Cutting vocals in the woods behind his college dorm. Mixing in the backseat of a sedan. Sneaking into the music department after hours to teach himself to play new instruments (and sneaking out before the faculty arrived in the morning). From the start, Mobley's work has been marked by solitude, ingenuity, and a drive that could only be called obsessive. Whether you experience his music on record or at one of his live shows (on stage, he's electric), the passion is palpable. Mobley grew up all over the world, from the Spanish Mediterranean to the California coast. Perhaps it's because of this itinerant childhood that he finds it so hard to sit still.
Over the last few years, he's composed dozens of pieces for stage and television, played 150+ national tour dates (with the likes of JUNGLE, Mutemath, & Wavves and at festivals like Savannah Stopover and Float Fest), and recorded (then scrapped) two whole albums in pursuit of the songs that would become his forthcoming full-length debut, Fresh Lies. The album, on which Mobley plays every instrument, defies easy classification, drawing liberally (often simultaneously) from indie rock, R&B, and pop sensibilities. He's equally at home on a playlist next to The Weeknd and TV on the Radio alike, while his electronic, dub-dabbling production style calls to mind the intricate work of artists like James Blake and Thom Yorke.
Greta Van Fleet with Special Guest CLOVES - Presented by Opus One & PromoWest North Shore
Fans who have been following Charlie Parr through his previous 13 full-length albums and decades of nonstop touring already know that the Duluth-based songwriter has a way of carving a path straight to the gut. On his newest record, Dog, however, he seems to be digging deeper and hitting those nerves quicker than ever before.
"I want my son to have this when I'm gone," Charlie sings not 10 seconds into the opening song on Dog, "Hobo." His voice sounds weary but insistent, his accompaniment sparse and sorrowful. By the second line, the listener has no choice but to be transported on a journey through the burrows of his troubled mind, following him through shadowy twists and turns as he searches for a way out.
It turns out Charlie's been grappling with quite a bit over these past few years. As he prepares to release his new album on Red House Records this fall, he's just as candid about discussing his experiences in
person as he is while singing on the heat-rending Dog.
"I had some really, really bad depression problems over the last couple years," Charlie explains. "I've been trying to get fit, trying not to drink so much, trying not to do the rock 'n' roll guy thing. And then I got depressed. Really depressed. And to me, depression feels like there's me, and then there's this kind of hazy fog of rancid jello all around me, that you can't feel your way out of. And then there's this really, really horrible third thing, this impulsive thing, that doesn't feel like it's me or my depression. It feels like it's coming from outside somewhere. And it's the thing that comes on you all of a sudden, and it's the voice of suicide, it's the voice of âquit.'"
"These songs have all kind of come out of that. Especially songs like âSalt Water' and âDog,' they really came heavily out of just being depressed, and having to say something about it."
Sometimes I'm alright
Other times it's hard to tell
Like finding light in the bottom of the darkest well
- "Sometimes I'm Alright"
In the album's quieter moments, Charlie confronts these issues head-on, using only an acoustic guitar or banjo to light the way. But the incredible thing about Dog is that it digs into dark matter and contemplates serious topics like mental illness and mortality while embracing a pulse of persistence and forward motion; throughout the album, more and more musicians seem to be joining in the fray as the tempo builds, keeping the overall vibe upbeat.
"I was going to do it completely solo," Charlie says. "I was going to go to this barn in Wisconsin, sit there and play my songs. And I was practicing them and I thought, this is devastating. These songs are hard to
hear in this format. I would never be able to listen to them again. And then my friend Tom Herbers, he
saw something was wrong. We talked, booked time at Creation" Audio, and made a plan to flesh out the album with a backing band.
So Charlie called on some longtime friends who he's collaborated with throughout his career: the experimental folk artist Jeff Mitchell, percussionist Mikkel Beckman, harmonica player Dave Hundreiser, and bassist Liz Draper, who traded her typical upright bass in for an electric at Charlie's request. The group found an instant chemistry in the studio, capturing some of the tracks on the first take.
"I wrote all the lyrics on these giant pieces of paper, and I had highlighters, and I assigned them each a color. I was going to be super organized," Charlie remembers. "And then we started playing, and all of a
sudden none of that even mattered. These stupid highlighters, the pieces of paper - I should have just
trusted in the beginning that these friends would know how to take care of my songs."
