Tag Archive for Catie Curtis

A Susan Werner Kind of Weekend

As many concerts as I get to go and see, usually I see ‘my’ artists sort of in hit or miss fashion. So, when I get to see a favorite two nights in a row, it’s a pretty special occasion. Last weekend, that was a Susan Werner doubleheader.

Susan Werner and Jim Henry. Spotlight Cafe, Concord NH

Friday, November 2, was in Concord NH, at the Center for the Arts. They have a Spotlight Cafe for smaller shows, more intimate than the large theater. Susan had Jim Henry join her for accompaniment, fresh off the road from a tour with Mary Chapin Carpenter. He’s got a lovely nuanced style of play, and it complemented Susan very nicely. It was a pleasure to watch them enjoying each other so well up on stage.

Susan Werner at TCAN, Natick MA, with her trioOn Saturday night, November 3, the show shifted down to TCAN in Natick, MA. For this show, Susan had the stellar Trina Hamlin and Gail Ann Dorsey joining her. The amount of musicianship on stage when the three of them get together is just stunning, and since they also enjoy each other’s company so much, it becomes a magical event.  Susan also called up special guest Catie Curtis who, with Jenna Lindbo, treated us to her song Happy (a foreshadowing for the 2012 election results?) backed by the trio. The night was well worth every minute of a 2.25 hour each way drive. Can we do it again soon?

At both shows, we were treated to several songs from Susan’s upcoming Hayseed project. She’s still raising funds for it  so if you’re intrigued, check it out and pitch in something. The songs were terrific, and I am looking forward to hearing the final product.

Photos from both nights are posted… Find Concord here and Natick here. I probably ‘kept’ more than I should have posted, but I can’t help it – I want to celebrate all of the music!

One last thing… Saturday night’s show coincided with turning the clocks back, so the trio treated us to a delightful cover of Cher’s If I Could Turn Back Time. I only caught some of it on my iPhone, including some of Susan’s rant about the tradition, but it’s entertaining so I include it here. Enjoy!

Catie Curtis and The Nields for Voices United

The Nields with Catie Curtis

On Friday, September 28, 2012, I had the pleasure of attending one of the many concerts that would be held over the weekend as part of a celebration called Voices United for the Separation of Church and State. The shows were all to benefit a non partisan organization called Americans United. They advocate for the separation of politics from religion, something that has become increasingly important to many Americans in recent years (myself included).

At this show, Catie Curtis, who organized concerts across the nation for this event, was billed as having special surprise guests. I was delighted to walk up the stairs to the home hosting this particular event and see Nerissa Nields looking out. Great surprise!

The home in Newton where this concert took place was lovely, and about 40 or so people were in enthusiastic attendance. Big thanks to hosts Paul and Sarah for their hospitality! Their son, Jay, played two original compositions on the piano to start off the evening. He was very impressive. He reports that he will be recording a CD soon, so watch out for this one!

Nerissa and Katryna Nields were up next and delivered a terrific half hour set. If you’re in the Boston area this coming weekend, Oct 6, they will be doing two shows at Club Passim. Catie rounded out the evening with a set of her songs, and had The Nields join her for a few at the end. Their harmonies on Catie’s “Troubled Mind” were just stunning. Wish I had recorded that one, but I did pull out the iPhone and record the three of them performing The Nields’ “Keys to the Kingdom”. It was dark, so YouTube lightened it up, making it better even if a little wonky with ‘changing light’. Embedded below.

Photos are viewable on this site as well. They came out a bit grainy with having to boost exposure after the fact, but they are still a fun record of a terrific night of music.

Catie Curtis with Jenna Lindbo

Continuing with shows I have seen and photographed at the Tupelo Music Hall, not long after seeing Dar last fall, came Catie Curtis.  Usually, Catie is out on the road solo, but lately she has been playing out with multi-instrumentalist Jenna Lindbo, a burgeoning singer/songwriter in her own right. Rounding out the band for this album release tour was ace guitarist Thomas Juliano.

Catie Curtis with Kate MacNally of NHPR's Folk ShowCatie was touring to support her latest release, “Stretch Limousine on Fire”, a terrific collection of songs. I’ve been listening to Catie’s records and seeing her play for about 20 years now, and it’s been a real treat to see her evolution as a songwriter and performer. I imagine it must be something of a challenge for long standing artists to keep things fresh and growing. It’s always impressive to hear how artists like Catie take on that challenge. This show started like the Dar Williams show, with a Q&A with Kate McNally of New Hampshire Public Radio’s Folk Show as part of the Tupelo Public Radio Project. You can listen to that portion of the concert online.

Jenna Lindbo. Tupelo Music Hall, White River Junction, VT. 11 November 2011A big bonus for the night was seeing and hearing Jenna Lindbo for the first time. With one CD available at the time of this post, but another due out in the next few months, it’s clear to me that we’ll be watching Jenna become a big part of the folk world. I’m looking forward to hearing the next CD as well as how she continues to grow as an artist. We were treated to three of her songs during the show, including one that is fast becoming a personal favorite thanks to You Tube, “Instrumental Role.” For another of her songs, “Let There be Love”, a friend of Jenna’s came out on stage to perform it in ASL (joined a bit by Catie).

One of the things I enjoy most about being a folk fan is that it’s almost a given that a night out of live music is going to be a good time. That was certainly the case here. The shows are always too short  for my taste. They are my version of “Calgon, take me away!” And yes, of course, there are photos.