By: Karousel Music
February 13, 2015
We have a very special night tonight at The House of St Barnabas on Greek Street. You are invited to reserve a table for dinner (while there still are some!) and come enjoy a killer show - three of our all time favourites, with short sets each followed by a further handful of songs each in the round. As the evening goes on, the House of St Barnabas have kindly offered to host you all for a night of Valentines bliss in the house, with DJ's; and cosy, warm, dimly lit rooms dotted all over the place.
For those of you that aren't aware of it, the House of St Barnabas is a unique members club that we are very proud to be part of - unique not only because of the stunning Grade 1 listed building and remarkable history, but because all profits at the House go to changing the lives of people affected by homelessness. They run an employment academy among other things all aimed at breaking the cycle of homelessness. An extraordinary place - you're going to love it.
There are only around 100 places for this event, so please do email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know you're coming, and mention if you'd like to have dinner. Music starts at 8pm, doors from 7.
Please email email@example.com for tickets - event is free, with donations to the acts
And so, who's playing you may ask? Well... get THIS!
In no particular order...
/// Pat Dam Smyth ///
Every now and then, us music fans get extremely excited about an artist that some journalist or other uncovers who is sat on a couple of wonderful records that the world has inexplicably missed - most recently Bill Fay or Matt Deighton spring to mind. Usually there's some dark documentary to go with it, or a tale of evil labels or managers, or a tragic loss of heart. When we were given Pat's record 'The Great Divide' and had a look at a few promo photos that came with it, we thought we'd found another lost classic artist - that in itself would have been exciting. But, you see, it gets better than that: it turns out, he's at it right now, today, recording, writing, gigging. The vinyl release of the album is imminent with our friends at Plane Groovy - and there's good cause to celebrate... The Irish Times called him a purveyor of '...a rare kind of truthful songwriting...'; The Daily Mirror calling his first solo outing a triumph and declaring that "(Pat) has returned to create something beautiful." The BBC called the record "...Amazing, musical story telling at it's finest" - Dermot O'Leary in particular championing it on Radio 2. PRS magazine called it "Beautiful, with an acerbic bite" - the list goes on. We're devotees, and we can't wait for you to soak up a night with a once in a generation artist. A cult hero in his native Northern Ireland, Pat a writer of class, honesty and gravitas with hints of everything good from Beck to Lou Reed, Leonard Cohen to The Black Keys, and, unwittingly, Bill Fay. Ace.
/// Samantha Whates ///
There's some artists you'd take bullets for, and Samantha Whates is one of them. An impossibly lovely voice, and songs that are like dancing matches lighting little bonfires beneath your ribcage. We are incredibly proud that Samantha was the first artist to join our publishing family. For fans of acts like First Aid Kit, Nina Nastasia, Laura Viers and Susanna And The Magical Orchestra, Samantha is a lost piece of the jigsaw. The much lauded Dark Nights Make For Brighter Days album, which she recorded live in a couple of days up in her native Scotland, is a sparkling, atmospheric, and emotionally brave record that drew nothing but praise from exactly the kind of people she’d want it from – Bob Harris opining on BBC Radio 2 that it was “...really, the most beautiful album...” and Tom Robinson on BBC 6 Music echoing the sentiment describing it as “... just gorgeous...”. Crucially, Samantha is one of those artists that also enjoys the endorsement of her peers. Mercury nominated Kathryn Williams with whom Samantha has collaborated for her next full album, said “her Scottish lilt melts into the words and melody of her songs like an ice cube in a single malt...” while comparing her to Vashti and Joni. James Yorktson (another Mercury Music Prize nominee) described her as “a lovely surprise, her presence and songs made my evening, she’s a rare treat...” Live, she has that knack of tying a squadron of helium balloons to the more serious songs by being so irrepressible and likeable in the moments between them that you won’t be the first to leave the show feeling like you just met your new best friend.
/// FIONA BEVAN ///
Ohoho! We can't wait for this! When Fiona Bevan's Music played our show at The Phoenix last year, it was one of those moments where you could see people looking round at each other, puffing their cheeks out in approval. The first thing you’ll probably read if you search for Fiona is that she wrote Little Things for One Direction with Ed Sheeran (and won a BMI award for it) Now that’s all good and well, but what you really should be reading about is her record, Talk To Strangers. As the Guardian put it so well, it’s decorated with “startling odysseys that suggest Erykah Badu, Joanna Newsom and Kate Bush spine-tinglingly joined". Describing herself as ‘pop in disguise’, within five seconds of seeing her live you know you’re watching the real deal. A wonderful musician with a unique voice and a magnetism on stage that sets her apart from her contemporaries. Fiona is currently immersed in writing for the next album, and we may get some sneaky peeks the new material tonight. In the meantime, check out previous singles from Talk To Strangers, Rebel Without A Cause, and killer first single The Machine. The whole album has the wonderfully weaved lyrics of a superb observer, the class of years gone by, but all stitched together with a modern production that holds it immediately up with it's the best of what's being released right now.