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The Lizard Lounge
Cambridge, MA
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Wednesday 6/10 -
with special guest CURTIS McMURTRY
$5 advance and $8 at the door
8:30 doors / 9:00 show

Dennis Brennan and his stellar band of revolving musicians continue to rock the Lizard on Wednesday nights.  As the band does each week, special guests open the second set with a short set.  Look for some to cover Dennis Brennan songs.  Tonight features Austin based singer songwriter Curtis McMurtry.  Curtis played this middle set a few months back and wowed everyone with his songs.  Curtis is the son of legendary singer songwriter writer James McMurtry. Curtis hits the stage at 10:15. Dennis and the band hit at 9:00PM sharp!

To the uninitiated, Brennan could be considered Boston's own Leonard Cohen or Elvis Costello.  His songwriting is respected by critics and musicians alike. Not only adept with the pen, Dennis Brennan is a highly accomplished performer and is known for his ability to span musical genres, styles, and era's with ease.  His emotive and passionate voice is comfortable tackling classic country and R& B as well classic jazz, rock and blues.  But it's really Brennan's originals that have set him apart.  The Chicago Sun Times described him as "A rootsy, hard-edged rocker with the barroom soul of the pre-Woodstock Graham Parker and the unsparing insight of a working class poet."  It's a fitting description if ever there was one.  To the initiated faithful who attend every show, Dennis and his band (which includes guitarists Duke Levine, Kevin Barry, Russell Chudnofsky, Ian Kennedy, and Tony Savarino on any given night along with the rhythm section of Billy Beard and Richard Gates plus keyboardist Jim Gambino) have etched so many indelible magical moments on the local collective conscious that they return each week to see what will happen next.

From Austin, Texas. You know his father and his grandfather.
Now meet Curtis McMurtry on his East Coast tour for his debut album Respectable Enemy.

"Sharp songwriter" (CMT) mirrors legendary father with literate story songs that examine "the nastiest parts of people"

AUSTIN, Texas  Curtis McMurtry's forthcoming Respectable Enemy plots ("Foxhole") and prowls ("Eleanor's House") with singular focus. "I wanted to make an album about people treating the ones they loved as opponents and the really mean and competitive aspects of love," the Austin native says. "It's about conflict and spite and those times when someone who should be proud of their partner's or friend's accomplishments is jealous instead. I play out the nastiest parts of people."

Results spotlight a singular young songwriter rapidly rising. McMurtry's vibrant vignettes effortlessly pull ("Isabel") and punch ("Down to the Wire") with raw emotion and keen insight. Folks notice. "Wise beyond his years," CMT recently called McMurtry. Celebrated songwriter Joe Pug agrees: "Like few songwriters his age, Curtis truly understands what a big tent American music actually is. While most modern Americana practitioners search for another rough edge to sand down, his debut is refreshingly unsymmetrical and beautiful."

Evidence: "Chaplinesque." McMurtry seamlessly frames a wounded lover's disdain with unflinching honesty. "What a respectable enemy you turned out to be," he growls, "and here I thought you were just a bad friend." "I wrote 'Chaplinesque' when I was 17," McMurtry explains. "I had this friend that I was really close to and she ended up getting closer to the person I was dating and I couldn't use her as a confidante anymore. It was difficult but fascinating."

Remember that sentiment. McMurtry describes the entire collection as "downers to some extent." He carefully divides his stark narratives into two groups: reflective, nostalgic downers and vindictive, nasty ones. McMurtry frequently mirrors Townes Van Zandt analyzing his own songs: "I have a few that aren't sad, they're hopeless, about totally hopeless situations." "Hope is where you choose to see it, so maybe you can imagine a place where these people come to terms with the problems," he explains. "However, I don't think that resolution is presented in the material. They're snapshots of difficult places without clear indications of where they will end."

His novelist's eye offers striking attention to detail throughout.b"Curtis is frightfully observant and unflinching in his approach and has a refined voice for storytelling," producer Will Sexton says. "He's an absurd creature who you can't stop staring at and wanting to listen to." Songwriting legend Jon Dee Graham eagerly doubles down: "Respectable Enemy's an honest recording of good performances and well-written songs. I wish I could've played the guitar on 'Wire.' It's wonderful. I would've loved to fuck some shit up there."

More on DENNIS BRENNAN Music is in his blood and it shows not just in the impressive body of work, but in the workman like attitude he brings to the stage each and every time.  It's what inspired J. Geils frontman Peter Wolf to remark, "The biggest challenge for any artist is to sustain and keep growing. Many musicians who stick with it can fall into a trap of becoming parodies of themselves. Dennis has always kept maturing, which is one of the hardest challenges, and that's why I always enjoy checking him out." It's also why band mate Duke Levine says "Dennis is such a strong performer, he never phones it in, and that means everything to a sideman. If Dennis is giving something that is amazing, then you'd better give it, too." Or as guitarist Kevin Barry says, "I have never played with Dennis when he gives less than 100 percent."

Dennis Brennan is a local treasure and he continues to impress and evolve.  Do not miss your chance to see him... every Wednesday night right in your own back yard.

The Dennis Brennan Band performs two sets every Wednesday night starting at 9:00 (8:30 doors).  Ticket price may vary from week to week.


The Lizard Lounge (View)
1667 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States


Music > Americana
Music > Country
Music > Folk
Music > Rock
Music > Singer/Songwriter

Minimum Age: 21
Kid Friendly: No
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!


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