LeE HARVey OsMOND! - When Tom Wilson released 2015’s Beautiful Scars, his third album under his alternate moniker, Lee Harvey Osmond, he was just beginning to grasp the full irony of using an assumed identity. Turns out Wilson had been living his entire life under one-a fact he didn’t learn until his 55th birthday, when his cousin confessed she was really his mother hand his heritage was Mohawk, not Irish.
That’s why the cover depicts Wilson as a powerful and raw figure, warrior-like-someone who looks as if he’s still wild. “That’s actually how I feel as an artist,” Wilson explains. “At 56, I’m just emerging from the woods, with all of this new knowledge of who I am.” Don’t miss this opportunity to see one-third of Blackie and the Rodeo Kings.
BURNING DAYLIGHT! Celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the release of Burning Daylight’s debut album, “Whiskey & Romances”
The seminal Rochester, NY alt country/power pop band will perform the album in its entirety as well as songs from singer/songwriter Nick Young’s solo catalog.
“Whiskey and Romances” was produced by Dan McLoughlin of The Push Stars and received high praise from critics and fans alike upon its release. Past and current members of the band include J.P. Nawn, Tim Mroz and Jesse Sprinkle.
“Contagious songs in the alt-country mode, sounding like a cross between Wilco, the Old 97’s and vintage Soul Asylum.”-Freetime Magazine
Indie folk/ Americana/rock ‘n’ roll with Brooklyn’s LELAND SUNDRIES!
Leland Sundries is the mostly solo project of New York based Nick Loss-Eaton. He is re-branding Nashville’s original blues Americana with a touch of indie rock sarcasm. Although he isn’t the first person to use a resonator guitar (see “Bon Iver”), it is a refreshing sound in a landscape of bands utilizing the same 3 piece set over and over.
Leland Sundries has also been known to use a 2 string Cigar Box Guitar made in Memphis, giving his New York audiences the chance to experience something that few city kids even realize exists. Loss-Eaton also uses a megaphone-harmonica set up which captures the vintage-recording-scratchy echo that defines the original Americana sound for modern audiences.
2013 Albert King Blues Guitarist of the Year Award Winner SELWYN BIRCHWOOD! If you’re a fan of Hound Dog Taylor, Robert Randolph, Lucky Peterson..and the Campbell Brothers, do NOT miss this hot, hot, blues band!!! Selwyn has torn it up at the Abilene Roots-Americana Stage of the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival..and he’s sure to tear it up again. He’s touring in support of his latest Alligator Records release, Pick Your Poison.
HA HA TONKA! - “Call the sound of Ha Ha Tonka folky indie rock; call it Southern rock; call it Ozark-steeped-blues-rock. What the labels don’t convey is the band’s sense of raw power and four-part harmonies.” ~KDHX, St.Louis
With Special Guests TRAPPER SCHOEPP! “Rootsy, cinematic rock that charms as it soars.” ~NPR Music
JC Brooks makes soul-infused, genre-bending music that is energetic and kinetically charged. “It all started out as an effort to merge post-punk and soul, but it’s grown into so much more than that, “ says vocalist/lyricist/bandleader JC Brooks. “I feel like we carry that ethos with the genre-mixing blend of soul music we write, and the punk aspect is more about our DIY determination to get out there onstage and engage with our live crowds on a visceral level.” After years of touring the US and Europe playing clubs to major festivals, the band hunkered down in 2016 to record The Neon Jungle.
Doors 4pm, Music 10pm (Post Party in the Park Party!!)
JON STICKLEY TRIO
On the tail of their critically acclaimed 2015 album, Lost at Last, Jon Stickley Trio independently released a brand new 5-song EP, Triangular, on December 2, 2016. With roots in gypsy jazz, bluegrass, and hip-hop in an “exhilarating all-acoustic swirl” (Acoustic Guitar Magazine), Jon Stickley Trio combines Jon Stickley’s rapid-fire flatpicking guitar with the sultry and wild, yet refined, melodies of Lyndsay Pruett on violin set over the deep groove of Patrick Armitage on drums.
