THE ROOTS CAFÉ SINGER-SONGWRITER SERIES
MATT PLESS, GEORGIE JESSUP,
GEOFFREY HIMES & WILLEM ELSEVIER
AT AN DIE MUSIK LIVE MAY 12
Matt Pless and Georgie Jessup
perform their own songs in the round
with singing host Geoffrey Himes
Before folk-punk phenom Matt Pless heads off to New York State next month to share the stage with Mavis Staples and Ani Di Franco at Pete Seeger's Clearwater Hudson River Revival, the singer-songwriter will do a hometown show in Baltimore as part of the Roots Café Series. Indie Pulse Music describes Pless's songs as “is unlike any youth anthem, agro political [music] you may have heard: well written, well composed, light hearted and sweetened with soft acoustic rhythms, it sounds more like a Simon and Garfunkel album of love songs, but love of life, of humanity and of doing right by your fellow man.” Despite the frequent comparisons to Bob Dylan, Indie Pulse argues that Pless comes “from a more angst-ridden generation, with an ideology that is intertwined with an abundant humor and is uniquely his own.”
Georgie Jessup’s songwriting is influenced by everything from old school country to Memphis R&B, placing her music firmly in the “cosmic” Americana Music genre. Her lyrics reflect her outspoken advocacy for animal rights, Native American issues, transgender rights and environmental sanity. The subject of an award-winning documentary film, “Woman in A Man’s Suit,” Georgie also has five, well received, CDs available. She often performs with two different bands: the Philosopher Dogs and the Cosmic Cowgirls, but this evening she will be performing solo on piano and guitar. “Georgie sings from the heart, like a rare flower in a wilderness,” says blues diva Candye Kane. “She speaks to us about the deepest issues, issues that all of us should care about, but so many of us pretend don’t affect us.”
Geoffrey Himes celebrates his birthday with this concert. Though he is best known as a music critic for the Washington Post, Smithsonian Magazine, Baltimore City Paper, Nashville Scene, Jazz Times, No Depression, Paste and many more, Himes is also a longtime singer-songwriter who has co-written songs with Si Kahn, Fred Koller, Walter Egan, Sonia Rutstein, Billy Kemp, Stephen Wade, Jim Patton, Tony Denikos, Alan MacEwan, Ed Pettersen, James von Lenz, Andrew Grimm, Bob Kannenberg and others. His songs have been recorded by Kemp, the Kinsey Report, Denikos, Koller, Mojo Filter, Patton and others. This month Himes will premiere a new song: “Broken People.”
Willem Elsevier is a trained violinist who has found success in both the classical and jazz worlds. He is best known, however, for his role in Love Riot, the Baltimore rock band that recorded with producer Eric Ambel and toured widely. Elsevier’s sophisticated solos helped the band beat out 2,500 other bands from around the globe to win the Yamaha Music Quest competition in Japan in 1994. Elsevier has also recorded with such acts as Billy Kemp and Milkshake. Since 2012, he has been performing and songwriter in a duo with Geoffrey Himes.
AN DIE MUSIK:
An Die Musik is Baltimore’s finest listening room. With 84 armchairs, great acoustics, the city’s best piano and a lobby bar, this performance space above the venerable record store is as intimate as it is inviting. The street parking meters are free on Sundays; the venue offers discount coupons for the area’s ethnic restaurants, and the 5 pm start time keeps the afternoon free while allowing a good night's sleep before the work week. Here, at last, is a music experience designed for adults.
UPCOMING SHOWS IN THE ROOTS CAFÉ SINGER-SONGWRITER SERIES
AT AN DIE MUSIK LIVE:
June 2: “Poetry and Music” with Maryland’s Poet Laureate Grace Cavalieri