13876152_1245253075494039_4492766027711122693_n.jpg

STEVE POLTZ

Smart-ass philosopher, hopeless romantic, cosmic vagabond: Steve Poltz is all of these things, as well as a respected singer-songwriter. Mixing maudlin finger-plucked acoustic narratives with life-affirming parables, Poltz is perhaps best known as the co-writer of Jewel’s pop hit “You were meant for me”. Poltz oozes charisma, and long ago cemented his reputation as a bit of an unhinged genius. Whether improvising lyrics mid-song, or grinning his way through absurdist banter, you can NOT unsee a Steve Poltz show.

To suggest that Steve Poltz isn’t normal is about as safe a statement as one could make. You would basically require the powers of the Hubble space telescope to locate Steve Poltz from any region of normalcy.
For music fans on both sides of the equator, this is a very good thing.

Born among the hearty seafaring folk of Canada’s Halifax, Nova Scotia, Poltz has lived most of his life in Southern California, where the sun treated his rocky Canadian DNA like clothes in a dryer. Naturally a spectrum of cultural and emotional tensions arose and he eventually sought refuge in the art of songwriting, where he tapped into an unforgettable and often horrifying depth of unhinged genius.

Among the music cognoscenti, Steve Poltz is regarded as one of the most talented and prolific songwriters of our time. His songs have been among the longest running ever on the Billboard Top 100 and they regularly appear in movie soundtracks, television shows, and even the odd commercial. His touring schedule is ferocious, ping ponging between continents with enough frequency to earn him manic followings in scores of different accents and languages.

Any musician who has traveled as extensively as Poltz will have their share of colorful road stories, but Poltz’ adventures read like a bucket list. Starting out auspiciously, Poltz recalls meeting Elvis Presley at a small airport and beaming proudly as The King hugged his sister for an inordinately long time. Growing up in Palm Springs, California, he trick-or-treated at Liberace’s house and was Bob Hope’s favorite altar boy. In an alcohol-soaked haze, he infamously accosted David Cassidy, who had summoned him to Las Vegas to write a hit song for the aging Tiger Beat cover boy.

His rich and colorful legacy is the stuff of legend, but it is his distinctive style of songwriting that has caused the world to offer up its stages, clubs, and alleys. Poltz’ sound is entirely unique- from his inhuman fingerstyle techniques to the inimitable melodies that roll from his guitar like cool waterfalls, you know a Poltz song as soon as you hear it. To see Steve to perform live is one of the most entertaining shows a human could ever see. Frenzied, aggressive, hilarious, and heartbreakingly sincere, his live performances have become bona fide events, with sub-cultures popping up all over the globe to entice him to come and tour. As relentless as he is in concert, he is also the guy who famously co-wrote the timeless ballad “You Were Meant For Me” with platinum-selling songwriter Jewel. Of course, because we’re talking about Steve Poltz, it should surprise no one to learn that the song was written on a lazy Mexican beach, where Poltz and Jewel were soon snapped up and sequestered by Mexican Federales and required to witness and eventually assist in a large marijuana bust on the beach. Don’t believe it? See for yourself in the pictures on his web site.

Poltz, an ex high school wrestler (98 pound class), is also an obsessive baseball fan, a die-hard yoga practitioner, a hopeless romantic, a smart-ass philosopher and a child-like adventurer with an absurdist’s view of the planet and all of its curious life forms.

Music fans have adored him since he first fronted the hallowed punk-folk legends, The Rugburns, whose live shows earned the band a following that is best described somewhere between the terms “cult” and “crazed substance-abusing fanatics.” Once touring over 300 days a year, the Rugburns occasionally reunite for wildly popular sold-out shows.

Poltz’ solo body of work is an impressive collection of ballads, rockers and uniquely melodic acoustic numbers that reflect his incomparable style of alternate tunings and savage finger picking techniques. Guitar geeks fall prostrate at his feet trying vainly to learn how to play his stunningly gorgeous and deceptively complex songs. To see him play guitar is a visual feast so frenetic that close proximity to his playing exposes one to risk of seizure.