“In a time when a lot of instrumental music feels more like math than art, Jon Stickley Trio’s Triangular reminds us of the pure joy that can be created and shared through music,” say Greensky Bluegrass’ Anders Beck.
If you’re a fan of Infamous Stringdusters, Greensky Bluegrass and Leftover Salmon, you’ll love Jon Stickley Trio.
Our Own Worst Enemy is a new band recently formed by old pros. Steve Lyons, Don Christiano, Paul Lindsley and Mike Tutino have come together to bring you their take on old school Honky Tonk, plus some originals and a few nuggets from local songsmiths such as Todd Bradley and the late, great Dave Donnelly. They aim to make you wanna dance the two step and cry in your beer. If you like music by Cash, Haggard, Frizell and Jennings, this is your band!
“We’re switching things up a little. After four albums I’ve decided to step out and start using my own name. It’s something that a lot of people have encouraged me to do over the years, and I guess that 2017 just felt right.” That name, Amanda Anne Platt & The Honeycutters, is also the title of the band’s new album, which will be released by Organic Records on June 9, 2017.
“We’re keeping The Honeycutters too because we don’t want to confuse people…really, we’ve always been Amanda Anne Platt and the Honeycutters. I think I’ve just gotten to a place where I feel comfortable enough to be in the spotlight.”
Lyrically driven, the songs on Amanda Anne Platt & The Honeycutters blend the band’s old-school country roots attitude with their shared influences of rock and folk. Amanda says of the album, “I think it’s just about life and all that that entails. Including but not limited to death, strangers, birthdays, money, leaving, arriving, seasons, corruption, and love.”
Performing along with Platt, The Honeycutters are Matt Smith on pedal steel and Stratocaster, Rick Cooper on bass, Josh Milligan on drums and harmony vocals, and Evan Martin on keys and Telecaster.
The Penthouse at One East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14604
“Abilene on the Road” proudly presents MARSHALL CRENSHAW y LOS STRAITJACKETS!
Marshall Crenshaw y Los Straitjackets combines the shared sensibilities of a pop-rock maestro & a band of guitar-wielding marauders.
Born in 1953 in Detroit, Michigan, Marshall Crenshaw learned to tune a guitar correctly at age ten and has been trying ever since. His first big break came in 1978 playing John Lennon in “Beatlemania.” Over the course of a career that’s spanned three decades, 13 albums, Grammy and Golden Globe nominations, film and TV appearances (Buddy Holly in “La Bamba”) and thousands of performances, Marshall Crenshaw’s musical output has maintained a consistent fidelity to the qualities of artfulness, craftsmanship and passion, and his efforts have been rewarded with the devotion of a broad and remarkably loyal fan base.
“Although he was seen as a latter-day Buddy Holly at the outset, he soon proved too talented and original to be anyone but himself.” -Trouser Press
Los Straitjackets are the leading practitioners of the lost art of the guitar instrumental. Using the music of Ventures, The Shadows, Link Wray and Dick Dale as a jumping off point, the band has taken their unique, high energy brand of original rock & roll around the world. Clad in their trademark Lucha Libre Mexican wrestling masks, the “Jackets” have delivered their trademark guitar licks to 16 albums, thousands of concerts and dozens of films and TV shows.
“…novelty is a key ingredient, but it’s elevated by the band’s good-natured sincerity and skill.”- NPR World Café.
***SPECIAL BACKYARD PICNIC with ONE OF OUR HONKY-TONK HEROES JIM LAUDERDALE!
Two-time Grammy winning singer and master songwriter Jim Lauderdale is both a “songwriter’s songwriter, “ who’s written/co-written many modern classics for iconic artists, as well as an intuitive sideman, who’s enhance the music of a bevy of esteemed musicians. As a solo artist, since 1986 up until now, he’s created a body of work spanning 28 albums of imaginative roots music, encompassing country, bluegrass, soul, R&B and rock. Along the way he’s won awards, garnered critical acclaim, and earned himself an engaged fan base.
