News from the Stairwell

The weblog of The Stairwell Sisters – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

In Like a Lion

MARCH 2009 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

In like a Lion, people!

Wrapping up February with some very exciting shows…followed by just one concert from the Sisters in March before everyone takes to the four winds, only to meet back up in May…in Scotland! We hope you were able to catch Voices of a Peoples History – see below for news on that incredible event. We think the Bruce Springsteen cover we worked up for the show will make it into our set lists! Meanwhile, catch your Sisters soon…or well see you this Summer…

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

NEWS

The San Francisco Bluegrass & Old Time Festival was a whole lot of fun, and many thanks to all the volunteers that helped it go. All the gals had great shows with various bands The Knuckle Knockers, The Crooked Jades, Evil Diane – and together we had a real dancing show at the Café du Nord late on a Tuesday! Thanks to the Mad Cow Stringband, down from Davis, and the new, awesome Black Crown Stringband for sharing that show. Check out Mike Melnyks photos (scroll down to see other galleries). Were looking forward to the beautiful Lark Theater this weekend with Corinne West, an up-and-coming singer/songwriter with a hot new band.

In other news, more than you ever wanted to know about Evie is in a new interview with InnerviewWorld.com check it out!

Well folks who would have thought we would be sharing a stage (and a backstage!) with Josh Brolin, Boots Riley, Benjamin Bratt, Kerry Washington, Diane Lane and other luminaries as we did for Howard Zinn & Anthony Arnoves live performance of Voices of A Peoples History at the sold-out Mission High School Auditorium last night? Not only was the company amazing, but the performance itself was a beautiful and moving portrait of the struggles of people throughout our nations history. As much as we have seen progress in Civil Rights, Womens Rights and more, the more it became clear that the power struggles in this nation are far from over. How much things remain the same. Special thanks to Todd Chretien and the ISO for putting on this amazing event, and for having the good taste to bring us on as musical guests ;) We were honored to support this project.

 

 

THE GALS WITH HOWARD ZINN AND ANTHONY ARNOVE

 

EVIE AND JOSH BROLIN

 

THE GALS WITH BOOTS RILEY AND BENJAMIN BRATT



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February rolls right in…

 

FEBRUARY 2009 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

Its SFBOT Time Everyone!

The San Francisco Bluegrass & Old-Time Festival kicks off the month with concerts all over the Bay featuring more than 70 bands and your Stairwell gals are playing in all their incarnations. In addition to concerts & square dances later in the month, weve just confirmed an appearance at a very exciting event “Voices of a Peoples History” hosted by Howard Zinn and Anthony Arnove. Check out the details below, and on our website. See you out there!

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

NEWS

We kicked off the new year with a rip-roaring Breakin Up Xmas Square Dance on our home turf, and thanks to all those who came to play, call or dance! We followed it up with a sold-out show in the South Bay at Mission City thanks to Dick Brundle for his work producing the Fiddling Cricket series. The Portland Old-Time Gathering was a super fun weekend up north two simultaneous giant square dances eased the crowds kudos to the Portland crowd for a festival well done. Evie spent the latter half of January recording her solo project, with Mike Marshall producing, and were all eager to hear the results, though we might have to wait a while :(Sue is promoting our punk relatives, Cousin Dale and designing a CD package for Cascada de Flores; Martha’s having fun with the Knuckle Knockers, learning to play the banjo, and fighting budget cuts to vital services in San Francisco; Lisa and Step revisit their Crooked Jades days with a reunion concert at SFBOT…and Lisa is now teaching “Music Together” as well as designing a book about Big Sur legendary restaurant Nepenthe.

 

We were delighted to receive an invitation to perform at Howard Zinn & Anthony Arnoves Voices of a Peoples History of the United States a show based on the book they wrote, featuring speeches and music of the disenfranchised. Join Howard Zinn with a cast of readers and musicians, including Benjamin Bratt, Josh Brolin, Diane Lane, Clarence Thomas, Kerry Washington, Robin Wright Penn, yours truly, and others tba soon. We are honored to be a part of this amazing event check their website for more info. And there have been reports of Stairwell posters sighted at Celtic Connections, the fabulous festival in Glasgow, Scotland where we raged in 2007 touting our upcoming Scotland tour. 



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Happy New Year!

JANUARY 2009 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

Happy New Year!

