Thursday, January 29, 2015


Clyde’s of Gallery Place will host “Capitol Blues Night” to benefit Music Maker Relief Foundation’s programming. Music Maker partner artists Cool John Ferguson and Ironing Board Sam will perform at the event, which only has one hundred tickets available.

The “legendary” (Billboard) Ironing Board Sam was a house musician on the first televised African-American music revue called “Night Train” and then became one of the best-loved entertainers on the Crescent City’s music scene, before relocating to N.C. It was just announced that he will be returning to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival lineup for 2015, and has recently been profiled in Offbeat Magazine.

Cool John Ferguson, of Beaufort, S.C., began playing the guitar at 3 years old and has been called by blues legend Taj Mahal “…among the five greatest guitarists in the world.” Cool John was recently profiled in Premier Guitar.

Ironing Board Sam – Cherry Pie

Cool John Ferguson – The Cat Ate the Rat, the Rat Ate the Wizard

The event is co-sponsored by Puckett & Associates and Clyde’s Restaurant Group. Bill Puckett of Puckett & Associates and Bart Farrell and Tom Meyer Clyde’s Restaurant Group are members of Music Maker’s Board of Directors. Clyde’s has been hosting Capitol Blues Nights for five years to raise funds and awareness for Music Maker, which helps roots musicians in need to develop their careers and meet their day-to-day needs. The event brings together Music Maker artists who perform and mingle with the audience in an intimate setting.

“We are so grateful to Bill, Tom and Bart for their wonderful generosity to our mission, and for bringing great Music Maker artists to Washington, D.C.,” said Tim Duffy, Music Maker’s founder. “Ironing Board Sam and Cool John playing in the same night is an epic show, not to be missed. It will be an intimate night of excellent music, incredible food, and fellowship. Clyde’s recreates a true juke joint atmosphere in the heart of D.C.”

Capitol Blues Night will be March 12th from 7:30pm – 10:30pm at Clydes of Gallery Place. Tickets will include the show, beer and wine and an assortment of heavy hors d'oeuvres. Tickets can be purchased for $100 from Music Maker’s website,, or directly from Clyde’s of Gallery Place at

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Zap Mama and Antibalas rehearsal video




“It all fell into place as soon as I saw the island. I could see it all,” remembers Kristin Andreassen, co-founder and co-director of the Miles of Music camp for all ages and all levels. The organization she and Laura Cortese started now hosts weekends in New York and Boston, and a week on a private island on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire that will celebrate its fifth year in 2015. The main event, the week-long NH camp has sold out each of the last two years.

Kristin was first invited to join a private group of songwriters on the island in 2010. Not only did she realize immediately that she’d found a home for her longtime dream (shared with fiddler/songwriter Laura) of a music camp, but she also wrote the bulk of her new album ‘Gondolier’ over the summers at a private retreat held by a group of songwriters on the property. (Now, the songwriters go the week before the campers.) “We piled instruments in a motor boat and cruised over to the island in the dark. By the next morning, I could picture where it would all be: in the Rec. Hall we’d have a band-in-a-box class where singers get to work with a staff rhythm section, we’d have one-on-one lessons on the porch by the water.”

Andreassen’s new album ‘Gondolier’ comes out February 17. She recently taped syndicated radio shows Mountain Stage, Woodsongs, and Music City Roots. Here is video from the latter performance of the song “New Ground."

She explains how Miles of Music is unique by saying, “We take a holistic approach to learning music. It’s not broken up by instrument, on purpose. People are playing real music with each other from the moment they start in the morning.” Campers are also coached on performance skills, including thinking about incorporating visual arts as they prepare to play their music at evening concerts. (Last year there was a resident dancer, a painter and a shadow puppeteer on staff with the mission to encourage collaborations between the arts).

The singer-songwriter explains, “Night-time revelry ranges from a square dance to people singing Katy Perry at full-band karaoke. It’s a ridiculous range of genres. We are conscious about that. We are bringing in old and new traditions, with the intent of exploring the essence of each thing and see how we might consciously pull things out of new and old traditions to make something new in the moment.”

Andreassen reflects, “This is how folk music is still transmitted in this country. I’ve taught at half a dozen folk camps, including some ’song school’ type camps where I’m teaching songwriting and some 'old time weeks' where I’m generally teaching clogging or square dancing.  Our camp is a combination of those approaches. Our camp teaches traditional music and creativity. We don’t blend those ideas together. We just think each can inform the other. And sometimes it’s just more fun to try old fiddle tune with electric bass and drums.”

Miles of Music Camp takes place on a private 43-acre rocky woodland island on Lake Winnipesaukee near Meredith, New Hampshire, at the *Three Mile Island Camp managed by the Appalachian Mountain Club. The camp consists of 50 small rustic cabins along the lake shore plus recreational facilities and a community dining hall. In between music classes, jams and concerts, campers can explore the woods, go for a swim in the lake, or canoe around the island.

