In September, my almost 14 year old Liam and had a wonderful night nibbling on charcuterie and sipping kombucha while listening to my musical partner Jeffrey C. Capps rock a solo show and ever since I’ve been looking forward to bringing them The Soft and Low, my folk-rock duo with Jeff.
The day has nearly arrived! Friday, December 13 at 7 pm is your time to escape from the hustle of this season, to sit and sip and relax and let us folk-rock you.
Hello friends! I hope that all of you had a warm and nourishing Thanksgiving. December is full of seasonal fun! Here’s where you’ll find me celebrating all the treasures of this month:
Ron Clark’s Small Miracles – Fri, Dec 6th – 7-9 pm Uptown Bill’s, 730 S. Dubuque St, Iowa City A beautiful and rare offering by my friend and mentor Ron Clark: “Get out of the cold and enjoy an evening of heart-warming holiday storytelling with Small Miracles, a moving, one-man show by Ron Clark. Small Miracles takes the audience on a nostalgic, heartfelt journey as Clark shares his recollections of growing up in a small Iowa town where the mayor/street cleaner doubled as Santa, a courageous dog, a terrifying audition for the fifth grade Christmas pageant, and his stint at a department store Santa. Clark’s vivid storytelling will captivate you and bring to mind your own fond memories. This show is perfect for the whole family.”
The Soft and Low – Fri, Dec 13th – 7-9 p.m. Wild Culture Kombucha, 210 N. Linn St, Iowa City Jeff played at this great new venue a couple of months ago, but this will be the first time for our duo! While we’ll play much of our standard fare, you can bet that a couple of those holiday songs will sneak into this set, as well. Come for the tunes, and stay for the delicious kombucha, beer & wine!
I’m thrilled to share this information from my friends at ArtFarm19! I will be there with bells on. Bells and heaven knows what else. Anything is possible.
Dear creative friends and collaborators,
I wanted to let you know about ArtFarm19, a festival of creativity happening near Iowa City this July. ArtFarm19 brings together artists, educators, entrepreneurs, healers, and movement builders, to share creative practices, find renewal and restoration on Scattergood’s rural campus, and participate in the launch of new regional arts programming. The mission of ArtFarm19 is to connect people across differences and harness the power of the arts to build a more JEDI (just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive) world.
Throughout the month, ArtFarm19 will gather together creative folks to participate in a variety of creative activities. Check out the opportunities below and RSVP for one or all of them:
July 4 (RSVP here)– opening potluck to greet the Swarm Artist Residency hive queens who will be curating 75 artists in residence this summer at Scattergood.
July 9 (RSVP) – Art Bazaar to meet the Swarm artists in residence.
July 14 (RSVP) – join The Great Parade in the Muscatine County Fair Parade in West Liberty – we will give you costumes, musical instruments, and puppets to play with as we make a spectacle and recruit more people to the creative force
July 15-17 – join us as we Build-a-Show in three days. The first day will be for designers who want to get inside the making of the show. The second day will be for people who want to be in the show. The third day will be for people who want to see the show we made. RSVP to join us for Day One-Designers, Day Two-Performers, or Day Three-Final Performance!
Attached is a flyer you can share with your networks. Please follow our social media platforms (linked below!) to keep up on all the events as they unfold. You can also fill out our contact form to be added into our events email.
Introducing Lucy, my featured musician for July and August!
One of my favorite aspects of producing these featured musician profiles every other month is what I learn about my students and how that new knowledge relates to what I’ve already seen from them in the context of working together each week.
Lucy regularly attends and fully participates in various Irish music sessions around town. She has also performed locally many times and a recent successful open mic performance culminated in her being invited to open for a touring folk band. I’m going to pause there and let you take that in. Amazing.
Lucy has listed “collaboration with other musicians to make music that inspires others to move and dance” and that inspires me to fondly remember that Lucy and I first met in a dance class. Her innate love of moving to music comes through so beautifully in her playing.
I also love what Lucy has to say about the rhythm of the seasons, community and the importance of embracing the beginner’s mind. These are all deep values for me as well and are the roots of where I find my purpose as an artist.
Congratulations to Lucy for all she has accomplished, for all she brings to our community, and for her sheer courage, determination, and dedication to playing her important part in our miraculous musical ecosystem.
Watch your favorite Irish dancers perform both traditional and contemporary Irish dance along with some seasonal favorites! Then join in for a jig yourself!
Ceili (social dance)
Tickets sold at the door: $16
3 and younger free (on lap please)
Participating in the band of the Family Folk Machine is one of the great joys of my life and my husband Joe equally loves being a member of the intrepid bass section.
I will only be able to participate in the Sunday concert but my fellow fiddlers Caleigh Stanier and Ben Sauder will have the fiddle situation well in hand at the Friday concert also.
If you’re not yet familiar with the Family Folk Machine, we are a non-auditioned, multi-generational community folk choir directed by Jean Littlejohn. We are all devoted to and in awe of our wonderful director. She brings unmatched musical integrity as well as boundless joy with her to every rehearsal and performance.
The art for this poster is by one of our fellow choir members, Susan Stamnes. I love it so much.
Some of the best musicians in Iowa City and environs are not chasing a career in music. Keith Reins, for example, is a player and collector of folk songs who also works as a professor of English at Kirkwood Community College. After hours, you’re likely to find him at folk music sessions around Iowa City: at Hilltop Tap, Mickey’s or Uptown Bill’s Coffee House.
Reins is the guitarist at the session who slips jazzy passing chords into traditional Irish and Scottish tunes — verging on folk heresy — but always in ways that deepen and add texture. Reins approaches the depth of virtuosity and artistry of performers as revered as Bert Jansch and Nic Jones. There’s a nonchalance and ease to his playing that comes from countless hours sitting in a circle, playing with others just for the joy of it.