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SESSION AMERICANA - last show until the new CD hits in the fall
The Lizard Lounge
Cambridge, MA
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SESSION AMERICANA - last show until the new CD hits in the fall
Tuesday 8/21
8:30 doors / 9:30 show

No two Session Americana shows are alike. They're rowdy, freewheeling modern hootenannies that surprise the audience as much as they surprise the Somerville, Massachusetts sextet. Session Americana has innovatively recast the live show experience as a familial gathering of musicians seated at a round table swapping songs and instruments. Although the musicians face each other, the audience feels drawn into the circle, engaged by the joyous camaraderie, playful musicality, and charmingly original music of this all-star cast of characters.

Session Americana has received numerous press plaudits for its inventively entertaining live show as well as its revelatory recorded work. The Boston Globe has praised Session Americana for its "fun, fresh take on old-fashioned, and timeless, music." Alt-country arbiters of cool, No Depression, has called them: "The cream of the Somerville/Cambridge roots music community." Bill Janovitz, of seminal alt band Buffalo Tom, has enthused: "Every set is that magical night at the campfire that you experienced when you were a kid and never forgot." Session American has won Improper Bostonian's "Best Roots Act" and "Best CD," and won Boston Music Awards' "Best Folk Act" and "Best Live Residency." The band has also been nominated for Boston Music Awards' "Best Americana Act" and "Best Live Act." On September 4th, Session Americana releases its fourth installment, its most cohesive and well-composed batch of songs yet, Love and Dirt.

Love and Dirt is a playfully irreverent take on roots music with an edgy experimental side. "A big piece of this journey is taking risks we haven't taken before. In the studio we don't want to make anything sound like it's 'supposed' to. We're not an old timey act, we're a pop band," Cavanaugh affirms. The album was tracked by Matt Malikowski  and noted producer, engineer, and mixer Paul Q. Kolderie, known for his work with the Pixies, Radiohead, Hole, Dinosaur Jr., Throwing Muses, Morphine, and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. Kolderie also mixed the album. The atmospheric track "Easier" patiently unfolds with a gorgeously ethereal intro before easing into the tune's lush and quaintly haunting hooks. "The intro to 'Easier' sounds closer to Radiohead than the Band," Cavanaugh says. It's a sweetly cautionary tale of excess and battling inner demons with the hopeful lyrics: It's getting harder day by day/It's getting harder but that's okay/Because you and I will find a way.

Members of the band were sitting in a car one day when Billy Beard said they should name the record something that describes the songs. Noting they had songs about American agrarian culture and love, they came up with "Love And Dirt." On the smoldering rockabilly number "Making Hay," Session Americana addresses the dirt side of the album's conceptual tandem with barbed wit.

The group was assembled eight years ago around the idea of applying a traditional Irish music session approachwhere musicians sit around in a circle and play fiddlesto Americana, hence the name "Session Americana." The sextet began a Sunday night residency at Toad in Cambridge, Mass. The initial patchwork of a band stayed together for four years and made the highly esteemed 2005 debut, The Table Top People Volumes 1 And 2. Today, the core band is Ry Cavanaugh, Billy Beard, Dinty Child, Jim Fitting, John Bistline and Kimon Kirk along with Laura Cortese and Jefferson Hamer. These charter Session Americana members have worked with such diverse and respected artists as Treat Her Right, Patty Griffin, Lori McKenna, The The, Dennis Brennan, and Kris Delmhorst, to name just a few.

Session Americana started haphazardly with no rehearsals, doing traditional country songs, Band songs, and Boston community songs by songwriters like Jimmy Ryan, Mark Sandman [Morphine], and Dennis Brennan. Over four records, however, Session Americana has grown into writing its own well-crafted vibrant take on traditional Americana.

The group's 2005 debut, The Table Top People Volumes 1 And 2, influenced many other bands that adopted Session Americana's distinctive live configuration and its motley assortment of instruments, like drums fashioned from an old suitcase and field organs. The six-piece also became highly sought after as a vibey backup band. In this context, they've done sessions with J. Geil's singer Peter Wolf, Patty Griffin, Buffalo Tom's Bill Janovitz, and many others.

The group has grown from a rag-tag jam at a local pub to a regional institution, playing gigs from coffee houses to urban nightclubs; regional, national, and international festival tents; and theaters. Last summer Session Americana did the Galway Arts Festival for two nights in front of 350 people. The show was collaborative with local Irish artists joining the party of six. "We do this thing in front of people, share ideas, do spontaneous work, and collaborate with whoever is available. There is an everything goes/anything can happen energy," Cavanaugh explains. "People recognize this is not just a band, but a prehistoric experience that doesn't translate to youtube or video, it happens in a very analog way."

"Best Live Residency" 2011 - Boston Music Awards
Nom "Best Americana Act" 2009 - Boston Music Awards
Nom "Album of the Year - Diving for Gold" 2009 - Boston Music Awards
"Best CD of 2007 - Beer Town" - Improper Bostonian
"Best Roots Act 2006" - Improper Bostonian
"Best Folk Act - 2005" - Boston Music Awards

Collaborations, Casual Guests, and Friends of the Band
Rose Polenzani (Studio Record Here)
Bruno Green (FR)(Studio Record Here)
Peter Wolf and Duke Levine
Patty Griffin
Bill Janovitz
The Henry Girls (ROI)
Finbarr Doherty (ROI)
Cahalen Morrison
Anais Mitchell
Kris Delmhorst
Everyday Visuals, Tim Gearan, The Watson Twins, Alec Spiegelman, Dietrich Strause, Jon Powhida, Billy Conway... too manyn to list.

Some Venues
The Lizard Lounge, Club Passim, Natick Center for the Arts, Stone Mountain Arts Center, Barbes Brooklyn, Brooklyn Rod and Gun Club, Avalon Theater Maryland, Galway Arts Festival, Earigael Arts Festival, Sugar Club Dublin, Cafe Lena, Narrows Center for the Arts, Iron Horse Northampton, Brattle Theater, First Night Boston, Tweed River Festival, Langdon Street Cafe (RIP), Middle Earth Music Hall (RIP), Hay Barn at Goddard College, Grand Theater Ellsworth Maine, One Longfellow, Tupelo Music Hall, Toad Cambridge, Parker Pie VT.



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

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Music > Americana
Music > Folk
Music > Rock

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


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