Past Featured Artists
Marci Geller, a piano-based contemporary singer-songwriter from Stony Brook, New York, has recently released her first solo project since disbanding her popular trio, Lucky 13, in 2011.
Pamela Means, singer-songwriter & jazz musician, with her "mad-guitar-and-vocal skills" (Time Out New York) has toured throughout the US, Canada, Europe and Australia, selling well over 12,000 units of her seven independent releases along the way. Means's latest album, Precedent, elegantly addresses a range of themes from the state of the union to the state of the heart. Curve Magazine calls her "one of the fiercest guitar players and politically-rooted singer-songwriters in the music industry today."
Carolyn Wonderland is a multi-award winning artist from Texas. She just won Best Female Vocalist (not bad for a guitar picker!) at the 2011/12 Austin Music Awards .Previously, she and her band were named Austin's Best Blues Band at the 2009 Austin Music Awards where Carolyn picked up the award for Best Female Vocalist, too! No stranger to awards, Carolyn has several from the Houston Music Awards (Best Guitarist, Musician of the Year, Release of the Year, Single of the Year, Best Female Vocalist, Best Blues Band, among others)! Carolyn, her band and friends were recently featured on PBS's Austin City Limits with Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings. Her 2011 Bismeaux release, "Peace Meal" (recorded in Austin at Bismeaux and Woodstock, NY at Levon Helm's Studio) has been in the top ten iTunes Blues Chart, Top Twenty Americana Playlist and has found folks talking about Carolyn's music from House of Blues Radio's Elwood's BluesMobile to Don Imus, from Guitar Player Magazine to the Huffington Post. Carolyn is proud to announce her band's partnership with www.WhyHunger.org while on tour (and at home shows!) the band donates 10% of sales to this amazing organization. Please DO check them out! "Peace Meal" has been critically lauded and is the follow up to the 2008 CD, "Miss Understood" (produced by Asleep at the Wheel's Ray Benson) which has been on the charts and in rotation since it's release and has been featured on many "Best of" lists. She, Cole El-Saleh, Rob Hooper, and Shelley Cox have toured most of the States, and Europe, and Japan ... perpetually on the road ... only landed in jail once (knock on wood) for peacefully protesting the war.
Karyn is part Joan Osborne, a touch of Janis Joplin and a bit of EmmyLou Harris – effortlessly oscillating from bluesy to country and back. Her musical inspiration comes primarily from the eclectic mix of music to which she was exposed while growing up in the musically diverse culture of Washington, D.C.
“Red Dress is a marvelous way to launch a career in a market headed up by Bonnie Raitt and Lucinda Williams; but Karyn Oliver certainly appears to have the voice and writing skills to ride in their slipstream until the time is right for her to take over” – Allan Harrison, Maverick Magazine (August, 2011)
Honor Finnegan is the Susan Boyle of quirky indie folk, only hotter. Her songs are humorous then heartbreaking with melodies that soar. Based in New York City, she has been making a splash in the northeastern regional folk scene with her original songs and ukulele playing. Combining elements of musical theatre, comedy, traditional folk, and poetry, Honor is cooler than the other side of the pillow.
Honor Finnegan was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago and learned to appreciate a variety of people and music living in a mostly African American neighborhood and sitting in the back seat of her single mothers car listening to the radio for long periods of time. When Honor was 11 her dream of being an actress came true when she was cast in the 1st National Tour of “Annie”.
Honor eventually outgrew the Annie thing and went back to Chicago, spending her early adult life studying Improv with Del Close who created “Honor Finnegan vs. the Brain of the Galaxy” to try and help the poor waif get somewhere in life.
In 1991 Honor moved to Ireland. While living in Ireland, Honor sang with jazz bands, blues bands, big bands and traditional Irish bands including DeDannan for about a day. She released a cassette, “Learning to Fly”, in 1996 and was a finalist in the Paddy Music Expo in Limerick. Her song “Better Love Water” was sung on the Gay Byrne Radio Hour twice with the all-female a Capella group, “The Cappuccinos”. Honor moved to New York in 1998.
Honor is a regular attendee at the late great Jack Hardy's songwriter's exchange, which has nurtured the talents of Suzanne Vega, and Shawn Colvin to name but a few. She is also a proud member of Tribes Hill, a folk music collective based in the Hudson Valley. She was a finalist in the 2011 Connecticut Folk Festival Songwriting Competition, and she has shared the stage with Buskin & Batteau, Sloan Wainwright, and David Massengill.
Suzie performs powerfully as a solo act, as a duo or as a full band. She has toured nationally with Stuart McLean’s The Vinyl Café and the John McDermott Band. Suzie made her New YorkCity debut in 2011 supporting John Hammond at a free outdoor stage in Madison Square Park
Conservancy and has performed for Canadian Peacekeepers in Bosnia and the Persian Gulf. She was also the voice of Tim Horton’s for 5 years.
Suzie’s latest full-length release is a solo acoustic blues album entitled Me ‘n’ Mabel which was produced by Danny Greenspoon; and in May 2012 she released Live At Bluesville which includes 8 blues, roots and gospel songs that were recorded by Bill Wax at Sirius/XM in Washington, DC. Suzie’s website is www.suzievinnick.com..