2015 Island Camp dates:

Jun 13-19: Lake Winnipesaukee, NH

Miles of Music also hosts two weekend workshops in Kristin & Laura’s respective home towns, which happen to also be where a majority of the campers hail from. Those dates are:

Feb 6-8:  Boston, MA
Feb 27-Mar 1: Brooklyn, NY

Andreassen says of the June camp, “There are 110 people on the island, of whom at least thirty are teachers. One of the things that we've worked hard on is keeping the ratio of music teachers to music students.” Instructors include co-founder and co-director Laura Cortese, who performed at Pete Seeger’s 90th birthday celebration at Madison Square Garden; Jefferson Hamer; Yep Roc artists The Stray Birds; Josh Ritter bassist Zachariah Hickman; winner of the 2013 Clifftop Appalachian Stringband Festival Fiddle Contest Clelia Stefanini; indie songwriters Heather Robb of the Spring Standards and Shane Leonard of Field Report; Louisiana cajun and swamp pop kings The Revelers; ace cellist Valerie Thompson; traditional square dance…and clogging mistress Christine Galante; “squarely convincing” (NY Times) singer-songwriter Michaela Anne; and Dinty Child, multi-instrumentalist from Boston’s legendary Session Americana. It was Dinty who first invited Kristin and Laura to the island since he’s the off-season manager of the facility.

“I get a strong sense of the community that we’ve created,” says the co-founder, continuing, “I’ve watched bands form from the people who attended camp. I feel some sort of impact on helping nudge other people’s creative projects along. I feel it every week, either when I go to my old time session at Lowlands [Bar in Brooklyn, NY] or when I play a show.”

She’s not just a co-director, but she’s also a client. She exclaims, “Also, I get to play my songs with really great musicians!”

