Socializing and light potluck at 3:00 p.m.
$20 suggested artist donation*

For an invitation to attend, please contact Lee
by email at windycityhouseconcerts@gmail.com
or at 312-810-3067

Joe’s songs and performances are a unique merging of musical beauty, social consciousness, and spiritual exploration. He weaves a diverse web of stories with brilliant musical skill, ensnaring even the most rigid of hearts, inviting them to open. His songs invite us to live inside of our passions and our beliefs.

On the stage, in the studio, or in the classroom, Jencks applies conservatory training to contemporary genres, bridging styles and techniques. Drawing on his Irish heritage (dual U.S./Irish Citizen), Jencks uses his lyrical voice to enchant, heal, and inspire. Jencks has won numerous songwriting awards and is also highly regarded as a song interpreter.

Joe had a full house for our show last August – I expect this one will be full as well, so please don’t wait to get in touch if you are interested.

Press

“In these times, we need the singers who will do the homework and tell the stories! Joe Jencks is among the fine next generation singers who are ready to carry on the tradition as well as look into the future” “Holly Near, Ukiah, CA

“The key to the future is people joining in. The music of Joe Jencks captures this essential spirit. Joe is a fantastic singer who carries on the traditions.” -Pete Seeger

“Joe Jencks is the type of musician that will cause you to drop that morning newspaper or pull your car to the side of the road when you hear his songs. He is the type of artist that will turn heads in his direction when he walks onto a stage. His voice will instantly draw you into his passionate songs. He is the type of musician whose music will become a part of you.” -Ron Olesko, WFDU–FM Teaneck, NJ

Watch and Listen to Joe Jencks

Selected audio tracks:
https://www.sonicbids.com/band/joejencks/audio/

Video of “Come With Me” at NERFA (Northeast Region Folk Alliance)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMKVA571PPA

Video of “Deportee” at the Old Songs Festival
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvdHNnLg24U


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

* All funds go to the musician