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Jessica Fichot Quartet

Genre: Folk , Gypsy Jazz , World

  1. Thursday, April 17 9:00 PM (21+)

Drawing from her French/Chinese/American heritage and her youth in Paris, chanteuse and songwriter Jessica Fichot performs original French chanson, gypsy jazz and international folk. Following the release of two acclaimed albums "Le Chemin" and "Le Secret", she has toured throughout the U.S., China, Mexico, Canada and western Europe - backed by her fiery band (clarinet, guitar and upright bass), and armed with her accordion, toy piano and beautiful multilingual vocals.

Joe Ely w/ David Ramirez

Genre: Country Rock , Singer-songwriter

Joe Ely is an American singer, songwriter and guitarist whose music touches on honky-tonk, Texas Country, Tex-Mex and rock and roll.

He has had a genre-crossing career, performing with Bruce Springsteen, Uncle Tupelo, Los Super Seven, The Chieftains and James McMurtry in addition to his early work with The Clash and more recent acoustic tours with Lyle Lovett, John Hiatt, and Guy Clark.


Johnette Napolitano (of Concrete Blonde)

Genre: Alternative Rock , Singer-songwriter

  1. Sunday, June 15 7:30 PM (All ages)

The rock critic had just vomited all over his bed. It was 3:04 a.m. on yet another early morning in 1986 in New York City and the scribe had just come off a three-day benderpalooza of self-prescribed medicines for the wounds of a break-up with a prevaricating witch. He hated his job, he hated his life – and more importantly – he hated rock ‘n’ roll.

As he gathered the bed sheets covered with effluvia to throw out the window, the 24-hour television set broadcast that voice. He turned and saw this dame for the first time and recognized the cry of a street angel whose epic vocal power contained human history, the strength of iron and steel, and the vulnerability of someone insisting on freedom when she knows damn well she might not get it.

He dropped the crumpled sheets short of their eleven-story descent and sat at the edge of the bed to watch the tube. There she was – someone named Johnette Napolitano from some L.A. band called Concrete Blonde. She was beautiful and whip smart and had confidence and poise and wit.  Again, there was that voice. “Mmmph. Hope for rock ‘n’ roll after all,” he said out loud, knowing full well he was talking about his own sorry ass. 

Twenty-seven years later Johnette Napolitano is talking to the rock critic on the phone from her home in Joshua Tree, California. He wants to know about that voice. “When I was in junior high school and started goin’ to parties, I wasn’t the most socially graceful creature at all. So I’d take my guitar around and the one thing I know is that whenever I’d start singing, everyone would shut up and listen.”

Shut up and listen. Shut up and listen. And so they did.

Concrete Blonde came howling out the chute in that year of our Ronnie Ray-Gun 1986 and knocked out three classic albums by 1990: Concrete Blonde, Free and Bloodletting. The latter begat the hit single “Joey” – a sobbing love song to a dying alcoholic – perfect rock balladry. Napolitano was born in Hollywood – the belly of the beast – and her songs were (and remain) cinematic – feature films compressed into three-minute rock ‘n’ roll: “Still In Hollywood,” “God Is A Bullet,” “True.” Walking In London, Mexican Moon, and a collabo with Chicano punk-rockers Los Illegals followed. “Ghost Of A Texas Ladies Man” and “Heal It Up” – among others -- hail from that period. She is also one of the great song interpreters of our time, as proven by the way she turned James Brown’s “It’s A Man’s World” and Leonard Cohen’s “Everybody Knows” into Johnette songs.

In between recording she toured the planet. “Gigging was always just as much about traveling,” she explains. “Like my godmother told me when I was 9 years old ‘you must travel, you must go to Europe, you must see these places.’ I never forgot that – this was my way out and into the world.” She worked on side projects -- Pretty & Twisted, The Heads with Talking Heads vets, and a legendary, much-bootlegged ‘90s solo album that went officially unreleased because of record racket shenanigans. Just as importantly, the girl who’d dreamed of an unaffordable art school when she was a child became the woman who pursued all of her dreams. She’s been an artist and art gallery owner, conducted psychic readings, keeps horses, studied pottery with a master in Mexico as well as flamenco dance and song in Spain and is now a practicing tattooist. “I’m licensed to ill, baby!” she proudly exclaims in her delicious, throaty laugh. Her Joshua Tree Tattoo business focuses on “nature-based design.” After moving from L.A. a dozen years ago, she’s incorporated the desert aesthetic like she used to use Hollywood as a muse. “I absorb my surroundings,” she explains.