Monday, January 26, 2015

Zap Mama bio

Known to her fans as Zap Mama, Marie Daulne began as the leader and founder of a female vocal polyphonic quintet that succeeded worldwide and has since evolved into a variety of configurations approaching Urban, Jazz, American Soul and Afro-Pop Music styles. Redefining the term “vocalist” Marie Daulne is more than a singer; she is a sonic stylist, who alternates between storytelling and creative vocal expression. Using the organic tone of the human voice, Zap Mama has developed her sound for over 20 years, inspiring diverse audiences around the world.
Born in East Zaire, during the Congo Crisis, Marie lost her Belgian father to the Simba rebels only days after her birth. Shortly after his death she was flown with her Congolese mother and siblings to Belgium where traditional Congolese songs and culture remained present. The loving Belgian family of her father exposed her to liturgical music and Walloon popular songs. As an adolescent, Marie also trained athletics in track and field, proving to be a powerful athlete which is still evident in her live performances.
Following a return visit to the Congo in her early 20‘s, Marie was inspired to sing and create music. Seamlessly blending African, American, and European cultural influences, this Belgian-Congolese diva has a unique vocal style. Zap Mama’s genre connects the citizens of the world through sound. Her poly-phonic arrangements use the voice as an instrument creating VOCAL GROOVE’s that reinterpret the sound of Urban, Afro-scat and Alternative Funk music.
In the early 80’s, Hip-Hop culture arrived in Europe and inspired Marie’s body and soul. She began experimenting with beatboxing, rap and graffiti and training in acrobatic choreography. Marie discovered her artistic personality and started her studies at «Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Visuels» (La Cambre). While studying visual arts Marie also attended modern dance classes and trained circus acrobatics, developing her choreography skills and swinging between artistic mediums.
In 1987, Marie began studying jazz in Antwerp and by 1989 she was teaching, developing compositions for an a cappella quintet.
In the 90’s, Marie auditioned singers and founded the Afro-European vocal quintet ZAP MAMA.
Signing with the Belgian label «CRAMMED DISCS» (Sony Music), in 1991, Zap Mama was receiving international attention.
By 1992, David BYRNE of «Talking Heads» signed Zap Mama with his label «LUAKA BOP» (Warner) in the USA.
As new inspiration arrived, Zap Mama's music began to incorporate a myriad of genres, particularly those of the African diaspora combined with a unique mix of Euro-American traditions.
As their success grew, the quintet was invited to prestigious stages around the world, including the MONTREUX JAZZ FESTIVAL (CH), NORTH SEA JAZZ FESTIVAL (NL), WOMAD (AU, NZ, UK), GLASTONBURY (UK) and many others.
In the US, Zap Mama’s first album was announced at the top of the BILLBOARD CHART’s for 21 weeks in The World Album category. Also during this time Marie discovered the music of the movie «Métisse» by Mathieu Kassovitz, and with her brother Jean-Louis, Marie began to expand her skills with improving beatbox, breakdance and participating in activities with the community of Parisian Circus artists.
Zap Mama’s 1st record, «ADVENTURES IN AFROPEA», was nominated for a GRAMMY AWARD for the Best World Music album in 1994.
Invited to perform with the NEVILLE BROTHERS, Al JARREAU and Bobby MCFERRIN, Zap Mama toured through the USA, Japan and Europe. Appearing on numerous TV shows and stations, including «TARATATA» on French TV, «LATER... with JOOLS HOLLAND» on British television, as well as the «THE ARSENIO HALL SHOW» and «SESAME STREET» in the US, BBC NEWS and ABC network, Zap Mama’s presence reached many audiences worldwide.
In 1995, Marie Daulne signed, co-created and performed for an advertisement for COCA COLA that was broadcast worldwide during the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics. Taking center stage as the lead vocalist of Zap Mama, Marie’s music took on a more Urban influence and stepped away from a cappella in 1996. Collaborating with numerous artists including BLACK THOUGHT and QUESTLOVE (The Roots), SPEECH (Arrested Development) and MANU DIBANGO, Zap Mama started her tour singing and playing in big concert halls all over the USA. With concerts in the New Orleans and New York City "House Of Blues" the "Hollywood Bowl" in Los Angeles and "Fillmore Theatre" in San Francisco, her shows were SOLD OUT. This 4 year-long tour reached around the world enchanting audiences in the US, Africa, Australia and Northern Europe.
In 2000, Marie moved to New York where her career took off. With composer Hans ZIMMER and producer Tom CRUISE. Marie worked on soundtrack for the PARAMOUNT movie «MISSION IMPOSSIBLE II» which included her cover version for track «IKO IKO». This new version of « IKO IKO » was recorded in Beverly Hills and included in Zap Mama’s 4th album « AMAZONE ».
The 5th album « ANCESTRY IN PROGRESS » was recorded in Philadelphia and produced by the band THE ROOTS. Featuring Grammy Music Award winners Erykah BADU, Talib KWELI, COMMON, BILAL, QUESTLOVE and BAHAMADIA, it represents a combination of Afro-European spirit and Afro-American spirit. On THE BILLBOARD CHARTS it struck first place and stayed in the top 20 for several weeks.
The 6th, more intimate album, «SUPERMOON», summarizing her experiences of the previous 15 years, was recorded in New York. Marie invited star musicians including David GILMORE, Meshell NDEGEOCELLO and many others. During this time Marie also worked with ARNO and THE ROYAL OPERA CHILDREN’s CHOIR OF «LA MONNAIE» (Belgium’s National Opera in Brussels).
In 2010, Zap Mama’s 7th album «RECREATION» was nominated for Outstanding World Music Album by NAACP Image Awards. Album featured G. LOVE («Drifting») and Marie’s friend and French actor Vincent CASSEL with whom she recorded a cover of the French song «Paroles, Paroles») in BRAZIL.
Taking on new challenges, Marie began to perform at special events as the "Afro-European Diva". Singing a repertoire of Anglophone, Francophone, Latin and African songs while suspended 10 meters above the ground, Zap Mama performed at galas for the European Union and at the "Best of Belgium" (biggest tennis exhibition starring Serena Williams and Kim Clijsters).
In addition to her musical endeavors, Zap Mama has worked with humanitarian aid organizations Doctors Without Borders, Amnesty International, CARE and the United Nations, using her music to bring about awareness.
At the 2011 SOUL TRAIN MUSIC AWARDS, Zap Mama was honored and graciously accepted the invitation from founder and creator Don CORNELIUS to participate in a tribute performance honoring Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees, «Earth, Wind & Fire». Zap Mama was the 1st European “Afro-pean” artist to be involved in the Soul Train Music project.
In 2012, Marie Daulne was invited for guest performance with SLY & ROBBIE in Los Angeles at THAT 70’s SOUL event, celebrating soul music legends. During most recent years, Zap Mama continues touring around the world.
Besides numerous concerts in USA, Mexico, Russia and Europe, in 2013, Zap Mama performed at event celebrating 20 YEARS OF CARE in ATLANTA.
Celebrating her 20-year career, Zap Mama recorded her 8th album in two volumes, «ECLECTIC FLASH vol.I» and «FLASHBACK TO PRESENT vol.II». Returning to her roots, Marie features her trademark of pure vocal sound, sharing her core passion and essence of Zap Mama's music. With this album Marie says, "Everyone has a voice, a sound to be heard" and introduces the new Zap Mama’s concept, Vocal Flash Mob Concert. Marie invites the audience to join her show by singing as a choir and experiencing the collective intelligence during the concert. It’s all about the unity of the musical ingenuity. Marie also offers vocal MASTER CLASSES and has established the VOCAL GROOVE CHOIR to encourage fans and vocal enthusiasts in cities around the globe to sing.
The first single from the new album, entitled «WE GO», vividly echoing strength and unity, is a soundtrack for expanding possibilities. It evokes self-confidence and inspires us to listen, feel the waves and flow. Rhythm brings people together with our connection through time and tone. With empowering lyrics, a rising chorus and invigorating horns, the alluring groove features legendary Jamaican producers and players SLY & ROBBIE, Sly Dunbar (drums) and Robert Shakespeare (bass).