Throughout his three-decade career, Jim Lauderdale has helped pave the way for the current Americana movement, recording albums and writing songs that cross genres from country, rock, folk and bluegrass. Jim has written songs and worked with some of the finest artists in traditional and modern music, including Robert Hunter, Ralph Stanley, Elvis Costello, George Strait, Buddy Miller, Lucinda Williams, Solomon Burke, Old Crow Medicine Show, the Dixie Chicks, Vince Gill, Donna the Buffalo among many, many others. Jim is releasing his 29th album, London Southern, on June 30.
Ameripolitan/honky-tonk at its Finest... DALE WATSON AND HIS LONE STARS
We’re thrilled to be hosting Dale again!
Dale Watson is the keeper of the true country music flame. The Austin-based honky-tonker carries on in the tradition of Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson with his “Ameripolitan” brand of American roots music.
The Blasters exemplify the best traditions of American Music, performing with passion and honesty that for over three decades has won the hearts and souls of fans worldwide. Composed of founding members vocalist-guitarist Phil Alvin, drummer Bill Bateman and bassist John Bazz with Keith Wyatt on guitar, they carry on a hard-won legacy as one of the most recognizable and credible bands in American Music. Their influences range from the likes of George Jones and Carl Perkins to Ike Turner, Howlin’ Wolf, James Brown and Big Joe Turner, all blending into a sound that ignores the lines between Rock & Roll, Country, Blues and Rockabilly.
The oft-requested return of hot soul/R&B/Motown band MITTY & THE FOLLOWERS! Don’t miss Mitty Moore, Steve Lyons, Jeff Hobbs and Sammy G, as they get you dancin’ all night long! Plus...It's Lenny Polizzi's Birthday Bash!
Alyssa and Doug Graham have spent nearly their entire lives exploring music together. Friends since she was 7 and he was 9, they became a couple in their teens, then husband and wife. Somewhere along the way, they also became The Grahams, a dynamic Americana duo who've married their love of adventure with a desire to build on foundations laid by their musical predecessors. Their first song-crafting expedition, along the Mississippi's Great River Road, became their 2013 debut, Riverman's Daughter. For its follow-up, they rode the rails - and wound up recording not only a studio album, but a documentary and live album on the move and in venues from Sun Studio to Amtrak's famed City of New Orleans train.
Their new long-player, the explosive and aptly named Glory Bound, was helmed by Grammy nominated producer Wes Sharon (John Fullbright, Parker Millsap) at his 115 Recording studio in Norman, Oklahoma, and will be released on May 19. Recording in Oklahoma holds special significance for a couple raised as Dylan-loving New York City suburban kids who spent weekends strumming campfire songs in the Adirondacks. Like many Dylan fans, they traced their way back to his greatest inspiration.
SEAN ROWE - We are the elders of our minds,” sings Sean Rowe on “Gas Station Rose, the track that ushers in his fourth album, New Lore, with plaintive plucks of guitar and steady drips of piano that fall in like rain. It’s a sparse and beautiful moment, anchored by Rowe’s unparalleled voice-so full of gravely soul, aged and edged by years on the road, as a father and husband, as a creative force always looking for the next rhyme. And, so integral to the man that he is, one that is constantly absorbing nature. It wasn’t the easiest journey to get to the ten vulnerable songs that comprise New Lore (out April 7th)-it took a label change, a trip to Memphis and some support from unexpected places-but what resulted is a road map for a gentle heart in modern times, in a world where the best oracle isn’t within a computer, but within ourselves.
Though Rowe has often made his hometown of Troy, New York and its surrounding areas his creative base, New Lore brought a new environment, and a new producer. Appropriate to his love of folk-blues legends like Howlin’ Wolf, he ventured to Sam Phillips Recording studio in Memphis to work with Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price). They tapped into the history of the legendary space to hone a sound that is at once rich and stark, putting Rowe’s deep and dynamic rage at the forefront. Because if high notes can shatter windows, Rowe’s low and guttural ones can meld sand into glass.
