With Greg Kane
Saturday 20th January 7:30pm
Hug And Pint
Kaia Kater is a Quebec born Canadian singer-songwriter who plays piano, guitar and most importantly banjo. But she can also flatfoot, which is an American style of dancing where you wear clogs. If you’re a Bluegrass fan, like I am, then when you see a flatfoot board on the stage at a Bluegrass gig, you know you’re getting the real deal. It’s so amazing to watch. She performed at the 2018 Newport Folk Festival, with Rolling Stone magazine highlighting her performance as one of the ’12 Best Things We Saw’. This is very old school, traditional American folk music full of rustic wisdom and genuine beauty. She has two studio albums under her belt, with her third dropping later this year. Cool, delicate Appalachian music.
Choice Track: Kaia Water – “La Misère”
Thursday 25th January 7:30pm
Jesca Hoop is a folk/pop singer/guitarist from Santa Rosa, California, USA. In her late teens she went off grid (after her parents separated) and found herself sleeping under trees and making homes in yurts and chicken coops whilst wandering the plains of Wyoming. As luck would have it by her 20’s she found herself back in California and landed a job as the nanny to the children of non other than seminal singer Tom Waits. He helped her finesse her music and by the time she was 30 she had signed to Columbia Records in the US. That didn’t work out and in 2008 at the behest of Elbow’s Guy Garvey (whom she’d met when he was touring the US), she moved to Manchester, England. She is presently signed to Sub Pop records and her 9th studio album “Order Of Romance” was released in 2022. Her music is kinda quirky alt folk, beautifully arranged and performed. I’ll bet a lot of people use her music to audition high end Hi Fi systems … it’s sonically stunning.
Choice Track: Jesca Hoop – “Red White And Black”
Tuesday 30th January 7pm
Mackintosh Church, Queen’s Cross
Andrew Wasylyk is a multiple SAY Award nominated instrumental artist from Dundee. I first came across him as lead singer of the band The Hazey Janes (which also had 2 of Michael Marra’s kids in it) in the 00’s, but he used the surname “Mitchell” at that time. He also uses the “Mitchell” epithet when he plays with renowned Scottish band “Idlewild” of which he is a permanent member. But it’s Wasylyk when he plays his intriguing folk/jazz hybrid instrumental music. When I listen to him as Wasylyk I really do get a 70’s American detective TV show vibe from it … not the aggressive stuff, but the more contemplative and dare I say seductive moments in said TV shows. I was also gonna say it doesn’t sound like it comes outa Dundee, but maybe the home of the Caledonian V&A can be sensitive, even sensual too. You heard it here first, “Dundee – One City, Many Secrets”.
Choice Track: Andrew Wasylyk – “Awoke in the Early Days of a Better World”
Saturday 3rd February 9pm
“I’ve got so tired of discussing my future, I’ve started avoiding the people I love … “ sings 41 year old, Long Island, New Yorker Jeff Rosenstock. I know how he feels, I’ve spent a lifetime being told it’s not a real job being a musician. I can attest that it most certainly is … and a difficult one at that. Jeff Rosenstock doesn’t make it any easier for himself tho, his music is chaotic, not very mainstream, but it’s quirky and fun. He seems to enjoy seeking out barely singable melodies, half screams them and then puts them on top of overplayed, mostly inaccurate piano/guitar performances backed by old school, US Ska/Punk rhythm sections. But it really works. Every now and again I hear some Ben Folds in his music, gives you the impression (for a moment) that he knows what he’s doing, but it quickly descends back into chaos. If you sing along to these songs at the gig, you’ll be walking home hoarse for sure.
Choice Track: Jeff Rosenstock – “Nausea”
Saturday 10th February 6:30pm
Noah Kahan is a 26 year old American singer/songwriter from the tiny town of Strafford (pop. 1,094) in the North Eastern state of Vermont, USA. He has been touted as one of the best new artists of 2023 and his stratospheric streaming stats surely back this up. His musical backstory is a familiar one … upload songs to YouTube & Soundcloud at a very young age, gradually gain a loyal and supportive fanbase that just grows & grows and then once you sign your major record deal they propel you to megastardom! Seems an easy formula for success, but there needs to be something special in there to make it happen. Noah Kahan’s USP is his sincere vulnerability which he has bucketloads of. To these ears he’s got a James Taylor thing going on that makes for a very enjoyable listen. Collaborations with Post Malone, Hozier and Kacey Musgraves hasn’t hurt him either (them pesky major record companies and their well worn strategies!) Oh, and he’s a dog lover.
Choice Track: Noah Kahan – “Northern Attitude”
Monday 12th February 7pm
Galvanizers Yard SWG3
What an utterly confusing and bewildering world we live in. Seemingly Bossa Nova is back baby … yes it is! And little Laufey Lín Bīng Jónsdóttir, a jazz singer from Iceland is single-handedly responsible for the resurgence in this alternative take on the traditional Brazilian samba. She’s packed a lot into her mere 23 years too, started learning piano and cello whilst still in single digits … performed with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra playing Cello at 15 … succeeded on various TV talent shows by 16 … graduated from L.A. Berkeley School of Music by 21 … at 22 hosted her own radio show on the BBC Network and last year, at 23 she was nominated for a Grammy for her album “Bewitched”. And she totally rules new media too, with her TikTok and Instagram channels swamped with multiple millions of uber fans. Listening to her made me reach for Astrud Gilberto and “The Girl From Ipanema” … it’s been a while, but I now find myself as calm as I’ve been in years and in a near meditative state … ahhhhhhh.
Maybe the world might just need a bit of Astrud Gilberto and Laufey with their Bossa Nova right now to calm things down a bit.
Choice Track: Laufey – “From the Start”
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