Saturday, Oct 15, 2005

Ina May Wool
on the same program with
Steve Robinson


        Ina May Wool

ntroduced by Charlie Backfish of WUSB, she came upon the stage looking like country in her fringed suede jacket and embroidered skirt ... and then she started her set by belting out her opening number in her powerful voice accompanied by Dan Weiss on guitar. But then she followed with a sweet melodic tune, and she sang another in a breathless low whisper and a breathless high whisper. Ina May Wool demonstrated a broad command of the stage and her versatile instrument. The sharks were in the harbor tonight, and we loved her.

he began singing as a kid back home in Marblehead, Mass. At the age of eight she wrote, directed, and sang the leading role in a school musical about Christopher Columbus (good early experience for the off-Broadway productions she starred in much later) and she played her first paying gig, to the local boy scout troop, at 12.

ow she’s a dyed-in-the-you-know-what New Yorker, and she delivers music that contains a world of experience. Wool has a strong, beautiful, evocative voice. Not a classic "folk" voice, (but then, what is a classic "folk" voice?), it’s not surprising to hear that aside from her solo singer-songwriter career, Wool has done some commercial work, some stage work and a touch of rock and roll.

ust as good as her engaging voice are the songs she and husband Daniel A. Weiss have co-written. "Sometimes the songs just pop out, other times we’ll work for ages on the arrangement. The words are mostly true, a combination of observation and personal experiences, either my own or friends’. I like to tell the audience a story." Whether she’s singing about wasted lives, transforming love, the kind of anger that fuels passion, or the odd celebration of a spent relationship ... Wool threads the needle, stitches the details and embroiders a fine portrait of life at its most complex.

INA MAY WOOL his is an artist who deserves to be noticed, and we were honored to have her in the spotlight on our Hard Luck Café stage.

thers have praised her with:

  • "Wool sings so close to the emotional waterfall that she compels undivided attention."
        — DIRTY LINEN, Mitch Ritter

  • "One of my favorite unheralded New York singer/songwriters."
        — John Platt, WFUV

  • "Ina May Wool takes us into deep dark caverns populated by off-balance elephants, dangerous bears and other perilous creatures of our own emotions. Her songs provide a steady beam of light to guide us. Her voice provides the power."
        — Marilyn Rea Beyer, Music Director, WUMB Radio

  • "Ina May Wool has an elegant confidence on stage in any setting. Her well-crafted songs are as mature and intriguing as a lipsticked cognac glass."
        — TOM NEFF, Grassy Hill Concerts

  • Link to Ina's website:         Listen to her music:

    and on the same program

    Steve Robinson

    STEVE ROBINSON ong Island based Steve Robinson has been singing since he was in grammar school and has a wonderfully expressive voice. He started playing the guitar just out of high school. "My folks bought an old Sears Silvertone guitar with the intention of taking adult music classes. They quit but I picked it up and started playing and haven't stopped yet".

    teve is a self-taught guitarist and has developed his own unique finger style. He has recently begun to write his own songs and has quickly developed into an exceptionally strong songwriter.

    e also has a great ear for material from other writers. Steve's musical background is an eclectic mix, and you are likely to hear a mix of old rock and roll, new singer/songwriter tunes, Celtic songs, as well as some of Steve's own great originals.

    teve Robinson is a real kick to watch in performance; he opened with his Every Minute of the Day, a terrific melodic love song. He followed with a mix of roadhouse blues, traditional folk, covers and his own songs; he comes up with a unique and entertaining blend which showcases his terrific voice and demonstrates that he has the chops. Steve has finished his CD and will have it available 3 weeks from when you read this. We were very proud to have Steve here for his first headliner billing on our Hard Luck Café stage.   —   You should have been here!

    thers have praised him with:

  • "Steve Robinson is known for his special style of finger picking on guitar and he’s known by many acoustic musicians locally. His set consisted of melodic originals and covers with a few rockin’ ones mixed in. One of the melodic songs that stands out is A Little Bit Of Heaven, which is a simple yet beautiful song that was written for his young granddaughter. As to a rockin’ type song, Steve plays the hell out of a tune titled Little Rock & Roller. There are probably some folks in their 20’s that wish they could play guitar with the passion that Steve Robinson performs with. One of the darker pieces he performs is Lucinda, which is a tale about love gone very badly awry."
        — Aural Fix magazine

  • Our host tonight was Bob Westcott, and our open mike featured performances by:

  • Bob Campbell
  • Glen Roethel
  • Gerry McKeveny
  • Paul Helou
  • Tim Atwell
  • Lora Kendall
  • Roger Silverberg
  • Paul Cama
  • Pedro
  • Barry Be & Samuel P. Lazow
  •   ... and   Nick Vermitsky
  • If you weren't here tonight, you missed yet another of the very best programs of the year ...