The Woes, The Honeycutters, Rebecca Pronsky
249 4th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY, 11215
Doors 8:00 PM
This event is 21 and over
The Woes band based out of New York City, formed in 2002 by frontman Osei Essed and his long-time collaborator Cicero Jones. Their sound is a mix of blues, country, and folk, topped off with Essed's gruff voice, often compared to that of Tom Waits. Other than Jones, are or have been students at SUNY Purchase's Conservatory of Music.
First appearing on a sampler from Essed's own label, Blacksand, they since have released an EP, Coalmine, recorded in 2004 with Dan Romer of the Fire Flies. They are currently finishing up their first full-length album, That Coke Oven March, again working with Romer, with artwork by Karin Bumiller. They are also working on film music for Spirit of '79, a documentary about the American agricultural movement, made by Keith Maitland for Illegalfilms. The documentary also features interviews and songs by Willie Nelson and Arlo Guthrie.
The Honeycutters are, at the heart, the musical collaboration of singer/songwriter Amanda Anne Platt and Lead Guitarist/ Producer Peter James. While their sound has drawn comparisons to such artists as Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris or Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Platt and James produce a refreshingly unique blend of Americana music that is comfortingly familiar while being entirely original. Whether performing as an acoustic duo or a full fledged Honky-Tonk five piece, The Honeycutters leave smiles on the faces of the ears that they catch.
Their first full length studio release "Irene" (May '09) was recorded at Asheville's own Collapseable Studio, and mixed by Grammy Award winning sound engineer David Fergason (Nashville TN) . The album has garnered radio support across the USA as well as overseas, and landed them in Iaan Hughes' (No Depression Podcast) top twenty of 2009, Fret Knot Radio Hour's "Nine to Know from '09″, and as number 32 in WNCW's listener voted top 100.
Amanda Anne Platt has been hailed as "one of the best songwriters coming out of WNC these days" by WNCW programming director Martin Anderson, and her voice has been described as "perfectly unadorned" and "recklessly beautiful". Her song, "Little Bird," won second place in the general category of the Chris Austin Songwriting contest in 2011. Her lyrics are as catchy and heartbreaking as her melodies. Dane Smith of Asheville NC's Mountain Xpress writes "Her songs make you sad…in a good way!" In both her simple composition and honest delivery it's easy to hear the influence of country legends such as Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, or Loretta Lynn, and with this Miss Platt credits growing up listening to her Father's extensive record collection every Saturday morning. Despite her love for classic country, she cites Bruce Springstein and Tom Petty as major influences and her songwriting carries a wit and an edge that plants her firmly in her generation.
Peter James is rapidly becoming one of Western North Carolina's most sought after guitar players, known for both insightful solos and tasteful accompaniment. Having first held a guitar at age thirteen, he quickly started making up for lost time by delving completely into the instrument. His natural talent and attention to detail made him an asset to The Slant Six Cowboys, a New Hampshire based group founded by James and singer/songwriter Don Witcher out of their long time musical collaboration. In 2004 they released a self-titled album on 95 North records which reached number 14 on the AMA chart. Since moving to Asheville in 2006 James has played right-hand man to several of the region's top acts, including Taylor Martin and Brian McGee.
Like so many of country music's great duos, Platt and James have a musical chemistry that can be felt throughout the songs they play, from the sounds of their guitars to their vocal harmonies. Perhaps this is why they are frequently mentioned along with the movement to "Take country music back to it's roots". The Honeycutters are just doing what they know how to do: making music that feels as good to hear as it does to play. Their original brand of Americana has proven equally appealing to both the musician and the music lover, the country and the city, and the old and the young.
Tal Taylor on mandolin, Ian Harrod on bass, and Jon Ashley on drums round out Platt's songs and create a sound that carries just as well across the bar room as the acoustic duo does in a church or a music hall.
Since releasing "Irene," The Honeycutters have shared the stage with such Americana giants as Tony Rice, The Seldom Scene, Donna The Buffalo, and The Steep Canyon Rangers. They have been voted Western North Carolina's favorite local Americana act (2011 Mountain Xpress reader's poll) and delighted audiences from upstate New York to Seattle, Washington. They are currently planning the release of their sophomore effort, "When Bitter Met Sweet," for May of 2012.
Rebecca Pronsky is a born and raised Brooklynite who plays twangy folk that is "as urban as it is rural, not afraid to be sophisticated" (Maverick). "Pronsky's voice conveys the wisdom of experience" (NPR) and her live performances are "passionate and wry" (Time Out NY). Only Daughter, Rebecca's newest album, will be released in March 2013 on Austin's Nine Mile Records. It was recorded by Scott Solter (Superchunk, Mountain Goats, John Vanderslice) and produced by Rebecca's husband and lead guitarist Rich Bennett who "puts the trimmings on the music with a battery of echo drenched, twangy leads" (Blurt). Her most adventurous work yet, the album is gritty and noir-ish, layered and dreamy, bravely disobeying the usual conventions of the Americana genre.
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