Huck Notari generally refers to his music as original country folk. It is steeped in the authenticity of times gone by, drawing his listeners into old values and timelessness. Huck grew up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire which had a tremendous impact on him and his appreciation for simpler times, the country, and down to earth people. His childhood home graces the cover of his newest album, Huck Notari and the River, and his song titled, Home, serves as the anthem for the album. The mountain life shaped the foundation of the man on stage, and though he has traveled many adventurous mile since leaving those mountains, his roots and values are quickly apparent in his genuine smile and heart breaking melodies.
Huck felt drawn to the Pacific Northwest and big changes; he jumped a Greyhound bus, wrote some songs and found himself hanging out with musicians and playing open mics in Oregon. It wasn’t long before he was on the road again, landing as a Charlie Chaplin mime on Royal Street in New Orleans. Huck heightened his dedication to his craft, joining up with a country blues and ragtime jug band, the Kitchen Syncopators; he played alongside Gill Landry, currently with Old Crow Medicine Show, Woody Pines, and Felix Hatfield of Oz St. Fossils and Cardboard Songsters.
Again called to Oregon, Huck headed on to a new adventure, where he found himself in a drafty old farm house on Highland Road out in the country; the country magic took him in and nurtured what would soon be the birth of Huck in his own voice. After some time, he moved into the city, Portland, and spent days painting and writing songs on guitar and piano with absolute dedication. He released his first album, Highland in 2007 and followed it with Very Long Dream in 2009. He was often joined by Karin Nystrom, also with the Portland Symphonic Choir, who sings and plays snare drum, and Joel Shimmin who performs on a variety of guitars. Karin and Joel came to be the core of the River, also joining Huck on his new album released in the fall of 2013, titled as such.
On his recent collection of songs, Huck Notari and the River, Huck comments, “I wanted a beautiful, flowing sound all the way through… I feel I was able to capture the warmth I was looking for.” The close listener of Huck’s lyrics and finger-picked melodies will find themselves drifting into nostalgia, the beauty of a broken heart, and meaningful stories we all treasure in our own minds.
When Squirrel Butter isn't drawing crowds at Pike Place Market, the Seattle sweetheart Old Time duo is busy playing concerts, leading jams, and organizing the Emerald City's hot Old Time scene. A splinter group of The Tallboys, Squirrel Butter is comprised of Charlie Beck and Charmaine "Lady Li-Lei" Slaven, who are both proving to be leaders in the burgeoning Northwest roots genre.
Charlie Beck plays banjo and guitar, amongst other instruments, while Charmaine is best known for her clean, virtuosic buckdancing, which she somehow does while playing guitar. They combine rip-roaring old-time tunes with funky hokum songs and country blues picking, both on banjo and guitar. Their new CD, Renderings, also features both Charlie and Charmaine on fiddle, in addition to all their other instruments and Charmaine's dancing. It's an impressive amount of music being made by this young couple!
Squirrel Butter's sound is authentic, raw, and true to tradition. Give them a listen and you'll be amazed that such full sounds can come from two lovebirds who only play with what they can carry on their backs from one gig to the next.
Russell Kaback’s funky island beats and sweet, soulful grooves melt into rootsy reggae and heartfelt folk reminiscent of James Taylor or Marvin Gaye. His lifetime love of music, supported by his travels and studies, has come to fruition in his new album, ‘Message Of Love,’ and his live performances, both of which offer an uplifting and poetic tapestry woven with hope and strength.
Kaback’s early days in St Louis, followed by his youth in Montreal and subsequent years on the road, provide him a fertile landscape of musical influences. From the spiritual blues of Van Morrison’s Street Choir to the mystical lyricism of Bob Marley and George Harrison, Kaback’s smooth vocals and rich composition appeal to a broad audience.
Kaback started performing in the folk cafes of upstate New York, then moved on to such hotspots as Pete’s Candy Store in New York City and World Cafe Live in Philadelphia. He’s as comfortable sharing a stage with indie sensation Regina Spektor as with Caribbean reggae legend Bankie Banx, and has recorded in Nashville with Teddy Jack Bridges, the son of Leon and Mary Russell.
After playing and teaching music in schools and villages from Philadelphia to Anguilla, Kaback settled with his wife and children in the rolling hills of Western MA. The new album, ‘Message Of Love’, was recorded at Q Division in Somerville MA and features the stellar guitar work of Duke Levine (Mary Chapin Carpenter, Martin Sexton) and Kevin Barry (Paula Cole, Peter Wolf) as well as vocals by Naia Kete and Sean Altman (Rockapella). Produced and mixed by Billy Straus, whose studio credits include Bruce Springsteen and XTC, the album is lushly lyrical and radio friendly.
Kaback loves to connect with audiences and is currently booking gigs in support of ‘Message Of Love’