Norfolk's Discovery Music Series has announced a new set of shows starting Oct. 18 and stretching into the spring of 2013. Shying away from indie rock, the series has steered toward acoustic, folk and bluegrass.
An exception is the legendary punk-ska-metal band Fishbone, which is returning to the area, having played the Jewish Mother in Virginia Beach late last year. The group was the subject of a recent documentary film, "Everyday Sunshine" from directors Lev Anderson and Chris Metzler.
Fishbone's show at the Attucks Theatre will be Feb. 23.
The Oct. 18 series launch show is by Orgone, a Los Angeles band I don't know. According to Allmusic.com, they're a funk ensemble that's been tapped to back hip-hop groups Little Brother and the Pharcyde.
Elsewhere on the schedule, we see an Oct. 27 show by singer-songwriter Steve Forbert, known for his hit "Romeo's Tune."
Check out the full series schedule and band mini-bios below.
Discovery Music Series
October 18, 2012 – March 22, 2013
& THE DIRTY BIRDS
JOHN COWAN BAND
NORFOLK, VA- The City of Norfolk’s Seven Venues, in association with the Virginia Arts Festival, will present the 2012-2013 Discovery Music Series at the historic Attucks Theatre with a lineup of twelve noteworthy performances from October 18,2012 through March 22, 2013. Now in its eleventh season, The Discovery Music Series has become a staple of the Hampton Roads music scene. The series continues to be one the best ways to discover up and coming artists at an affordable price as well as revisit some more seasoned musicians whose music you may already know but have never experienced in an intimate theatre setting. Come discover the undeniable talent that makes this series truly great!
Orgone, October 18, 2012
Pronounced with a long second “O,” the Los Angeles band Orgone is dedicated to heavy, raw, adrenaline-fueled funk and sweat-dripping soul. With a core rhythm section of close friends and self-taught musicians steeped in local DJ culture, Orgone has spent the last decade expanding their roster and evolving a sound rooted in old school respect but pulsing with the force of the new millennium. Orgone has become a staple on the festival circuit while gaining a reputation among fellow artists as one of the baddest go-to backing bands on the planet. Always evolving musically and cosmically, Orgone continues to connect with kindred musical spirits throughout the universe with relentless touring and the upcoming release of their fifth full-length album.
Orgone is a live funk juggernaut that can do it all, weaving seamlessly between gut- bucket nastiness, afrobeat, disco/house, and classic covers, creating a sweaty, dynamic dance experience.
Steve Forbert, October 27, 2012
Originally from Meridian, Mississippi, Forbert traveled to New York City as a young man and played guitar for change in Grand Central Station. He continued to play various venues and he skyrocketed to international prominence with a folk-rock hit, “Romeo’s Tune,” during a time when artists like the Ramones and Talking Heads were fading out and other New Wave and punk acts were moving in to the public consciousness. Still, critics raved about Forbert’s poetic lyrics and engaging melodies, and the crowds at CBGB’s club in New York accepted him alongside those acts. After his first two records came a series of well-crafted, unforgettable songs on such albums as Little Stevie Orbit, Streets of This Town, The American in Me, Mission of the Crossroad Palms and Evergreen Boy. His tribute to Jimmie Rodgers, Any Old Time, was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2004.
Forbert’s lengthy discography has helped to establish him as an American icon and his music was pure Americana before that genre was even recognized. Now, 34 years after his first album, Forbert is releasing an exciting new work, Over With You. It includes ten fresh but mature songs that pinpoint a wide range of emotions that color personal relationships and that most listeners have undoubtedly felt and struggled to understand at some point in their lives. “This is an album that has taken a lifetime to make,” explains Forbert. “You don’t just pull these songs out of thin air — you have to live them.”