You claim the bed lifted up off the floor
Well, how do you know I'm not as good as you are? A soul is a soul is a soul is a soul
In the album's more raucous moments, Charlie turns from contemplating his inner struggles to examining his connection to other living creatures. The album's title track, "Dog," and the blistering "Another Dog" were inspired by some of the lessons he's learned from his own pet, and wondering about the way dogs interact with humans and the outside world.
"I have a dog, her name is Ruby but I call her Ruben, and we go for these long, crazy, chaotic walks," Charlie says. "Because I decided a long time ago that I get along really well with this dog, and I was
taking her for walks, and she wanted to go this way, and I wanted to go that way. And then I thought, why
are we going to go this way and not that way? Maybe I should be the one getting walked. Maybe I'll learn something. So I follow the dog."
Despite the album's darker moments, the listener is left hearing Charlie in a more optimistic and defiant headspace, reflecting on how far he's come - and how content he is to accept that some things are simply unknowable.
(Early Show) Eilen Jewell - Presented by Opus One & 91.3 WYEP
Eilen Jewell laughs when told her labelâs president called her a musicologist. But she confirms she and her husband and bandmate, Jason Beek, have a passion for studying American music.
âWe really love to uncover the past. Itâs almost like digging for buried treasure,â she says. âFor me, thatâs where music is at. I like all kinds of music as long as thereâs the word early in front of it.â
For her new album, Down Hearted Blues, releasing Sept. 22, 2017, on Signature Sounds, they unearthed 12 vintage gems written or made famous by an array of artists both renowned and obscure, from Willie Dixon and Memphis Minnie to Charles Sheffield and Betty James. Then, like expert stonecutters, they chiseled them into exciting new shapes and forms, honoring history while breathing new life into each discovery.
(Late Show) Turnpike Gardens with Special Guest NORM
Combining equal parts tight, high-energy musicianship and dynamic songwriting, Turnpike Gardens is an up-and-coming rock band from Pittsburgh, PA. The band draws its influences from rock acts of late 60s and early 70s as well as early 90s alternative rock.
Turnpike Gardens consists of three high school friends, bassist Nick Funyak, guitarist Evan Mulgrave and drummer James Conley, a trio with more than a decade of shared musical history, and features vocalist Heather Polvinale, whose brash, powerful voice carries shades of Grace Slick and Fiona Apple.
In their short history, Turnpike Gardens has already created a reputation for packing local venues such as The Smiling Moose, Mr.Smalls, Club Cafe while delivering dynamic, energetic performances. The band has played a number of shows with touring acts and local mainstays such as The Semi-Supervillains and There You Are. Their debut, self-titled LP has received a warm reception from numerous online radio stations, and local radio appearances include regular turns on 105.9 the X and a live session in the WDVE Coffeehouse with Randy Baumann and the DVE Morning Show.
The band is currently writing and recording its follow-up LP to 2015's self-titled release and continues to play live sets in support of the first album.
(Late Show) Ugly Blondes / Whiskey Pilot / Jakethehawk
Rooted in triple-stacked harmonies, southern storytelling, and cosmic country twang, Cordovas create their own version of American roots-rock with That Santa Fe Channel.
The album marks the band's ATO Records debut, arriving after more than a half-decade's worth of international touring, communal living, and shared songwriting sessions. It's a timely â and timeless â version of a sound that's existed for 50 years, ever since pioneers like the Grateful Dead and the Allman Bothers Band blurred the lines between rock, country, and amplified folk music. If That Santa Fe Channel nods to the band's influences, though, it's still a fiercely unique album, recorded in a series of live takes that shine a light not only on Cordovas' songwriting chops, but their strength as a raw, rugged live band, as well.
That Santa Fe Channel was produced by the Milk Carton Kids' Kenneth Pattengale in East Nashville, not far from the home that doubles as the band's rehearsal space, headquarters, and shared living quarters. There, in a converted barn behind the property's main house, the guys logged countless hours fine-tuning a sound that's already earned praise from outlets like NPR Music and Rolling Stone, who described the group as "the harmony-heavy, guitar-fueled house band at a Big Pink keg party in 1968." With its western wooziness and siesta-friendly swagger, That Santa Fe Channel also nods to the band's other home bases: Southern California, where bassist and band leader Joe Firstman lived for years; and Todos Santos, Mexico, where Cordovas' five members travel every winter to write new songs, sharpen old standbys, and oversee the acclaimed Tropic of Cancer Concert Series. The result is a record that's steeped in â but not limited to â southern sounds and California charm. It's American music without borders.
