CANCELLED: Christine Lavin & Uncle Bonsai

Christine Lavin

Read more about the 'Just One Angel' Tour here!

Celebrate the holidays at one of the funniest and most musically satisfying concerts you’ll ever experience. Singer-Songwriter Christine Lavin and the Seattle trio Uncle Bonsai share an equally angelic and wicked sense of reality, and when it comes to the holidays’ charged emotions, a gleeful desire to skate on thin ice. Together in concert, they deliver some of the most clever and unflinching lyrics in

Just One Angel is an exuberant celebration of selections from their individual repertoires alongside new holiday songs. Christine mesmerizes with “Christmas 1899”, “New, New, New Year, and delights with “Little Christmas Song” and “Dance Mom”, (a tribute to Abbey Lee and the TV show “Dance Moms”. Uncle Bonsai will sing the album's namesake, “Just One Angel,” as well as "Christmas is Just Around the Corner" (not intended to be sung anytime near Christmas), and the brand new holiday nugget "Seasonal Work," a song about our three-ball winter friends.

The concert will host several guests at various points in a nine city tour that includes Pittsburgh, PA (The Carnegie Lecture Hall), Alexandria, VA (The Birchmere), Philadelphia, PA (World Cafe Live), Portland, OR (The Aladdin Theatre) and four shows in New York City (The Duplex). Each guest is one of the featured artists in the new JUST ONE ANGEL 2.0 album, a collection of twenty one new alternative holiday songs, co-produced by Lavin and Andrew Ratshin of Uncle Bonsai. “There's nothing traditional about this album”, says Lavin. The songs swing from the unexpectedly spontaneous ("Snow Day" by Honor Finnegan) to the sentimental "(These Ornaments" by Craig Werth), to the delightfully romantic ("Mistletoe" by 20-something LA duo Shelby & Tieg), to the melancholy, for those who hate holidays ("Last Night Of The Year" by Broadway star Tom Wopat). Grammy-winning legend Tom Paxton sings the soon-to-be classic ("My Christmas Guitar"), while Bernice Lewis sings her tribute to the woman behind the man ("Ho Ho Ho" -- what's really going on with Mrs. Claus). This new compilation has gone 'international,' including British singer/songwriter Spottiswoode & His Enemies, Irish songwriter/author Danny Ellis, and a recording of a Portugese traditional Christmas instrumental "Airoso" performed by the Seattle duo Field & Franz. JUST ONE ANGEL 2.0 will be released in early fall (Pumpkin Nutmeg Records).


“Perfect! Off the wall or under the tree, the greatest selection of holiday songs this side of the North pole.” -WXPN, Philadelphia

“A remarkable music assemblage” – NY Examiner
“Just One Angel is an imaginative gem”

Christine Lavin is a singer/songwriter/guitarist/recording artist living in Geneva, New York. She has recorded 20 solo albums [latest: Cold Pizza For Breakfast on Yellow Tail Records]. She has also produced nine compilation CDs showcasing the work of dozens of songwriters whose work she loves -- one of them, the food-themed One Meat Ball, includes a 96-page cookbook that Christine edited. For four years she hosted "Slipped Disks" on xm satellite radio, playing CDs slipped to her backstage by compatriots, and is the occasional guest host for the City Folk Sunday Breakfast Show on WFUV-FM at Fordham University. She also writes freelance for various publications (including The Washington Post, The St. Petersburg Times, The Performing Songwriter, and Delta "Sky" Magazine). Her song "Amoeba Hop" has been turned into a science/music book by illustrator Betsy Franco Feeney (Puddle Jump Press), received the stamp of approval from The International Society of Protistologists, and a "Best Book Award" from the American Association for The Advancement of Science.

The new book THE PLUTO FILES: THE RISE AND FALL OF AMERICA'S FAVORITE PLANET, written by Neil deGrasse Tyson, head of the Hayden Planetarium in NYC, includes the complete lyrics to Christine's song "Planet X," which details Pluto's history and planetary status debate in rhyme. The book is published by W.W. Norton. And Christine got a "D" in Astronomy in college (see kids? You CAN make up for the mistakes of your youth).

Christine performs concerts all over the US, Canada, and points beyond (Australia, Germany, Israel), and hosts knitting circles backstage prior to each show. Songs of hers have been performed by artists as diverse as Broadway stars Betty Buckley, Sutton Foster, and David Burnham, cabaret divas Andrea Marcovicci. Barbara Brussell, and Colleen McHugh, the college a cappella Dartmouth Decibelles, and The Accidentals, winners of the National Harmony Sweepstakes championship.