John Cowan Band, November 3, 2012
John Cowan is considered to be one of the ultimate musical innovators; his ability to move easily between music styles and blend genres into creative new forms has made him one of the most significant voices in acoustic music over the past thirty years. After making a name for himself in the early 1970s’ music scene in Louisville, KY., Cowan rose to fame when he became the lead singer for New Grass Revival. He and band mates Sam Bush, Bela Fleck, and Pat Flynn introduced a new generation of music fans to a charged, experimental brand of bluegrass. After entertaining fans for nearly two decades, New Grass disbanded in 1990 and Cowan immediately pursued his creative muse with a series of critically acclaimed albums. The Evansville, Indiana-native explored tunes that ran the gamut from rock to souls to blues and beyond however, as the 21st century began, Cowan found himself slowly returning back to the acoustic music that he knew so well. He surrounded himself with some of the best acoustic musicians working. When the current line-up of his band, Jeff Autry (guitar), Shad Cobb (fiddle), and John Frazier (mandolin), came together, the music began to take a natural, organic turn back to Cowan’s acoustic roots. On his latest release, New Tattoo, fans can hear eclectic mix and blend of styles and Cowan’s willingness to bare even the most private recesses of his soul. New Tattoo is a bold and notable statement from one of the most important voices working in American music.
Darrell Scott, November 15, 2012
Darrell Scott, the son of musician Wayne Scott with whom he has collaborated, is a Kentucky born singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. As a child, Scott moved to East Gary, Indiana and by his teens was playing professionally in Southern California. He attended Tufts University, where he studied poetry and literature and has lived in Nashville, Tennessee, since the mid 90’s. He has written several mainstream country hits, and also has established himself as one of Nashville's premier session instrumentalists. Scott has collaborated with many successful artists to include Steve Earle, Sam Bush, Emmylou Harris, John Cowan, Verlon Thompson, Guy Clark, Tim O'Brien, Kate Rusby, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Mary Gauthier, and many others. His unique music has attracted a growing fan base, and he tours regularly with his own band. His most recent album, Crooked Road, was released in May 2010. It went on to win an award at The 10th Annual Independent Music Awards. That same year, Cowan was announced as part of the Band of Joy, alongside Robert Plant, credited as performing vocals, mandolin, guitar, accordion, pedal, lap steel and banjo.
Martin Sexton, January 11, 2013
Born and raised in Syracuse, NY, a self taught guitarist and singer, Sexton joined his first band when he was in eighth grade. In 1990, he moved to Boston, and began his career as a busker in Harvard Square and eventually began playing in clubs. In 1991 he released his own record, In the Journey, in cassette format, and much of the material on this and Black Sheep, his 1996 debut for Eastern Front Records, is autobiographical in nature, concerning his life on the road. Remarkably, Sexton sold 15,000 copies of his cassette-only album through the power of his live shows and rigorous tours around the U.S.
He was named Artist of the Year by the National Academy of Songwriters in 1994 and by 1996, Sexton was sharing stages with Art Garfunkel, Jackson Browne, and John Hiatt. Sexton subsequently signed a deal with Atlantic Records, releasing The American in 1998 and Wonder Bar in 2000. Sexton continued to tour, building a sizable following throughout the States. He released the Christmas-themed Camp Holiday in November 2005, followed by the captivating Seeds in 2007. Sugarcoating was released in 2010, followed by the politically charged, five track EP “Fall Like Rain” in 2012.
He has become known in the music industry as a folk, blues, and jazz guitar master, using his hands, feet, and incredible vocal range as both melody and percussion. Sexton continues to maintain a demanding tour schedule, and currently records for Atlantic Records.
Wheeler Brothers, January 17, 2013
The Wheeler Brothers, a five-piece act composed of Austin natives, have emerged as one of the most exciting bands to come out of Texas. Brothers Nolan, Tyler and Patrick Wheeler met Danny Matthews at LSU where they spent many afternoons playing guitars in the bar rooms of Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Upon their return to Austin, the group decided to round out their sound with the addition of guitarist A.J. Molyneaux. The band worked well together and managed to create a sound that pushed their name to the forefront of the Austin music scene.