Years before Cordovas' formation, Firstman traveled the country as a solo musician. Raised in North Carolina, he moved to Hollywood as a determined 20 year-old, signing a major-label deal with Atlantic Records in 2002. His debut album, War of Women, hit stores one year later. When a dizzying blur of acclaimed shows â including opening dates for Sheryl Crow and Willie Nelson â weren't enough to satisfy the expectations of a big-budget record label, Firstman lost his contract and took a new job as music director on Last Call with Carson Daly. It was good work, with Firstman performing nightly alongside first-rate musicians like Thundercat and Kamasi Washington. Still, the need to create his own music was ever-present. With Cordovas, he's found his ultimate vehicle: a collaborative band with multiple lead singers and a collective approach not only to songwriting, but to existing. Cordovas aren't just bandmates. They're roommates. They're co-conspirators. They're a family.
"The Cordovas are a 24-hour, 7-days-a-week job," clarifies Firstman, who shares the band's roster with drummer Graham Spillman, keyboardist Sevans Henderson, and dueling lead guitarists Lucca Soria and Toby Weaver. "You're always on call to play, to adapt to another man's idea, to pick up a guitar or look at a lyrics sheet. We're eating dinner together, hanging out together, and making art. We don't have rehearsal times, because rehearsal is always. You have to honor the art first, and everything else comes second."
Living in such close quarters â both at home and on the road â has turned Cordovas into a band of brothers. Stop by the band's East Nashville compound and you may find Soria and Weaver picking their way through bluegrass songs inside the barn, while Firstman wraps up a family dinner in the kitchen and Spillman fixes the band's RV outside. There's a communal vibe to the band's existence that bleeds over into their songs, where it's often hard to pinpoint a single person's voice in those thick, swooning harmonies. That Santa Fe Channel is the soundtrack to that communal existence: a collection of songs written together, performed together, and lived together.
And what a soundtrack it is. There's the Band-influenced boogie-woogie of "Standin' on the Porch," full of blue notes and pedal steel. There's the layered melodies of "I'm the One Who Needs You Tonight," the classic chord changes of "Selfish Loner," the barroom piano of "Step Back Red," and the hungover charm of the album's opener, "This Town's a Drag," which finds Firstman searching for illegal thrills in a dry town. Together, That Santa Fe Channel's nine songs paint the picture of a band on the rise, heading for a horizon whose beauty can match their own.
Tory Lanez - Memories Don't Die Tour with Special Guests Davo, Flipp Dinero
A near reverential dedication to truth is the foundation Tory Lanezâ artistic identity. Unabashedly introspective and keenly observant of the outside world in equal measure, the rapper born Daystar Peterson in Toronto, Canada, spent his early adolescence honing the sure-footed, narrative-led lyrics that have become synonymous with his singular style of rap. Lanez sophomore studio album, Memories Donât Die, comes as a follow up to his 2016 debut, I Told You, which was met with critical success, and featured the number one, Double Platinum singles, âSay Itâ and âLUV.â
One part personal confessional and one part victory lap, the album sees Lanez place his feet firmly between the now and the then, walking the blurred line between what has transpired and what is to come with all of the surety and dominion of a modern day Chronos. âThis album is nostalgic because a lot of the stuff Iâm rapping and singing about is from my past,â said Lanez. âThese memories are very vivid, very real and very true. Theyâre memorable to me and I know if theyâre real to me theyâre real to other people too.â
The sprawling musical opus, which highlights moments in the 25-year-oldâs history spanning from early childhood through 2017, is held together by the rapperâs innate talent for uniting genres into new, hybrid soundscapes. With seemingly little effort, Lanez always experiments as he creates, fusing together a mish-mash of influences into a nuanced, self-mythologized genre he has dubbed âswavey.â And while Lanez scored a Grammy nomination and number one single with the tropically-infused, hip-swaying, familiar rhythm of âLuvââproduced by Cashmere Cat and Benny BlancoâMemories Donât Die is defined by a revisitation of more traditional hip-hop and R&B conventions; Lanez embraces the world of knocking 808s and the growl and punch of unembellished instrumentals alongside the polished gloss of his trademark croon. Touting features from 50 Centâan homage to the part of his adolescence spent in Jamaica, Queens, Future, Wiz Khalifa, Fabolous, NAV and more.
