Grammy Award winner Jon Cleary and his band, the Absolute Monster Gentlemen, brought their Mardi Gras vibe to DC recently for a Fat Tuesday celebration at The Hamilton Live.
Steep Canyon Rangers released Out in the Open, their most recent album, in 2018 via Ramseur Records. The North Carolina bluegrass band is on tour with a stop at The Hamilton Live on Friday, Jan. 25.
[Editor’s note: This piece has been updated on Jan. 22, 2019, to reflect details of the show.]
In August, Rolling Stone listed Town Mountain in its 10 Country Artists You Need to Know. Although the band has been around for a more than a decade, and it has won International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, it’s reaching a new level on the back of its latest album, 2018’s New Freedom Blues, released last year, which casts a sonic bridge between bluegrass and Americana. Town Mountain justified that new level of respect in a show at The Hamilton Live on Friday.
I was looking forward to a good show to kick off 2019 — and Leyla McCalla’s scheduled performance at The Hamilton Live seemed like just the ticket. What I experienced though was far from merely “good.” Instead, Leyla’s performance was mesmerizing, sensual, joyous, and exquisite… adjectives that describe far more accurately her unique blend of traditional Creole, Cajun, and Haitian music (with American folk and gospel thrown into the mix as well).