Howe Gelb & The Vortexas feat. Pieta Brown and Mark McKowski announce exclusive NL show01-09-2023
Howe Gelb of Giant Sand has just announced a special show: Howe Gelb & The Vortexas featuring Pieta Brown and Mark McKowski. For one night in The Netherlands only they will do a "song swap and excursions in sound":
Let me set the scene – irresponsible lovers are canoodling in semi-lit booths, the jukebox is playing some old tunes by Frank and there’s some people over there who never want to fall in love again. It’s the last bar still open and the piano player mooches over to the battered grand. This guy, we know, is great. He expertly and succinctly slides in words like “iconoclast”, “apropos”, “tumult” and “ludicrous”, he even name checks Constantinople – that’s proper old school. For those celebrated guys who hit on the standards – Monk, Cohen, Bacharach, even Merle Haggard, Howe Gelb is creating new tunes with cathartic one-liners and malleable melodies that suggest any singer could interpret these dozen American piano ballads and take his offbeat worldview and make it their own.
The daughter of two preacher’s kids, Pieta Brown’s early upbringing in Iowa was in a rural outpost with no furnace, running water, or TV. There, she was exposed to traditional and rural folk music through her father, Greg Brown, the now beloved Midwestern folk singer. Later, while living with her mother in Birmingham, Alabama during her formative years, Pieta drew on and expanded these influences and began writing poems and composing instrumental songs on piano. By the time she left home at 18 she had lived in at least 19 different houses and apartments between Iowa and Alabama. In her early 20's, after experiencing what she describes as "the songs calling,” Pieta started experimenting with the banjo and eventually picked up a 1930's Maybell arch-top guitar during a visit to her father's place and never looked back. Emerging from a disjointed and distinctly 'bohemian' upbringing, Pieta began performing live and making independent recordings soon after teaching herself how to play guitar. "I grew up around a lot of musicians and artists living on the fringe, and have always felt most at home among them," Pieta says. Continually revealing new layers as both a songwriter and performer, Pieta is being recognized as one of modern Americana's true gems. In recent years Pieta has released multiple highly critically acclaimed albums, with much attention being paid not only to her distinct sound and style, but also the power of her singing and songwriting, including fan favorite, Paradise Outlaw.
Mark McKowski is the all-new alter ego of Mark McCausland, one half of the critically acclaimed Irish duo The Lost Brothers, and previously of the Deltasonic band The Basement. Returning to his old label with a brand new solo project, is pleased to present “Lake”, the first insight into an upcoming album entitled: ‘Notes From The Boneyard’: