Friday, February 21, 2020, 8 p.m.
“The best live performer I’ve ever seen” –John Mayer
The Boston Globe says that “his voice comes in a hundred impossible shades.” He grew up in Syracuse, New York, on roots rock and the blues, and he rose to the top of the crowded Boston songwriting scene with his spellbinding live performances—initially building a following on the streets of Harvard Square. Martin Sexton is a rare virtuoso who can blend songwriting and amazing guitar and vocal chops into a whole that’s greater than the sum of the parts. His original songs reconstruct the spirited sound and unpretentious attitude of classic 1970s FM radio for a new generation. Recent Michigan shows by this amazing performer have sold out, so a word to the wise: don’t delay on the tickets! Says the New York Times: “He jumps beyond standard fare on the strength of his voice, a blue-eyed soul man’s supple instrument … his unpretentious heartiness helps him focus on every soul singer’s goal: to amplify the sound of the ordinary heart.” Martin comes to Michigan with a new release, “Glory Bound.”
Sunday, February 23, 2020, 7:30 pm
New music, shaped by a life-threatening illness
In a career spanning more than 25 years, Joe Henry has left an indelible and unique imprint on American popular music. As a songwriter and artist, Joe is celebrated for his exploration of the human experience. A hyper-literate storyteller, by turns dark, devastating, and hopeful, he draws an author’s eye for the overlooked detail across a broad swath of American musical styles—rock, jazz and blues—rendering genre modifiers useless. A three-time-Grammy-winning producer, Joe has made records for Bonnie Raitt, Hugh Laurie, Lisa Hannigan, Elvis Costello, and Solomon Burke among many others. In 2016, Joe teamed up with Billy Bragg on the collaborative album Shine A Light: Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad. The pair were subsequently nominated as Duo/Group of the Year by the Americana Music Association. Joe comes to Michigan with a new album, “The Gospel According to Water,” mostly written after the songwriter’s recent bout with stage 4 cancer (he’s now in remission).