Thanks to all of you for your support in 2008! Weve been doing it all ourselves for almost 9 years now, and feel very proud of what weve accomplished, with your help. Lots to look forward to in the new year! See below for dates and news, and well see you at a show …like this one tonight, for instance…

SATURDAY Jan 3 Breakin Up Xmas Square Dance Party Pick in East Bay Express (their listing says FRIDAY Jan 3 – oops…) 

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

NEWS

December was decidedly calm for the band, making plans for the new year. It was time for a break, some rest and creative recovery, not to mention reconnecting with family and friends. Evie heads into the studio this month with acclaimed musician and producer Mike Marshall, and she is super excited to see a new vision of her original songs come to fruition. Evie was also honored and inspired to join Linda Tillery & Holly Near in leading an end-of-year community sing. Were all looking forward to the San Francisco Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival, with ten nights of bands playing all over town, square dances and more … featuring Lisa’s SFBOT Festival poster design. 

RECENT REVIEWS

Radio Free Americana named Get Off Your Money one of their favorite releases of 2008: much fanfare has been given to Uncle Earl, and deservedly so, but one should not overlook this all-female old-time string band plowing similar musical ground, as this album will definitely get you off your moneymaker to shake out the cobwebs.

- RADIO FREE AMERICANA



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The end of 2008

DECEMBER 2008 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

 

Happy Holydaze Folks - 

 

Its been a big year for us gals, releasing and touring our third CD Get Off Your Money. The feedback weve gotten in reviews and in person is that the band is stronger than ever, and a whole lot of fun – we’ll toast to that! We already have some excellent shows planned for 2009 and look forward to seeing you there. Thanks as always for your support of live music.

Have a very happy season full of music, light, and good company – and remember, CDs make great presents ;)

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

 

NEWS

November saw us playing all around the Bay, doing some fabulous audience and community building shows. Dance party with The Creole Belles was especially fun, as was the enthusiastic audience and fabulous sound down at the Redwood Bluegrass Association concert, courtesy of acoustic musics finest engineer, Paul Knight. Evie disappeared into the First International Body Music Festival, and the gals put some old-time into the open mic, breaking up all that jazz with some hambone, which the Brazilians especially LOVED! Were happy to take some time with our families, and start the New Year right with a rocking square dance come on out!



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November aha!

 

 

NOVEMBER 2008 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

How about that election!? Amen for CHANGE. And given what Michelle Obama was wearing on election night – she’s now an official Stairwell Sister.

 

Us Sisters are enjoying a little hibernation, which of course includes some great shows, workshops and a DANCE PARTY this month. We hope to see you there!

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

NEWS

October saw your gals at a wild and crazy rumpus down in San Diego followed by a surreal yet beautiful festival in the desert. A big thanks to Mich & Marty for throwing a very fun party in SD, with lots of dancing and carrying on, and the first time we saw people square dancing with drinks in hand! Joshua Tree roots music festival was beautiful and the park was divine. Seeing all those stars in the warm night air was quite a tonic. Great to hang with Elephant Revival, hear Carrie Rodriguez, finally meet Devil Makes Three and dance to the Belleville Outfit. Thanks to all those desert rats who hosted a darn good time, with no sandstorms!

 

 

“Into the middle with a great big whoop” (and toast)!

 

 

J-Tree Elmo in hot pants with his oil drum entourage (Lisa, Harlan, and Clay)

 



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October haps

OCTOBER 2008 NEWSLETTER OF THE STAIRWELL SISTERS – All-Gal Old-Time String Band

Happy Fall…Though the weather is all summery here in the Bay, we are Falling into a predominantly home season. Weve got some very fun local shows coming up. Our 2008 release Get Off Your Money has gotten great reviews if youre so inclined, please add your own reviews to iTunes! Wed appreciate it!

xo, Evie, Lisa, Sue, Martha & Stephanie

NEWS

The Berkeley Old-Time Music Convention just gets better and better. We truly enjoyed getting to know the wild and wonderful Sheila Kay Adams she made our festival concert a real hoot! Having Benton Flippen in town with Paul Brown and Frank Bode was a real treat Benton laid down the square dance just right. And, well, our alter egos came out for the Cabaret they thought it was the Berkeley Old MIME Convention see photos below. Check out Evies band Evil Diane at the Stringband Contest here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KtKQpM7fqHI Finally, we ended the Albany Music in the Park series with a huge free show from the first downbeat there was a writhing mass of children and adults all dancing non-stop all night. We abandoned our set list and just rocked out for the shortest mosh pit weve seen. So fun! 

THAT’S RIGHT FOLKS, IT’S THE BERKELEY OLD MIME MUSIC CONVENTION!

If you guessed “Sugar Hill,” you’re right!

Evie takes a banjo solo

Steph wins the race! (Martha’s up to her roller derby tricks, Evie’s all turned around, and Lisa’s “running man” just didn’t hack it)

A treat for those who never enjoyed the sound of clogging

NEW REVIEWS

If you enjoy the high energy roots based music of groups like Nickel Creek 

and Old Crow Medicine Show, give The Stairwell Sisters a listen.

Kerry Dexter, BLOGGERNEWS.NET

 



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