With Special Guest GIRL BLUE! - Girl Blue is the brain child and alter ego of singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Arielle O’Keefe. She debuted her first recorded release on October 5, 2106 with an EP titled I Am Not A Star, introducing a new sound that blends raw soul and rock with keen pop songwriting sensibilities.
With Ray Jacildo on the Hammond Organ, and Jason Smay on the drums.
"Watching Mckinley James play guitar is like watching a time-lapse film loop; every goddamn time I see him, I swear he gets better and better. Although a mere 15 years old, James digs deep into rock 'n' roll's blackness and blueness. He plays downright nasty and mean. This kid is the second coming of Nick Curran. Watch, you'll see." Frank De Blase, Rochester City Newspaper
"This is not subtle music. It's revved up both musically and rhythmically with a load of energy and stamina. The ladies of C'est Bon traded off vocals over the pump of the button accordion...It was passionate, immediate, sexy and cool.” - Frank DeBlase, music critic at City Newspaper, Rochester NY
Do not miss this hard-rockin’, foot-stompin, girl-powered Cajundancehall troupe!!!
"The LA outfit has been around for fewer than five years, though listening to their music, you might think your vinyl-junkie friend picked one of their records out of a pile next to Fleetwood Mac and Hendrix. They have a classic Southern grit that makes you crave a sweet tea. They have defined their sound with a bluesy twang on guitar, driving thump on bass, and a soulful Southern vocal in singer Natalie Meadors." ~LA Music Blog
The Penthouse at One East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14604
“Abilene on the Road” proudly presents singer-songwriter CHRIS TRAPPER! Chris Trapper began his career as the front man for late-90’s alternative rock band The Push Stars (Capital Records). With four CD releases and several high profile national tours-including a run with Matchbox Twenty-The Push Stars served to establish Chris as an authentic talent.
As a singer-songwriter, Chris is most known for his original song “This Time,” the #1 selling song on the Grammy-nominate soundtrack for the film August Rush (Robin Williams, Jonathan Rhys Meyers/Warner Bros Pictures). His music can best be described as lyrically driven root-pop with a knack for telling everyday stories. The New York Times has called his work “classic pop perfection.”
The Arbor Loft, 17 Pitkin Street, Rochester, NY 14607
Doors 6:30pm, Music 8pm
“Abilene on the Road” proudly presents Dave Alvin, Grammy Award winning singer songwriter and self described “barroom guitarist, is widely considered to be one of the pivotal founders of the current Americana music scene. A fourth generation Californian, Dave Alvin grew up in Downey, California as the local landscape quickly evolved from orange groves and dairy farms to tract homes and freeways. Since forming the highly influential roots rock/R+B band The Blasters, with his brother Phil in 1979, and throughout his long and critically acclaimed solo career, Dave Alvin has mixed his varied musical and literary influences into his own unique, updated version of traditional American music. Combining elements of blues, folk, R+B, rockabilly, Bakersfield country and garage rock and roll with lyrical inspiration from local writers and poets like Raymond Chandler, Gerald Locklin and Charles Bukowski, Alvin says that his songs are just like California. A big, messy melting pot. Dave Alvin's songs have been recorded by a who's who of contemporary roots artists from Los Lobos, Little Milton, Robert Earl Keen, Marshal Crenshaw and Joe Ely to Dwight Yoakam, James McMurtry, Buckwheat Zydeco, Alejandro Escovedo and X. His songs have also been featured in many movies and television shows including Justified, The Sopranos, True Blood, The Wire, Six Feet Under, Crybaby, Miss Congeniality and From Dusk To Dawn.
The Sixth Installment…Of An Intimate Evening with blues great..and soon to be member of the Rochester Music Hall of Fame JOE BEARD And his special guest…STEVE LYONS Do not miss this special night of music.
THE PHIL MARSHALL BAND - From his days with Colorblind James Experience to his playing with Annie Wells and Lalaland, Phil Marshall has been one of Rochester’s most innovative guitarists. Don’t miss this show with Special Guests
The return to Abilene ofTHREE CHORD MONTE! A full night of blues and rock served up by Earl Repp on guitar and vocals, Mark Downey on guitar and vocals, Gary Yanni on drums, Tom Mooney on bass and Eric Paley on keyboards.