The Wheeler Brothers’ debut album, Portraits, was released in June 2011and was met with rave reviews. The album was backed by Texas swing legend Ray Benson and his label Bismeaux Records. This support, as well as the bands strong presence on college radio, helped pave the way for Wheeler Brothers to embark on their first national tour in the summer of 2011. The Wheeler Brothers debuted on the festival scene and began to gain recognition from supporting national acts such as Bob Schneider and Drive by Truckers. The Wheeler Brothers continue to tour and perform for their growing fan base and consistently sold out performances.
Mountain Heart, February 2, 2013
Widely known throughout the music industry for continually redefining the boundaries of acoustic music, Mountain Heart has been synonymous with cutting-edge excellence in acoustic music circles since the group's creation in 1999. Mountain Heart continues to be one of the most highly awarded ensembles ever created, with members of the band having won or been nominated for Grammy’s, ACM, CMA, and multiple IBMA Awards. They have appeared at the Grand Ole Opry in excess of 125 times and have shared the stage with acts ranging from Lynyrd Skynyrd, Montgomery Gentry, Merle Haggard, George Jones and Brad Paisley to Alison Krauss, Tony Rice, The Avett Brothers, Yonder Mountain Stringband, Levon Helm, John Fogerty and Patty Loveless.
From large outdoor folk and bluegrass festivals, to sold-out arena shows opening for Southern Rock icons, Lynyrd Skynyrd, to co-headlining concerts with the acoustic guitar legend, Tony Rice, Mountain Heart always manages to win over their audience, leaving them on their feet. Their rare combination of talent and abilities makes Mountain Heart one of the most versatile acts ever assembled. This year Mountain Heart will play some of the most prestigious outdoor multi-genre festivals in the nation as well as theaters and clubs as they tour in support of their seventh album, That Just Happened, which was released in late 2010.
Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds, February 9, 2013
Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds, a nine-piece ensemble that puts a modern spin on classic soul, is led by Arleigh Kincheloe (Sister Sparrow) and is backed by the mighty force of The Dirty Birds, a flock of eight men who artfully lay down thundering grooves and soaring melodies. Front-woman Sister Sparrow first began writing songs with her harmonica-playing brother Jackson, but it quickly became clear that a large, powerful band was needed to do justice to the tunes she was producing. The siblings called upon their cousin Bram, a California raised drummer, to help them assemble a band of epic proportions. Bram brought in childhood friends JJ Byars (alto saxophone) and Ryan Snow (trombone), and Ryan called upon baritone saxophonist and close friend Johnny Butler. Trumpeter Phil Rodriguez, guitarist Sasha Brown and bassist Aidan Carroll were eventually added to the group.
By 2009, Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds packed New York’s legendary Rockwood Music Hall every weekend, holding down a five-month-long residency that built them a reputation for being one of the funkiest, tightest groups in the city. Within six months of their November 2010 debut release on Modern Vintage Recordings, Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds had opened for the Black Keys, the Neville Brothers, Dr. John, the Rebirth Brass Band, and the Soul Rebels Brass Band, among others. Through numerous bookings at music festivals, they continued to gain wider acclaim. In the spring of 2011, they embarked on an extensive national tour. Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds’ undeniable camaraderie, boundless energy, incredible talent and passion for music makes for an explosive combination that is taking the country by storm and growing their rabid fan base.
Frontier Ruckus, February 17, 2013
Frontier Ruckus, a roots-based band from East Lansing, MI, are known for incorporating elements of rock, folk, bluegrass, country, blues, and jazz into their lyric-driven songs. The band was formed by singer-songwriter Matthew Milia and banjo player David Winston Jones during high school, and eventually became a three-piece with Eli Eisman on bass. During their college years, Frontier Ruckus expanded the band, adding Ryan "Smalls" Etzcorn on drums, Anna Burch on harmony vocals, and multi-dimensional musician Zachary Nichols on horns, singing saw, and melodica.
