Friday December 8th, 8pm $10 suggested donation
MARK FOSSON is a singer-songwriter and American Primitive guitarist who grew up in Kentucky, where he began writing songs while he was still in his early teens. In the late 1970s he sent some song demos to John Fahey's West Coast-based Takoma Records, and Fahey, impressed with what he heard, offered Fosson a recording deal. Fosson lost no time in relocating to Los Angeles and began recording, but as bad luck would have it, Takoma was in some difficulty, and the label soon folded. Fahey allowed Fosson to retain the master tapes of the sessions, however. Now located on the West Coast, Fosson met fellow songwriter Edward Tree, and the two began working together, forming The Bum Steers, a country-tinged group, in the late 1980s, eventually being invited to play the Grand Ol' Opry at the request of Porter Wagoner. Fosson's material appeared on several soundtracks throughout the 1990s.
In 2005 Fosson began recording a solo project, "Jesus on a Greyhound", which was released on Big Otis Records. The album drew positive reviews and Fosson was frequently compared to Americana music artists like Ramblin' Jack Elliot, Joe Ely, John Prine and Guy Clark. The Fahey material finally saw the light of day as "The Lost Takoma Sessions" from Drag City Records in 2006. His song "Another Fine Day" is included on the highly acclaimed "Imaginational Anthem Vol. 3" guitar compilation from Tompkins Square Records.
On June 26, 2012 Tompkins Square also released "Digging In The Dust", a collection of early home recordings which led to Fosson's signing to Takoma Records.
In May 2015 he released "kY", a collection of instrumentals inspired by his time growing up in Kentucky and in July 2017 his newest album, "Solo Guitar" was released on Drag City Records .
DON ZIENTARA - Best known as the producer for most of the bands on Washington D.C.'s legendary Dischord Records, Don Zientara is also a musician -- once a member of Under Heaven, in the early eighties -- who released his first solo album, Sixteen Ssongs, on long time collaborator and friend Ian MacKaye's Northern Liberties label in 2003. Originally an studio artist and sound engineer at the National Gallery of Art, Zientara began his foray into documenting the music of late seventies/early eighties Washington, D.C. when he was asked to record shows for bands like the Look and the Urban Verbs at clubs such as The Atlantis. His abilities as a producer earned him some quick word of mouth success, and the demand for his services deemed it necessary for Zientara to open up a studio to record more and more of the area's musicians. The studio, dubbed Inner Ear, would eventually become a Mecca of sorts for the D.C. underground scene, with Zientara working with bands such as the aforementioned Urban Verbs (later know as the Verbs), the Teen Idles, Minor Threat, Fugazi, Q and Not U, Dag Nasty, Slant 6, Circus Lupus, Smart Went Crazy, the Evens, Joe Lally, Bad Brains, and southwestern punk outfit 7 Seconds. Although Zientara's close relationship with Dischord earned him the respect of the punk community nationwide, his work was not limited to the noisier, more angular aspects of music. At Inner Ear (which would eventually outgrow its basement space, and move to more appropriate settings in a commercial space in Arlington) Zientara also recorded such varied musics as chorale music, Celtic folk, classical, jazz, spoken word, and books on tape readings.
After finally finding a sound for his own work that was satisfactory, Zientara released an album of his own, Sixteen Ssongs -- which got its unique sound from a vintage (40 years old) Wollensack tape deck -- on Northern Liberties, the label started by MacKaye to showcase some of the more rootsier and folkier aspects of Washington D.C.'s talented group of musicians, such as Zientara and Lungfish's Daniel Higgs. A follow up album, Clocks and Watches, was released on that same label in 2007. Two more solo albums followed these: I Was Waiting, and Eyes In the Back of My Head. He has been on many compilation albums.
ANTHONY PIROG is making his mark on the guitar playing universe, one sonically enthralling, diversely influenced project after another. From his work on Janel and Anthony's “Where is Home," described in Guitar Player Magazine as “approachable experimentalism," to what AllMusic described as “pristinely executed rock guitar solos" with Skysaw, Anthony displays a “crystalline tone that’s immediately recognizable as his own" in his ever-evolving conception of how a guitar can sound. Anthony has played with musicians across a wide spectrum of styles and genres. He has performed with renowned avant jazzers such as Henry Kaiser, Elliot Sharp, Michael Formanek, Ches Smith, Mary Halvorson, William Hooker, William Parker, Eyvind Kang, Skuli Sverrisson, Allison Miller, Jon Irabagon, Doug Weiselman, Susan Alcorn, Dave Ballou, Andrew Bishop, Balázs Pándi, Gino Robair, Tatsuya Nakatani, James Brandon Lewis, Jessika Kenney and played in myriad jazz, electronic and improvisational groups up and down the East Coast. Seemingly able to master any convention he chooses to adopt and more than capable of developing and adapting his own, Anthony Pirog challenges our preconceived notions about genre and guitar sound.