Chris Whitley Celebration/Tribute, April 26th in Bellows Falls Vermont!
The 3rd annual celebration of his life & spirit
Bellows Falls Opera House
Bellows Falls, VT
April 26, 2008
* Alejandro Escovedo * Vernon Reid * Dan Whitley * Trixie Whitley * Melissa Sheehan *
* and special guests *
Mark your calenders as this is going to be
an event for all to remember, an
extremely special weekend with headliners: the ever
awe-inspiring Alejandro Escovedo and the creative genius
of Vernon Reid!
Both Alejandro and Vernon share the creative
values of Chris and both EXTREMELY important artists
whom Chris himself respected in a huge way. This year the event will be bigger and take place in the newly renovated Bellows Falls Opera house were they also show films, it is a full size theater as well as opera house and stage with killer sound, complete with balcony too... very classy spot and fitting for the event.
Also, there is talk of that Fri night (before the saturday music) the showing of Chris Whitley video's and tons of Chris performance footage... plus a saturday ope mic dedicated to Chris covers so stay tuned for updates!
Tickets will be onsale soon, more updates/info to follow over the next few
days and thank you
for all the support!
and intimate Chris Whitley website
of the late great Mikael Whitley, the Whitley sculptor mother, an
absolute artist/genius in her own right.
Jeff Lang has posted this awesome podcast he put together on the
Dust forums, I thought It should be in the news section as well.
US release on Rounder Records
A Chris Whitley and Jeff Lang collaborative album called "Dislocation Blues" due to be released in 2006 features several songs sung by Chris as well as Chris's playing featured on most cuts...this CD has some absolutely brilliant moments that no Chris Whitley fan or Jeff Lang fan for that matter will go away dissapointed...
"The record that I was fortunate enough to make with Chris is a studio
record, not a live one. We recorded 12 songs in Melbourne during April this
year for a full-length CD, a collaboration between us. It is very bitter/sweet
to talk about in light of the loss of the man, but against that the recording
is full of incredibly beautiful singing and playing by Chris. We wrote a
couple of new songs together for the recording, and also recorded versions
of Chris' songs Velocity Girl, Dislocation Blues, Rocket House (very different
version to that on the Rocket House album, two nationals with Chris' boot
board). Chris also sang amazing renditions of the traditional song Stagger
Lee, Dylan's When I Paint My Masterpiece, Forever In my Life by Prince (incredibly
soulful singing) and he and I traded verses on Dylan's Changing Of The Guard
as well as tracking a couple of my songs. It was recorded live in a wonderful
sounding room, with a great recording engineer in a no-stress environment
over three days. Of the twelve songs Chris sung seven, I sung four (with
Chris singing harmony throughout one) and we both sung one together (the
aforementioned Dylan song). All but three songs are with a great rhythm
section - Grant Cummerford on upright and electric bass, and Ashley Davies
There were also some live tracks selected for a bonus disc.
Right now, I'm not certain of when it will be released. It was our plan that it would come out in the first half of 2006, and I am hopeful that this will still happen.
I'm sure you will find out as soon as details are arranged.
Being able to work with Chris is something that I'll be forever proud of."
Special MySpace page for Reiter In - myspace/whitleyreiterin
Friday, February 17, 2006 - The Baggot Inn - 8pm
The Baggot Inn
82 W 3rd St (bet Sullivan & Thompson)
Greenwich Village, NYC
8:00-Closing time (all night long!!)
Advance Ticket sales here: http://www.thebaggot.com/feb06.html
There will be lots of great music/songwriters/musicians, spoken word memorials, photographs, Chris Whitley audio/video. Also we will probably allocate some time for people who would like to get up and dedicate a personal spoken word memorial to Chris. Among those performing music will be some of Chris's friends and family: William Nowik, Dina Ragine, The SawTelle's, The Dan Whitley Band, Kelly Joe Phelps, Steve and John Conte and many other surprises!
SAT/SUN - MARCH 4/5 - Austin/Houston TEXAS
Appearing- Shawn Colvin, Charlie Sexton, Eric Johnson (Austin), Vernon Reid, DJ Logic, Doug Pinnick, Dan Whitley and more.
Saturday, March 4, 2006 - The Glenn in Austin, Texas
Sunday, March 5, 2006 - Warehouse Live in Houston, Texas
In the Houston area, an incredible night of music will take place at Warehouse Live on Sunday, March 5. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m., with the show starting at 7:30 p.m. Current artists to perform include Shawn Colvin, Charlie Sexton, Vernon Reid, DJ Logic, Doug Pinnick, the Sonnier Brothers, the Dan Whitley Band, John Egan, Arthur Yoria and NDUGU. Warehouse Live is located at 813 St. Emmanual Street, Houston, Texas. Advance tickets are $20 and can be purchased through Ticketmaster- www.ticketmaster.com.
