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Roots on the Rails Revue with Dave Alvin, SOLD OUT! Phil Alvin, Eliza Gilkyson, and Butch Hancock
The Old Church Concert Hall
Portland, OR
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SOLD OUT! Tickets are no longer available for Roots on the Rails Revue with Dave Alvin. There will NOT be tickets available at the door.


Roots on the Rails Revue with Dave Alvin, SOLD OUT! Phil Alvin, Eliza Gilkyson, and Butch Hancock
The Minor Key Concert Series at The Old Church was created to showcase the best singer-songwriters this world has to offer. Genres will range, but the stories will linger. Set in Portland's oldest still standing church, you'll find yourself set in one of the most intimate venues around.  
We are thrilled to announce the first concert in this series. On Thursday August 25th the Roots on the Rails Revue rolls through Portland and makes a stop at The Old Church, featuring Dave Alvin, Phil Alvin, Eliza Gilkyson, and Butch Hancock. plus Rick Shea, Christy McWilson, Cindy Cashdollar.

Riding a train and playing or listening to music conjures up romantic images of Woody Guthrie and his guitar crossing the country by boxcar during the Great Depression. The music-train connection runs deep. Boxcar Willie made a career of hobo songs. Steve Goodman had a hit with "City of New Orleans." In 1970, the Festival Express rolled across Canada with Janis Joplin, The Band, the Grateful Dead and others on board.

In 2001, Hunter, a music manager in the 1990s, put together a trans-Canadian train trip to a folk music conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. That led to the creation of Roots on the Rails (, with the first trip  Toronto to Vancouver  in 2003. Hunter now does four a year. The most recent, in April, was Los Angeles-Albuquerque (N.M.)-Chicago-Glacier Park (Montana)-Portland (Ore.)-LA.

The railroad fits most comfortably into the world of roots music. Folk, blues, western, jazz  American music  is the order of the day.

"Trains and music. They're inexorably intertwined, as any right-thinking 2-year-old knows," says Charlie Hunter, the supreme commander  really, that's what they call him around the office  of Roots on the Rails, his Vermont-based company that since 2003 has run 35 music-themed train excursions. His attachment goes back to his childhood.

"As a 2-year-old, I loved trains," he says, "and my older siblings sang me to sleep with horrible murder ballads like 'Banks of the Ohio.' " (excerpts from AP, Wilson Ring)

In 1979, Dave Alvin and his brother Phil formed the roots rock band the Blasters with fellow Downey residents Bill Bateman and John Bazz. Alvin served as the group's lead guitarist and chief songwriter. Despite a growing fan base in the United States and Europe, Alvin left the band in 1986 and became the lead guitarist of the Los Angeles-based alternative rock band, X. He left X in 1987 to work on a solo project after the group recorded their album See How We Are. Alvin became a member of country-folk band the Knitters and appeared on their 1985 album Poor Little Critter on the Road and their 2005 follow-up, The Modern Sounds of The Knitters.

Eliza Gilkyson is a 2-time Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter and activist who has become one of the most respected musicians in Folk, Roots and Americana circles.
Her songs have been covered by Joan Baez, Bob Geldof, Tom Rush and Roseanne Cash. Elizas music has always offered a vivid reflection of the times we live in, full of joys and sorrows, each song a window into a life of struggle and triumph in a world she feels is poised on the edge of moral, economic and environmental bankrupty.

A world traveling troubadour with a long string of recorded songs and albums, Butch Hancock has been called "one of the finest songwriters of our time" and is acknowledged by his peers and critics alike as one of the premiere singer-songwriters Texas has ever produced. His tunes evoke mystical visions of wind-swept dry-plains and his lyrics are profoundly imaginative, often displaying for his listeners the miracles that occur in the ordinary through creative irony and metaphors. His lyrical style has often been compared to that of Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie and his songs have been covered by the likes of Emmylou Harris.  Hancock is also a member of renowned country rock super-group, The Flatlanders, along with his lifelong friends, Joe Ely and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, a band they formed in 1972.


The Old Church Concert Hall (View)
1422 SW 11th Ave at Clay St
Portland, OR 97201
United States


Music > All Ages
Music > Americana
Music > Blues
Music > Country
Music > Folk
Music > Singer/Songwriter

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: Yes!
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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