The Minor Key Concert Series: Season 3

The Minor Key Concert Series at The Old Church was created to showcase some of the most creative and dynamic singer-songwriters this world has to offer. Genres will range, but the stories will linger. Set in downtown Portland’s oldest church building (on the National Register of Historic Places) you’ll hear incredible music in one of the most intimate venues in the Pacific Northwest, with world-class acoustics.

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(Photo by Todd Cooper)

Kaia Kaiter

Friday, August 31, 2018
Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm

Born of African-Caribbean descent in Québec, Kaia Kater grew up between two worlds: one her family’s deep ties to Canadian folk music in her Toronto home; the other the years she spent learning and studying Appalachian music in the USA. Her old-time banjo-picking skills, deft arrangements, and songwriting abilities have landed her in the spotlight in North America and the UK, garnering critical acclaim from outlets such as Rolling Stone, CBC Music, No Depression and Uncut.

Kaia started her career early, crafting her first EP Old Soul (2013) when she was just out of high school. Since then, she’s gone on to release two more albums, Sorrow Bound (2015) and Nine Pin (2016). Her most recent album weaves between hard-hitting songs that touch on social issues like the Black Lives Matter movement (“Rising Down,” “Paradise Fell”) and more personal narratives speaking to life and love in the digital age (“Saint Elizabeth”). Nine Pin won a Canadian Folk Music Award and sent Kaia on an 18-month touring journey from Ireland to Iowa, including stops at The Kennedy Center, Hillside Festival and London’s O2 Arena. Kaia is currently working on her next album, due for release in early 2019.


 

The John Doe Folk Trio

(2 nights!)
Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm
The JOHN DOE Folk Trio ? ! ? WHAT THE HELL ! ? ! Doesn’t he play punk rock w/the band X ? Doesn’t he have The John Doe RocknRoll Band? This Folk Trio concentrates on Doe songs like a solo acoustic show but w/ more OOMPH ! There will be favorites from solo records, favorite X songs & some Knitters too but all in a FOLK style. It’s like the desert or the plains, there’s miles & miles of space w/ beauty and harshness. Come & hear for yourself.
John Doe was born in 1977 when he arrived in Los Angeles. His previous life in Tennessee, Wisconsin & Baltimore was a great & fertile time but new music and social changes led him to events that created a life in art. He graduated from Antioch College in Baltimore in 1975, worked as a roofer, aluminum siding mechanic, and ran a poetry reading series. Ms. Meyers was his landlord in the rural black community of Simpsonville , MD. John met Exene Cervenka at the Venice poetry workshop Nov 1976 and he started working with Billy Zoom around the same time. When DJ Bonebrake joined X in mid-1977 the line up was complete. They released six studio records, five or six singles and one live record from 1978-1993. Five of X’s records have been re-issued along with two compilations. The Unheard Music documents their lives and progress as a band from 1980-83. In 2009 the film was included in the Sundance UCLA Archive of greatest films of all time. They appeared several times on American Bandstand, Solid Gold and David Letterman. As one of the last original punk rock bands standing, they continue to tour. The day that X played a free noontime concert in Fullerton, CA, they caused Orange County’s greatest high school truancy rate to date. In 1988 John started a family and lived in the Tehachapi Mountains, near the “Grapevine” of Highway 5, which separates southern and central California. He has recorded 8 solo records w/ numerous renowned singers and players, more recently including Patty Griffin, Dan Auerbach, Aimee Mann, Don Was, Kathleen Edwards and Greg Liesz. He has appeared in over 50 films and television productions, with some of his most notable roles in Road House, Georgia, Roadside Prophets, Great Balls of Fire, Pure Country and Roswell. He continues to act these days but more sporadically as his touring schedule has become more demanding. Other musical side projects include work with the Knitters, Jill Sobule and The Sadies. He continues to write poetry and has even taught workshops from time to time. He currently lives in Austin, TX.


