WATCH LIVE: Mountain Stage This Sunday with Joan Osborne, Griffin House and more.
Our spring season is fully underway, and we couldn’t be more excited about this Sunday’s stacked lineup at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, WV. Tickets for this show are still available here. However, you also have the option to watch from wherever you are at MountainStage.org or LiveSessions.NPR.org when the show streams live Sunday night at 7 p.m. EST. This free stream is provided by the video production department at WV Public Broadcasting and our colleagues at NPR’s LiveSessions. Anyone who would like to watch the stream, and support the show in the process, can purchase a donation-based “Pay What you Wish” Ticket via Eventbrite.” We ask that in-person attendees remain masked throughout the duration of the performance. As always, we sincerely appreciate everyone’s cooperation in keeping each other safe.
This weekend we welcome back the soulful stylings of Joan Osborne for what will be her ninth appearance on the Mountain Stage. She’ll be joined by “vintage cosmopolitan pop” singer Kat Edmonson, the punk-tinged heartland rock of Dave Hause & The Mermaid, singer-songwriter Abby Hamilton, Virginia-based country rock syndicate 49 Winchester, and the solo folk-rock of Griffin House.
Below is a snapshot of each act as well as a few videos to get you acquainted with these world-class artists. Whether in-person, or via the live stream, we hope you’ll join us this Sunday for another exciting edition of Mountain Stage, live performance radio from the Mountain State of West Virginia.
Joan Osborne is an 8-time Grammy nominee and multi-platinum selling recording artist. A native of Kentucky, she moved to NYC to attend NYU Film School, but dropped out after becoming involved in New York’s downtown music scene.
Her 1995 album Relish was a critical and commercial success and spawned the international hit single and video “What If God Was One Of Us“. She directed the video for Relish’s second single St. Teresa and created the artwork for the album’s physical package. She has traveled the U.S. and the world for over twenty-five years performing in clubs, theaters, arenas and stadiums, with her own band and as a featured vocalist.
Ms. Osborne’s 10th studio album Trouble and Strife was released in 2020. Ms. Osborne lives in Brooklyn, NY with her daughter and partner.
Griffin House’s new record Stories for a Rainy Day is a collection of 9 songs written during the pandemic and recorded in just 3 days, and is being described as his most happy and upbeat yet. The opening track “The Mississippi Hippie” was originally written for a feature in Esquire magazine called “Somewhere in Mississippi” and was rediscovered and resurrected for for “Stories for a Rainy Day.” The album was recorded by Tim Pannella using a stripped down trio set up with Jersey based musicians Eric Novod on drums, Mark Masefield on keys, and House on guitars and vocals. With minimal production and the band playing together as opposed to overdubbing, the songs have a space to be more playful, free and alive.
A concept record, with each song telling a story, an idea inspired from one of House’s favorite childhood albums Ten Summoner’s Tales, the final tale features the hilarious character “Guido” is the only song on the album that was recorded live in concert.
On a base level, the term ‘blood harmony’ is simple—it describes the specific sound two siblings make when they sing together. Given that Dave Hause has been writing and recording songs with his younger brother Tim for a while now, it made sense to use that phrase as the title for his fifth solo record. But this being a Dave Hause album also means there’s much more to it than that. Beneath the surface of Blood Harmony, in fact, are multiple layers of meaning relating to Hause’s role as a musician, a brother, a husband, a son and—having become a father to twins a few months before the release of 2019’s Kick—a dad. As such, Blood Harmony is also a reassertion of what family means to him. Even more so because it’s coming out on the label owned by he and his brother. “I thought Blood Harmony was a great title” says Hause, “and really specific to how Tim and I have decided to work over the years. It also pertains to my children because they’ll have their own Blood Harmony. So the germ of the album, the beating heart, is that I’m in a true family. I have a grounded reason to work and a bunch of people that I want to make proud with the work that we do. It’s a family business.”
If you've spent any time exploring Kentucky's booming folk/rock/country scene, chances are you've heard somebody say, "You've really got to hear Abby Hamilton." The Nicholasville singer-songwriter has garnered a reputation as a can't-miss live performer, opening for acts like Kelsey Waldon, Valley Queen, Arlo McKinley, and Justin Wells, as well as singing at festivals including Master Musicians and On the Rails. With influences ranging from the classic country divas to Bruce Springsteen, she wins over audiences with her clever lyrics and entrancing vocals. Her long-anticipated second EP, Afraid of the Dark, is bound to appease Hamilton's avid fan base, perfectly encapsulating her unique sound that feels just as comfortable in the Appalachian mountains as it does in a whiskey-soaked bar room in the city. She spent months in a hollow in Prestonsburg, Ky., crafting songs that tell stories inspired by true events about hope, home, and young love. It's a genre-bending folk-rock experience that cements her place as one of the region's most interesting young songwriters.
With its latest album, Fortune Favors The Bold, Russell County, Virginia-based 49 Winchester is ready and roaring to break onto the national scene with its unique brand of tear-in-your-beer alt-country, sticky barroom floor rock-n-roll, and high-octane Appalachian folk.
“As we’ve aged and matured, our sound has gone from a softer place to this grittier, edgier tone that we have now,” says lead singer/guitarist Isaac Gibson. “So, we’re trending more towards being a rock band instead of a country band. But, at the same time, I don’t think anybody’s ever known quite what to call it.”