Thursday, July 7
Tickets: $15 advance, $20 day of show available at Ticketweb.com, Babeville Box Office (M-F 10a-5p), or charge by phone 866-777-8932.
A show played perfectly to an empty bar. A singer with life and death on his shoulders, swinging a microphone like Samson swung a jawbone. The real ones who die with nothing half the time. With Salt As Wolves – his fifth collection of original songs – Jeffrey Foucault gives us what poet and author Chris Dombrowski calls in the album’s liner notes, “that rare artistic combination of a voice and a world:” a tough, spare collection of darkly rendered blues and ballads, like a field recording of a place that never existed. In a series of letters to lovers, friends, heroes, and family, Foucault deftly weaves together disparate strands of sound and experience, raw love, and hard wisdom. Jeffrey Foucault released Salt As Wolves on October 16 via Blueblade Records.
One of the finest songwriters of his generation, Jeffrey Foucault has taken, in his own words, ‘the small roads;’ building a brick and mortar independent international touring career of ten studio albums, countless miles and critical accolades. He’s been lauded for “Stark, literate songs that are as wide open as the landscape of his native midwest” (The New Yorker) and described as “quietly brilliant” (The Irish Times), while catching the ear of everyone from Greil Marcus to Don Henley (who regularly covers Foucault in his live set), to Van Dyke Parks (who offered to play on Foucault’s 2011 album, Horse Latitudes, after catching a live radio interview). ‘Salt As Wolves’ is a line from Othello describing boldness; a fitting title to frame a record of blues played bold and loosely. With his fifth collection of original songs Foucault stakes out and enlarges the ground he’s been working diligently all the new century: quietly building a deep, resonant catalog of songs about about love, memory, God, desire, wilderness and loss. Salt As Wolves gives us Jeffrey Foucault at the height of his powers, fronting an all-star band, turning the wheel of American music.
Since 2013 Foucault and former Morphine drummer Billy Conway have toured across the United States and overseas together, refining a primal, stripped-down stage show: two men, two chairs; a Sears Silvertone electric tuned low and played through a 5-watt amp; a suitcase kick drum, a low-boy cymbal, a snare drum. The pair play only what they can carry into the club alone in one trip, and cover all the territory from blues and country, to rock ‘n’ roll and folk with a laconic ferocity and timeless cool. Their dynamic partnership – as nimble as it is sonically powerful – is the bedrock from which Salt As Wolves builds an eerie and muscular existential blues.
Salt As Wolves is not an exploration but a statement: here is the man in full, extending his musical reach in the toughness and precision of his electric guitar work (as he distills a modal, hypnotic electric blues reminiscent of John Lee Hooker and Jessie Mae Hemphill), in the mature range and depth of his singing, and in the intimacy and vulnerability of his songwriting. Cut live to tape in just three days in rural Minnesota, Salt As Wolves moves like a vintage Chess record, with an openness and dimensionality that beckons the listener further in. In language richly simple and profound, Foucault plumbs the implications of a life spent looking for the Real, in a series of epistolary songs that locate the transcendent moment or its seeking, the love we don’t understand, the thing that is lost when a great spirit dies.
Singer-Songwriter Mike Brown opens the show. “Brown’s songs, and even his demeanor while performing, simmer with an all-too-human edge that unsettles as much as it thrills—precisely what music should do when it comes from the heart. Where so many musicians working in the country-Americana mold fabricate heartache and wanderlust, Brown doesn’t have to fake it.” – (585) Magazine
In addition to a prolific career as a singer-songwriter, producer and multi- instrumentalist, Grammy-nominated artist Mike Brown is an incredibly dynamic and versatile collaborator. His debut record, American Hotel, was self-recorded in all 50 states over the course of 8 years, and features a staggeringly diverse roster of 75 special guests, including members of: The Band, Los Lobos, The Jayhawks, Wilco, Television, Nine Inch Nails, Bare Naked Ladies, Guster, Goo Goo Dolls, The Wallflowers, Counting Crows, Sparklehorse, Gwar, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Matchbox Twenty, The Meat Puppets, Soul Asylum, Cracker, Superdrag, Whiskeytown, Morphine, Moxy Fruvous, Belle and Sebastian, 10,000 Maniacs, The Minus 5, Freedy Johnston, Letters To Cleo and Soul Coughing.
Brown is also the founder of Temperamental Recordings, a recording studio and label based out of a former Methodist church built in 1828. In 2011 the impressive space and collection was featured on The History Channel show American Pickers, with Brown appearing as an expert and appraiser of musical instruments and vintage recording equipment.
In 2014 Brown released a CD with a childhood friend Zac DeCamp titled Automatic Music Can Be Fun and, with the help of Brian Grunert from White Bicycle Design Firm, was nominated for a GRAMMY in the Best Recording Package category against Jay-Z, David Bowie, Metallica, and Reckless Kelly.
His next album Songs for Seven Fingers will be released in 2016, and includes members of Band of Horses, Sparklehorse, Larry and His Flask, Morphine, Whiskeytown and several others.
Date(s) - 07/07/2016
341 Delaware Avenue