Antibalas Bio

“Rhythm is what makes a good Afrobeat record,” says Gabriel Roth, Daptone Records co-founder, producer and connoisseur of all things funky. “Not just the rhythm section, but the rhythm of the horns, the rhythm of the vocals, the rhythm of the keyboards, everybody’s rhythm. It’s not just being about being right or wrong in your rhythm, or being good at it, but it’s about feeling something the same way, swinging the same way, anticipating things the same way, and hitting things the same way — everybody hearing music the same way, and being able to turn all those instruments into one voice.
“Antibalas is the only band that can do that, right now. That’s why they’re still at the front of the scene, after all these years.”
Fourteen years after their first gig, and five since the release of their last album, 2007’s Security, Antibalas — Afrobeat’s premier second-wave ensemble — are back with their fifth full-length release. Simply titled Antibalas, the album is both a blazing reaffirmation of the NYC band’s collective musical strengths, and a hard-hitting continuation of their funkified excursions into what Antibalas founder and baritone saxophonist Martín Perna calls “our vault of esoteric sounds and knowledge.”
“We kicked around a couple of different titles,” Perna explains, “but we could all agree on Antibalas. We’re always who we have been, and this is what we are and what we’re about, without any frills. If you’ve never heard any of our albums before, this is the one to listen to.”
“Musically, it’s our best playing as a band,” says trumpeter Jordan McLean. “We’re having more fun together, we’re all breathing in sync, the structures of the compositions and the overall sound are tighter, and the band is sounding better than ever.”
Recorded over a two-week period at Daptone’s House of Soul Studios in Brooklyn with Roth at the helm, Antibalas is the first Antibalas full-length to be released on Daptone, which — given Antibalas’ deep- and long-running ties to the label — brings things kind of full-circle for the band. Antibalas has shared past and present members with several outfits in the Daptone stable (such as Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Menahan Street Band and The Budos Band), while Roth was an original member of the band, and produced the first three Antibalas albums. “Making this record was like going back and playing basketball with all your high school buddies, or something,” says Roth.
The “family reunion” feeling on Antibalas is further bolstered by the return of original guitarist Luke O’Malley, who contributed “Dirty Money,” the album’s effervescent opening track. “Luke O’Malley has an amazing sense of music,” says tenor saxophonist Stuart Bogie, “and ‘Dirty Money’ is a perfect example of that. But he’s also such a hilarious and inspiring person, who leads with just kind of a blind energy into everything he does. He’s very much a reason why everyone in that room is there.”
“We’ve woven ourselves together musically, but also personally,” says Perna. “It’s a community that has existed as Antibalas for 14 years now, and if you go back to when Gabe and Luke and I started making music together, it goes back to ’94.”
According to Perna, a little-known but tasty morsel of music trivia is the fact that TV on the Radio, The Dap-Kings and Antibalas all began in the same apartment — a decrepit old factory loft at 132 Havemeyer Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. “Gabe, Tunde Adebimpe and I were all living there at the time Antibalas was getting started. The Dap-Kings were called the Soul Providers at the time; that was just getting off the ground. Tunde just finished at NYU and was doing animation stuff at the time, and we would mess around on the cassette four-track and make little songs. And then Dave Sitek moved into the loft, and he and Tunde started making music. So this little liminal space was so fertile with friendship and creative imagination, and this shared sense of struggle that was manifested in three musical groups that have made a pretty strong impact on America in different ways.”
Originally conceived by Perna as a cross between the NYC Latin funk grooves of Eddie Palmieri, Harvey Averne and Mandrill and the Afrobeat jams of the late Fela Kuti, the music of Antibalas gradually shifted towards the Fela side of the equation. “As we got deeper into Afrobeat, we realized that we were juggling a lot of things, and kind of need to have only one thing on our plate,” Perna recounts.
“At the time, there was not a lot of interest in Afrobeat, or in Fela, per se,” adds Roth. “Because of that, a lot of people looked at Antibalas as pioneers in this second wave of Afrobeat that kind of blossomed around the world. There are great Afrobeat bands now in Brazil, in Chicago, in England, in a lot of places, and I think a lot of those bands looked to Antibalas, alongside Fela, as one of their real inspirations.”
Through their concerts, tours and recordings, Antibalas have helped re-popularize the classic Afrobeat sound, in the process earning the admiration of a wide array of respected musicians, including everyone from Questlove and David Byrne to Fugazi’s Ian MacKaye and John Frusciante of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Much in demand as collaborators, they’ve performed as a band in the studio and on stage with such artists as Medeski Martin & Wood, The Roots, Public Enemy, Paul Simon, Amadou and Mariam, and Fela’s son Femi Kuti, to name a few. In 2007, following the release of the band’s last album, Security, Antibalas’ Afrobeat expertise led to the involvement of several band members — including trombonist Aaron Johnson and Jordan McLean, who respectively served as Musical Director and Assistant Musical Director — in Fela!, Bill T. Jones’ musical based on the life of Fela Kuti, which eventually went on to a successful Broadway run, earning eleven Tony Award nominations and three wins.
But Fela! wasn’t the only thing keeping Antibalas busy between Security and sessions for the new album; in addition to playing about 50 shows a year across the globe as Antibalas, the band’s members have individually recorded and/or performed with TV on the Radio, Iron and Wine, Amy Winehouse, Mark Ronson, Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, The Roots, Angelique Kidjo (whose 2007 album Djin Djin earned the Antibalas Horns a Grammy Award), Ornette Coleman, David Byrne, Miike Snow, St. Vincent, Gomez, Wale, Spoon, The Black Keys, Imogen Heap, Lee Fields, Melvin Gibbs, Sugar Minott, Patti Smith, Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars, and The Budos Band, as well as devoted ample time to their (and each other’s) side projects like Ocote Soul Sounds, Superhuman Happiness, Piano Music & Song Trio, Chico Mann, and Fu-Arkist-Ra.
“During these past five years, with all the side projects, it was still all of us playing together, just not in Antibalas,” Perna explains. “We were all still locking in together, building friendships, building the musical trust, and building the sort of ESP that happens when musicians play together for a long time. It wasn’t like, ‘See you in five years!’ We’re not reuniting per se, because we were never disunited; we were just all busy with other hustles.”
That heightened musical ESP is deliciously tangible on Antibalas, much of which was recorded live in the studio to one-inch 8-track tape. “There’s very little in the way of overdubs,” reveals Roth. “A little bit of background vocals, maybe a punch here on a solo or a guitar part, but for the most part it was live. I’d done the early Antibalas records on 16-track, but this record I did on 8-track, which I was able to do because the band is playing better than ever. I could mix people together, and not worry about how I was going to take ‘em apart and fix ‘em later, because these guys are the baddest in the business, and they were swinging from the beginning.”
Tracks like “The Rat Catcher,” “Him Belly No Go Sweet,” “Ari Degbe” and “Ibeji” capture the band’s fiery telepathy and unrelenting sense of groove, while also showcasing their most concisely focused attack yet. From the deft rumble of the new rhythm section (drummer Miles Arntzen and bassist Nikhil Yerawadekar) to the leonine growl of longtime frontman Amayo, the band — which also includes Victor Axelrod (organ, electric piano, sticks), Marcos García (guitar, background vocals) and Marcus Farrar (shekere, sticks, background vocals) — sounds more locked in and self-assured than ever.
“What makes us tick, and what makes any band a band, is a shared collective idea about what the sound is,” says McLean, “and then of course on an individual level, it’s what each person brings to the band to give the band its defining sound. We have a shared idea of Afrobeat and Fela’s music, but we also have these 10 or 12 individuals who are also bringing their own heartbeat and their own perspective and their own experiences as individuals, and bringing that together to make Antibalas.”
“We love this Afrobeat, it’s important to us, it’s not appreciated enough — and making it is a transformative process in so many different ways,” says Perna. “Unlike most music that’s really ego-driven and centered around one person or cult of personality, all of us have had to learn to function with really specified roles — everyone becomes a drummer, in a certain sense. Our parts may be played on melodic instruments, but they’re part of this huge interlocking net that holds up the music.”
“What’s interesting about Antibalas is that it really is a multi-headed beast,” adds Bogie. “The last song on the album is ’Sare Kon Kon,’ and it’s a song that has a kinetic energy that’s just racing and racing the whole time. To paraphrase the lyrics, it’s like, ‘We’re running, we’re running, we don’t know where we’re going, but everybody’s running.’ That kind of encapsulates the rushing anarchy that keeps the band together. It’s the idea that we’re all kind of on this train, and there’s no director, no engineer, no brake; everybody just has to run, and go or not go.
“It’s kind of mysterious,” he continues. “Antibalas is really a band that is bigger than any of its members. I believe that it is one of the most genuine anarchies that I have ever seen in a band. I think that’s what’s most interesting and different about the band. But I think it’s the essence of the music, and our love for it, that really brings us together.”