Her latest book project, Cold Pizza For Breakfast: A Mem-Wha?? has just been published and is available in paperback, kindle, iPad, and audio book formats. Just One Angel, her latest compilation project, (22 artists, 22 Christmas/Hanukah/Solstice/New Year's songs) has just been released in time for the 2010 holiday season.

Uncle Bonsai

Uncle Bonsai performs original, contemporary folk/pop music. With their soaring and intricate 3-part vocal harmonies and biting humor, accompanied by only an acoustic guitar, Arni Adler, Patrice O'Neill, and Andrew Ratshin deliver poignantly unflinching portrayals of life, love, and a guy named Doug. The trio's influences range from the Beatles to Stephen Sondheim. Some say Zappa cross-bred with Peter, Paul and Mary. Loudon Wainwright III, the Roches. Three tightly tiered and adhered voices, acoustic guitar. That's it. Nearly naked folk-pop for everyone.

Uncle Bonsai has released 9 recordings, headlined at clubs, concert halls, and festivals throughout North America and appeared with superluminaries, including Bonnie Raitt, Suzanne Vega, The Bobs, et al.

Their latest release, "The Grim Parade," features both live and studio recordings of songs that focus on the passing of time, the passing of genes, and the passing of pets -- the truth of everything seemingly buried somewhere under the family tree.


Uncle Bonsai formed in 1981, when three recent graduates of a tiny college in Vermont migrated to Seattle and found each other in the want ads. Though strangers on the campus of only 600 students, the three quickly came together when one of them put out a call for a folk group to sing sea shanties.

Instead, Andrew, the group's guitarist and primary songwriter began writing new songs for the trio, creating a sound that soon became the trio's trademark: high soaring and intricate harmonies, (often biting) humor, and poignant, unflinching portrayals of life, love, and an everyman named "Doug."

The first "show" -- busking outside the gates of the Bumbershoot Festival in Seattle – amassed seven dollars apiece, enough to cross the gates onto the grounds in 1981. A year later, Bonsai opened for Firesign Theater, the first of several Bumbershoot and other festival appearances across North America.

When Seattle's KEZX radio played Bonsai's first recording, "Suzy," sold-out houses in the Pacific Northwest followed. Over the next eight years, Uncle Bonsai motor-homed its way around the national folk circuit for club, theater and festival engagements, frequently playing at New York's The Bottom Line, DC's The Birchmere and San Francisco's The Great American Music Hall, among others. The trio received accolades from national press and released three critically acclaimed recordings, A Lonely Grain of Corn ('84), Boys Want Sex in the Morning ('86), and Myn Ynd Wymyn ('88).

Uncle Bonsai's acoustic folk-pop songs are almost one-act plays or short stories, resisting strict pop, folk, or singer-songwriter categories. Consequently, in the '80s the trio paired with a wide range of artists --- Bonnie Raitt, Suzanne Vega, Loudon Wainwright III, Tracey Chapman, They Might Be Giants, The Persuasions, The Bobs, and Robyn Hitchcock -- reflecting a diversity of categorization. In addition to their regular appearances at clubs and festivals throughout North America, the group stretched the boundaries of "folk" music, appearing in a number of theaters, including a run with the improv group None of the Above, for shows at Seattle's A Contemporary Theater.

In 1989, Bonsai the group decided to take a break, but not before performing one final show, a benefit concert before an audience of 8,000 at the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle.

Eight years later, the trio reunited for one night only, to perform and record the "Doug" release and, following up on the success of that evening, which sold out within hours of being announced, started performing bi-annually, writing new songs and winning over new fans. Just a year later, the group recorded a series of live concerts that became their eighth release, "Apology." Performances throughout the Pacific NW region, and a number of concerts in favorite national clubs, convinced the group to start touring again

In 2007, Patrice O'Neill joined original members Arni Adler and Andrew Ratshin, and three years later, Uncle Bonsai released The Grim Parade (2010), a collection of live and studio performances of songs focused on the passing of time, the passing of genes, and the passing of pets -- the truth of everything seemingly buried somewhere under the family tree.



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CANCELLED: Christine Lavin & Uncle Bonsai

Friday, December 20 · Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM at Aladdin Theater