AcoustiCafe Open Stage
Monday, December 9, 2013 - 7:00pm doors / 7:00pm show
Pittsburgh's #1 Open Stage returns to Club Cafe with host Mike Medved. Fashioned after some of the high profile and wildly successful open stages in Nashville and New York City, AcoustiCafe's open stage intends to create a supportive environment for artists to network with their peers, test new music or haul out old favorites, and most importantly, extend their reach in the local scene.
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Ages 21+ Only.
An Evening with Zoe Keating
Tuesday, December 10, 2013 - 6:00pm doors / 7:00pm show
A one-woman orchestra. She uses a cello and a foot-controlled laptop to record layer upon layer of cello, to create lush, beautiful and otherworldly music. Increasingly considered a role model for DIY artists, Zoe's self-released albums have sold over 35,000 copies and she has amassed an incredible 1.3 million twitter followers.
As a cellist and arranger, Zoe has worked with a wide range of artists, including Imogen Heap, Mark Isham, Curt Smith, Amanda Palmer, Rasputina, DJ Shadow, Pomplamoose and Paolo Nutini. From 2002 to 2006 she was a member of the cello-rock trio Rasputina. Zoe is a recipient of a 2009 performing arts grant from the Creative Capital foundation. Her new self-released album, "Into The Trees" was released in June 2010 and as of September 1st, was in its 10th week on the Billboard classical charts.
91.3fm WYEP Presents Diego Garcia with Special Guest Caleb Pogyor
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 - 7:00pm doors / 8:00pm show
Diego Garcia knows how to mine romantic yearning in his work. His acclaimed 2011 solo debut Laura was the ultimate bedroom recording, an intensely focused and utterly entrancing chamber-pop song cycle about unrequited love, his own. The titular Laura was a woman he fell for in college but lost during a hectic period a decade ago when he was fronting Elefant, a New York City-based rock band that toured the world with artists like Interpol, The National and Morrissey. By the time Laura was finished, Garcia accepted the fact that she might only exist in his life as the subject of these songs. Then he miraculously won her back (and later married her). But those years of estrangement left an indelible mark and continue to inform his work.
Garcia's new album, Paradise, continues to expand upon the romantic sound he had begun to shape throughout his work on Laura. The album's hybrid of influences, from the late-sixties "Anglo" crooners like Jacques Brel, Serge Gainsborg, Leonard Cohen and Scott Walker to the early-seventies passionate balladry of Latin American artists like Roberto Carlos, Jose Feliciano, Piero, and Spaniard Julio Iglesias, is a musical reflection of who he is: a U.S.-bred son of Latin American parents who thinks in English, but can speak fluently in Spanish.
Says Garcia, "When I was in the studio making the Laura album, I was digging through my parents' record collections and really taking a deeper look at Latin troubadours. There was one singer named Piero; I heard his song 'Mi Viejo' and it changed my life. I spent a whole session listening to that song, to all the details. When you listen to those singers, the drama in their delivery was so powerful, the way they would capture 'the malady of love.' Then I had this sort of eureka moment. It sparked an idea that felt very natural to me, reaching into that lost world, that golden age of Latin music."
"Tell Me," the first song Garcia completed after his reconciliation and return from the road, was the catalyst for Paradise: "I got into the studio and out came 'Tell Me'. Stylistically, I wanted to make the transition to album number two as gradual and natural as possible. I didn't want to just get into the studio for the sake of reinvention, make a record and completely ignore what had gotten me to that point. It not only allowed us to get our confidence back and compose the rest of these songs, it also served as the bridge we were looking for to the new album."
Paradise offers more than equal time examining the nuances of love and relationships but on an even deeper and more universal level than Laura. "Start With The End," the Spanish-guitar-percussion-driven album opener hits with a brash, celebratory flourish. Garcia admits, "It was the last song written for the record and I felt like making a little noise to celebrate."
"Sunnier Days" is a pure-pop highlight, with a sing-along passage near the end that audiences everywhere will soon be memorizing. But the song's title, just like the album name, is deceptive. Offers Garcia, "That song is one of my proudest moments. For me, it's a strong pop song in that it takes your mind off things, both sonically and lyrically. But underneath the surface there is a deeper spiritual message that hopefully bring you closer to the truth."
Garcia balances blissful romanticism in upbeat songs like "She Dances" and "Donde Estas," (his first song sung in Spanish) with a recurring frisson of uncertainty and longing on such dramatic narratives as "Thoughts Of You", "My Heart Is An Island" and the genuine "Truth Will Ring."
"'Truth Will Ring' is one of my favorite songs," he says. "The inspiration for that is how everything can feel and look perfect from the outside, but really, you never know what another person might be thinking, and I think that happens in a lot of relationships. If you've lived life, if you've had your heart broken, had your ups and downs with or without a partner, that's ultimately what I'm singing about."
