THE LUMINEERS - THE CLEOPATRA WORLD TOUR

I.M.P. Presents

THE LUMINEERS - THE CLEOPATRA WORLD TOUR

BØRNS, Rayland Baxter, NO LAWN CHAIRS

Sat, September 10, 2016

Doors: 5:30 pm / Show: 7:00 pm

Merriweather Post Pavilion

Columbia, Maryland

$39.50 - $59.50

This event is all ages

Please note that there is a 6 ticket limit for this show per household, customer, credit card number, phone number or email address for online and phone sales to this show. Patrons who exceed the ticket limit will have their order cancelled automatically and without notice.

 

There are no refunds or exchanges.

The Lumineers
The Lumineers
It took four years for The Lumineers to follow up their platinum-plus, multi-Grammy-nominated, self-titled debut -- which spent 46 weeks on the Billboard 200 and peaked at #2 -- but 'Cleopatra' is well worth the wait. After exploding onto the scene with their monster single, "Ho Hey" (which spent a staggering 62 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #3) and its follow-up, "Stubborn Love" (recently featured on President Barack Obama's Spotify playlist), The Lumineers spent a solid three years touring six of the seven continents. During that time, The Lumineers -- whose original members Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites founded the band in Ramsey, New Jersey back in 2002 -- earned a pair of Grammy nominations (Best New Artist, Best Americana Album), contributed two songs to 'The Hunger Games' franchise (including the hit Jennifer Lawrence/James Newton Howard collaboration, "The Hanging Tree") and sold an impressive 1.7 million albums in the U.S., and 3 million worldwide.

'Cleopatra' proves Schultz and Fraites -- along with cellist/vocalist Neyla Pekarek -- are neither taking their good fortune for granted, nor sitting back on their laurels. With the help of producer Simone Felice (The Felice Brothers, The Avett Brothers), the man Wesley calls "our shaman," the band ensconced themselves in Clubhouse, a recording studio high atop a hill in rural Rhinebeck, N.Y., not far from Woodstock.

The Lumineers then set about trying to make musical sense of their three-year-plus roller coaster ride. Their skill at setting a visual story to music comes through amidst the delicate, deceptively simple acoustic soundscapes. This time, though, bassist Byron Isaac provides a firm, low-end on the apocalyptic opener "Sleep on the Floor," a ghostly tune about getting out of town before the "subways flood [and] the bridges break." It's a densely packed, cinematic song that echoes Bruce Springsteen's "Atlantic City" and John Steinbeck's 'East of Eden' -- which were models for the record alongside Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen and Jack Nicholson in 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.'

"We took the same approach this time as we did with the first album, recording demos in a small house we rented in the original Denver neighborhood where we first moved," explains Wesley, contributing the lyrical ideas while collaborating on the music with Jer, who tackled a variety of instruments, including guitar, the very prominent piano and trademark tribal drums.

"Wes handles all the lyrics", says Jeremiah, "and Wes and I come up with all the rest together -- music, melody, and structure. There are no rules or titles in our writing process, just merely chipping away slowly until we both agree we have something fantastic."

"The record is our greatest hits reflecting what's happened to us over the last three years," added Wesley. "We tried to come up with the best possible version of every song, so we recorded a lot of different iterations, changing the tempos, dressing 'em up, stripping 'em down. It took a lot of work to make them sound so easy. We're very passionate about the process. It was a very intense and beautiful experience. There was a lot of battling, a lot of tears, but some amazing stuff came out, and at the end, we were much better off. It transformed our relationship."

'Cleopatra' is named after the title track, inspired by a woman from the Republic of Georgia, an acquaintance of Wesley's wife's best friend whom he met while visiting there. The hard-bitten woman drove a taxi with a can of beer between her legs and a cigarette dangling from her mouth, having survived a hard-scrabble life, pining for the man who got away after her father died. "There was this level of defiance about her," nodded Wesley. "She was accepting her fate, but still felt misunderstood."

