Date/Time Event
Feb 13, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Eli West CD pre-release concert
Phinney Neighborhood Center,
6532 Phinney Avenue N, Seattle

Saturday, February 13:  Advance ticket sales through Brown Paper Tickets will end at noon today.  There are seats available so come to the concert tonight and purchase tickets at the door. – Producer

Eli West will release his new solo recording, The Both, on February 25.  In anticipation of this release, he will play at the Phinney Neighborhood Center on Saturday, February 13.  John Reischman will be joining him on mandolin.

Eli West2

Eli writes, “I have taken ballads of significance to my musical growth over the last two years and recorded two versions of each.  In parallel, this record is a tribute to my two grandfathers: Men of differing world views, both in pursuit of meaning and family.”

The recording includes Reischman, a Vancouver BC mandolin legend, along with well-known jazz guitarist Bill Frisell, ballad singers Anna & Elizabeth, Dori Freeman and more.

Eli West is one half of the acclaimed duo Cahalen Morrison & Eli West.  They have been featured on NPR, Folk Alley and have toured extensively in the United States and the British Isles, releasing three records to date.

Get tickets in advance at

Feb 20, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
The Reid Jamieson Band Plays Seattle
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle


Advance tickets for this show are $16 ($2 discount for members,students and seniors), $8 for youth. Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more. Tickets are available here:

REID-bwVancouver Canada’s Reid Jamieson shines his light with an incredible voice, therapeutic lyrics, and magical way with melodies. A regular on the popular radio show Vinyl Cafe, and winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest (folk), he has recorded with Cowboy Junkies, Samantha Parton (Be Good Tanyas), Sarah Harmer and various members of Blue Rodeo.

Juniper-black-webReid can be found performing as an entertaining duo with his saucy wife and songwriting partner Carolyn Mill. Along with the Lennon win, this creative couple wrote their way into the Vancouver Folk Music Festival by winning 1st prize in the Pickin’ a Folk Star Contest. They just released their first album singing together titled Juniper’s Kitchen – it’s a little Johnny & June meets Fleetwood Mac – and all about the songs.

Known for his compelling covers of everything from The Everly Brothers to Madonna, Reid just released his much anticipated collection – The Presley Sessions Revisited  A musical love letter to the greats of the 50s era, including songs made popular by Elvis, Roy Orbison, The Platters and The Flamingos.

The amazing multi-instrumentalist and Seattleite, Joel Tepp, will sit in for this special show.

Press Quotes about Reid’s performances and cds:

“Arresting… dazzling voice” – Toronto Sun

“After Reid appeared on the Vinyl Cafe we received tremendous feedback from our audience. He stole the show…He blew me away.” Stuart McLean – CBC Vinyl Café

“Kicks Josh Rouse’s ass crooning indie-soul-country classics all of his own making…your life will be better with this music in it.”- Americana UK

“Neither derivative nor nostalgic…a work of elegant, understated beauty that juggles elements of plaintive folk, rock and countrified pop while enveloping the listener in the atmospheric glow of his soulful vocals.”- Paste Magazine (4 to Watch)

Additional Videos:

From the new cd The Presley Sessions Revisited, “Only You” (cover of Platters song):

Reid and Carolyn live with “Take Me to the Sea”:

Mar 05, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Craver Hicks Watson & Newberry
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

Old time and bluegrass music, both vintage and new, with early Red Clay Ramblers favorites

Advance tickets are $18 ($16 for members,students and seniors), $9 for youth age 7-17. Advance tickets are available at SFS Concerts or through Brown Paper Tickets.   Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more (cash or check).   Doors will open at 7 pm for a 7:30 start.

Craven Hicks photoBill Hicks and Jim Watson, along with Tommy Thompson founded the Red Clay Ramblers in 1972.  Mike Craver joined in 1973.  For the next decade these talented musicians toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Scandinavia and Africa; acted and played in two Off-Broadway shows (DIAMOND STUDS, & Sam Shepard’s A LIE OF THE MIND)– and released 8 albums on the Flying Fish and Sugar Hill labels.

In the early 80s, Watson, Craver and Thompson released a highly acclaimed album of Carter Family songs titled MEETING IN THE AIR.

After a long battle with Alzheimer’s, Co-founder and banjo player Tommy Thompson passed away in early 2003.

Bill, Jim and Mike left the band in 1986 to pursue music careers as individuals, with duos, and with other bands as well as musical theater.

LW9w-5189The three of them still get together and play music, joined by Joe Newberry on banjo and vocals.  Check out the website for their latest news and links to what the band members are doing now, their tour in Ireland, vintage Red Clay Ramblers footage and other events of the past 40+ years.

In 2012, Craver, Hicks, Watson & Newberry released an album of their current repertoire entitled YOU’VE BEEN A FRIEND TO ME.

Fans of Prairie Home Companion can listen to them on the Nov 21, 2015 show from Waterbury, CT.

SFS is thrilled to have these four musicians include Seattle on a special Pacific Northwest tour.  Old Time and Bluegrass music fans consider them to be a National Treasure.

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to hear these incredibly talented musicians!

Check out some of their songs and tunes:

Mar 12, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Seumas Gagné and Friends
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

Advance tickets for this show are $16 ($2 discount for members, students and seniors), $8 for youth age 6-17.  Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more.  Advance tickets are available at SFS concerts or at Brown Paper Tickets.

promo pic 1 croppedCombining harp and voice with personal stories of his Gaelic adventures, internationally acclaimed harpist Seumas Gagné creates an evening of great music, humor and wit.
For this concert, Seumas will be joined by an exciting lineup of stellar local Celtic musicians – expect the concert to soar to an amazing level.

His past performances have been described as magic, delighting audiences with the synergy and art of the musicians as well as heartfelt stories of his journey.  Gaelic song explores the human experience in an intimate way that anyone can understand and appreciate with a little help from a knowledgeable guide who can dissolve the language barrier.

promo pic 2 croppedA Cornish music graduate, Seumas has been playing the music of the Scottish and Irish Gaels for more than thirty years. His love and passion for the music shines through every piece.

Seumas is one of the founders of Slighe nan Gaidheal (say: SLEE-uh nunGAY-ull), Washington’s Gaelic language and cultural society, where he teaches Gaelic in their language classes.

In 1997, Seumas journeyed to the Royal Scottish National Mòd (a Gaelic music competition) in Inverness, Scotland where he won the solo harp performance. At the time, he was the only American to have won this award.

In 2001, he returned to the Mòd in Scotland with a team of four friends and won the first-ever competition for waulking songs (ancient tradition of wool milling).

Seumas is a noted judge, instructor and performer in harp festivals around the country.

As one of the founding members of the band Wicked Celts, Seumas recorded a CD with them, Prophecy and Blessing, in 1997.

Seumas’ first solo CD, Baile Àrd, was released in February 2012. It includes a mix of traditional and original songs in Scottish Gaelic, as well as traditional dance music. Instructional videos at Seumas’ website help fans learn the choruses of these songs.

Don’t miss the opportunity to experience this internationally acclaimed musician and get your Gaelic on!

Mar 26, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Greg Ruby and the Rhythm Runners - Prohibition-era jazz
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

A chance meeting in 2012 between Greg Ruby and New York multi-instrumentalist, Dennis Lichtman, ignited the flame for the Rhythm Runners.  In a shoebox-sized music venue in Brooklyn, Lichtman and Ruby struck up a conversation about their shared love of vintage jazz.  Lichtman asked, “Are you Greg Ruby. . . from Seattle?  I’m supposed to call you tomorrow about playing on my upcoming tour!”  With that coincidence as an auspicious sign, Lichtman and Ruby joined forces and the Rhythm Runners were born, joined by trumpeter, Gordon Au from New York, and trombonist, Charlie Halloran and bass player Cassidy Holden, both from New Orleans.

Rhythm Runners2

Featuring a horn-based Prohbition Era jazz style of new music, much of it written by Ruby, the Rhythm Runners will come to the Phinney Center Community Hall for a Seattle Folklore Society concert.  Along with their original compositions, the Rhythm Runners will feature music from one of Seattle’s compositional masters of 1920’s jazz and popular music, Frank D. Waldron.  His music landed in a unique crossover period between Ragtime and Dixieland jazz but also contained other popular musical styles of the day: waltzes with three-part forms and clever key changes.

Advance tickets for this show are $18 ($2 discount for members,students and seniors), $9 for youth. Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more. Tickets are available here:

Apr 02, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Kathryn Claire
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

Tickets are $18 ($2 discount for members, students and seniors), $9 for youth. Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more. Doors will open at 7 pm for a 7:30 start. Advance tickets can be purchased online, or in person at any of our other concerts.

Kathryn Claire
Kathryn Claire

Kathryn Claire returns to the SFS stage, after an absence of four years. She exhibits a charisma and grace on stage matched only by her truly unique voice and rare ability to move seamlessly across genres. She has spent years cultivating her own style and approach to music as a violinist, guitar player, singer, and songwriter. Strong fundamentals from her classical and traditional music background combined with an innate ability to improvise has made her a favorite at venues, festivals and institutions around the world. She has toured and performed extensively in the US, Japan, India, Holland, Belgium and France.

Kathryn Claire’s solo albums include Wanderer, Homespun, Morning Comes Too Soon, Shimmering Blue. The Willamette Week praised Morning Comes Too Soon saying “Claire’s rich, bell-clear alto and precise playing serve her songs with emotional generosity and evident sincerity” and described her voice as “a part of the scene’s very fabric”. She has collaborated with an impressive roster of national and international artists including Portland-based Hanz Araki with whom Kathryn Claire recorded and released a four album celtic music project in 2012. The Irish Edition described Kathryn’s voice as “strong, deeply moving” and The Irish Post included the duo on their top 10 best album list of 2013.

She is currently working on a new album titled, Bones Will Last. It is an album both hopeful and heartbreaking, with deeply personal and starkly universal themes featuring performances by Zak Borden, Allen Hunter, Ara Lee and Don Henson. Bones Will Last explores Claire’s voice as a songwriter as well as instrumental composer blending her love of classical, traditional and original music.

This concert features her collaboration with Zak Borden (mandolin) and Allen Hill (bass) and includes material from her soon to be released Bones Will Last CD.

Apr 09, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Sam Baker Brings Texas Singer-Songwriter Show to Seattle
Phinney Neighborhood Center,
6532 Phinney Avenue N, Seattle, Seattle

Advance tickets for this show are $18 ($2 discount for members, students and seniors), $9 for youth. Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more. Tickets are available here:  Doors open at 7:00 for the 7:30 show.

Sam Baker.
Sam Baker

Sam Baker might be the most captivating songwriter in America. You’ll probably never catch yourself singing one of his songs in the shower, because his melodies generally tend to be as bare-bones serviceable as the raspy scratch of his singing; but by God, you listen to what he has to say, hanging on for every line like a baby bird at feeding time. Sometimes his words come out haltingly, one by one; others tumble out of his mouth in spurts of nursery rhyme cadence (copper penny for your thoughts/copper jacket full of lead/they wanted little Jimmy Cagney dead …) By the time he sing-speaks them all, hes burned a black-and-white image or sometimes even a whole movie in your mind that lingers long after each song ends.

Some, like Juarez and Odessa from 2007’s Pretty World, will haunt you for life. Bakers fourth album, Say Grace, adds several more masterpieces to that gallery, beginning with the title tracks poignant portrait of a woman weighing the ghosts of her past against the lonely onset of advancing age. In Migrants, he tells of 14 men who cross the border only to succumb to the elements of the brutal Sonora desert. Ay mijitos/they looked like dried leaves/scattered in the sun, Baker sings with a sadness underscored by Joel Guzmans keening accordion. They got 12 lines in a Midwestern paper/on the pages with the ads for shoes.

But there’s true grace here, too, from the sweetly touching but unmawkish Isnt Love Great to the surprise sense of humor leavening the blue-collar angst of Ditch: My wife God bless her and for what its worth/thinks she and Taylor Swift/were twins at birth/separated at birth/Earth to wife/wife to earth!  — RICHARD SKANSE/Lone Star Music

If you are familiar with Sam Baker and his music, you know the story of his surviving a 1986 train bombing in Peru as discussed in his interview with Terry Gross on NPRs Fresh Air.  She describes this 44-minute audio interview as her favorite of 2014.  If you have the time, click and listen.  Its a fascinating insight into the man, and how this incident has shaped his life and music.