With practiced finesse, Lanez matter of factly spins larger-than-life tales of betrayal at the hands of friends and finding solidarity in former foes. Yet even while working within the comfort of his own personal history, Lanez is never monotonous. Instead he is positively effusive, slinking between moods and pivotal moments as if trying to reclaim and preserve the memories seared into his soul. There are moments when he thumps his chest, claiming the spoils of a hard-won victory, and proudly embracing his self-perceived status of underdog and voluntary outcast. At other times he is unapologetically vulnerable, falling down the rabbit hole of reflection with an unguarded transparency that resonates with the emotion of a distant moment.
Lanez explores his past, recalling tender memories of the death of his motherâa woman who he remembers as âTrue Happinessââand his upbringing zig-zagging across the U.S. and Canada, dodging the cycles of violence that his saw his family subjected along the way. He also looks forward, promising the world to his newborn child and his mother.
In short, memories truly have not died for the Grammy award nomineeâhe is able to recall his own life story with remarkable clarity, and keenly translate its impact on his present with pragmatism, verity and true emotion. When Lanez details the loss of his mother he does so with the sheen of salt from unshed tears. When he reflects on the nature of love (and his own shortcomings), there is a sense of genuine regret and desire. His honesty is unfailing and unrelenting, but also feels universal. We are seeing Tory Lanez for what he isâa young man growing, progressing and learning in an ever-changing world that can be capricious and cruel, but also wildly beautiful and filled with warmth.
HEAR US! An Evening of Art & Advocacy featuring Rachel Lynne, Dinosoul, Swampwalk, and Daniella (of Soft Gondola). All proceeds to benefit Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania.
Since their debut in 2006, Oakland, Californiaâs Howlin Rain has seen as many highs, lows, and wild adventures as any great American rock band. Led by singer/guitarist/lead howler Ethan Miller (co-founder of blistering psych rockers Comets On Fire), theyâve performed to worldwide audiences, enlisted a megastar producer and label, moved on from said megastar producer and label, and ultimately embraced a DIY spirit.
With their new LP The Alligator Bride, Millerâs merry band of pranksters deliver their fifth full-length set of swampy, ragged, and unapologetic rock ân roll. âThe guiding principle for The Alligator Bride was to create âNeal Cassady Rock,ââ says Miller. âWhich is to say, high energy, good-times adventure music, driving the hippie bus, shirtless and stoned, up for four days straight, and extremely fuzzy around the edges.â Itâs their first release on Silver Current Records, the artist-run label owned by Miller, who carefully oversees all curation, recording, graphic design, and distribution.
The Alligator Bride is gleefully indebted to classic rock formations such as the Grateful Deadâs Europe â72, Mountain Busâ 1974 burner Sundance, and Freeâs masterpiece of atmospheric, minimalist blues, 1969âs Fire and Water. But thereâs a wider context to the Rain. At any given moment, Miller pivots between several projects, each a different facet of his sun-scorched California vision. From the pastoral psych jams of his celebrated Sub Pop band Heron Oblivion, to the scuzz punk freakouts of Feral Ohms, to the sprawling, analog ambience of The Odyssey Cult, to his various books of poetry, Miller cuts a renaissance figure in madmanâs garb, howling at the moon and cranking out handmade masterpieces.
Which brings us back to Howlin Rainâs latest. Tracked over three days by Eric âKing Riffâ Bauer at the Mansion in San Francisco, The Alligator Bride is the sound of a full band playing live to tape, cutting the material in first and second takes. (It also marks the second installment in the bandâs Mansion trilogy. First was 2016âs Mansion Songs, a less raucous affair, with the gentle touch of Espers/Heron Oblivionâs Meg Baird on vocals, among other contributors.) Miller attributes the magic to the vibe of the Mansion studio, the same space that gave birth to modern garage-psych classics by Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, and Mikal Cronin. âBecause it has the word âmansionâ in it, people are like, âOh, I didnât realize it wasnât an actual mansion.ââ says Miller. âItâs a basement in Chinatown. Itâs a mansion of the mind. Itâs a creative castle. Itâs not a literal, San Francisco mansion.â
From the first notes of opening track âRainbow Trout,â Millerâs guitar choogles out an inescapable riff, a sly reference to the sky spirits of Norman Greenbaum and ZZ Top. The riff â that riff! â unabashedly grounds The Alligator Bride in the classics, but reaches for the stars. Daniel Cervantesâ bottleneck slide guitar eases into place along with Millerâs tuneful-yet-ravaged lead vocals, followed by Jeff McElroyâs bass and Justin Smithâs charging drums. Title track âAlligator Brideâ soon crashes the gates like Crazy Horse in all their ragged glory, telling a carnivalesque tale of American splendor, a parade of creatures across time and space. And final track âComing Downâ slow-burns its way through eight minutes of indestructible twin guitars, blazing to a heroic, acid-damaged finish.
