Isis Music Hall Kicks Off a New Year of Great Music
By Gina Malone
It’s a brand new year of tuneful, old favorites at Isis Music Hall as January’s lineup includes folk, Celtic and traditional music by an impressive range of contemporary artists.
On Saturday, January 7, at 7 p.m. Isis Music Hall and Mountain Spirit present Ken and Brad Kolodner, playing hammered dulcimer, banjo and fiddle.
On a CD release tour for The Swift House, this father-son duo have been playing together for seven years and will be making their Isis Music Hall and Asheville debut. Son Brad says that, although he grew up in a musical household, he did not seriously begin playing banjo until he was 17 years old. “We’re rooted in the traditional melodies and hypnotizing groove of Old-Time,” he says, “but we embrace taking liberties with the music.”
Ken Kolodner is considered one of North America’s most influential hammered dulcimer players and Old- Time fiddlers. “We strive to create a unique soundscape that highlights the pairing of the hammered dulcimer and clawhammer banjo,” Brad says, “two very rhythmic, percussive and versatile instruments.” Tickets for the performance are $15.
Folk musician Bill Staines performs Sunday, January 8, at 7:30 p.m. A New Englander, Staines has ties to the Boston–Cambridge folk scene of the early 1960s and has been called “one of folk music’s best songwriters and entertainers.” Tickets are $18.
For the third year running at Isis Music Hall, Andrew Scotchie’s B Day Bash, on Saturday, January 14, at 9 p.m., brings a lineup that includes Aaron “Woody” Wood and The Patrick Dodd Band (featuring Ashley Heath). Asheville favorites Andrew Scotchie and the River Rats will close the evening with several WNC special guest players including David Earl and John Trufant of Levee Daze. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.
On Thursday, January 19, at 7 p.m., Debra Cowan will bring her blend of old and new to Asheville for the first time. “It’s encouraging,” she says, “to know that the rich and varied musical traditions are being kept alive in Asheville.” She performs a variety of songs—from traditional ballads to contemporary favorites. “I encourage the audience to join in and I do hope we’ll raise the roof at Isis with a wall of voices.” Tickets are $12.
It’s An Evening with Carrie Newcomer on Friday, January 20, at 9 p.m. An acoustic singer and songwriter, she has been described as “a voice for progressive spirituality, social justice and interfaith dialogue.” Tickets are $22 in advance and $25 at the door.
Mountain Spirit and Isis present a return engagement with The Legendary Tom Rush on Wednesday, February 1, at 8:30 p.m. Rush’s roots lie in the folk revival of the 1960s and artists such as James Taylor and Garth Brooks credit his “distinctive guitar style, wry humor and warm expressive voice” as influences on their own musical careers. Rush’s Club 47 concerts have brought Nanci Griffith and Shawn Colvin, among others, to wider audiences as they began their careers. Tickets are $35 in advance, $40 at the door.
Isis Restaurant and Music Hall is located at 743 Haywood Road in West Asheville. For ticket information and dinner reservations, call 828.575.2737 or visit isisasheville.com.