Sue Foley with Benji & Rita
As many of you will now have heard, that despite months of negotiations with our landlord, we have failed to come to agreement on terms based on fair market value. As a result we will be forced to close our doors at our current location on March 31, 2020.
It is our intention to honour as many of our show bookings and tickets as possible, but it is going to take us a bit of time to secure an alternate venue. We are confident that all shows on the calendar will have a home and as soon as an alternate venue is secured, we will be notifying all ticket holders immediately. We ask patrons to kindly not reach out to our box office for updates in the interim.
Friday, May 22, 2020
Sue Foley with Benji & Rita
Advance $30 / Door $35 *
Enjoy Sue Foley is a multi-award-winning musician and of the one of the finest blues and roots artists working today. She is a veritable triple-threat of musical talent as a guitarist, songwriter and vocalist. As with many blues women of the past, Foley has a long history of defying convention, and being a positive role model for aspiring, young female musicians.
The Canadian has been working professionally since the age of 16, and by the age of 21, Foley had relocated to Austin, TX and began recording for Antone’s—the esteemed blues label and historic nightclub that helped launch the career of Stevie Ray Vaughan and many others. In the two decades that have followed, Sue Foley has been busy touring and recording steadily, all while toting her signature pink paisley Fender Telecaster. In 2001, she won the prestigious Juno Award (Canadian equivalent of the Grammy) and also holds the record for the most Maple Blues Awards and has earned three Trophees de Blues de France. She has also garnered several nominations at the Blues Music Awards in Memphis, TN.
With 11 recordings under her own name, an instructional DVD and book, as well as various compilations and projects, Foley is set to release her new album, The Ice Queen (March 2, 2018) on Stony Plain Records. “I’m extremely excited to be working with Holger Petersen and Stony Plain Records. Holger is one of the most knowledgeable “real music” people in the business”, says Foley. “Stony Plain is known to put out great music and I know The Ice Queen has found her home.”
Recorded throughout 2017, The Ice Queen represents Foley’s full circle journey – her return to the roots of her career in Austin with producer Mike Flanigin. The album was recorded with her long-time friends and collaborators Jimmie Vaughan and Billy F Gibbons (ZZ Top) as well Chris ‘Whipper’ Layton from Double Trouble, Charlie Sexton, and members of the Tedeschi Trucks and Gary Clark Jr bands.
“When I was a teenager I idolized Jimmie Vaughan and Billy F Gibbons,” Foley says. “They're both legends now so this feels like an historical event (at least it does for me). And I grew up sitting at the feet of players like George ‘Big Beat’ Rains, Derek O'Brien and The Texas Horns. I spent many nights watching Charlie Sexton and the Arc Angels with Chris Layton. I learned and grew more musically in my years in Austin than at any point in my life. The fact that all these mega talented musicians have graced my album is beyond anything I hoped for. I am still pinching myself.”
A flood of inspiration and themes can be found on each of the tracks – ranging from lost love, anguish, and struggle to release, forgiveness and rebirth. Mostly recorded live-off-the-floor, Foley’s emotional vocal delivery, conviction, accessible yet inspired lyrics and intrepid guitar playing are all laid out, bare and raw for the songs to reveal.
Opening with the radio friendly and funky “Come to Me”, The Ice Queen also features upbeat and rollicking tracks “Run”, “The Lucky ones” (a duet with Jimmie Vaughan) and “Gaslight”. There are several bluesy and soulful tracks including “81”, “The Ice Queen”, “Fool's Gold” (featuring Billy F Gibbons on vocals and harmonica)”, “If I Have Forsaken You”, and a cheeky, guitar-heavy cover of Bessie Smith’s “Send Me To The ‘Lectric Chair”. Foley also provides some more mellow and unexpected songs on The Ice Queen with the jazzy “Death of a Dream”, the flamenco-blues hybrid “The Dance” and a beautiful cover of the Carter Family’s “Cannonball Blues”.
The Ice Queen represents Sue Foley’s indefatigable commitment to her craft, and her transparency with the journey that birthed her, further proving that you can’t keep a good blueswoman down, particularly when she is The Ice Queen.
Benji & Rita
Benji Kaplan and Rita Figueiredo are two well-respected Brazilian jazz musicians, though their approach is quite different. Kaplan, a New York native, is an intimate songwriter who gently strums the guitar, sings poetic lyrics, and harmonizes gorgeously. Rita Figueiredo, who hails from São Paulo, Brazil, has similar traditional Brazilian music-meets-jazz influences, but with a much more theatrical approach. Her talent as a composer with her fierce singing style gives her music unbridled passion. Rita's intensity of spirit might seem to be an odd mix with Benji's understated complexity but it's quite a logical fit. You really can't do better than these two when it comes to current players of this genre. - Aaron Carnes (East Bay Express)
Cinematic and refined, Benji & Rita channels the scents and sounds, the flora and fauna of the couple’s homelands, drawing on everything from samba and baião, to waltzes and pop catchiness, much as Brazilian popular composers have over the last five decades.
They have toured throughout Europe, North America and South America, enchanting audiences with their unique approach and take on Brazilian, jazz and classical traditions. They have performed alongside such acts as: Earth Wind and Fire, Alceu Valença, Bernard Purdie, Junior Mance, Seu Jorge.
“A collection of lush, iconoclastic arrangements and distinct vocals that make for a unique marriage. The team combines samba, waltz and pop arrangements by Kaplan (on guitar) with additional lyrics by Figueiredo, that are said to draw on the lyricist and singer’s roots in a country known for its Amazonian jungles and hard scrabble urbanscapes and are sung in Portuguese, so who knows: The music’s charm is in its dramatic delivery and its evocation of Tropicalia.” - Denise Sullivan (Downbeat Magazine)
“Fans of classic Brazilian styles will take an instant liking to this. It’s quite an impressive and wide-ranging debut, sporting roots in Brazil and branches in many other places. I hope this twosome stays and plays together for a long time.” -Tom Orr (World Music Central)
“A freewheeling, gorgeously orchestrated whirlwind through the many facets of Brazilian music (samba, baiao, waltzes, pop)...whimsical, deeply romantic sonic images of New York and Brazil by the dynamic husband and wife team of Benji Kaplan (composer, arranger, producer, guitar, vocals) and Brazilian born singer-songwriter Rita Figueiredo.” - Jonathan Widran (L.A. Times, Jazziz, Billboard & All Music Guide)
“...one of the most lively and magical sessions I’ve heard in 2019...Tunes like “Memorial Day” will hold you spellbound...Rita takes flight over the top with her sweet vocal stories... priceless.” - Dick Metcalf (Contemporary Fusion Reviews)
* Advertised pricing excludes taxes, ticketing and sustainability fees.
* Ticket Price: $30.00
* Service Fee: $4.00
* Sustainability Fee: $5.00
* HST: $5.07
* Total Ticket Price: $44.07