The band recorded a six-song self-released EP entitled “I Am the Water You Are Pumping” in 2006. Five of those songs appeared again in 2008 on the band's first full-length album, The Orion Songbook, which was named for Orion Township, a Metro Detroit suburb. Eisman left the band around the time of the album's release and was replaced on bass by Burch. The following year, Frontier Ruckus released The Orion Songbook as a double vinyl on Lower Peninsula Records with “Way Upstate & the Crippled Summer, Pt. 1”, another six-song EP, appearing as the fourth side. That same year the band was signed to Ramseur Records, a North Carolina-based label, specializing in folk and roots music.
In 2010, Frontier Ruckus became a four-member band as they prepared for the release of their second full-length album, Deadmalls & Nightfalls, when Burch decided to leave the group. Brian Barnes replaced her on bass and the band continues to tour the country.
Fishbone, February 23, 2013
Fishbone is a rock group that formed in 1979 in Los Angeles, CA. Combining equal parts of deep funk, high-energy punk, and frantic ska, Fishbone was one of the most distinctive and eclectic alternative rock bands of the late '80s. After performing in local clubs during the early '80s, the group signed with Columbia Records in the mid-'80s, releasing a self-titled EP in 1985. The following year, Fishbone released their first full-length album, In Your Face, which was quickly, followed by the Christmas EP “It's a Wonderful Life (Gonna Have a Good Time)”, released in 1987.
Truth and Soul (1988), Fishbone's second album, captured the band at their most ambitious, as they alternated between heavy metal and funk. The album expanded their fan base but they didn't record a new album for another three years. Before 1991's The Reality of My Surroundings Fishbone added second guitarist John Bigham. The album was a hit, receiving positive reviews, however, the record didn't establish the band as a mainstream success, nor did 1993's Give a Monkey a Brain and He'll Swear He's the Center of the Universe, despite their appearance at the third Lollapalooza.
In 1996 Fishbone released Chim Chim's Bad Ass Revenge, their first album for Arista, as well as a double-disc compilation Fishbone 101: Nuttasaurusmeg Fossil Fuelin. Despite poor album sales, the group remained a popular concert attraction, issuing the all-star Psychotic Friends Nuttwerx in the spring of 2000. In 2002, an EP featuring a 20-minute jam with Primus, entitled “Friendliest Psychosis of All”, was released on their own label, followed by a live album full of new songs, Live at the Temple Bar and More, in the summer. In 2006 their album Still Stuck in Your Throat appeared in Europe and the album arrived in the U.S. in April of 2007. Fishbone continues to tour, electrifying audiences with their high-octane shows.
Paul Thorn, March 2, 2013
As the son of a Pentecostal preacher, Paul Thorn started down his music path performing in churches. His first paying gig was at a revival with his father. Paul continued gathering first-hand musical experiences as a child, taking particular notice of the gospel music he heard at close quarters. His hometown of Tulepo, Mississippi was rich in music tradition. However, before Thorn reached his teens, a new passion overtook music...boxing. With the help of his Uncle Merle, a professional fighter, Thorn was taught the art boxing. He eventually won some amateur regional fights, turned professional, and became a fairly decent fighter. The highlight of his career was in 1987 when he fought Roberto Duran in Atlantic City, which was televised nationally in 1988. Over the next 12 years, Thorn’s passion for music began to return. He began to perform at various clubs around town and was eventually discovered by the legendary manager Miles Copeland. Thorn recorded his first album, Hammer & Nail, in 1997 for A&M then recorded Ain't Love Strange for Copeland's boutique Ark 21 label three years later.