The 21st Century brought the gorgeous, solo Scarred, various Concrete Blonde reunions and her book Rough Mix – a collection of short stories, lyrics and drawings. She’s now touring on her own – just an acoustic guitar and her songs, passages read from Rough Mix against projected backdrops of original and found art – and that voice.

“I get a little impatient with people my age because they’re always talkin’ about the old days bein’ so much fun and I’m thinkin’ ‘well why don’t they just dig themselves a hole now?’ This is the time to really fuckin’ bring it. I’ve been doin’ it long enough that I oughta know what I’m doin’. Insecurities that used to plague me aren’t there cuz I’m too tired for ‘em. It gives me the freedom of not giving a fuck. I’ve been having the best time of my life and I’ve never seen an audience have a better time.” She pauses and then adds for emphasis: “I’m looking forward.”

The rock critic whose faith in rock ‘n’ roll was restored all those years ago by Johnette Napolitano laughs. His only advice is shut up and listen.

----- Michael Simmons


Johnny Clegg

Genre: Singer-songwriter

  1. Wednesday, April 30 7:30 PM (All ages)

Johnny Clegg - dancer, anthropologist, singer, songwriter, academic, activist and French knight. Whilst all of these tags are fitting, none of them can accurately describe the energetic, passionate human being who has become one of South Africa's greatest musical exports. He has campaigned against the injustice of apartheid South Africa and been instrumental in putting the new South Africa on the map as a cultural ambassador. More info on Johnny's life and achievements is available here.

Recently awarded three honorary doctorates from Dartmouth College, CUNY and University of the Witwatersrand, Johnny, a former Grammy nominee and Billboard music award winner, still tours regularly, both at home and abroad.

Jon Batiste and Stay Human

Genre: Blues , Jazz

  1. Sunday, May 18 7:30 PM (All ages)

Peerless artistry combined with the uplifting pleasure of entertainment exists squarely at the heart of Jon Batiste’s musical vision which he calls Social Music and is the title of the full length debut.  With his soulful voice, virtuosic piano chops and dapper sense of style, Jon Batiste, 27,  transcends music genres with his modern take on American music.  Jon has absorbed a musical language that disregards genre distinctions - reviving the roots of jazz, blues and other American music yet playing it in a way that is fresh, accessible and engaging. Produced  by Jeff Jones “The Jedi Master” with Jon Batiste, Social Music features Batiste on piano, vocals and melodica, (which he has renamed the harmonaboard) and his Julliard trained band Stay Human. 

Batiste has defined a vision based on what's already been a rich artistic journey.  Born in New Orleans Jon is a descendant of New Orleans' musical "royalty" whose deep musical heritage is part of the inspiration for the HBO series Treme and in which he has appeared.  He attended the prestigious New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA) before moving to New York at 18 to attend Julliard receiving a Masters Degree in Music.  Over the last decade he has forged his own artistic path by indelibly fusing himself within the fabric of New York City culture.  He currently serves as the Artistic Director at Large of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem where he curates programming and educates audiences of all ages and backgrounds.

He has collaborated with the likes of Prince, Cassandra Wilson, Lauryn Hill, Spike Lee, Wynton Marsalis, Jimmy Buffet, Eve, Lenny Kravitz, ?uestlove, and Asher Roth and recorded extensively, most recently putting out the EP MY NY with Stay Human in 2011 which was recorded live in the subway system of Manhattan.

He is a "Movado Future Legend" award recipient and recently received the prestigious honor of Best New Artist at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.  He has performed in over 40 countries, playing sold out shows in  various venues from NYC, London and Paris to The Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center. Jon Batiste and Stay Human are currently touring the US and will be doing summer festivals in the US and in Europe in July.

Jose Gonzales

Genre: Funk , Pop , R&B

  1. Thursday, May 08 9:00 PM (21+)

Firmly rooted in jazz, fed with a steady diet of blues, and dedicated to the art of the song, JOSE 'JUICY' GONZALES TRIO offers a fresh take on standards, joyfully flirting with pop, funk, and R&B. Whether leading his piano trio, or fronting as a vocalist, his performances are always special.