As Signature Sounds celebrates 20 years in 2014-2015, it has been embraced as a pillar of the Americana and folk music communities. In 2012, it opened the Parlor Room, a venue in downtown Northampton, MA. Signature Sounds’ Jim Olsen explains, “In an age where the role of a record label seems to be diminishing, the Parlor Room gives us a whole different way to share music with our fans. It allows us to present Signature artists and other artists that we admire in way that is flattering to everyone involved.” It also gives music fans of western Massachusetts a way to interact with the label, which was founded in part as a showcase for the local scene before expanding to a national scope.

Actually, Signature Sounds’ concerts pre-dated the venue. Jim says, “We felt the need for an intimate, informal venue that would be conducive to a listening room atmosphere. Because we're not a bar or a restaurant, our venue is all about the music.” (The Parlor Room is 60-capacity and BYOB.) The original plan was to produce a few shows per month but it became apparent quickly to Jim that there was demand for a lot more than that. He adds, “We currently produce between ten and twenty shows each month.” It also gives the label and opportunity to engage with artists beyond its roster. In addition to the presented shows, the Parlor Sessions, an intermittent winter Sunday jam session that features hot soup, invites musicians of all levels. The Parlor Room even hosted Makers Market during the Christmas season, extending an invitation to Pioneer Valley artisans.

On an even bigger scale, Signature Sounds took on production of the Green River Festival, which will be held July 10-12, 2015. Last year’s festival sold out. Green River has featured Josh Ritter, Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams, Mavis Staples, Arlo Guthrie, Steve Earle, The Avett Brothers, Neko Case, Calexico, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Old Crow Medicine Show, Dr. John, Alison Krauss & Union Station, Taj Mahal, and Gillian Welch & David Rawlings since its founding in 1986. Coming full circle, the festival has introduced audiences to Signature Sounds acts. In addition to great music, it also features hot air ballooning, showcasing the Pioneer Valley’s natural beauty. Here’s a video recap of 2014’s fest.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015




Kingsley Flood’s ‘To The Fire’ EP is out this week and signals the kickoff of “the year of the Flood” (Boston Herald). Produced by Paul Kolderie (Radiohead, Speedy Ortiz, The Pixies), the EP is only the first of three planned recordings for 2015. NPR World Café named the indie rock act one of its “Next” artists last month:

Kingsley Flood played sold out shows in Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia, PA last weekend and has its song “Waiting on the River To Rise” featured in a new History Channel national ad campaign.

Check out an embeddable version of the band’s “inspired” (Paste Magazine) cover of Ellie Goulding’s “Anything Could Happen” here.

Kingsley Flood will perform at Mercury Lounge in NYC this Friday and at the Sinclair in Cambridge, MA on January 30.

