Nicki Bluhm

Nicki Bluhm (9:00 PM)

The Shelters (8:00 PM)

Sat, September 19, 2015

7:00 pm

Adv Tix $15.00 / Day of Show Tix $17.00

Tickets at the Door

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Nicki Bluhm - (Set time: 9:00 PM)
Nicki Bluhm
Compass Records is excited to announce the release of renowned singer/songwriter Nicki Bluhm's new album, TO RISE YOU GOTTA FALL out June 1. To celebrate the announcement, Rolling Stonepremiered the tle track yesterday, hailing the song as "a blast of Memphis soul." TO RISE YOU GOTTA FALL as recorded in Memphis at the legendary Sam Phillips Recording studio and features two co-writes with Ryan Adams and a Dan Penn cover. For these live band analog sessions, Bluhm brought in producer Matt Ross-Spang (Margo Price, Jason Isbell), and the studio band included Will Sexton (guitar), Ross-Spang (guitars), Ken Coomer (drums and percussion), Al Gamble(Hammond B3), Rick Steff (piano) and Dave Smith (bass), with Reba Russell and Susan Marshall (background singers), Sam Shoup (string arrangements) and various special guests.

"It was the very first song we tracked," Bluhm told Rolling Stone, "and Ken just started playing the groove and the band slowly started to drift in. Ken is such a present musician, and he's listening to the words and reading the room and the vibe...There's a line in the song that says, 'I went looking for some perspective, so I knocked on my mama's door,' and he just hit the drum -- the rim -- like a knock, which brought a playfulness and lightness to the song. I love Will's guitar playing, too. It's so understated, but he makes himself known. It's like the old saying goes: 'The young bull charges down the hill, but the old bull takes his time.' These musicians were tasteful; they're all old bulls full of experience and class. Having a string section arranged by Sam Shoup was the icing on the cake. Memphis had melted into my California soul."

After six years with her band the Gramblers, and recent high-profile collaborations (Phil Lesh, Infamous Stringdusters, Ryan Adams), Bluhm wrote the life-chronicling songs for TO RISE YOU GOTTA FALLover a two-year period, during which she got divorced and moved to Nashville, TN. The album is a chronicle of her state of mind following these deep and fundamental life changes.

"These songs are quite personal," Bluhm says. "They are the conversations I never got to have, the words I never had the chance to say, and the catharsis I wouldn't have survived without."

Bluhm's divorce, along with the need to challenge herself, inspired the West Coast na ve to make her spur-of-the moment, cross-country move to Nashville in 2017.

"Nashville was inspiring because of all the songwriting going on here," Bluhm says. "When I would come to Nashville on writing trips it was just percolating... it was intoxicating. So I very hastily, in a matter of days, decided to move. I just had this gut feeling."

Ross-Spang happened to be mixing a record in Nashville at the time and they met up and hit it off immediately.

"I really needed someone who was going to take the reins and have a vision for the album and he really did," Bluhm says of meeting Ross-Spang. "My ex-husband had been my musical director, co-writer, and producer on all my records except one and I was looking for someone to step into that leadership roll, which Matt did very gracefully. I was looking for a clean slate; the only baggage I wanted to bring into the studio were the words to the songs I was singing. I wanted it to be a fresh experience; I didn't want to even have history with anyone in the room that would pull me into old habits or ways of thinking. So we agreed we'd record in Memphis."

Once settled in Sam Phillips Recording, the sessions revolved around tracking live with an ace band assembled by Ross-Spang.

"We really just recorded live and we didn't do that many takes of each song," Bluhm says. "The final versions we ended up with were all one take. It was really refreshing to go analog. It minimized over thinking and second guessing, forced us all to stay in the moment and play from the heart. Sam Shoup did all the string arrangements and when he walked in the room I thought he was a housepainter; he was the most understated, unlikely suspect. That was the thing about Memphis that was cool... not a lot of egos, just people making music for music's sake. Throughout the session there was a lot of listening and trusting. Matt really spends me curating his sessions and who he decides to bring in; he knows how to keep the vibe right. What you are hearing is, as Jerry Phillips would say, 'not perfection but captured moments in time.'

"I had lost my partner in so many ways," Bluhm continues, "my musical partner, my life partner, my creative partner, and all of a sudden I was left on my own, to start my own engine. It was really intimidating and scary," she says "but I had support from my management, my agent, my friends and family, and ultimately I just had this guttural drive that I didn't even know I had in me. I was on autopilot, ready to move forward and take the steps I had to take to keep moving forward. When the album finally comes out it's going to be like setting a caged bird free."

Bluhm will be touring this year and beyond in support of TO RISE YOU GOTTA FALL. The confirmed tour dates are below with more to be announced soon.
The Shelters - (Set time: 8:00 PM)
The Shelters
Chase Simpson (vocals/guitar)
Josh Jove (vocals/guitar)
Sebastian Harris (drums
Jacob Pillot (bass)

For a moment there, Los Angeles based band The Shelters seemed like 21st century rock 'n roll’s best kept secret. But word got out. It started in the clubs. And everyone who saw them thought maybe he or she had gotten there first. By now, however, it’s clear that they’ll all have to share.

The Shelters have their self-titled debut LP coming June 10th on Warner Bros. Records. Just like the EP they released last October as an album preview, their full-length is a blast of Southern Californian rock and roll from a four-piece like they used to make them, when the factory was still up and running. Co-produced by Tom Petty, this album comes at you from behind, nothing you were expecting.

The Shelters had just banded together when Petty heard them and got a gut feeling about what they could be. He gave the Shelters the keys to his home studio and showed them a few things. Though mostly he left them alone, Petty had enough sense to leave the gear powered up. Maybe they were determined to show him he hadn’t made a mistake. Maybe they just liked the way those old tube amps sounded. They seized the moment and got to work, insistent on becoming a band. A real band.

One listen to their single “Rebel Heart,” or any one of the other eleven songs on their debut, and you’ll know they pulled it off. Led by the songs, harmonies and twin-guitar sound of Chase Simpson and Josh Jove, and powered by drummer Sebastian Harris’s groove obsession, the band has put together a collection of recordings that have an immediacy, an emotion, and a musical intelligence that suggests these boys are beyond their years.

People are going to reference some of the great rock and roll bands of yesterday and today. But this is no tribute show. The sounds they’ve made seem to have been dragged from the vaults and forced to fit the present. It’s all a beautiful reminder that rock and roll may have slipped out of view for minute, but it’s still out there, alive in the hands of the ones who need it the most.

The Shelters, now including Jacob Pillot on bass, have toured recently with the likes of Gary Clark Jr, Mudcrutch, The Kooks, The Wild Feathers, BRONCHO, Atlas Genius, The Struts and more, plus made major festival appearances across the country. They will tour the nation at the end of 2016, including a run of shows with Band Of Horses in October.
Venue Information:
Troubadour
9081 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90069
http://www.troubadour.com/

All lineups and times subject to change