POSTPONED - The Claudettes, Beth Bombara
Doors open at 7 pm.
THE CLAUDETTES: The Claudettes fuse Chicago piano blues with the full-throttle energy of rockabilly and punk and the sultriness of '60s soul to write a thrilling new chapter in American roots music. Johnny Iguana pounds the piano alongside seductive singer Berit Ulseth, bassist/guitarist/singer Zach Verdoorn and drummer Michael Caskey. Johnny, who toured for years with his cult-favorite rock band oh my god, is also in the Grammy-nominated groups Chicago Blues: A Living History and the Muddy Waters 100 Band. He has toured/recorded with Junior Wells, Buddy Guy, Otis Rush and more and played piano on the new "Chicago Plays the Stones" album featuring Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Buddy Guy. The Claudettes recorded their 2018 album "DANCE SCANDAL AT THE GYMNNASIUM!" (Yellow Dog Records) with Grammy-winning producer Mark Neill (Black Keys, Old 97's, J. Roddy Walston, J.D. McPherson). The Claudettes have recorded a new album with Grammy-winning producer Ted Hutt (Violent Femmes, Lucero, Old Crow Medicine Show, Gaslight Anthem, The Devil Makes Three). It will come out in early 2020. http://theclaudettes.com/
"A revelatory blend of jazz and blues, stirred with punk brio. There are also dashes of classical and world music, and enough stops, starts and hairpin turns to suggest the giddiness of Raymond Scott's cartoon music...How do they do it?" Greg Kot, Chicago Tribune
"A skewed cabaret band of blues, jazz and rockabilly…a sensibility that feels equal parts James Dean and David Lynch." Minneapolis Star-Tribune
BETH BOMBARA: Beth Bombara's album Evergreen began thousands of feet above sea level. Looking to step back and clear her head after a long bout of touring, the rock & roll-influenced Americana artist nestled herself in the Rocky Mountains in a remote cabin. The cabin’s name? Evergreen. She spent time wandering through acres and acres of untouched forest around the cabin, up and down craggy rocks that felt nothing like her native Michigan nor her adopted home of St. Louis. Almost by accident, songs for her sixth album began to take root.
“I wasn’t writing a new record -- at least, I didn’t think I was at the time,” she admits. “But I’m starting to realize, that’s just what I do. I write songs. You know how trees exhale oxygen? They don’t think too hard about oxygen...it’s just a byproduct of their existence. Well, songs are a byproduct of my existence. I’ve already exhaled these songs, but maybe they’re a needed breath for someone else. And the idea that even one other person needs them is what fulfills me.”
Although based in Missouri, Bombara has spent much of her adulthood on the road, carving out her own award-winning mix of vintage folk and electric roots-rock. She’s been a solo artist, a bandleader, and an occasional side musician for other artists. With Evergreen, Bombara resumes her role as the leader of an amplified Americana band. These songs were largely written on the run -- in friend’s basements, during soundchecks, and on the road -- while Bombara and company toured the country in support of her 2017 release, Map and No Direction. As a result, there’s a strong sense of movement here, from Samuel Gregg’s versatile guitar playing to the thump of the group’s rhythm section (featuring Mike Schurk on drums and Kit Hamon -- Bombara’s right-hand man and longtime collaborator -- on bass). Gluing the sound together are Bombara’s unforced vocals, sharp hooks, and optimistic lyrics, which find her taking an honest look at life’s difficulties while continuing to move forward with positivity.
“Getting to work these songs out on the road was invigorating,” says the songwriter, who’d previously recorded Map and No Direction with a small, insu lar team consisting of Hamon and co-producer Karl Kling. “So I already feel invincible with my touring band, and then my friend John Calvin Abney joined in on keys (and production). The five of us just walked in to the studio, set up in one live room, and hammered out the whole album in less than a week. It was the most fun I’ve ever had making a record. Everyone’s doing what they do...it just felt effortless.”
From Tom Petty’s heartland rock & roll to Aimee Mann’s quirky indie-folk, Evergreen sources its inspiration from iconic sources. Even so, this is the unmistakably unique work of Beth Bombara, a singer/songwriter who, over a half-dozen albums, has nodded to past traditions while always pushing ahead into new territory. Evergreen is her newest high-water mark: an album that matches her craft with the nuanced stomp of her strongest band to date.