“[‘Set Me Off’ is] an up-tempo jam with a propulsive beat and a punk-rock attitude.” – Wall Street Journal

“Poised to take on 2015 with some serious momentum.” –Pop Matters

“Back at full energy.” – Washington City Paper

“Raucous folk-rock wrapped in a swanky indie shell, stadium rock for the small-room set, the return of one of America’s next great bands.” – Chunky Glasses

"You gotta see these guys live" - Boston Globe

"One of the greatest live acts going." - Boston Herald

"The lively rock ‘n’ roll of ‘Set Me Off’ is a powerful opening salvo" – The Swollen Fox

“The group succeeds in spinning influences of folk, punk, Americana and rock music into catchy, thoughtful songs you can both dance to and sing along with.” – Glide

Upcoming Tour Dates:

January 16: Mercury Lounge, New York, NY, tickets
January 17: Stone Church, Newmarket, NH, tickets
January 30: The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA, tickets
To The Fire Track List
1.     Set Me Off
2.     All In All
3.     Thick Of It
4.     Anything Could Happen
5.     Cavalry

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


A month and a half before the release of ‘Gondolier,’ Kristin Andreassen has a full slate of radio sessions and taping, both local and nationally syndicated. She is also announcing a series of tour dates, both headlining and supporting. ‘Gondolier’ features Aoife O’Donovan and Chris Eldridge (Punch Brothers) and combines her trad-folk background with her indie rock sensibility, which she earns by singing backup onstage for Lucius and on record for Sufjan Stevens. CMT Edge has called ‘Gondolier’ a “delicate beauty.”

Kristin Andreassen Early Radio Activity:

1/8   New York, NY- WFUV: studio session
1/12 Saranac Lake NY- Folk Alley:  studio Session
1/14 Baltimore, MD- WRNR Voices of the Bay    
1/18 Morgantown, WV- Mountain Stage taping
1/19 Lexington, KY- Woodsongs taping
1/20 Knoxville, TN- WDVX Blue Plate Special
1/21 Nashville, TN- Music City Roots
1/23 Louisville, TN-WFPK Live Lunch

Kristin Andreassen Tour Dates:

1/13 New York, NY - Rockwood Music Hall, Stage 1
1/14 Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Street House Concerts
1/15 Washington, D.C. – House Concert
1/16 Raleigh, NC Duke Energy - Center/Fletcher Theater (w/ Aoife O’Donovan)
1/31 Olivebridge, NY - The Winter Hoot
3/3   Northampton, MA - The Parlor Room
3/4   Cambridge, MA - Club Passim
3/7   Katonah, NY - Caramoor Center for Music & the Arts
3/10 New York, NY - Joe's Pub

Monday, January 5, 2015

Kristin Andreassen 'Gondolier' credits and lyrics

Liner Notes & Lyrics

Appearing on Gondolier:
Kristin Andreassen / lead vocal, guitar, piano, organ, body percussion, harmonica
Tom Ayres / guitar, bass
Stephanie Coleman / fiddle
Erik Deutsch / piano, Hammond organ
Rushad Eggleston / cello
Chris Eldridge / guitar
Nico Georis / accordion
Jefferson Hamer / harmony vocals
Lyndon Hardy / harmony vocals
Cassandra Jenkins / harmony vocals
Paul Kowert / bass
Frank Locrasto / piano, organ
Tony Maimone / banjo bass
Robin MacMillan / drums
Ruth Merenda / harmony vocals
Aoife O’Donovan / harmony vocals
Mike Riddleberger / drums
Ryan Scott / guitar 
Jacob Silver / bass
Alec Spiegelman / bass clarinet, clarinet, flute
Lawson White / drums, percussion
Chris Eldridge & Paul Kowert appear courtesy of Nonesuch.
Aoife O’Donovan appears courtesy of Yep Roc Records.

If I was a fish in the sea
How could I see the sea
How could I see the sea
If I was a fish in the sea

If I was the wind in the leaves
How would I feel the breeze
How would I feel the breeze
If I was the wind in the leaves

If I was a note in a song
I could feel short or long
Short or long
And what I feel could be wrong

You were never lost so you couldn't be found
We were never stopped so we couldn’t be wound
Just a kernel of corn in a big corn maze
Doesn’t see no puzzle, doesn’t need to know the way
I was never nothing if not your friend
At the start and the middle of a world without end

If I was a fish in a tree
I would feel the breeze
Dry as autumn leaves
If I was a fish in a tree

When we get caught up in the air
That’s when we see the water down there
Now I know, I know I need it on my skin
I know I need it on my skin oh would you throw me
Would you throw me back in
Throw me back in
Throw me back in
Throw me back in

Kristin: electric guitar / Cassandra: harmony vocals /
Robin: drums / Chris: electric & acoustic guitar /
Jacob: bass / Alec: clarinet, bass clarinet & flute

One if by land, two if by sea
Three if by time, and that I would believe
The future’s camped out there like a sleeping army

Three if by time, four if by air
I’ll climb up in the steeple with a feather in my hair
And light the lamps that tell you what I see out there

I was always looking out for you
Would you let me be your lookout
I was always looking out for you
Will you be my lookout now?