Erin Sax, also know as the lead singer of the NYC based band "Hands off My Sister", a five piece Punk Grass Southern Rock Blues band, has been called, “buesy and ornery”. Her music lives somewhere between Bonnie Raitt and Merle Haggard (if there were such a love child). Her live performances have often been compared to a young Patty Smith.
As a touring artist, Sax has performed at venues across the United States and Europe, including B.B. King's, Tipitina's, The House of Blues, The Triple Door and The Double Door. She has been featured on NPR's Performance Place, The Caravan Blues Radio Hour and The Alchemist Playground and has shared the stage most recently with country bad boy Robert Earl Keen, Marshall Crenshaw and The Samples.
Erin’s new single “Happy” is the title track for the upcoming Judd Hirsch movie, “Red Robin”. Her debut solo album, "Mercy”, produced by Clay Holley who also has worked with Adele, Amy Winehouse, and John Legend, is set to be released 2013.
Brittany Ann (of Easton, PA) could sing before she could talk, or so says her mother. Growing up, when her father wasn’t serenading her and her sisters, she would sometimes pick up his guitar and teach herself some chords.
She eventually attended the Lehigh Valley Charter School for the Performing Arts in Bethlehem, PA with a concentration in vocal music. Around this same time, she became enamored with legendary song crafters like Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell and continued building on her growing musical prowess. Brittany began penning one heartfelt song after another, weaving the sophisticated folk tapestry that would come full circle in 2010 on The Good in That, her first full-length studio recording, a collaboration with Grammy-winning producer Glenn Barratt.
That recording process, which began in the summer of 2009 at Morningstar Studios in Spring House, PA, allowed Brittany’s songs to take full shape and evolve before her. With the help of some well-established local musicians and friends, she emerged from the experience with a collection of ten beautifully polished and eloquent tracks, which together peer into her widely imaginative, sagacious mind. The Good in That was released in the fall of 2010, and has since received much critical acclaim.
Now a 22-year-old Temple University senior, Brittany Ann has bloomed into one of the Northeast’s most inspiring, ambitious young songwriters, winning over listeners with her trademark ethereal melodies, intricate finger-picking, and "wise beyond her years" lyrics. She has a genuine and endearing stage presence, and a rare knack for connecting with her audiences.
Brittany Ann is an artist who is rooted in the folk tradition but not necessarily bound by it, a refreshing and enchanting new voice with much, much more on the horizon. -Kevin Brosky
"This young lady is the future of folk music" -Gene Shay, WXPN and the Philadelphia Folk Song Society
With a sound adorned in American-roots traditions, Wendy Colonna's signature songwriting and her sultry voice make her style unmistakable and contageous. On the strength of her powerful performing abilities and resonant voice she can swing from soul-shout gospel to front porch ballads, from empowering funky anthems to dark, swampy narratives.
The Louisiana native has been recording and performing live since 1997 when she was signed to an indie Louisiana record label. Since, she has released five critically acclaimed studio albums and a live album and DVD recorded in the legendary club, Antone’s in Austin, TX, where she has hung her hat since 2000. She was voted “Best Singer-Songwriter” in Austin and is a multi-award winning artist who’s work has also been featured in commercials and films.
On top of keeping a busy schedule, touring the US and internationally, Wendy is also an avid yoga practitioner, athlete and community leader. She says, “I do this work because it calls to me; I have learned that what I’m doing has a powerful effect on people’s lives; it heals and transforms. So I just keep doing it. After all, isn’t persistence and perseverance necessary in all forms of love?”
Like a rock in hurricane, Wendy Colonna continues to move with the wind behind her, a force of nature that is consistent, strong and rich, like her spirit, pipes and her stories.
Wendy is currently recording her latest offering. Release date Tentatively Sept 2013. Visit http://pledgemusic.com/wendycolonnasnewalbum to learn more!
“There is truly a mystical quality to their playing. They create a lyrical sound that is at once unique as well as seamless.” – Lori Lander Murphy, Irish Philadelphia
RUNA draws on the diverse musical backgrounds of its band members and offers a contemporary and refreshing approach to traditional and more recently composed Celtic material. Through their repertoire of both highly energetic and graceful, acoustic melodies, along with their fusion of music from Ireland, Scotland, Canada, and the United States, this vocal and instrumental ensemble gives its arrangements of traditional songs and tunes a fresh sound.
“Best of all, RUNA sounds like no one else.” – Travis Rogers, Jr., Music Life and Times
Members of RUNA have played with Solas, Riverdance, Slide, Clannad, Fiddlers’ Bid, Moya Brennan, Eileen Ivers, Hazel O’Conner, Full Frontal Folk, Keith & Kristyn Getty, Barcó, Téada, and the Guy Mendilow Band.
RUNA consists of vocalist and step-dancer, Shannon Lambert-Ryan of Philadelphia, Dublin-born guitarist, Fionán de Barra, Cheryl Prashker of Canada on percussion, Dave Curley on mandolin, vocals, bodhrán, and step-dancing, and Tomoko Omura of Japan on the fiddle. The band often performs with world-renowned, guest musicians, including Isaac Alderson on the uilleann pipes, flutes, and whistles.
