Greg Brown to Bring Grammy-Nominated Roots-Folk to Helsinki Hudson

Greg Brown (photo Sandy Dyas)

(HUDSON, N.Y.) – Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter Greg Brown brings his roots-oriented original songs to Club Helsinki Hudson on Friday, April 28, at 9pm. Brown is one of the titans of the new-folk movement of the early-mid 1980s, a mostly acoustic, back-to-the-roots scene that rebelled against the slick folk-rock of the previous decade, while anticipating the explosion of the Americana music scene of the 21st century.

Along with the likes of Patty Larkin, John Gorka, and Shawn Colvin, Greg Brown has remained one of new-folk’s leading lights, and his contemporaries paid tribute to his legacy on the 2002 album, “Going Driftless: An Artist’s Tribute to Greg Brown,” which featured guest vocals by Ani DiFranco, Gillian Welch, Lucinda Williams, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and Shawn Colvin. Brown is known as much for his portraits of small-town America and the characters who reside there as for his gruff vocals that belie a kindness and generosity of spirit.

Greg Brown was born in the Hacklebarney section of southeastern Iowa and raised by a family that made words and music a way of life. His seasoned songwriting, storytelling, and music are deeply rooted in that place. He moves audiences with warmth, humor, a thundering voice and his unpretentious musical vision.

At age 18, Brown won a contest to play an opening set for singer Eric Andersen in Iowa City, who then encouraged him to head east. Moving to New York, Brown landed a job at Gerdes Folk City in the Village running hootenannies. Next, he tried Portland, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, but after a few years he moved back to Iowa. He recorded a couple of albums on his own, then began working on the renowned national radio show “A Prairie Home Companion” and touring nationally. After Brown teamed up with Bob Feldman in 1983, they re-released Greg’s first two albums under the name Red House Records — the beginning of the now legendary folk/roots label that has released nearly all of Brown’s 27 albums.

In 1985, Brown released “In the Dark With You,” an acoustic classic. In 1986, he set poems of William Blake’s “Songs of Innocence and of Experience” to music on a critically acclaimed album of the same name. “One Big Town” (1989) earned Brown his first Indie Award for Adult Contemporary Album of the Year, as well as a rave review in Rolling Stone. “Dream Café” (1992) was also a huge critical success. The Washington Post called it an “unassuming triumph,” and in the opinion of Z Magazine, it rivaled Bob Dylan’s “Blood on the Tracks.”

Following Dream Café, Brown recorded “Friend of Mine with Bill Morrissey,” which earned him his first Grammy nomination, and he also released a children’s album, “Bath Tub Blues.” 1994’s “The Poet Game” saw significant international radio play (charting on AAA and topping The Gavin Report’s Americana chart) and earned not only critical raves, but also the Indie award for singer-songwriter Album of the Year. “The Live One” (1995) proved to be a fan favorite capturing the humor, warmth, insights, and spirit of his legendary live shows. His 1996 release, “Further In,” topped them all: critics called it a masterpiece and it received a four-star review in Rolling Stone. Brown’s 1997 release — “Slant 6 Mind” — received more of the same and earned Brown his second Grammy nomination. 1999 brought the re-release of “One Night,” a live concert recording originally released on the Coffeehouse Extempore label. Two releases followed in 2000: “Over and Under” (Trailer Records) and the critically acclaimed “Covenant,” which won the Association for Independent Music’s award for Best Contemporary Folk Album of 2000.

The year 2002 brought two albums – “Milk of the Moon” and “Going Driftless: An Artist’s Tribute to Greg Brown.” The latter features some of today’s best female songwriters including Lucinda Williams, Ani DiFranco, Iris Dement, Gillian Welch, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Greg Brown’s three daughters, and more. These artists joined forces to record a beautiful tribute album — each selecting their own favorite song by Brown to cover for a special CD benefiting The Breast Cancer Fund. In September of 2003, Brown released “If I Had Known – Essential Recordings, 1980-1996” (Red House), a retrospective album and DVD highlighting the body of Brown’s work through 1996. “Honey in the Lions Head” was released shortly thereafter (Trailer Records) and is an album of folk standards from the public domain. Also in 2004, he released “In the Hills of California: Live From the Kate Wolf Festival 1997-2003,” a collection of live performances recorded at the Kate Wolf Memorial Music Festival featuring guest appearances by Nina Gerber, Shawn Colvin, Garnet Rogers, Dave Moore and others.

In 2006, Greg released “The Evening Call,” his first new studio album in over four years, which charted high on Americana and folk radio, earned him five stars in Mojo and garnered rave reviews in No Depression, Acoustic Guitar and The Washington Post. The two-disc collection “Dream City: Essential Recordings Vol 2, 1997-2006” features some of these new Americana classics along with other fan favorites from his last six studio albums and some previously unreleased material and live tracks.

For reservations in The Restaurant or in the club call 518.828.4800.





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