'Cleopatra' also deals with what Wesley terms "the elephant in the room," the band's success and the way it can sometimes put a target on your back. The syncopated piano rolls in "Ophelia" ("I got a little paycheck/You got big plans/You gotta move/I don't feel nothin' at all"), the organic sound of fingers squeaking on guitar strings in "Angela" ("The strangers in this town/They raise you up just to cut you down") and the Faustian bargain described in "My Eyes" ("Oh, the devil's inside/You open the door/You gave him a ride/Too young to know/Too old to admit/But you couldn't see how it ends") consider the perils of getting what you wish for, with everyone knowing your name, and your songs.

Schultz demonstrates his keen literary eye and ear for narrative description in "The Gun Song," in which he recalls rummaging through his mild-mannered, progressive, intellectual, psychologist father's sock drawer after his death and finding a "Smith & Wesson pistol," making him wonder what other mysteries his dad kept from him. "Long Way from Home," its 5/4 signature reminiscent of Dylan's "Don't Think Twice (It's Alright)" or "Shelter from the Storm," tells of hope and desperation, a double-edged sword which can both sustain or ultimately, "fuck you up," Wesley noted ruefully. The title phrase repeats three different times at the end of the individual verses, each carrying a different meaning. Sings Schultz: "Held on to hope/Like a noose/Like a rope/God and medicine take no mercy on him..." The characters in 'Cleopatra' are hanging on for dear life, trying to find reasons to believe, or creating some on their own just to survive with some sort of grace.

With four years between albums, The Lumineers are excited to get back out on the road and, as Wesley puts it, "connect with the new record and have people connect with it."

The band had total artistic freedom in writing and recording the album, so Wesley and Jer pushed the envelope on experimental tracks like the stream-of-consciousness, purposely lo-fi "Sick in the Head," the yearning, piano chord build-up of "In the Light," or the closing orchestral instrumental, the aptly titled coda, "Patience."

There is something timeless about The Lumineers that links their songs to 18th century pastorals, 19th century work songs, 20th century folk narratives and 21st century post-modern cinematic soundscapes. It sounds familiar, but take the time to dig below the surface. Listen carefully and layers of meaning reveal themselves, just like that gun Wesley discovered in his dad's drawer, intimating all sorts of intrigue and sharp observations. Success hasn't spoiled The Lumineers; rather, it's inspired them to follow their muses even further.

"We continue to make the kind of records we want to," says Wesley. "We believe in this music. It's a true labor of love. We just want to keep reaching more people with our songs."