In Austin, the show will be held at The Glenn on Saturday, March 4, with the same lineup, but will also include The Barbwire Project featuring- Eric Johnson, Malford Milligan, Steve Barber, Bill Maddox, Stephen Bruton, Chris Maresh, Rebecca Henderson and the Tosca Strings. The Glenn is located at 13101 Hwy 71 in West Austin by The Backyard. Tickets are $20 in advance and can be purchased through Get Tix- www.gettix.netA raffle will be held at each event featuring special autographed items. Also be on the lookout for surprise guest appearances. All proceeds go to cover medical expenses for Chris's care and to establish a Trust Fund for his daughter, Trixie Whitley.
A special thank you to The Raven Grill for their generous donations toward making this show happen.
SAT. FEB. 11 AT THE WINDHAM IN BELLOWS FALLS, VT
A celebration of the life and music of Chris Whitley will take place at the Windham in Bellows Falls, VT on Saturday, February 11. Known for his haunted vocals, propulsive National guitar and poetic songcraft, Whitley died in late November in Texas at age 45.
Chris Whitley has a special connection to Rockingham and Bellows Falls; he spent his teenage years with his mother, brother Daniel and sister Bridget in a cabin on a dirt road in the back hills of Rockingham. It's where he first picked up a guitar. And it is where he returned in the late nineties to record one of his most enduring cds, the gorgeously stark and somber DIRT FLOOR.
"Lots of people have been asking me about doing a small, grass roots musical get together up there," says Dan Whitley, Chris Whitley's younger brother who also contributed guitar to several of Chris's CD's. "It might turn out to be not so little." The Dan Whitley Band, a supple power trio, will anchor the evening event, with guest turns from close Whitley friend, former New York songwriter Melissa Sheehan and Ingrid's Ruse, the fast-rising area folk-rock trio that includes Ezra Veitch (for whom Whitley baby-sat a few times). Other friends may be announced. There will also be a display of photographs of Chris Whitley, courtesy of Chris Nofziger, the noted lensman who shot the DIRT FLOOR cover and many other pictures of Whitley throughout his career.
During the afternoon, there will be an open mic where fans wishing to share music influenced or by Chris Whitley will be encouraged to play. The open mic is hosted by Jesse Peters, the popular Rockingham guitarist and songwriter.
"When Chris died, there was a massive outpouring of love and support," says Dan Whitley. "There hasn't yet been an occasion where friends - whether or not they knew Chris personally - can come together and celebrate the amazing spirit of my brother and his music. That's what we're going to do."
Although Chris Whitley never achieved mass fame, his passing has resonated throughout the music community and garnered coverage on TIME, the New York Times, NPR and press throughout the world. His albums LIVING WITH THE LAW and DIRT FLOOR are regarded as classics, and passionate advocates abound for any of his dozen or so other releases, from the psychedelic DIN OF ECSTASY to the electronica of ROCKET HOUSE to the dark, jazzy minimalism of HOTEL VAST HORIZON. Bruce Springsteen, Iggy Pop and Keith Richards all count themselves admires of Whitley's music. Dave Matthews has said, "I feel more passion for his music than I do for my own. I have a fervent, religious devotion to the magic that Chris Whitley makes."
Large-scale big-city 'tribute' concerts slated for the next year are in the talking stages, but that isn't the aim of the Vermont shows. Charlie Hunter, whose Flying Under Radar Concerts is helping promote the event, says, "When Chris was up here last summer, he was talking about wishing he could just give the music away to people. He was incredibly generous of spirit; this event is not about celebrity. It's about celebration."
And as Dan Whitley says, "My brother was all about life and living, and we want anybody who felt touched by him or his music to come and be welcome."
Bellows Falls is located on I-91, a half-hour north of the Massachusetts border, 4 hours from New York, two and a half hours from Boston. There is daily Amtrak and Vermont Transit bus service to New York. Tickets for the 7:30 pm evening concert and 3:00 pm afternoon Open Mic are on sale at Village Square Books and Bulls Eye Music in Bellows Falls, and on line at www.virtuous.com. All proceeds above expenses will go to the Whitley family. Persons desiring more information should visit www.flyingunderradar.com or call 802-463-3669.
This is the 14th record by Chris. All analog recording, made with band in New York, mostly played in one take with no overdubs. A surprisingly powerful rock album full of raw melancholy and rough beauty - among the best you have ever heard from Chris
Chris wanted the band on the album be called
The Bastard Club was:
Chris Whitley: lead vox , gtrs
Heiko Schramm: bass gtr, backing vox
Brian Geltner: drums, vibes, acoustic gtr, backing vox
Tim Beattie: harmonica, lap steel, backing vox
Kenny Siegal: baritone, electric and acoustic gtr, backing vox
Sean Balin: violin
Gwen Snyder: vox and tambourine
The recordings were done June 1,2,3,and 5th 2005 at Old Soul Studios on 2" tape Sony MCI Jh24 tape deck- through a Trident Board. All analog recordings played in one take.
