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Thursday August 9 2018
  8:30PM doors -- music at 9:00PM
$12 in advance / $15 at the door
Simon Lunche
  from The Blondies
 Pop Rock, Singer Songwriter
Planes On Paper
 indie folk
Josiah Johnson
  from The Head And The Heart
 Folk, Singer Songwriter

Simon Lunche
-from Berkeley,CA
-Singer/songwriter Simon Lunche has packed a near-lifetime of musical experience into just 19 years. As the creative force behind Berkeley-based indie-rock act The Blondies, he’s written and produced the band’s entire catalog and made his name as a captivating live performer. Along with taking up guitar at age five—and soon becoming the youngest endorsed artist in the history of Gibson Guitars—he’s built up a vast musical knowledge that includes composing all the instrumental parts to his songs, from violin and cello to trumpet and sax. Having spent the last decade as a frontman, Lunche is now set to deliver a solo debut that brings a powerful new depth and even more dynamic vision to his artistry.


Formed when Lunche was nine-years-old, The Blondies released their acclaimed album Just Another Evening in June 2016, right around the time of his high school graduation. While several of the band’s older members decided to focus on finishing up college, Lunche opted to forgo school and pursue music full-time. Despite having written the majority of The Blondies’ three EPs and full-length effort all on his own, Lunche quickly found that working as a solo artist allowed a greater degree of creative freedom and sparked an unexpected evolution in his sound.


“As I started working on my new music, I rediscovered the reason why I picked up guitar in the first place,” says Lunche, who recalls hearing an Eric Clapton solo at five-years-old and instantly becoming infatuated with guitar. Expanding on the technique he’d begun sharpening as a little kid, Lunche soon advanced from his former role as rhythm guitarist and started crafting more intricate and richly textured guitar lines. “I don’t go for that shred-happy stuff that’s going to blow the roof off,” he says. “For me it’s more about slower, smoother playing and more melodic lines that really stay with you in a special way.”


As he settled into finding his voice as a lead guitarist, Lunche conjured up a guitar lick that would make its way into his solo debut single. Mixed by Grammy Award-winning engineer Dave Reitzas (who’s previously worked with artists ranging from Barbra Streisand to The Weeknd), “An Angel’s Love” bears a warm authenticity shaped by Lunche’s longtime love of Van Morrison and Leonard Cohen. The piano-driven track also finds Lunche bringing deeper nuance and a more reflective mood to his lyrics. “I think as you get older, you start to appreciate these little moments in time in a way you maybe never had before,” he says. “A lot of what I’m writing right now is about dealing with change and trying to move forward, but still holding onto some reminiscence of the past.”


Throughout his forthcoming album, Lunche matches his classic sensibilities with a soulful vitality that adds a fresh new edge to his music. At the same time, his solo work shows the strength of his natural musicality (a factor possibly inherited from his grandfather Raymond V. Pepe, who—as president of the Institute of High Fidelity—was hailed by Frank Sinatra for his sonic ingenuity). In each track, Lunche builds off his instincts with the songwriting skills he’s honed since age six. He also sculpts every song with intense precision, tapping into his constant studying of the complexities of production. “When I listen to music, I’m thinking about how certain sounds were made, what gear was used and how things were recorded,” he says. “Experimenting in the studio all the time has really helped me to fine-tune my own sound and create music that feels good to me.”


When he’s not working on his solo material, Lunche is often immersed in his long-term project of composing his own symphony: further proof of his restless creativity and singular devotion to making music. “If you don’t see me, I’m probably writing some piece of music or working on finding some sound—to the point where if I try to wind down a little at the end of the night, after about two minutes I’m picking up my guitar and trying to figure out some tone,” he says. “Music is 100 percent my life, and there’s really nothing that can ever distract me from it.”

Planes on Paper
Jen Borst • Navid Eliot • Mikey Gervais
• Faustine Hudson • Jacob Navarro
-from Yakima, WA

-“Planes on Paper don’t need much; just an acoustic guitar and two vocals harmonizing, holding each other close, is complete sonic comfort.” – KEXP

While at times "Edge Markings," the debut full length record from Yakima, WA duo Planes on Paper, blossoms into grandeur, Jen Borst and Navid Eliot imbue their art with a warm and ever-present intimacy. Indeed, from the first notes the record feels kindly and familiar. A work of grace and beauty crafted with specific intent, our protagonists “tried our best to make a record that we can all feel not alone to.”

While at times "Edge Markings," the debut full length record from Yakima, WA duo Planes on Paper, blossoms into grandeur, Jen Borst and Navid Eliot imbue their art with a warm and ever-present intimacy. Indeed, from the first notes the record feels kindly and familiar. A work of grace and beauty crafted with specific intent, our protagonists “tried our best to make a record that we can all feel not alone to.”

Written mostly in the isolation of the rural pacific northwest, Edge Markings was recorded at Panoramic House in Stinson Beach, CA by engineer Scott McDowell (Feist, The California Honey Drops). The recording sessions featured appearances from their friends Faustine Hudson (Damien Jurado, The Maldives) tracking drums, Josiah Johnson (The Head & The Heart) providing moral support and grocery selection, and The Golden Gate String Quartet. Matty Gervais (Shallow Lenses, The Head & The Heart) visited via phone to offer fresh ears and production advice.

Borst and Eliot both grew up steeped in music; both, coincidentally cutting their melodic teeth with wind instruments. Gradually they moved into the contemporary world, and following his muse Eliot headed east from Seattle a half-decade ago. They met when Borst was the photographer assigned to shoot Eliot for a feature on the songwriting scene for the local paper. “Jen said jokingly, ‘I would sing harmony with you sometime,’” related Eliot, “and I told her, dead-serious, ‘I’m playing tonight, show up and we’ll figure out what songs we both know.’”

Fate is stubborn, and shortly thereafter they were recruited to sing harmony in a local band. The pair sang the occasional duet at gigs, and soon enough venues started asking about booking just the harmony singers. On a lark Borst and Eliot decided to cut a demo. The live-recorded demo took on a life of its own, so they cut a studio EP called The Ruins and the train picked up a head of stream. The single “Television” - a song that reflects on the sadness filling the great chasm between Americans of different political leanings - was featured on a few radio stations. Apparently the right people heard it, and the band was asked to perform at The Kennedy Center. It’s been quite some three years.

If one were given to speculation, if would be fair to theorize that this rush to the early glimmers of success might be due to both the meticulous care and lack of ego that go into the duo’s work.  “We’re very conscious of the fact that the only things we are experts on is our own lives and feelings” says Eliot. “We love to write, and we really do labor over each song making sure it conveys exactly what we want, without ever claiming to know any great truths. Our goal with this recording and every other is that people hear it and experience a certain empathy with us, and they feel like we empathize with them. We’ve gotten through the darkest times in both our lives, comforted by soundtracks we still remember, and the best times of our lives have had music to accompany them as well. Music has been so profound in both our lives, it feels almost like an obligation to try to be that for someone else. “


Josiah Johnson
Josiah Johnson
-from Oakland, CA

-Southern California native, current resident of the Bay Area, former Seattleite, one-time Torontonian, and long-time tour busy resident. Josiah Johnson's immersion in the musical culture of so many locales, as well as his dedication to constant touring, have given him the means to share his music far and wide. But the strength of his songwriting has carried his music far beyond his physical reach. Best known as a member of American indie-folkers, The Head and The Heart, Josiah's solo performances highlight a stripped down, emotive, lyrics-first kind of song craft, inimitable in its sincerity and beauty.