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Marti Jones & Don Dixon

Marti Jones Art

Marti Jones & Don Dixon have been performing together, off and on, for over twenty years. This longtime partnership has resulted in an intimate stage rapport as well as the seamless blending of two of the most distinct voices around today. With over two hundred songs in their collective recorded catalogue, you never know quite what to expect when they hit the stage, but rest assured their performance will feature thoughtful lyrics and heart-felt singing.

The Avett Brothers

The Avett Brothers are an American folk rock band from Concord, North Carolina. The band is made up of two brothers, Scott Avett and Seth Avett along with Bob Crawford and Joe Kwon. Mike Marsh and Bonnie Avett-Rini are touring members of the band. Wikipedia

St. Paul and the Broken Bones

St. Paul and The Broken Bones is an American eight-piece soul band based in Birmingham, Alabama, United States, that formed in 2012. The band is composed of Paul Janeway, Browan Lollar, Jesse Phillips, Kevin Leon, Al Gamble, Allen Branstetter, Amari Ansari, and Chad Fisher. Wikipedia

James W. Hall

Location: (Thorn series) Florida Keys

James W. Hall is the author of 20 novels, the latest of which is When They Come For You (2017, Thomas and Mercer).

Fourteen of the novels feature a hardcore loner named Thorn, who makes a meager living tying bonefish flies. Thorn, and his private eye pal, Sugarman, have teamed up to thwart animal smugglers, cruise ship hijackers, rogue medical experimenters, and other assorted villains. For a man who simply wants to be left alone to contemplate the island light and sweet sea breezes of Key Largo, Thorn has been drawn into a long string of adventures to right wrongs and avenge the deaths of his friends, relatives and lovers and has taken innumerable gashes and wounds and scars in the process.

Hall’s non-fiction work includes Hot Damn! a collection of personal essays he wrote for the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel’s Sunshine Magazine, as well as some he wrote for the Washington Post and The Miami Herald.

His second non-fiction effort is Hit Lit (Random House) an analysis of twelve of the most commercially successful novels of the last century and the dozen features those books have in common.

Les Standiford

Locations: Florida and others.

Les Standiford is the author of twenty-one books, including the critically acclaimed works of non-fiction, Last Train to Paradise:  Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad that Crossed an Ocean –a History Channel Top Ten Pick & the One Read choice of more than a dozen public library systems; Meet You in Hell:  Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick and the Bitter Partnership that Transformed America, and Washington Burning: How a Frenchman’s Vision for Our Nation’s Capital Survived Congress, the Founding Fathers, and the Invading British Army–both publisher’s nominees for the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Awards; The Man Who Invented Christmas:  How Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived our Holiday Spirits (a New York Times Editors Choice); Bringing Adam Home:  The Abduction that Changed America (a New York Times best-seller); and most recently, Water to the Angels: William Mulholland, His Monumental Aqueduct, and the Rise of Los Angeles, a featured alternate of the History Book Club. 

He is also the author of ten novels, including the acclaimed John Deal mystery series as well as the stand-alone thrillers Black Mountain and Spill (adapted as a feature film). 

He has received the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Award, the Frank O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, and Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is Founding Director of the Creative Writing Program at Florida International University in Miami and was appointed holder of the Peter Meinke Chair in Creative Writing at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg for the Spring of 2016.

He and his wife Kimberly, a psychotherapist and artist, are the parents of three children, Jeremy, Hannah, and Alexander.  They live in Pinecrest, Florida, in a home built of native Florida pine and maintained by the spirit of John Deal. 

Mary Chapin Carpenter

Mary Chapin Carpenter is an American singer-songwriter. Carpenter spent several years singing in Washington, D.C. clubs before signing in the late 1980s with Columbia Records, who marketed her as a country singer. Wikipedia

John Jennings

Long Time Guitarist, Producer,
Collaborator
John Jennings
R.I.P.

Editor Note: The wonderful video of Down at the Twist and Shout was filmed at the Spanish Ballroom, Glen Echo Park, Glen Echo, Md. Take note of both John Jennings and Pete Kennedy on guitar and the wonderful BeauSoleil. Also special because I was there.

Taj Mahal

R.I.P. Gregg Allman

In September 2014, some 50 years after moving to Los Angeles to form the band Rising Sons with fellow blues musician Ry Cooder and Jessie Lee Kincaid, Taj Mahal hightailed it to Nashville to receive an honor he called “one of the most powerful and wonderful things that could ever happen in my life.” Celebrating decades of recording and touring that have nearly singlehandedly reshaped the definition and scope of the blues via the infusion of exotic sounds from the Caribbean, Africa and South Pacific, the two-time Grammy winning singer, songwriter, film composer, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist was feted with the Lifetime Achievement for Performance Award at the 13th Annual Americana Honors and Awards.

James (Jim) Sallis

James Sallis (born December 21, 1944 in Helena, Arkansas, United States) is an Americancrime writer, poet, critic, musicologist and musician, best known for his series of novels featuring the detective character Lew Griffin and set in New Orleans, and for his 2005 novel Drive, which was adapted into a 2011 film of the same name.

Film – Drive starring Ryan Gosling

Lukas Nelson & the Promise of the Real

“In case you didn’t know, Willie Nelson has a son. His name is Lukas Nelson.

Lucinda Williams

Three-time Grammy Award winner, Lucinda Williams has been carving her own path for more than three decades now. Born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, Williams had been imbued with a “culturally rich, economically poor” worldview. Several years of playing the hardscrabble clubs gave her a solid enough footing to record a self-titled album that would become a touchstone for the embryonic Americana movement – helping launch a thousand musical ships along the way.

While not a huge commercial success at the time Lucinda Williams (aka, the Rough Trade album) retained a cult reputation, and finally got the reception it deserved upon its reissue in 2014. Jim Farber of New York’s Daily News hailed the reissue by saying “Listening again proves it to be that rarest of beasts: a perfect work. There’s not a chord, lyric, beat or inflection that doesn’t pull at the heart or make it soar.”

For much of the next decade, Williams moved around the country, stopping in Austin, Los Angeles, Nashville, and turning out work that won immense respect within the industry (winning a Grammy for Mary Chapin Carpenter’s version of “Passionate Kisses”) and a gradually growing cult audience. While her recorded output was sparse for a time, the work that emerged was invariably hailed for its indelible impressionism — like 1998’s Car Wheels on a Gravel Road, which notched her first Grammy as a performer.

The past decade brought further development, both musically and personally, evidenced on albums like West (2007), which All Music Guide called “flawless…destined to become a classic” and Blessed (2011), which the Los Angeles Times dubbed “a dynamic, human, album, one that’s easy to fall in love with.” Those albums retained much of Williams’ trademark melancholy and southern Gothic starkness, but also exuded more rays of light and hope. This all lead to the 2014 release of Williams’ first double studio album Down Where The Spirit Meets The Bone. The album received overwhelming praise from the media and fans, thus proving that Williams’ songwriting is as strong and important as it has ever been.

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