ROBERT SARAZIN BLAKE 14 FEBRUARY 2019 @ 7:30 PM POTLUCK & DOORS @ 6:30 PM $10-$15 SUGGESTED DONATION (100% to the artists) CHENANGO CRAFTSMAN — Binghamton, NY
In 1997, Robert Sarazin Blake dropped out of college and hit the road. The folk music of his father’s house had combined with the DIY punk ethos of the day and produced his first batch of songs, Another Irrelevant Year. On the heels of Richard Manning, Billy Bragg, and Ani Difranco, Blake’s eighteen-year-old release is now an early document of the folk-punk movement. On his first tour, Blake played 30 shows around the U.S., planting seeds as he developed touring, not as an economic model, but as a lifestyle. He hasn’t stopped. Eleven full-length albums into his career, he’s continued to write, pulling from folk roots, his travels, his contemporaries, and the quiet spot in the back of his mind. The writing has evolved, mellowing with experience and expanding with reference, but the essence of the work has remained the same–strong narratives solidly built on the folk foundation and fully in the immediacy of the now.
NORTH SEA GAS 27 SEPTEMBER 2019 @ 7:30 PM POTLUCK & DOORS @ 6:30 PM $15 SUGGESTED DONATION (100% to the artists) CHENANGO CRAFTSMAN — Binghamton, NY
Over thirty-eight years and stronger than ever!! North Sea Gas is one of Scotland’s most popular folk bands with great vocals and tremendous three part harmonies. Guitars, Mandolin, Fiddle, Bouzouki, Harmonica, Whistles, Bodhrans, Banjo and good humor are all part of the entertainment. They have received Gold and Silver Disc awards from the Scottish Music Industry Association and regularly sell out shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and around the world!
Toronto-based singer-songwriter Shawna Caspi performs solo but there’s a whole band under her fingertips. She believes in poetry and the power of one person and one instrument, accompanying herself with a remarkable lyrical fingerpicking guitar style. 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. 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. Shawna loves the landscapes of her travels, and while weaving them into her songs, she has also been portraying them on canvases, painting one-of-a-kind works of art inspired by the rich scenery she sees on tour. Shawna’s fourth album Forest Fireis a collection of songs about burning things down and building them up again. When the words get heavy, they are held up to the light of love and gratitude. Shawna strives to be unafraid, to embolden quieted voices, to tell the truth above all else.
JOY IKE MARCH 10, 2019 @ 7:30 PM POTLUCK & DOORS @ 6:30 PM $15 SUGGESTED DONATION (100% to the artists) CHENANGO CRAFTSMAN, BINGHAMTON, NY
Polished and precise, yet buoyed with an airy grace, Joy Ike paints with a broad palette that defies easy categorization. Born to Nigerian immigrants, the singer/songwriter’s music, voice, and writing have drawn comparisons to many great female musicians including Nina Simone, Laura Nyro, and Regina Spektor. But her percussive piano-playing and soaring vocals give homage to her African upbringing. After leaving her career as a publicist in 2008, Joy has spent the last 10 years playing thousands of shows across the country. A write-up on NPR’s All Things Considered says “The depth of subjects she tackles in her poetic lyrics are perfectly complemented by a unique blend of neo-soul, with just the right dash of pop…a truly compelling act to watch in person, with the ability to create an intimate setting in locations big and small.” Ike is currently on tour in support of her new album, Bigger Than Your Box.
DAVID JACOBS-STRAIN & BOB BEACH NOVEMBER 15, 2019 @ 7:30 PM POTLUCK & DOORS @ 6:30 PM $10-$15 SUGGESTED DONATION(100% to the artists) CHENANGO CRAFTSMAN SESSIONS, BINGHAMTON, NY
David Jacobs-Strain is a fierce slide guitar player and song poet, known both for his virtuosity and spirit of emotional abandon. Jacobs-Strain began playing on street corners and at farmers markets in his hometown of Eugene, Oregon, as a teenager, and bought his first steel guitar with the quarters he saved up. Before dropping out of Stanford to play full time, he had already appeared at festivals across the country, often billed as a blues prodigy, but he had to fight to avoid being a novelty act: “I wanted to tell new stories, it just wasn’t enough to relive the feelings in other people’s music.” Since then, Jacobs-Strain’s ability to capture emotional intensity in a deeply personal way has made him a mainstay at festivals such as Strawberry, MerleFest, the Vancouver Folk Festival, and Telluride Blues. His guitar work, both thundering and shimmering, has landed him onstage alongside Taj Mahal, Bob Weir, Los Lobos, Etta James, and Del McCoury. Boz Scaggs chose him to open for two different summer tours. At David Grisman‘s invitation Jacobs-Strain appeared alongside many of the nation’s great string players on the Tone Poets compilation.