Jose James w/ Moonchild

Genre: Electronica , Hip Hop , Jazz , R&B

  1. Thursday, April 24 7:30 PM (All ages)

Singer-songwriter José James has always been on the quest for new musical horizons; constantly evolving and blurring the lines between genres in the process. Now on the heels of his critically acclaimed Blue Note Records debut No Beginning No End, José returns with his dynamic and daring fifth album While You Were Sleeping. While keeping his trademark soulful baritone at the forefront, José adeptly weaves elements of indie rock, folk, funk, blues, hip hop and R&B into an experience journeying from desire to introspection and spiritual epiphany. “As an artist, I’m going to keep evolving,” he says resolutely. “I think my fans have now come to expect this from me. They want to know what I’m going to do next.”

“I really wanted to make a wide open album that people could come into from a lot of different perspectives,” he continues. “This album is a synthesis of everything I love about music, from contemporary artists like Frank Ocean, James Blake, and Junip to groundbreaking artists I grew up with like Nirvana, Radiohead, and Madlib. It’s also a love letter to many late nights spent in East London clubs like Plastic People and Cargo, watching new movements unfold in electronic music. I want people to feel the joy of discovery that I experience night after night onstage, reaching for something new.”

Along with producer Brian Bender and his tight-knit band – Kris Bowers (keys), Solomon Dorsey (bass), and Richard Spaven (drums) – José set out to create an album that captured the spirit of his newfound creative space. In the studio the band members recalibrated their roles, serving as co-producers for his latest forays in sound. “They really went in on the creative ideas, taking it to a new place. I definitely had the artistic vision. It’s still a José James album. But for the first time, I let the band have more of a voice.” José’s decision to have all hands on deck resulted in a more cohesive band unit. “It got me a lot closer to them as well. It’s really about us sharing our musical worlds. The band is super tight now. I think it’s one of the most special bands that I’ve ever had.”

José composed the majority of the album while on the road in support of No Beginning No End. During his tour he decided to shift his method of composition to acoustic guitar. “I really loved the way it meshed with my voice,” he says. “It made me realize that I hadn’t been tapping into other influences that I had within me.”

José also recruited a new band member in Memphis guitarist Brad Allen Williams to shore up the ideas he’d been mulling for the new album. Williams brought a rock feel while maintaining his home city’s signature soul and blues. “He’s amazing. He’s a perfect fit for this new direction. There’s definitely a lot more rock elements on this record because of Brad, but the soul connection is also important to me. I never want to go too far away from soul.”

The resulting album beautifully showcases James’ knack for weaving strands of various genres into a singular musical experience. “Angel,” the album’s opening track, opens with a wailing guitar riff reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix before launching into a funky ode to the tug of war between carnal desire and the quest for love. “I think it’s fascinating to have that kind of spiritual/sexual tension. I think we need both. You just have to find the balance between the two.”

José offers up the converse in “Bodhisattva.” “It’s a Buddhist term that means enlightened being,” he explains. Written during a stop in Jakarta while on tour, the song was James’ first song written outside of No Beginning No End. “I was staying in a hotel modeled after the famous Borobudur Temple where I started to feel a beautiful spiritual presence. One day I was walking through the gardens surrounded by statues of Bodhisattvas and heard a Muslim call to prayer. I got inspired to write a song about unity and compassion that would be as deeply spiritual as my time in Jakarta.”

The lead single “EveryLittleThing” flaunts a rock vibe spiked with an electronica edge. “This was the only one that came together so quickly,” beams José. “We finished it in half an hour. The lyrics come from somewhere deep and personal. It’s just about coming from a rough beginning, which I definitely have come from. Finding strength through adversity. Being a self-made man.”

The album’s title track “While You Were Sleeping”ebbs and flows beautifully, ruminating on the end of a love affair. The song culminates in crashing waves of self-reflection and affirmation. “I feel like that’s the best thing I’ve ever done,” he says. “It’s the most mature song I’ve ever written. That’s a song – in both writing and production – that I’ll stand by as my best to date. It’s about break ups and that feeling of being on the edge, when you realize that your life is about to change completely. It’s about letting go and finding inner strength as well.”

“Anywhere U Go” revs up the rock engine once again while “Dragon” finds José melding his distinctive sound with singer-songwriter Becca Stevens. A former New School classmate, Stevens wrote the song as the sessions for While You Were Sleeping were coming to a close. “She wrote it and we were all blown away,” says José. “The demo that she sent was her playing on a Wurlitzer. We liked it so much we decided to use it on the album version.”

Reflecting his desire not to stray too far from his soul influences, the album closes with a slow-burning cover of the 1972 Al Green classic “Simply Beautiful.” Featuring a smoldering trumpet solo by Blue Note label mate Takuya Kuroda, José was initially wary of including the cover. “I’m not normally a fan of covering great soul legends,” he says. “But I felt like we were doing something musically valid with it, so we decided to record it. That was the only one we did together in one take. And you can feel it.”

