The following was submitted by the Me&Thee Coffeehouse:
On Friday, Sept. 9, the me&thee coffeehouse opens its fall season with a favorite performer, Cheryl Wheeler. This prolific musician tells stories that will have the audience rolling in the aisles, and will switch gears and sing a song that leaves everyone wiping tears away. Cheryl’s songs range from the serious to the wildly outrageous. Her entire concert is an emotional roller coaster. Opening the show is Eliot Bronson, formerly half of the Brilliant Inventions, who has just released a solo album, “Blackbirds,” which has received excellent reviews. Doors open at 7:30 PM for this 8:00 PM show at the me&thee coffeehouse which is located at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead at 28 Mugford Street.
If you’re not already familiar with Cheryl, you have probably heard her music. She is very respected as a songwriter by her peers, which can be seen by how many of them record her songs. Cheryl's songs have been covered by artists as diverse as Dan Seals, Peter Paul & Mary, Kenny Loggins, Garth Brooks, Suzy Bogguss, Melanie, Bette Midler, Maura O'Connell, Sylvia, Kathy Mattea, and Holly Near. From her albums you can tell that she is a gifted songwriter with a beautiful voice. From other people's comments about her you learn that she is a natural storyteller with a fantastic sense of humor. But until you see her in person, you never really believe what you've been told about her. Interestingly enough, almost half of the songs she performs during her shows have never been recorded!
Cheryl performed at venues around Baltimore and Washington DC before moving to New England in 1976, where she now lives. She tours extensively. She had a band for a while, but usually performs solo now, or with Kenny White, who often opens and then accompanies her and sings backup. One astute music journalist from Fame magazine summed up Cheryl by saying: “She is an anomaly on the acoustic music scene. She has a rare gift for writing songs with lush melodies and lyrics with incredible beauty. On the other hand, she is a master of quick wit. Her observational humor has brought us a number of songs describing the utter ridiculousness of the world around us. And then there is the richness of her silky alto telling us what lies in the deepest recesses of her songwriter’s heart.”
Perhaps best known as half of the acclaimed acoustic duo, The Brilliant Inventions, Eliot Bronson has recently struck out on his own, with the new album, Blackbirds. He was recently chosen to appear as one of the New Folk contenders at the Kerrville Folk Festival in Texas. The Washington Post called The Brilliant Invention's music, “clever contemporary acoustic pop that invites comparison to Ben Folds Five and Fountains of Wayne -- literate story-songs at once amusing and moving, with catchy melodic hooks.” In 2009 the band released their long awaited, first studio album Have You Changed to critical indie praise. They were picked as emerging artist to play prestigious Falcon Ridge Folk Festival and were voted the coveted "Most Wanted" act to return as main stage performers in 2010. The band surprisingly ended their partnership in the fall of last year, as plans for a follow up to HYC were being made. Suddenly a solo act, Eliot returned to the folk, and roots music that first drew him to songwriting and went to work on an album all his own. The result is Blackbirds, an intensely personal, stripped down, rough-edged record that departs from much of TBI's lighter pop material and showcases Eliot's unique poetic voice, and his finest writing to date.
Tickets for the performance of Cheryl Wheeler with Eliot Bronson opening are $25 in advance and $28 at the door. Tickets are available online at www.meanthee.org and can be purchased in person in Marblehead at either the Spirit of ’76 Bookstore or the Arnould Gallery As at all me & thee coffeehouse events, refreshments are available, including homemade pastries, coffee, and teas. The me & thee has a handicapped-accessible entrance and a handicap accessible bathroom, is a smoke-free environment, and is easily reached by MBTA bus. The me & thee is the oldest continually running acoustic coffeehouse in New England, and probably the country. The me & thee has been and will always be a volunteer, non-profit organization sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead. For information and directions, call 781-631-8987 or check the website www.meandthee.org.
Next concert: September 16, 2011 – Jay Ungar and Molly Mason
CALENDAR/PSA: Friday, September 9, 2011 Cheryl Wheeler with Eliot Bronson opening at the me and thee. Tickets are $25 in advance and $28 at the door. The coffeehouse is located at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 28 Mugford Street, Marblehead and starts at 8 p.m. Call 781-631-8987 or go to www.meandthee.org or information and directions.