A bird in the wind flies steady like a weathervane
A bird in a storm is a marionette on strings of rain
So you got pulled around by the hurricane

And with every revolution, it’s crawling up the coast
I got a flashlight and a flask, but I need a friend the most
You been up and down, tell me what you know


Looking out for the right time
Holding on for the good time
One if by land, two if by sea
Three if by time, and that you should believe
The future’s marching on a sleeping army


Looking out for the right time
Holding on for the good time
Waiting up for the right time
Looking out for the good time

Kristin: harmonica / Jefferson: harmony vocals /
Robin: drums, percussion & bass / Ryan: electric guitar /
Chris: acoustic & electric guitar

You get a line, honey, and I’ll get a pole
Together we’ll go down to that old crawdad hole
Where we set down our blanket on the green  grassy ground
Catching catfish by the dozen and crawdads by the pound

I’ve got a memory, so strong
Of Indian summer and a corny old song, babe

August was hot, and the lake has gone dry
We’ll just stand on the banks and watch the old crawdads die
Raccoon chased the possum, oh look what they found
A black tree with bright fruit and the branches bowed down

I’ve got a camera, so new
It makes color pictures like only paints used to do, babe

You climb on up, honey, and I’ll stay right here
I’ll catch what you throw me, I can see it so clear

The fruit was exactly the color of the sun
As seen through closed eyes when the afternoon’s humming, babe

You ride the grey mare, and I’ll ride the roan
You ride the G Train, and I’ll just walk home

I’ve got a camera, so old
It takes old timey pictures where silver stands in for gold
You ate a fruit, it was perfectly round
And the color of the sun when it’s close to the ground
Don’t you remember it, when we were kids
The color of sunshine as seen through closed eyelids, babe

Kristin: guitar / Jefferson: harmony vocal / Stephanie: fiddle /
Chris: guitar / Paul: bass / Mike: drums / Lawson: triangle /
Erik: piano & Hammond organ / Alec: clarinet

I hear, I hear, footsteps on the rocks
Oh not, that’s just the water, that’s how it walks
Down in the bunker, with the night watch on the shore
We try to sleep until we don’t try anymore

Dawn has barely broken when they call us up above
I’m thinking only of my life, sorry my love
Our guns are big as boats and their boats are small as birds
We are the hunter and the prey awaiting the word

As the cannons find the silence, you know I fear the worst
That someone will live to tell how I fired first
I feel, I feel the wind is pushing me around
But the wind is just the air when it’s falling down
Oh the wind is just the air falling down

Kristin: body percussion & piano / Rushad: cello /
Alec: bass clarinet, clarinet & flute

Here on the new ground, oh what will we grow
Here on the new ground, what seeds will we sow
I know, I know, I know

You know I loved the trees, it pained me to take them down
I traded them for sunlight and the bright new ground
Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go

Oh, the stones were heavy. It muscled up my back
A fence, a field and a house we made, the firewood neatly stacked
Hard row, hard row, hard row

Kneel down to the buzzard and bow to the crow
The earth is black as a bird’s wing and braided in corn rows
Just so, just so, just so

Kristin: baritone ukulele / Jefferson: guitar & background
vocals / Tony: banjo bass / Paul: acoustic bass /
Lawson: percussion / Alec: flute

It can get cold in Louisiana.
Colder than northerners know.
We can plug in the heat in the kitchen
But cold air finds the holes in the floor.

It can get cold in Louisiana.
Rice fields fields drawn in brown and grey ink.
But right there in winter, I’ll show you a flower
A cornet cast in purplish pink.

Azalea, I won’t fail ya.

After our party last weekend
When the band and the dancers had gone.
The rain and the flames and the mud and the boots
Together had conquered the lawn.

I thought on how everything transforms.
Fire to smoke, smoke to air, air to breathing.
I thought on how everything’s transforming me
But I’ll change like a tree, slow and even.

Azalea, I won’t fail ya.

Kristin: guitar / Ruth & Lyn: harmony vocals / Robin: drums / Tom: electric guitar & electric baritone guitar / Jacob: bass / Alec: clarinet, bass clarinet & flute

When I was a girl, I wished I was a boy
I had a dog, I wished it was a horse
We lived by the freeway, I thought it was the ocean,
Sounded like a seashell in my sleep in the night
I would go riding and I would go sailing
All the while bouncing a ball at the wall

And I was a gondolier, pushing through Venice
I was a tour guide of my own heart’s desires
Over there I’m a painter, over there I’m a builder,
Over there I’m a cab driver who knows every street
But I can’t find the bridge, or is it a ferry
Some way to cross over, some way to connect
No man is an island, but most of us choose one
There are islands for bakers and bankers
 and thieves.

And you row & row & row your boat on down the baby river
Row it oh so gently, as though life were but a dream

For some reason my dreams are all about water
It replaces the concrete, I can breathe it like air
Perhaps in a past life, I was a great swimmer
Or maybe in this life, I’m destined to drown
I’m destined to choose. So it’s been foretold
Sure enough, as I’ve chosen, my destiny is unfolding

Row & row & row your boat on down the baby river
Row it oh so gently, as though life were but a dream                   

But oh, I know, that dreaming is not living
So many lives there are to land upon,
The dreams just flow between
When I am an old man, I’ll wish I was a girl
I’ll wish I had parents. I’m sure that it’s true
I will want a tour then of my own heart’s desires
So many, so varied, all softened with time
No man is an island, but most of us choose one
There are islands for hustlers and mothers and kings
But the fearless explorers, they find secret passageways
Through melting obstacles. They move up
 and downstream
Saying look out for the rocks. Lean into the wind.
Look into your heart. Look out for your friends.
Hold fast to the oars. Maybe wait for the full moon.
Look up at the sky. Look down at your hands.

And row & row & row your boat on down the baby river
Row it oh so gently as though life were but a dream

But you and I know that dreaming is not living
So many dreams each night to lie upon,
And one life between the dreams

Kristin: organ, Wurlitzer & background vocals / Aoife: background vocals / Alec: clarinet, bass clarinet & flute / Robin: drums & percussion / Tom: bass

Go on, would you tell me just a little bit more about that place
Go on, you’d rather be there even now, I can see it in your face
Go on, you took your hand from mine, you think  I’d hold you here
But don’t think I don’t remember what you whispered in my ear

It was sunny above the clouds
Sunny till the plane came down
If I don’t keep on moving I fall like rain on the ground
Sunny above the clouds,
Sunny till the plane came down
I fell without a warning, I didn’t make a sound

Go on, you’re not the only one gets jealous of the birds when they fly south
Go on, you’re not the only one who’s tried the taste of metal in your mouth
Go on, you heard me right, I’m enough like you to know you’ve mapped the entrances and the exits but the courage, it comes and goes


Go on, at home we watch the sky and you say there’s sunshine way up there
So go, you’d take one look and then you’d fall
What would you hold onto but air
You’re right, with us down here there is no true and constant sun
We just have time, and we have weather
And some have faith
Don’t come undone

Kristin : guitar / Ruth: banjo & harmony vocal / Aoife: harmony vocal / Robin: drums / Chris: electric & acoustic guitar / Jacob: bass

If there was an apple, it’s all gone now
Even the stem and the seeds, she don’t remember how
Once her skin was golden but she stayed till it burned
Fell asleep in the sunshine, you would think she’d learn
If you gave her sweet lemon pie, she’d ask for lime
If you gave her eight days a week, she’d hold out for nine

Now she says she wants to fall in love
One more time

If there was a garden, they’ve closed the gate
Our friend she is knocking, she knows that she’s late
Empty with hunger, she whispers with thirst
I know you don’t trust her, you saw her at her worst
When she begged for a nickel and you gave her a dime
And she still showed up on Sunday to drink the free wine

Now she says she wants to fall in love one more time

If you gave her an apple, she’d plant the seed
Kneel in the garden, get dirt on her knees
There would be sweet trees and shade if she had her way
Somehow I believe her when I hear her say

That she could be true, she could even be kind
Could see it through, finish the line
She could be true, she could even be kind
Do you think you could spare her one more rhyme?

Would you let her fall in love
She only wants to fall in love
Asking please to fall in love
Begging please to fall in love
Would you let her fall in love
One more time?

Kristin: guitar / Ruth, Lyn & Aoife: harmony vocals / Robin: drums / Tom Ayres: electric guitar & bass

Not every oyster hides a pearl
Some questions don’t want an answer
If you’re counting all the raindrops, some never find the thirsty grass
But some do
How bout me and you?

Not many horses run the Derby
Some clocks just don’t keep good time
If you’re counting every snowflake, not many find an outstretched hand

But some do
How bout me and you?

How many hearts go untested?
How many loves go untasted?
How many listened when they said
Only a love saved is wasted?

Not every river finds the ocean
Not all the oceans grow with time
If you’re counting every kindness, some never find a grateful heart
But some do
How bout me and you?

I have got a heart that’s untested.
I’ve got a little bit of love left untasted.
The wiser ones, I once heard they said
Only a love saved is wasted.
Only a love unspent is wasted.

Not every song becomes a favorite
Not all good books get read again
If you’re counting every raindrop, some never find the thirsty grass
But some do
How bout me and you?

Kristin: tenor guitar & harmonica / Chris: guitar / Lawson: tambourine

Produced, Recorded & Mixed by Robin MacMillan
Except Tracks 3, 5 & 10 Produced, Recorded & Mixed by Lawson White
Track 2 vocals recorded by Jefferson Hamer
Track 7 mixed by Adam Armstrong
Mastered at Engine Room Audio by Dan Millice

Woodwinds arranged by Alec Spiegelman
Body percussion on “How the Water Walks” choreographed by Sandy Silva

Executive Producer Chris Eldridge

Cover art Doug Chayka
Photographs Laura Crosta
Album layout Claire Taylor Hansen

All songs by Kristin Andreassen / Yellowcar Music, ASCAP
All rights controlled & administered by Yellowcar Music, ASCAP

Most of these songs were either started or finished in a cabin on Three Mile Island in Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire. For the past few years, I’ve carefully guarded a week in June for a trip to this island where I write with a group of friends known as the Sub Rosa Collective. Thanks to all the musicians in that crew, and to the Passim Iguana Music Fund for supporting our work.

Thank you to all the artists who contributed to this project. I’m in awe of you
talents. Sincere thanks also to Molly Driessen, Brad Paul, Nick Loss-Eaton,
Paul Loren, Tom Krueger, Alex Marvar, Launa Schweizer, Buck McAllister,
Rob Rock, Amy Helfand, Lucas Miller, everyone who backed the album on
Pledge Music, my Miles of Music Camp “family” and my real life family,
especially Mom and Dad. Special double thanks to Aoife, Critter and Michelle.

Thanks above all to Robin MacMillan, whose suggestion that I make a record was
just the first of his many tireless and soulful contributions to this project.