Freedy Johnston & Jeffrey Gaines – Tickets – Rams Head On Stage – Annapolis, MD – January 10th, 2016

Freedy Johnston & Jeffrey Gaines

Freedy Johnston & Jeffrey Gaines

Leslie DiNicola

Sun, January 10, 2016

Doors: 6:30 pm / Show: 7:30 pm

Rams Head On Stage

Annapolis, MD

$22.50

This event is 21 and over

Freedy Johnston
Freedy Johnston
A gifted songwriter whose lyrics paint sometimes witty, often poignant portraits of characters often unaware of how their lives have gone wrong, Freedy Johnston seemingly appeared out of nowhere in the early '90s and quickly established himself as one of the most acclaimed new singer/songwriters of the day.

Johnston's songs are often praised for their literary quality – and deservedly so – but they also hit you on a gut level. As a young man, Johnston was drawn to both the raw energy of punk and the austere beauty of Paul McCartney's vocal melodies. It's no surprise that Elvis Costello's My Aim Is True is among the first albums that inspired him. One can hear Costello's gift for meticulous songcraft and wry storytelling on Johnston's second album, Can You Fly.

When it came out in 1992, Rolling Stone and Spin hailed Can You Fly as a masterpiece. Robert Christgau called it "a perfect album." Its success led to a major label deal with Elektra, for whom Johnston released This Perfect World in 1994. Not only did that album showcase Johnston's increasing sophistication and range as a songwriter, but it also included his breakthrough hit, "Bad Reputation."

In the ensuing years, Johnston released three additional albums on Elektra, including 1999′s critically acclaimed Blue Days, Black Nights, produced by T-Bone Burnett. And while he hasn't replicated the radio success of "Bad Reputation," critics have continued to praise Johnston's work effusively, solidifying his reputation as one of the finest and most singular voices in the singer-songwriter genre.

Johnston took a break from songwriting in the '00s, releasing the demo collection The Way We Were and the covers album My Favorite Waste of Time. Then, in 2009, he released his first new album in eight years, Rain On The City. Pitchfork, the Los Angeles Times and others praised the album, calling it one of the most assured efforts of Johnston's career.

Now splitting his time between New York City and Madison, Wis., Johnston has just released his latest album titled Neon Repairman. In an age where the Internet has greatly diminished the power of radio to dictate artistic success, Johnston is poised for perhaps the most exciting stage of his career. At this point, though, it isn't about destiny. Johnston fulfilled that a long time ago. Now, it's about joy – both for Johnston and his fans.
Jeffrey Gaines
Jeffrey Gaines
Jeffrey Gaines has been heralded for his soul-searching lyrics and his powerful live performances. With only his voice and a guitar for accompaniment, Jeffrey Gaines has earned a reputation as a captivating performer entertaining his audiences everywhere he goes.

Raised in Harrisburg, PA by parents more inclined to spin soul classics by Aretha and Otis than the New Wave and Brit Rock blasting from their son's room, a teenaged Gaines began playing guitar in several local garage bands covering The Who, The Kinks, and The Jam. He soon decided to set out on his own and quickly landed a record deal in 1992, releasing Jeffrey Gaines, the first of his five studio releases. The album garnered four stars from The Philadelphia Inquirer, describing Gaines as "…an ethereal soul…insistent, impassioned, full of self-knowledge." 1994's Somewhat Slightly Dazed, and 1998's Galore followed suit. Interview Magazine called Gaines' music "soul-searching" and "refreshingly free of jargon, sentiment or cliché."

In 2001, Gaines released Always Be (Artemis) to both critical and commercial praise. Featuring his emotional interpretation of "In Your Eyes" and his own soaringly beautiful "Always Be," the album hit #5 on R&R Callout America CHR/Pop list, also reaching #45 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart. The New York Post proclaimed Always Be as "a dozen-song mix…that completely illustrates the depth he is capable of."

Gaines' impressive catalogue grew with 2003's Toward The Sun, produced by Mitchell Froom (Elvis Costello, Bonnie Raitt, and Crowded House). The Boston Globe declared that "Gaines' soulful, wounded vocals make a case for his being one of pop's finest singers…an artist who deserves far more attention than some of his more hyped, yet less talented peers." Mojo noted, "This established soul-folkie's sexy growl has an underlying edge, making it a memorable album. Heartfelt and unpretentious."

Throughout his career, Gaines has built a rapport with his fans unlike any other in popular music today. Gaines goes as far as letting his fans influence the songs he performs each night. "When it’s just me playing, I only know the first song I'm going to play, but from there the energy and the vibe tell me what the next song is gonna be. Someone may yell a song, and I'm like 'Exactly! Good call.' That's so fun to me, keeping it really exciting and spontaneous. I don't even know what's around the corner, and the crowd doesn't either." Based on that relationship with the audience, Gaines released Jeffrey Gaines Live (CD / DVD) in 2004, followed by 2012's Live In Europe, which was recorded during his 25-city tour with Joe Jackson.
Leslie DiNicola
Leslie DiNicola
Nationally acclaimed singer-songwriter Leslie DiNicola has a rare gift for the sonic snapshot—through the poetic accessibility of her writing style she captures personal moments with a universal perspective.

Her latest, the EP Wake Up, is her most well composed and elegantly revealing body of work. Leslie has been frequently described as “combining the grittiness of Janis Joplin with the vulnerability of Alison Krauss.” It’s a potent sensibility that has endeared her to critics, fans, other established artists, and industry vets. Things To Do, See & Eat in NYC succinctly enthuses: “This girl is going places.” October Project’s Julie Flanders says: “DiNicola pours her full soul and tremendous heart into songs you will recognize for their mysterious way of telling your secret story with her powerful voice.” Leslie has worked with such respected music biz names as Ron Allaire (Keith Richards, Madonna, David Bowie, Shakira), Julian Coryell (Aimee Mann, Leonard Cohen, Jewel, Alanis Morisette), Erich Gobel (John Mayer, Ray Charles), Mark Schulman (P!nk, Cher, Foreigner), and Ellis Traver (Diane Birch, Fischerspooner, Sean Lennon, and Mark Ronson).

As a live performer, her commanding vocals and smoldering stage presence have enabled her to sell out solo shows and hold her own alongside renowned artists like American Idol Winner: Lee DeWyze, Howie Day, Anna Nalick, Tyler Hilton, Jaymay and October Project. Leslie is also a highly in-demand artist singing the “National Anthem” at major league sporting events across the country.
Venue Information:
Rams Head On Stage
33 West St.
Annapolis, MD, 21401
http://www.ramsheadonstage.com/

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