 

Dom Flemons

Wednesday October 3, 2018
Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm

Dom Flemons is originally from Phoenix, Arizona and currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area. He is known as The American Songster since his repertoire of music covers nearly 100 years of American folklore, ballads, and tunes. Flemons is a music scholar, historian, record collector and a multi-instrumentalist. He is considered an expert player on the Banjo, Fife, Guitar, Harmonica, Percussion, Quills, and Rhythm Bones. He has performed with leading musicians, such as Mike Seeger, Joe Thompson, Martin Simpson, Boo Hanks, Taj Mahal, Old Crow Medicine Show, and Guy Davis. He has been a professional touring musician for the past ten years and has traveled around the nation and the world presenting traditional folk and roots music to diverse audiences. Flemons has performed as a soloist at prestigious venues, such as, Carnegie Hall, Cecil Sharp House, the Grand Ole Opry, the Opening Ceremony for the National Museum of African American History and Culture, National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, Newport Folk Festival and represented the United States at the 2017 Rainforest World Music Festival in Kuching, Malaysia. In 2018, Flemons will release his first solo album titled Dom Flemons Presents Black Cowboys on GRAMMY Award winning record label Smithsonian Folkways. This recording is part of the African American Legacy Recordings series, co-produced with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. In 2017, Flemons was featured on David Holt’s State of Music on PBS and performed as bluesman Joe Hill Louis on CMTs original hit television show Sun Records. In 2016, Flemons released a DUO album with British musician Martin Simpson titled Ever Popular Favourites on Fledgling Records. He launched a podcast, American Songster Radio, on WUNC Public Radio and filmed two instructional DVDs through Stefan Grossman’s Guitar Workshop. In 2014, Flemons released a critically acclaimed solo album Prospect Hill through Music Maker Relief Foundation. In 2005, Flemons co-founded the Carolina Chocolate Drops who have won a GRAMMY for Best Traditional Folk in 2010. He left the group to pursue his solo career in 2014 and in 2016 the Carolina Chocolate Drops were inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame.


 

Dan Bern

Saturday October 20, 2018
Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm

Dan Bern has released some two dozen studio albums, EPs, and live recordings since his first CD on Sony/Work in 1997. Either fronting various bands or as a solo performer, he is convincing, funny and timely, with an unassuming tip of the hat to the spirits of the past greats, all while sounding fresh and original. Dan’s songs pack a punch, and are engaging and often cinematic. Bern’s singular songwriting has led to work on such projects as the Judd Apatow features Walk Hard—the Dewey Cox Story and Get Him to the Greek. His songs have appeared in countless TV shows and independent films, been covered by The Who’s Roger Daltrey, and lately, comprise all the songs for Amazon Prime’s The Stinky and Dirty Show, a cartoon for youngsters, now in its second season.

In addition to the music, Dan Bern is a prolific painter, with works hanging in The Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and The Bobby Feller Museum. He has published several books, the latest being a collection of poems, “encounters,” which recount his real-life encounters with, among others, Wilt Chamberlain, Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Carter and Hunter S. Thompson.
Exciting new projects in the works include new recordings with his much-beloved band, “The International Jewish Banking Conspiracy” (IJBC).


 

Dayna Kurtz

Sunday, November 4, 2018
Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm

Over the past decade, the New Jersey born vocalist/writer/musician/producer (now dividing her time between New Orleans and the mountains of Vermont) has been bestowed with many awards and praises, including being named the Female Songwriter of the Year by the National Academy of Songwriters. Dayna was recently nominated for New Orleans Songwriter of the Year in the Offbeat Magazine poll. Norah Jones and Bonnie Raitt have raved about her in interviews, and she’s performed on such high-profile radio shows as World Cafe, Mountain Stage, NPR’s Morning Edition, and Tell Me More. She’s toured and opened for the likes of Elvis Costello, Richard Thompson, Mavis Staples, Rufus Wainwright, B.B. King, Dr. John, Richie Havens, Madeleine Peyroux, Chris Whitley, and the Blind Boys of Alabama. Festivals that have asked Dayna to perform include the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, the French Quarter Festival, Celebrate Brooklyn, Lincoln Center Out of Doors and Roots on the Rails.

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