The band won several awards at the 2010 Montgomery Buck Music Awards, including Best Entertaining Band, Best Folk Artist, Best Female Vocalist, and Best Album – “Jealousy”. They were recently recognized on an international level in the 12th Annual Independent Music Awards for Best Song in the World Traditional Category for “Amhrán Mhuighinse” (Somewhere Along the Road) and in the Irish Music Awards with a nomination for Best Female Vocalist for 2012. Jim Allford of PA Music Scene writes, “The band is going to bereckoned with and I really feel they are Grammy bound within time.”
RUNA recently released their third album, Somewhere Along the Road – hailed by Irish Philadelphia as “an inspired group that has found its voice, and its place, in the world of Irish music”.
“For contemporary Celtic music at its very best – do yourself a favor and check out RUNA.. brilliant!” – Gene Shay, co-founder of the Philadelphia Folk Festival; WXPN-FM
One part wise old woman and one part goofy little kid, Jenna Lindbo is going to find a way to your heart. It’s only a matter of time. An Oregon native, Jenna travels the country, inspiring audiences from Asheville to Anchorage with her rootsy folk songs and infectious joy. Along the way she keeps meeting folks who love to hear her music, soak up the effervescent energy of her shows, and get smacked upside the heart.
“A songwriter with serious spark!”
Buoyed by the experience, inspiration, and exposure from touring extensively with Catie Curtis, Jenna’s solo career is taking off. She’s currently celebrating the release of her new cd,Jasmine Parade (2012), produced by Lorne Entress. With lush arrangements and simply adorned songs, this album beautifully captures Jenna’s storytelling and reflects a deepening in her art as well as a rich new chapter unfolding. The songs on Jasmine Parade as well as her first release, Strings & Spokes (2010) bring joyful attention to the sweetness and sorrow of life worth living.
Jasmine Parade features appearances by Catie Curtis, Kai Welch (Abigail Washburn), Edie Carey, and Peter Mulvey.
“If you don’t have fun listening to Jenna, it’s pretty much your fault.” — Peter Mulvey
Jen Foster is an award-winning singer/songwriter who regularly sells out shows across the country. Her special bond with her fans creates a captive audience anxious to hear her stories and take in her unique sense of humor. Whether she’s singing about the time her lover moved out and took everything she owned in her AAA radio favorite,“Taking Bob Dylan,” or about our jaded American culture in “Closer to Nowhere,” she always has something genuine & meaningful to say. The video for “Closer To Nowhere” went to #1 on the LOGO Channel and stayed in their Top 10 list for 6 months as well as being a featured song on MTV’s “The Hills.”
Foster is a First Prize winner in the Pop division of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and a First Prize recipient in the Great American Songwriting Contest’s Pop division. Lavendar Magazine called her “One of the most popular and promising singer/songwriters of her generation.”
Always independent, Foster has owned her Fosterchild Records label for almost 10 years securing film/TV placements including the theme to the Emmy winning web based soap opera “Venice: The Series.” She’s created “The Writer’s Share”, to benefit the TJ Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer, and AIDS Research featuring hit songwriters Richard Marx, Keb’ Mo, and Mike Reid among others held yearly at the world-renowned Bluebird Café. Jen has been a keynote speaker at Tin Pan South and the Indiegirl Conference in Knoxville, TN as well as being an artist/writer representative on the very distinguished board at Nashville Songwriters Association International. (NSAI)
The songstress, who’s voice has been compared to Sheryl Crow, Tracy Chapman and the Cranberries’ Dolores O’Riordan, just released “You Stayed”, an EP recording that is a tribute to her loving and loyal fans. She co-wrote the title track with multi-platinum hit Nashville based songwriter/producer, Jeffrey Steele (Rascal Flatts, Faith Hill, Tim McGraw). She is currently out on tour supporting the project.
Singer/songwriter Ruth Gerson will be performing a benefit show Saturday, November 2nd at 6PM, the day before running the NYC Marathon as part of the Sanctuary for Families Marathon Team at Rockwood Music Hall (Stage 1), 196 Allen Street, NYC.
Sanctuary for Families NYC Marathon Team still has room for more runners and is grateful for your sponsorship donations.
WOOL & GRANT
WOOL&GRANT shows are full of feeling and fun. “My favorite duo since Thelma and Louise,” says David Massengill about the New York-based group. “They got chops, heart, and soul-stirring harmonies.”
After playing together at festivals, house concerts, clubs and coffeehouses, Ina May Wool and Bev Grant are bringing their debut alternative folk Americana CD out into the world.
“They come from different places -- Ina May Wool as a character-driven singer-songwriter and Bev Grant as a topical songwriter - which makes their collaboration as a duo all the more intriguing and satisfying,” says John Platt, host of Sunday Breakfast on New York’s WFUV.
They tell their life stories. They celebrate South African grandmothers on a soccer team. They salute a solitary old man who just won't leave his mountaintop, and they shine a powerful light on the short, spectacular life of Janis Joplin. WOOL&GRANT remind us with grace and power that wild women don't have the blues.