Willy Porter

Martyn Joseph opens

Friday, March 7, 2014, 8:00 pm
(doors open at 7:00 pm)

smart, hip songs & mesmerizing guitar gymnastics

$21 advance / $23 door

Purchase tickets online
March 07 8:00 pm

Willy PorterWisconsin native Willy Porter is a guitar virtuoso with an insinuating voice that sneaks past your defenses and gets under your skin. The Washington Post has called him “a dazzling acoustic guitarist with a moody baritone,” while the Boston Globe describes him as “an acoustic picker with the Olympian speed of Leo Kottke bolstered by rootsy vocals and twisting, offbeat lyrics.” Willy has toured with Tori Amos, Paul Simon, and Jethro Tull, whose leader, Ian Anderson, said of him: “Thank God he doesn’t play the flute!” His music is engaging, original, and occasionally haunting, and between songs he tells hilarious stories, perhaps inspired by his background in improv comedy. “My folks they call me a radical / my friends they think I’m obscene,” he sings on his tenth and latest album, Cheeseburgers and Gasoline, in a song about a man who operates a Tilt-a-Whirl. “I enjoy the security of obscurity,” Willy said in a recent interview, but he’s an artist who deserves an even wider following.

Martyn Joseph of Penarth, Wales is one powerful and passionate performer. It’s no coincidence that his latest album, his 31st, Tires Rushing By in the Rain, covers the songs of Bruce Springsteen. With only his acoustic guitar and his rough, rugged voice, he conveys the enormous electricity behind the songs. “I have always found a reference point in Bruce’s material that I was able to connect with and always carry that honesty and integrity to the stage,” Martyn said in a recent interview. If you’re a Bruce fan, this collection is a must-hear, but Martyn’s vast songbook of originals, written over his 30-year recording career, is equally compelling. “Really what I do is to try and write songs that might step up and make some sense of a moment in time. A good song makes you feel like you’re not alone in the world.” His edgy, intense songs combine the personal and the political, but he can also get tender, as in “Let Yourself” when he sings “If it’s falling apart / just let yourself / be drawn by the stronger call / of what you really love.” Be drawn by the call of Martyn Joseph!

Visit Willy Porter's website

Visit Martyn Joseph's website

Listen to a track from Willy Porter:

Listen to a track from Martyn Joseph:

Photo by Rodney Bursiel

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