The real-life happy ending that followed the release of Laura marks a creative new beginning for Garcia, and it's the jumping-off point for Paradise: "I got my girl back, I have a family now. I spent three years on the road, and the future is wide open. We brought this new energy to this completely new place in my life. But in real life there are still cracks, and as an artist what I'm intrigued by is looking into those cracks for whatever beauty is there. That never goes away."
- Michael Hill
Tom McBride with Special Guests Grey's Fool and Bobby Johns
Thursday, December 12, 2013 - 7:00pm doors / 8:00pm show
On Tom McBride's award winning third album, 'Morning in Glen Burnie', the Boston-born, now Nashville based songwriter, weaves stories about love and loss, commitment, and the circle of fatherhood through a gorgeously laid-back, 12 song Americana-inspired album. McBride's vocal talents are in full display, as well as the smooth, backing band of some of Boston's finest musicians, as he eases between the soaring melodies of blue-eyed soul in "Julia" to the more restrained folk-country ballads "Take Her Somewhere" and "She Knows". To rustle up inspiration for this album, McBride dug deep into his record collection.
"I was trying to identify those songs that I loved as a child and still enjoy now," he explains. "I looked backwards a little bit and dug deeper into some older folk, pop, and country songs by artists like Roy Orbison, Buck Owens, and George Jones. I was challenging myself to simplify my writing, to really dig into more traditional forms and melodies."
"Put really simply," he sums up, "I just tried to write good songs."
With an eye on the classics, McBride wrote the songs that eventually became Morning in Glen Burnie, a modern album steeped in an old-school blend of Americana, blues, soul and pop/rock. Many of the songs were inspired by Nashville, the town where he launched his music career in the early 2000s and where he returned this past winter. McBride recorded Morning in Glen Burnie closer to his hometown, though, setting up shop just outside of Boston. Another Boston native, Kimon Kirk (Grant-Lee Phillips, Aimee Mann), signed on as producer.
"We recorded at Dimension Sound Studios with an excellent engineer, Dan Cardinal, (Josh Ritter, The Low Anthem) and a lights-out band with some great Boston area musicians. " McBride says. "Many of the tracks on the album are either the second or third attempt of the song. We'd go over the forms together in the mixing room, talk about the vibe of the song together, and then we'd go play it. Just painless, and a lot of fun."
The result is a classic-sounding album deep with melody and tightly crafted refrains that splits the difference between all of McBride’s influences, from the country sway of the Mavericks to the crooning pop of Sam Cooke. Mixed by Grammy-award winning engineer Ryan Freeland (Ray Lamontagne, Bonnie Raitt) the album has already begun gathering its own buzz, too, with the Mid-Atlantic Songwriters Association awarding its prestigious Gold Prize to the album's first track, "But I Don't Care" and McBride being announced as a finalist in American Songwriter Magazine and Martin Guitar's 2012 national contest "The Pub Deal".
In between recording, McBride has also been touring consistently across the East coast and throughout the states. He has logged over 250 shows across the country over the past few years, in addition to his performances at CMJ, Folk Alliance & SXSW, and has recently shared the stage with notable acts such as Dawes, William Elliot Whitmore, Kingsley Flood, Futurebirds, Charlie Mars, Ellis Paul, & Eli 'Paperboy Reed' among others.
& Ticket Giveaways
- Wed 01/15 Brass Bed
- Tue 01/21 Andy Allo
- Fri 01/31 The Wild Geese
- Sun 02/09 Peter Mulvey
- Tue 02/11 TJ Miller
- Thu 02/20 The Kin
- Sat 02/22 Falling Andes (CD Release Party & Show)
- Sun 02/23 The Whiskey Gentry
- Tue 03/04 Silencio Performing the Soundtrack Works of David Lynch
- Wed 03/05 Caroline Smith
- Thu 05/01 Joe Crookston
- Sat 05/03 Steve Forbert
- AcoustiCafe Open Stage
- Frontier Ruckus
- Start Making Sense - A Tribute to the Talking Heads
- (Early Show) The Wheals
- (Late Show) The Inseams
- AcoustiCafe Open Stage
- Zoe Keating
- Diego Garcia
- Tom McBride
- (Early Show) Callan (CD Release Party)
- (Late Show) Dax Riggs
- Hoots and Hellmouth
- AcoustiCafe Open Stage
- Angel Snow
- Frank Vieira
- (Early Show) The Pump Fakes Featuring Members of The Clarks, Goodbrother Earl, and Tres Lads
- (Late Show) The Race to the Coffin Comedy Tour Featuring John Dick Winters
- (Early Show) Bill Eberle
- (Late Show) The Mike Medved Band Project Bundle-Up Benefit
- AcoustiCafe Open Stage
- Bill Deasy's Annual Boxing Day Show (Full Band Performance)
- Vibro Kings
- (Early Show) Steel City Comedy Tour Featuring Chuck Krieger, Mike Wysocki, Carl Schimmel, Ray Zawandi and Tommy Kupiec
- (Late Show) Blue of Colors
- AcoustiCafe Open Stage