Saturday 5/6/2017 7:30 PM Joe Crookston Opener: Mike Agranoff
Joe Crookston: Songwriter, guitarist, painter, fiddler, slide player, eco-village member and believer in all things possible. Named 2016 Folk Alliance International Artist-in- Residence. He’s not afraid to walk outside trends and create his own version of magic. His recording Able Baker Charlie & Dog was awarded Album of the Year by Folk Alliance International. He’ll surprise you and awaken the cynics. He’s a bard in the modern world plumbing for lyrical gold like a social archeologist. His songs are universal, his rhythm infectious and in concert, he is funny as hell one moment and transcendent the next. At the end of the night, you’ll leave inspired. Whether he’s picking his 48 Gibson, weaving through lap slide songs or looping his fiddle, he will draw you in. It happens every time. With unwavering courage to be himself, he is literate, poignant and honest.
Mike Agranoff is one of those folk performers that steadfastly defies categorization, and yet amasses stalwart fans from folk aficionados of all categories. He draws his material from sources as diverse as traditional ballads and fiddle tunes, Tin Pan Alley, contemporaries in the Folk World, and his own witty pen. He delivers it with a skilled hand on guitar, piano, and concertina, an almost telepathic transmittal of the essence of the song, and occasionally sly twinkle in the eye in anticipation of some of the most horrible parodies ever perpetrated on an unsuspecting audience.
Advance tickets $15; children 12 and under $7.50.
Tickets at the door $20; children 12 and under $10.
Toronto-based singer-songwriter and fingerstyle guitarist Shawna Caspi performs solo, but there’s a whole band under her fingertips. A mighty singer, a story sculptor, and a truth teller, she has toured across Canada and the eastern USA and believes in poetry and the power of one person and one instrument. With her third album, Apartments For Lovers, Shawna Caspi taps right into those folk roots, stripping away session musicians and elaborate arrangements in favour of a simple, authentic sound – her solo guitar and voice. The result is a collection of songs that is close-up and honest, showcasing her warm vocals, classically-trained fingerstyle guitar playing, and intimate songwriting in a genuine, powerful way. Her songs are snapshots – moments that may appear small, but which subtly carry weight and offer greater depth thanks to her well-crafted lyrics. Shawna has toured throughout Canada and the United States, playing concerts and festivals. She has also played on the long haul trains between Montreal and Halifax and between Vancouver and Toronto as part of the VIA Rail On Board Entertainment Program. Shawna’s Canadian folk roots are an intrinsic part of who she is. In fact, Shawna as a solo musician is exactly who she is as a person – warm, inviting, a storyteller, a traveler, an authentic artist. “And at the heart of everything”, she says, “I’m just a really big music fan”.
Efrat Shapira is a classically-trained violinist, violist, singer, arranger and composer. She began her musical studies on the violin at age 7 and was immediately drawn to the beauty within the variation of so many musical styles. She learned klezmer and Israeli music from her father, dabbled in folk and rock, and learned to play bluegrass, country, and any other genre she came into contact with. She was accepted into the top classical violin schools in the country with scholarships, choosing to study at Indiana University. During this time she also was a member of the Shira Festival Orchestra in Israel, directed by Lorin Maazel, with conductors including Zubin Mehta. After graduation, Efrat moved to NYC to continue her career. Her first job was concertmaster for Olivia Newton John Orchestras, after which she re-established the Jade Quartet which had started at IU. On top of her work as a violinist, violist, and strings composer and arranger, Efrat also pursued her love of singing and jazz, culminating in her debut CD, No Strings Attached. She also toured as an onstage violinist in the Broadway show tour of Oliver, receiving rave reviews continent-wide. At this point Efrat became a new mother, took a break from being a leader, and joined Spuyten Duyvil for a few years, as well as working and recording as a sideman for other notable bands. Now back and feeling rejuvenated, Efrat is overjoyed to present her new CD The Silver Lining. She is also busy working on projects with the Jade Quartet and starting a Klezmer duo with her father, accordionist Dan Shapira.
Advance tickets $20; children 12 and under $10. Tickets at the door $25; children 12 and under $12.50.