Given the evidence on The Lumineers' eagerly anticipated sophomore album 'Cleopatra,' that shouldn't be a problem.
BØRNS
BØRNS
Growing up in coastal Michigan, Garrett Borns moved from one inspiration to another. His first artistic love was visual arts and then came music thanks to an eccentric piano teacher. At the age of fifteen BØRNS attended the prestigious summer program at Interlochen Center for the Arts to study filmmaking while writing songs on the side with the music majors. Playing local gigs through high school and college, BØRNS ended up in a secluded treehouse home in the Los Angeles canyons where he wrote his debut Candy EP, a set that filters the singer’s naturally moody, sensual sound through “an explosion of sunlight,” as he puts it. BØRNS’ single “Electric Love” is taking over radio airwaves and garnering praise from the media.
Rayland Baxter
Rayland Baxter
It’s hard to pinpoint the moment that songs are born, the day casual hummers become singers or scribblers become songwriters. Rayland Baxter certainly can’t, and he wouldn’t want to. Though he grew up in Nashville to the sounds of his father’s pedal steel, he didn’t dream of being a rock star. He loved music, of course, but he liked other things, too: being outside, playing sports, working at the bait shop to make spare change. He’d always just let things settle into place naturally, following his gut from Tennessee to Colorado to Israel and back again, not knowing that when he returned home he’d have a handful of songs and the knowledge that, at the end of the day, he didn’t want to do anything else but make music. He leads a life without reigns, his work always echoing the ease in which it came to be.
“All of my music has come in a very natural way, by following the organic process of life and letting it just happen,” he says. “I jumped my fair share of ships, and the pieces came together slowly, not by study or design.” The result is a record inspired by a life lived, not one struggling to inspire life. “Down the mountains and the valleys like the breeze,” he sings on “the mtn song,” “we’re going where we want to go, doing anything we please.” He’s done just that, writing songs that are reflections of what he’s seen, felt and lived; the metaphors found in the hills, the slow strums born at home but blossomed across the sea.
Growing up, Baxter’s father Bucky (a multi-instrumentalist for Bob Dylan, Steve Earle and Ryan Adams, among others) made sure music was just a natural part of life, a soundtrack to childhood. “I grew up around pedal steel melodies,” Baxter says, “not knowing how later in life it would shape me and how I sing or place lyrics in a song.” He’d met Dylan and become friends with a young Justin Townes Earle—back then, they were just two kids who knew their dads were gone frequently. One day, while out on a motorcycle trip, Bucky bought his son a guitar: a used, blue electric one. He was in elementary school, no older than third grade. “I played it,” Baxter says. “But I also played Nintendo.”
Most of the time, he just liked being out in the field, grass under his feet. While he spent much of his teenage years playing sports, by 21 he’d picked up the guitar again. The sound of six strings ringing had always been comforting, only now its draw proved stronger: it was a surprise, perhaps most to Baxter himself, how naturally and harmoniously songs came. Instead of finishing college he moved to the small town of Creede, CO, playing open mics at a taco bar and busking for tips. It was a gig as a guitar tech for the band Moonshine Sessions that led him to Europe. After a relationship in Paris went sour (though would later inspire the song “oLivia) he took his father’s old friend up on an offer to spend some time at his home in Ashkelon, Israel.
“I was supposed to be there for two weeks,” he says. “I ended up staying for six months.” Life in Ashkelon, a coastal town close to Gaza, involved a cadre of sounds: bombs detonating in the cornfields, sirens going off so frequently that few took notice or cover. Baxter drowned the noise with his host’s enormous collection of records and documentaries: Townes Van Zandt, Dylan, Leonard Cohen. “I would spend my days and nights just studying all my favorite people and musicians, and that’s when it clicked.” One night he couldn’t sleep, so he went outside to a barn in the back of the house with his guitar. “When I came back in, I said to my friend, ‘I think I wrote a good one out there.’” The resulting song was his aching, pivotal folk tune “the woman for me,” which later became a road favorite and will appear on his debut, feathers & fishHooks.
Baxter has a saying he likes to use a lot: “when you find the right river to float down, just keep floating.” That he did, using his time in Israel to craft the material that would become his Miscalculation of Song EP. He began recording his full-length in January 2011, produced by Skylar Wilson (Justin Townes Earle, Caitlin Rose) and supported by his friends, including Eric Masse (producer/engineer), Jacquire King (mix) and instrumentals by his father, Bucky. The songs range from the solemn, steel guitar and harmonica anchored “marjoria”; to the locomotive, du-wop of “driveway meLody”; to the stark, Middle Eastern tinge of “wiLLow.” Each is thickly emotional, raw but supremely balanced, pulling reference not only from musical idols but from love had and lost, roads traveled and trials awaiting back at home. And, when you strip it all away, these are songs that could exist with just Baxter’s voice and guitar alone, timeless.
He’s spent much of his time on tour: with The Civil Wars, who personally invited him to open, as well as Grace Potter & the Nocturnals. Now Baxter lives in a small, crowded house with five people, four chickens, a dog and a fish named okra near the Nashville fairgrounds, an industrial part of town on the west side of the river. He sleeps in a covered porch with no air conditioning or heat—“like camping,” he says, enthusiastically at that. His hometown has played a vital role in shaping him musically. “There is an incredible group of young artists, songwriters, painters and filmmakers here, just a huge community of really rad people. It’s been vital to have a great creative group of people I can feed off of all the time.”
His songs are a calming force for anyone looking for change, for love, or wanting to walk in a different direction—because it was his own quest for all those things that motivated the music. “I had nothing to write about until I was 25. I had to live through a lot,” he says, “and I when I sing I don’t hold back. I’ll cry on stage if I came to it. It’s an emotional release for me, and there’s no makeup on it. It puts me at ease, and that’s what I hope it will do for those who listen.” Down the mountains and the valleys, like the breeze.
Venue Information:
Merriweather Post Pavilion
10475 Little Patuxent Parkway
Columbia, Maryland, 21044
http://www.merriweathermusic.com/