From the salvaged sounds of American juke joints, back porches, honky tonks and rock clubs, The Suitcase Junket conjures an entirely new sound in his new, essential rock collection, Pile Driver.
"Now this is the shit I'm talking about, Jack. The Suitcase Junket is a lo-fi, low-tuned, low-down blast of end-times folk blues. It's crude; it's magnificent. With a stage set-up that resembles a junkyard foley stage or Fred Sanford's living room, The Suitcase Junket — one man band leader Matt Lorenz — incants and intones like a cross between Hound Dog Taylor and a Tuvan throat singer who has swallowed a bird. Take the singer-songwriter idiom, give it a low grade fever and a guitar and this is what you get. Captivating, mesmerizing, and gone ... real gone." -- Frank De Blase, Rochester (NY) City Newspaper
“He deploys his oddball, lo-fi but forceful sound in the service of well-conveived, engaging songs with literate and interesting lyrics.” The Suitcase Junket is much more than a curiosity or a novelty act, he’s a serious artist who shouts and winks at us at the same time, and has deep things to say to an open mind.” ~Seattle Post Intelligencer
“He’s an in-the-moment multi-instrumentalist, a true one-man band, carefully connecting and arranging unique objects around himself so that he’s a singer, guitarist, drummer and percussionist all at once~Daily Hampshire Gazette
Blues guitarist JIMMY THACKERY & THE DRIVERS! Jimmy Thackery is one of the few blues guitarists who learned firsthand from the masters of the blues, not off a blues record or dvd. Though most associate Jimmy with his 15 years as the co-founder of the Nighthawks, he ended his time with them in 1987. Since then, Jimmy has been on the road as a solo musician for 15 years doing nearly 300 shows a year proving each night that he is still the guitar powerhouse in the blues.
Thackery has lived the life of a true road warrior; he’s absorbed the artistic lessons of life and filtered them into his guitar playing and songwriting. To get where he is today, Jimmy has journeyed a highway of life filled with a series of twists and turns. He met all the right people and they have had a permanent influence on him.
****SPECIAL SHOW**** Live at The Penthouse at One East Avenue
Doors 7pm, Music 8pm
“Abilene on the Road” and Rochester Events present KINKY FRIEDMAN with Special Guest BRIAN MOLNAR
The slightly unorthodox Texas version of Will Rogers and Mark Twain, makes a rare Rochester appearance. Kinky is a country singer, songwriter, novelist, humorist, and politician who styles himself in the mold of popular American satirists.
Kinky is known for his satiric songs such as, “They Ain’t Makin’ Jews Like Jesus Anymore,” “Asshole from El Paso,” “I’m The Loneliest Man I Ever Met,” and many, many more classics.
Solo fingerstyle guitarist KINLOCH NELSON - Kinloch Nelson performs a synthesis of folk, jazz, classical, rock, American popular music, and original compositions. His programs run from J.S. Bach to John B. Sebastian and may include references to Miles Davis, Franz Schubert, John Fahey, Leo Kottke, The Ventures, Flatt and Scruggs, and the occasional TV theme.
“Abilene on the Road” proudly presents EILEN JEWELL with Special Guest MISS TESS
Honesty, confidence, and respect permeate Eilen Jewell’s music, dating back to her self-released Boundary County album in 2006. Since then, the Boise native has recorded five studio albums for Signature Sounds with her road-tested touring band, and two more as a member of the Boston-based gospel-charged Sacred Shakers (also on Signature Sounds), which includes that well-oiled band at its core. Her latest, Sundown Over Ghost Town, is a masterful culmination of Jewell’s work to date.
As hard as it is to categorize Jewell’s music-terms like alt-country, roots-rock, country-noir, and Americana get used a lot-it’s even harder not to become thoroughly enraptured by the singer/songwriter’s powerful versatility, musical stories, and images. And that gorgeous voice makes you feel like she’s singing just for you, out on the breezy back porch or by a crackling campfire. She does so much, so well.