We Love A Parade

“We’ll be sincere but not pretentious,” David Mayfield told an interviewer recently about an upcoming performance by his new band. “But we also don’t mind being goofy. There will be dancing. It will be sort of Simon & Garfunkel meets Randy Newman.”

Awesome! We know Mayfield from his bracing and bold work with indie-rock-grass band Cadillac Sky. But Mayfield, who’s been touring and playing since he was a kid in his family’s countryband, has a ton of music in him. So lately he’s been supplementing C-Sky work with collaborations that include the Avett Brothers and his sister, widely admired songstress Jessica Lee Mayfield. We get to hear his own band, the David Mayfield Parade, round out the night at our Winter 2011 season opener, a benefit for the Nature Conservancy and a night to dream about plans and hopes and resolutions for the year to come.

It’s hard to forget Mayfield, with his epic beard worthy of a Lord of the Rings extra and a kind of fighter’s stance on stage, which leaves him nimble and channels his vast energy outward in radiating waves. But the main draw is that voice, a pure and penetrating yet tender instrument. As he arcs his way through the wistful and beautiful melodies on his recent solo debut recording, you can hear a touch of classic troubadour but with a contemporary hipster’s sensibility. It’s going to be a treat to hear him crafting his own thing and to talk about his recent road adventures with so many hot acts.

Also on Wednesday’s bill, we welcome back the great Minton Sparks, that inspiring and original story-weaver. She’ll make you redefine what you ever thought about poetry, short fiction and music, because somehow she wraps them all together into these vignettes and stories (generally set to the accompaniment of a single musician) that evoke laughter and tears in equal parts.

Cranking up the energy will be the country punk and electric twang of Hank Sinatra. As the name implies, leader “Jeffro” Holshouser brings loads of sardonic wit, but there’s some serious rock and roll going on here too.

And we’re excited to welcome Julie Gribble, a rocket-ship up-and-comer who’s more than making her way in L.A. Originally from Atlanta, she became a fixture there before moving to the even-bigger big city and apparently started winning hearts and minds. She’s played Craig Ferguson’s awesomely weird Late Late Show three times and landed a bunch of musical placements in shows and commercials. Judging from her YouTube performances, we’re expecting a huge smile and tons of personality to go along with her sincere, Natalie Merchant-ish voice.

So join us for a big winter Wednesday. We don’t mind being goofy either.

Craig H

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