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A band in a body: Zoe Lewis

Posted by Christina Jedra  April 13, 2013 10:00 AM

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The following was submitted by the me & thee:

On Friday, May 10, the  me&thee welcomes Zoë Lewis to our stage. Zoë Lewis is a band in a body. She plays jazz, jump jive, latin grooves, swing, international folk, funk originals on anything from the piano to the spoons. Troubadour / vaudevillian / storyteller / singer-songwriter / piece of work. Bethel Steele, who will open, is a touring singer-songwriter based out of Boston, MA, whose music is something of an amalgam of Lori McKenna, Ani DiFranco and Neil Young. 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.
 
Originally from England, Zoë Lewis now resides in Provincetown on Cape Cod. Her music is upbeat, amusing and perfect for young and old alike. She's traveled all over the globe picking up worldbeat grooves and stories on the way; jumping box cars, riding on freight boats and has even played music with an elephant orchestra in Thailand. She's a mixture of swing, acoustic funk, latin jazz and folk. Her fast-paced lyrics poke fun at modern society and praise the rambling delights of childhood, secret worlds, and wandering love. Zoë started studying music (piano) in England at the age of seven in her little village on the south coast of England, Rottingdean. She began performing professionally playing the Hammond organ, piano and synthesizer for London Latin jazz ten-piece band AVANTI in 1986. The band toured the UK and cut a record. She went solo in 1988, performed piano / vocal jazz standards from the '30s and '40s in London pubs and later worked in South America and in the Caribbean.  In 1990, she arrived in the United States and began performing originals on guitar, piano, harmonica, ukulele, penny whistle, accordion, and human trumpet and has since then toured extensively, performing at numerous folk clubs, coffee houses, colleges, music festivals and pride marches. She has taught workshops in schools and has written a musical for children entitled PESTS! Her workshop "Music in our Pockets" encourages people to redefine their meaning of music; there's music on the streets, on our bodies, in nature, even in our pockets if only we open up our ears. Loose change, a set of keys can be used to make wonderful noise. With the help of African calabash, Jamaican steel pans, gourds, coconuts, trash cans, thumb pianos, conch shells and musical saws she demonstrates the point. In 1992 she began to perform in a variety of different acts in Provincetown on Cape Cod for the summer season. She became a local favorite and won Provincetown Paper's "About Town Awards" for best piano player and best comedy duo. She's toured all over the Unites States, has performed in England, Germany, Australia and aboard OLIVIA cruises. Performing upbeat and edgy tunes on a variety of weird instruments, telling traveling tales that'll take you from England to New Orleans by way of Bangkok and Guatemala, they bend the notes and stretch your imagination.
 
Bethel Steele is an Americana-inspired singer-songwriter who calls Boston, Massachusetts home. Bethel’s smoky alto and playing style - which ranges from driving rhythm guitar to delicate finger-picking - evokes a wide range of emotions. Of Love and Whiskey, Bethel’s latest release, has been described as “deep and inspired” by Italian reviewer Remo Ricaldone. John Apice, a reviewer for NoDepression.com says this about the new record and Bethel’s writing: “Steele knows how to tell a great story, adorn it in bright musical colors and deliver confidently [with a] deep, beautiful cognac flavored voice surrounded by a wealth of original material. Bethel is confident and sings with authority... Bethel has eyes, ears and heart open, pencil sharpened and sees what many other artists seem to miss.” The new record, Of Love and Whiskey, debuted on the Folk-DJ charts at #17 for the month of June and climbed up the Roots Music Report’s Top Folk Album charts to #16.
 
Tickets for the performance by Zoë Lewis with Bethel Steele 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

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