His albums reflect the depth and expanse of his influences throughout the years (One Left Shoe, Chinese Vacation, Traveling and Unraveling). He has also released a children’s album (The Barn), a performance DVD (Tales From The Tavern) and a collection of other recordings that defy categorization, such as Answering Machine – a 56-track collection of 45 second “songs” culled from his answering machine’s outgoing messages. Neil Young has ranked it as a favorite album.

His live shows have captivated audiences far and wide with a mix of singing, storytelling, shredding, and the occasional spoken word rants which have been known to incite riots. He can take an audience from laughter to tears and back again in the space of the same song. Steve Poltz transcends the word “talented.” He is unforgettable in all the right ways.

TG-C02-30072018-Trailside_July_31_copy_large.jpg

ERIN COSTELO

Crow. Bar and Variety is proud to present east-coaster Erin Costelo in our 8th instalment of the Crow Sessions dinner series. Erin will be releasing her new album "Sweet Marie"

With songs that sound like they were written by your heroes, Erin Costelo has been compared to Carole King, Laura Nyro, Nina Simone and Martha Reeves and has had the opportunity to open for legends like Mavis Staples, Dr. John and Boz Scaggs and has recently performed with Levon Helm's Midnight Ramble Band. 


Her last album Down Below, the Status Quo was nominated for a total of 12 awards in her home on the East Coast of Canada. Including wins for Producer of the Year, Solo Recording of the Year and R&B/Soul Recording of the Year.

 

Erin has had the pleasure of touring and collaborating with artists like Rose Cousins, Joel Plaskett, and Stephen Fearing. She is poised to release her 5th album "Sweet Marie" in October 2018 on Nashville label, Compass Records.  This project is complete with a “making of” documentary directed by Juno-winning songwriter, turned filmmaker, Amelia Curran which will air on CBC TV in early fall 2018. The album features Glenn Milchem (Blue Rodeo) on drums, Anna Ruddick (Randy Bachman) on bass and Leith Fleming-Smith (Matt Mays/Hawksley Workman) on organ as well as her long-time guitarist Clive MacNutt.  Erin is excited to bring this band to Crow. Bar and Variety in October!

 

 

I have had the privilege of a side stage view of Erin’s career for more than ten years and I can tell you that she produces the kind of work that makes other artists question their life choices. - Amelia Curran

 

www.erincostelo.ca

 

 

 

AndreaRamolo2018_750.jpg

ANDREA RAMOLO

Andrea Ramolo of Scarlett Jane fame is joining us for a Crow Session. An intimate evening of song featuring excerpts from her new soon-to-be-released album "Homage" A tribute to Leonard Cohen and her previously recorded album "Nuda"

She and her band will be performing two 45 minute sets. Our MC/Interviewer Jeff Woods will be conducting his candid interview in between.

ANDREA RAMOLO;

Born in Toronto to Italian immigrants hence the cover of the Italian love song Caruso on “NUDA”. Andrea began her artistic life as a dancer and actress, but picked up the guitar in 2003 when her mom was going through breast cancer treatment to heal myself and do something productive. The rudimentary country-folk tracks ended up on her 2008 debut, Thank You For The Ride. She followed it up in 2011 with the Tim Thorney-produced The Shadows and the Cracks, which earned her a nomination at the Canadian Folk Music Awards.

She then formed Scarlett Jane with Cindy Doire and spent five years extensively touring behind two albums, 2012s Stranger and 2015s eponymous offering, earning accolades from press and fellow musicians across the country and two more CFMA nominations.

Ive definitely matured and acquired this confidence in my writing and in my voice as an artist, she says. Sharing the stage with Gordon Lightfoot, Ron Sexsmith and Adam Cohen, and doing a couple of shows with Lee Harvey Osmond and Blackie & The Rodeo Kings, showed me that living in a van for three-and-a half-years in the early days of my solo career, honing my craft, paid off.

Now I feel like this language of music is a part of my vocabulary as a human being and that filtering life through song is just second nature. After almost a decade of touring and recording, I know now that music is not only a job, but a necessary part of my existence.