Produced by Kenny Siegal (of the New York band JOHNNY SOCIETY)
Engineered by John Holbrook and Tom Schick
Assisted by Sean Balin
Mixed by Kenny Siegal and John Holbrook in 2 days on the 15th and 16th of June.
Mastered by Chris Athens at Sterling Sound, New York
The songs on the album are:
- I Wanna Be Your Dog (Stooges)
- Bring It On Home (W. Dixon)
- Mountainside (Flaming Lips)
- Cut The Cards
- German Film Star (Passions)
- Are Friends Electric? (G. Numan)
- Reiter In
- I Go Evil
- All Beauty Taken From You In This Life Remains Forever
- Comin Home
The album will be released in Europe on Morning
Dew Records and on Red Parlor in
North America: Release Date March 28, 2006 - Pre-Orders can be taken at Amazon: Click to Pre-Order.
Europe: Please send your order to firstname.lastname@example.org
There will be a pre-LP 7" single I Wanna Be Your Dog b/w I Go Evil. This is going to be limited to 500 copies. We expect the 7" to come out shortly before Christmas.
Then there will be a vinyl album, consisting of a 12" disc and a 7" single. Reason for this: the master recording Chris came up with turned out to be too long to be put on one vinyl record without loss of sound quality. We couldn't see which 2 songs to kick off the album, so we decided on a 12" plus a 7". The single is Reiter In b/w Cut the Cards. As you see, it is different from the pre-LP 7" single. There will be 1000 copies pressed, but the vinyl release won't be limited per se! As long as there is sufficient demand, we will do additional runs. The album is expected to come out after Christmas or maybe in early January.
The CD won't be limited at all, so there is no need to worry about that. We expect the CD to come out around mid February.
My father took his last breath last night the 20th of November. I would like to make it clear that the people he needed and loved the most were with him while and when he left in peace. Those were Dan, Susann, my beloved mother Helene and me.
I would also like to ask you guys to understand there is a very fine line between Chris Whitley the legendary musician and Chris Whitley the Father, Brother, and Lover.
This was my Dad's favorite line from the first song I ever wrote, this is for you Daddy:
"Like the feather we blow away, in the thoughtlessness of words others say."
All faith and peace,
I just wanted to add Chris passed over surrounded by lots of love. The time we spent with Chris in these last days were something I'll never forget and these women whom I shared Chris's last moments with were just amazing.
Susann Buerger who was by his side nonstop (Chris planned to marry Susann) held him in his arms the moment he passed in absolute and total peace, the reason I mentioned this is I always felt being held by someone you love while you passed over was a truly special thing.
Trixie my niece is one of the strongest young woman I have ever met and Chris was always so proud of her whenever we spoke, Im also incredibly proud to be her uncle and love her beyond words.
Corinne gave her home to Chris and the rest of us in this time of need and didnt stop taking care of things that needed to be taken care of the entire time, she gave us all a sanctuary to take care of Chris in and went way out of her way to help from the beginning and is still helping.
Me, I pretty much just cried my ass off when I wasn't helping Susanne with Chris....still crying.
I hope you all will mourn my brothers death but more important celebrate his life as Chris was all about life and living... I started the celebration by cranking up Dirt floor in his honor...crying still.
Chris Whitley's Legacy will no doubt transcend all time.
Love and Light,
"Deliciously balancing between suffering and ecstasy [with] otherworldy production and heavy rhythms. Sexy and well-built."
"A riot of percussive tics, synthetic textures and Eno-like ambience. 4 Stars."
"Mixing [Whitley's] Delta-infused sensibility with ambient moodscapes."
"For the past 15 years, Chris Whitley has been one of the most interesting singer/songwriters, transforming and mutating the essence of the blues into all types of genre-less tunes charged with deep emotions. Soft Dangerous Shores is by far Whitley's most adventurous album to date, full of atmospheric and ambient sounds."
"Soft Dangerous Shores is an extended mood piece, carrying the contradictory imagery of its title through 11 songs that take the homey charm of folk music and make it sound discomfortingly alien, or like the only oasis in a crumbling world."
"Visceral enough to haunt your dreams, and cerebral enough to give them meaning. A hypnotic wrestling match between juke joint blues and Kraftwerkian beats."
"Shores bristles with Zen energies that are gutsy, ghostly and darkly seductive."
"SOFT DANGEROUS SHORES", the new record of Chris Whitley is out now. In the states it is released by Messenger Records. The label in Europe is Cooking Vinyl. So go and check out your next record store for it. Of course you will be able to order the record directly on the Messenger website.
If you want to read a little bit more about the new record, go to our "Music" section.