Josh Rouse w/ Doug Paisley

Genre: Singer-songwriter

  1. Friday, June 13 8:00 PM (All ages)

This down-to-earth singer-songwriter came out early in his career with an astounding and acclaimed piece of music in ‘Dressed Up like Nebraska’, highlighted by its title cut, and the song “Suburban Sweetheart”, which 15 years later still stands up majestically alongside other tracks of its canon. And the Artist continued to build on that impressive debut with subsequent albums, via his fruitful and long-running collaborations with producer Brad Jones. To many, this is personified in the break out hit album ‘1972’. It has been a career that, thankfully, has seen the Artist exhibit a welcome reluctance to follow the “devil-may-care, lets release everything recorded on tape” attitude of some of his contemporaries. Careful and thoughtful with his output, the Nebraskan ensures that the songs are well considered, and striving for the gold standard.

Josh Rouse | Oh, Look What The Sun Did from Ignacio Bernal on Vimeo.

Juana Molina w/ Daniel G Harmann

Genre: Singer-songwriter

  1. Monday, April 21 7:30 PM (All ages)

Juana Molina is a singer/songwriter from Argentina whose quirky, atmospheric songs bring to mind modern chanteuses such as Lisa Germano and Beth Orton. Best known in South America as a comedic television actress, Molina debuted in 1996 with Rara. The album was simple, direct, and intimate: three things that usually fall outside the ego scope of most celeb music projects. Apparently, Molina was happy pursuing other interests and it wasn't until 2003 that she returned with a follow-up album, this time recording for the U.K.-based Domino label. Segundo had all of the intimacy of Molina's earlier work, but the prominence of electronics on the album clearly signaled a departure. A third album of electronica-enhanced songs, appropriately titled Tres Cosas, appeared soon after, in 2004.

The lyrics on her albums are sung in her native Rioplatense Spanish, except in Insensible from her third album which is in French, and often accompanied by acoustic guitar among other instruments. Her music features elements of ambient and electronica, and she is often compared by critics to Björk, Beth Orton, and Lisa Germano. She usually writes, mixes tracks and performs on her own. Her second album, Segundo, was named Best World Music Album 2003 in Entertainment Weekly and gained a Shortlist Award 2004 nomination. Tres Cosas was placed in the Top Ten Records of 2004 by the New York Times.

The much more organic and acoustic guitar-based Son was released in May 2006. Un Dia followed in October 2008, charting the same course of organic and acoustic material. After a five-year break, Molina released Wed 21 in October of 2013 on Crammed Discs; it was prefaced by the single "Eras."

Daniel G. Harmann is a master craftsman of working class art. With the lyrical depth of Low or the Red House Painters, Harmann constructs “iceberg rock” as powerful as late 90s post punk, & as emotionally honest & deep as melancholy rockers Jimmy Eat World, Idlewild, or even Fugazi. Harmann's songs draw the listener in with their dark & smoky feel, while escorting you through life's landscape of pain & redemption in a way only a trusted friend can.

Judith Owen

Genre: Alternative Rock , Piano , Singer-songwriter

  1. Wednesday, June 04 7:30 PM (All ages)

British singer/songwriter Judith Owen's eclecticism has seen her records shelved in the rock, folk, and jazz sections of record stores. She was born the daughter of an opera singer and began writing songs as a teenager. Becoming a professional musician, she met and married actor/musician Harry Shearer and contributed vocals and keyboards to his 1994 album, It Must Have Been Something I Said.

That Judith Owen's new album Ebb and Flow evokes the spirit of the halcyon days of the great 1970s troubadours is not accidental. In a set of potent songs about love and loss, pain and joy, dreams and despair, the Welsh singer-songwriter fearlessly explores the duality of the human condition - and to do justice to the songs she turned to the legendary musicians who created the seventies troubadour sound. Between them, her core band of drummer Russ Kunkel, bassist Lee Sklar and guitarist Waddy Wachtel played on many of the landmark albums from the era by the likes of Carole King, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne.

The three musicians who "created the sound of the 1970s" (Rolling Stone) were always the band Owen wanted to work with. "I fell in love with them; that soothing sound and the consummate side-men who helped create it," says Owen. David Crosby described them simply as "the best." With Ebb and Flow, they recorded together for the first time in fifteen years.

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Triple Door

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Seattle, WA 98101
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