Thorn landed an opening slot for Sting and subsequently toured with other big names including Mark Knopfler, Jeff Beck, John Hiatt, Richard Thompson, Robert Cray, Marianne Faithfull, and John Prine. He's toured the United States, Canada and the UK performing in such noted venues as The Royal Albert Hall in the U.K., The Greek Theater and Universal Amphitheater in Los Angeles. By 2002, Paul landed with Back Porch Records and released Mission Temple Fireworks Stand, a quirky collection of Southern roots rock. On his latest recording, Are You With Me?, Thorn’s gift for narrative is stronger than ever. His songs are based on the universal themes of love, loss, and yearning but Thorn’s ability to weave in the unexpected is what keeps audiences coming back for more.
The Roys, March 22, 2013
The Roys, a brother/sister duo made up of Lee and Elaine Roy, have become one of the fastest-rising acts in the business. Heralded for their traditional vocal styling and a progressive instrumental attitude, The Roys have earned legions of fans from around the world. Born in Fitchburg, Massachusetts and raised across the border in New Brunswick, Canada, The Roys possess a sound that is rich and identifiable. Lee mastered drums, bass and mandolin, while Elaine learned guitar. After making the decision to work together, the duo developed a strong fan following on Country radio with songs like the rollicking “Workin’ Girl Blues,” and “Beautiful,” while also forging strong bonds with radio programmers, talent buyers and critics all across the country. Requests for live appearances began to grow. Their hard work paid off and in 2009 and 2010, The Roys won Inspirational Country Music (ICM) Duo of the Year. The release of their first Rural Rhythm Records’ album, Lonesome Whistle launched their career into high gear. The album was a huge success and helped land them the award for the ICM’S Bluegrass Artist of the Year in 2011, as well as a No. 1 single, “Coal Minin’ Man.”
THE ROYS have played some of the most notable stages across the world including Dollywood, Country Thunder, Tamworth (Australia), Folk Alliance, CMA Music Festival and dozens of Bluegrass festivals. The duo has also hosted seven episodes of the Bluegrass Mountains television show and have been seen on such popular television series as Fox & Friends, Better TV and Praise the Lord with Jason Crabb. The duo has shared the stage with superstars George Jones, Ricky Skaggs, Alan Jackson, Lady Antebellum and many more.
The duo’s follow-up album, New Day Dawning, features the infectious first single “Still Standing,” along with the intriguing “Grandpa’s Barn”. With an ever-evolving sound, The Roys continue to bring new life to traditional sounds.
All twelve concerts are available for $170 as part of the Discovery Music Series Subscription Package, which includes savings off single ticket prices and several subscriber benefits. Benefits include exclusive access to the VEER Magazine Libation Lounge where subscribers will enjoy complimentary wine, beer, soft drinks and snacks during intermission, first choice of seats, a free Discovery Series t-shirt and poster, tote bag and a subscriber discount card for use at local retailers and restaurants .
A six concert Discovery Music Series Package is available for $95 each and includes all the subscriber benefits.
All tickets go on sale Monday, October 1st at 10AM. Previous subscribers’ seats will be reserved for two weeks starting October 1stand will then be released to the general public. Single tickets to all shows are $20. Tickets can be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000, at the Scope Box Office 24 hours/seven days a week, or online at www.Ticketmaster.com . For more information, visit www.discoverymusicseries.com or www.SevenVenues.com. Fans can also connect with Discovery Music Series on Facebook, download apps for the iPhone and android at www.sevenvenues.com/app and follow the action on Twitter at @SevenVenues.
ABOUT THE DISCOVERY MUSIC SERIES:
In the fall of 2006, the City of Norfolk’s Seven Venues presented the inaugural season of the new Discovery Music Series at the historic Attucks Theatre with a lineup of four of the nation’s premiere singer/songwriters. Notable past performers have included Amos Lee, The Avett Brothers, Bettye LaVette, Dar Williams, The Holmes Brothers, Josh Ritter, Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Cowboy Junkies, Colin Hay, and The Weepies.
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