This is a rare visit for Sam to Seattle.  As engaging as his music is, his live shows are amazing treats, full of self-effacing humor, superior writing that uniquely describes experiences we’ve all had, and great, great acoustic Texas music.   Veteran sideman, Chip Dolan, will be playing with Sam.

Visit Sam’s website:
Apr 23, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
John Gorka in Seattle April 23
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

Advance tickets for this show are $20 ($3 discount for members, students and seniors), $10 for youth. Day of show tickets at the door, if still available, will be $2 more. Tickets are available here:  Doors open at 7:00 for  the 7:30 show.

Blue Tee Shirt - JG
John Gorka

Originally from New Jersey, John Gorka is a world-renowned singer-songwriter who got his start in the late 1970s at a neighborhood coffeehouse in eastern Pennsylvania while in college. The folk-inspired acoustic music inspired him, and before long he was performing his own songs – mostly as an opener for visiting acts.  Soon he started traveling to New York City, a powerful source of education and encouragement. Folk meccas like Texas’ Kerrville Folk Festival (where he won the New Folk Award in 1984) and Boston followed, and his stunningly soulful baritone voice and original songwriting began turning heads.

He released his first album in 1987, receiving popular and critical acclaim, followed quickly with five albums in seven years.  His albums and his touring (over 150 nights a year at times) brought new accolades for his craft. His rich multifaceted songs full of depth, beauty and emotion gained increasing attention from critics and audiences across the country, as well as in Europe where his tours led him through Italy, Belgium, Scotland, Ireland, Holland, Switzerland and Germany. He also started sharing tours with many notable friends—Nanci Griffith and Mary Chapin Carpenter among them.

In 2010, he also released an album with his friends and Red House label-mates Lucy Kaplansky and Eliza Gilkyson under the name Red Horse. Getting high praise from critics and fans alike, it landed on the Billboard Folk Charts and was one of the most played albums on folk radio.
Many well-known artists have recorded and/or performed John Gorka songs, including Mary Chapin Carpenter, Nanci Griffith, Mary Black and Maura O’Connell. John has graced the stage of Austin City Limits, Mountain Stage, eTown, and has appeared on CNN.

Hearing people shout out requests for songs he wrote years ago is something he enjoys, whether it happens in Fort Worth or the Netherlands.  Gorka’s most beloved songs are an enticing mixture guaranteed to make you laugh or cry. The former include “I’m From New Jersey” and “People My Age”.  He also hears frequent requests for such poignant antiwar ballads as “Let Them In” and “Temporary Road” and for a longtime favorite, “I Saw a Stranger With Your Hair,” an expression of longing. — Michael Granberry, Dallas News
John Gorka lives in Minnesota and when not on the road, he enjoys spending time with his wife and children. He continues to tour, playing festivals, theaters and clubs all over North America and Europe.

Visit John’s website:

Apr 30, 2016
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Reilly & Maloney: Farewell Tour!
Phinney Center Concert Hall, Brick Building,
6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle

Beloved folksinging duo Reilly & Maloney are giving it one more year.  After health complications scuttled plans for 2015 to host the swansong, 2016 gets the call with the pair feeling good.  (TICKETS)

Reilly & Maloney

In their own words:

” We feel that our commitment to our act and to each other has been an enduring blessing but that this is the right time to retire our partnership as we have known it.  We have had a good run, and now it’s time to close the show.  With heartfelt thanks,
~ David & Ginny “

Through the 1970s and ’80s there was no hotter act around Seattle than Ginny Reilly & David Maloney, two singer/songwriters whose rich harmonies and tireless performance schedule cultivated legions of fans throughout the region.  Taking hiatus in the ’90s, the pair reunited in 2000 to discover that their audience was very much still with them.

The songs and voices remain strong, 46 years after their first meeting in San Francisco.  Come send them off right!

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