JEFF WOODS;

The most talked about Jeff Woods attribute is his voice. It has been heard on radio and television for decades. Jeffs career continues to be about communication and he is known for sounding as though he's speaking just to you, despite the fact that his reach has extended to a weekly audience exceeding one million listeners.

Beyond talking on the radio and television as a host or a guest, Jeff's presence continues to extend to commercial voice-over and narration as well as to the stage as an emcee and speaker.

Jeff's success also extends to media management as he has programmed several major market radio stations.Canadas leading vintage rock authority, Woods has been at the center of conversation and context around music for 30+ years. Jeff has hosted radio programs and series, since 1983. He was the creator and host of The Legends of Classic Rock, heard internationally over 14 seasons, by a million weekly listeners across Canada and around the world. His many one-on-one interviews include artists like The Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, Rush, Ozzy Osbourne, The Band, Pearl Jam, Santana & David Bowie.

Jeff's current radio series "Records & Rockstars" complements his podcast of the same name, and his first work of non-fiction in print - the acclaimed book "Radio, Records & Rockstars".

ColinLinden-Head-cLauraGodwin.JPG

COLIN LINDEN

On November 27th Please join us in welcoming multi award winning (8 junos) Colin Linden to the Crow Stage for an intimate Crow Session Dinner Show. Ticket price includes the show, hosted by the the voice himself, DJ and author Jeff Woods, a delicious 3 course meal plus the usual tax and gratuity. A fabulous opportunity to see Colin in an intimate space that holds 80 music lovers.

COLIN LINDEN;

Born in Toronto, Canada, and raised in White Plains, New York, Colin Linden returned to Canada in 1970. He was already a guitar prodigy at 11 years old, and when most kids that age were playing sports, Colin was meeting and being mentored by one of his musical heroes, the great bluesman Howlin Wolf, which helped set the youngster on a course to pursue the sounds of his dreams. That encounter helped fuel a career that has featured his work on literally hundreds of albums. At last count, the total of recordings on which he has played approaches 400, while over 100 albums bear the Produced by Colin Linden credit.

Colin Linden is a genuine renaissance man of roots music. Hes a member of the highly successful trio, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, a singer and songwriter, an in-demand and prolific record producer, musical director on the hit TV show Nashville and sideman to the stars as guitarist for the likes of Bob Dylan, Bruce Cockburn, Emmylou Harris, Robert Plant and Alison Krauss.

Although Linden has had his hands in so many pots, he’s perhaps better known for his work on the foot-stompin TV show Nashville, which just finished its sixth and sadly, final season.

Linden is Nashvilles musical director and has also performed in front of the camera as a guitarist or bandleader. According to the Toronto Star, Linden got the job in part because he had already known the shows executive producer, T-Bone Burnett, from working with him on Cockburns 1994 album, Dart to the Heart, and the movie soundtrack from O Brother Where Art Thou? in 2000.

Linden’s work on Nashville also helped him, Stephen Fearing, and Tom Wilson develop the list of guest artists for both Blackie and the Rodeo Kings albums Kings and Kings (2017) and Kings and Queens (2011). Country music can be a small world. Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, whose music is often labeled roots in Canada and Americana in the US, is becoming increasingly renowned.

JEFF WOODS;

The most talked about Jeff Woods attribute is his voice. It has been heard on radio and television for decades. Jeffs career continues to be about communication and he is known for sounding as though he's speaking just to you, despite the fact that his reach has extended to a weekly audience exceeding one million listeners.

Beyond talking on the radio and television as a host or a guest, Jeff's presence continues to extend to commercial voice-over and narration as well as to the stage as an emcee and speaker.

Jeff's success also extends to media management as he has programmed several major market radio stations.Canadas leading vintage rock authority, Woods has been at the center of conversation and context around music for 30+ years. Jeff has hosted radio programs and series, since 1983. He was the creator and host of The Legends of Classic Rock, heard internationally over 14 seasons, by a million weekly listeners across Canada and around the world. His many one-on-one interviews include artists like The Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, Rush, Ozzy Osbourne, The Band, Pearl Jam, Santana & David Bowie.

Jeff's current radio series "Records & Rockstars" complements his podcast of the same name, and his first work of non-fiction in print - the acclaimed book "Radio, Records & Rockstars".