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Tracy Grammer and Cliff Eberhardt at the Me & Thee

Posted by Christina Jedra  February 5, 2013 10:00 AM

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The following was submitted by the me & thee coffeehouse: 
 
On Friday, March 1, the  me&thee presents a co-bill featuring Tracy Grammer [pictured left] and Cliff Eberhardt. Tracy Grammer is a nationally-touring multi-instrumentalist and singer who has accompanied and opened for Joan Baez and recorded with Mary Chapin Carpenter and is most widely known for her work the late Dave Carter. With several albums that have topped the FOLKDJ-L airplay charts and two intimate EPs that have won critical raves, she has proven herself "one of the finest musicians in folkdom".   Cliff Eberhardt is one of the most talented musicians on the solo acoustic circuit full of well-crafted songs and rich, emotional vocals. He is one of the most original songsmiths currently on tour, a highly intelligent and articulate artist whose penetrating and profound lyrics are sometimes overshadowed by his extraordinary guitar playing. 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.
 
A favorite on the folk circuit, Tracy Grammer is primarily known as a sensitive and creative song interpreter with warm vocals and stage presence, pristine fingerstyle guitar, and an unshakable dedication to promoting the legacy of her late partner, songwriter Dave Carter. Tracy Grammer saw Dave Carter perform three songs at a songwriter's showcase shortly after she moved to Portland, Oregon in 1996. "Here were stories that could stand alone as poetry, sung with compassion, intelligence, and a hint of Texas twang,” Grammer says. “I knew instantly that I was in the presence of greatness; I knew I had received my calling in life.” They met on their way out the door and by late 1997 had entered into a mutual "marriage in music." Their unique strengths and diverse backgrounds came together in powerful synergy. Carter conjured mystical, romantic, true fictions while Grammer complemented his expert guitar, banjo, and voice with beautifully intoned violin, mandolin and emotionally potent vocals. The duo signed to Massachusetts-based label Signature Sounds in 2000 and released two chart-topping albums of what they called “postmodern, mythic American folk music.” Then, on the morning of Friday, July 19, 2002 in a room at the duo’s favorite hotel in Hadley, Massachusetts, Carter returned from a run complaining of chest pains. Soon thereafter, he died in Grammer's arms from a massive heart attack, just three weeks shy of his 50th birthday. Grammer continues to perform Carter’s songs and has produced three solo and two duo albums since Carter’s death, including the critically acclaimed tribute CD Flower of Avalon with John Jennings as co-producer and Mary Chapin Carpenter contributing backing vocals and liner notes. In 2012 Red House Records released Little Blue Egg, an album of previously-unreleased Dave & Tracy recordings.
 
Red House recording artist Cliff Eberhardt knew by age seven that he was going to be a singer and songwriter. As a child Cliff taught himself to play guitar, piano, bass and drums. In his teens Eberhardt was fortunate enough to live close to the Main Point (one of the best folk clubs on the East Coast), he cut his teeth listening to the likes of James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, Bruce Springsteen, Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters, Bonnie Raitt, and Mississippi John Hurt - receiving an early and impressive tutorial in acoustic music. At the same time, he was also listening to great pop songwriters like Cole Porter, the Gershwins, and Rodgers and Hart, which explain his penchant for great melodies and clever lyrical twists. A driving force of the Greenwich Village New Folk movement and well known among his peers, Cliff’s songs have been covered by the likes of Richie Havens, Buffy St. Marie, Erasure, Lucy Kaplansky and the folk superstar band "Cry, Cry, Cry" (Dar Williams, Richard Shindell, Lucy Kaplansky).  Most recently Cliff composed original music for, and performed in, the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Folger Theatre production of The Taming of the Shrew, in Washington, D.C. The show, which was set in the American frontier of the 1800s, was directed by Helen Hayes award winner Aaron Posner, and the reviews were outstanding. The show’s director cites Cliff among his inspirations for the show: "So we have this unique Shrew, influenced and inspired by Deadwood. Of course, it is influenced and inspired by many other things as well, most particularly the amazing music of singer/songwriter Cliff Eberhardt, who is composing original music and performing in a role we call The Blind Balladeer.”
 
Tickets for the performance by Tracy Grammer and Cliff Eberhardt are $20 in advance and $23 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 an 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:  March 8, 2013 – Chick with Dip perform the Joni Mitchell’s Blue Tribute
 
CALENDAR/PSA: Friday, March1, 2013 Tracy Grammer and Cliff Eberthardt at the me and thee. Tickets are $20 in advance and $23 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. 

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