âWeâre in a vortex of futuristic events,â ruminates Miller. âAt this present moment, we can still remember the way the train whistle sounded in the middle of the night, rolling through the dark on the outskirts of town. An old America before we walked on the moon, before TV, cell phones, and the internet. The song (and perhaps the entire album) âAlligator Brideâ is about standing in the eye of that tornado of time â between the past and the present â in America.â Itâs a fitting vision for the band: torn between eras, an epic perspective on whatâs come before and what lies ahead, woven into a cosmic tapestry of riffs, rhymes, and resonant frequencies.
Chris Webby with Special Guests Anoyd, Brodie Fresh, Rook
Originally from Connecticut, Chris Webby is an American rapper best known for his versatile flow, creative punchlines, pop culture references, and love for cartoons. He is also the founder of the independent record label, EightyHD Music.
Doors will open an hour early at 6pm for extended kitchen service. Come have dinner with us before the show!
Now twenty-five years into his storied career, Cleaves' songwriting has never been more potent than on his new album Ghost on the Car Radio, out June 23.
The characters in Slaid Cleaves' songs live in unglamorous reality. They work dead-end jobs, they run out of money, they grow old, they hold on to each other (or not), and they die. With an eye for the beauty in everyday life, he tells their stories, bringing a bit of empathy to their uncaring world.
On "Take Home Pay," co-written with longtime friend Rod Picott, Cleaves sings from the perspective of an aging manual laborer, fighting looming regret and sadness with stubborn resiliency (and opioid use).
"On my way down to the pawn shop
A couple hundred is all I need
If I have to, Iâll hit the blood bank
Iâm bone dry but I can always bleed
I got some Oxy to keep me moving
It slowly takes some things away
The only thing I was scared of losing
She packed up and left today"
-"TAKE HOME PAY"
"As befits the times we live in, there's a heavy dose of disappointment and disillusion here," he says. But somehow, through the worst of it, optimism remains, as if to say, "Yeah, things are pretty bad out there. But there's still some good stuff if you know where to look."
One place his characters find solace is with each other. Traditional love songs are not often found on a Slaid Cleaves record. Here he approaches the subject less as a romantic gesture, and more as a world-weary appreciation of the one who's seen you through thick and thin, as in the song "So Good to Me."
"Times were tough but we were tougher
Slings and arrows we did suffer
Scars, weâve got a few, but who has not
Words of love and words of anger
Times of peace and times of danger
Never take for granted what we've got"
- "SO GOOD TO ME"
Described as "terse, clear and heartfelt" (NPR Fresh Air), his songs speak to timeless truths. "I'm not an innovator. I'm more of a keeper of the flame," he says.
"Songs are so accessible. You don't need an education to fully appreciate them, you don't need a lot of leisure time to spend on them, you don't need to learn the language of song. We seem to be born with it," Cleaves explains. "With no preparation at all, they can bring you to tears in a matter of seconds. I remember being three or four and getting a lump in my throat when I heard Hank Williams sing."
Now in his fifties, Cleaves admits that it's sometimes hard to stay inspired. "I do become jaded," he says. "I wonder that, at this point in my career, I've had no real national success. No impact on the culture, as my heroes had. The music that I love just doesn't seem relevant to mainstream culture. But then, I have no interest in what mainstream culture offers either."
"But those feelings are always quickly overcome by gratitude," he explains. "I'm making a living as a musician, and making a meaningful connection with people - what could be better than that?"
Ghost on the Car Radio is Cleaves' first release since 2013's Still Fighting the War, which was praised as "one of the year's best albums" by American Songwriter and "carefully crafted...songs about the struggles of the heart in hard times" by the Wall Street Journal. The New York Daily News called his music "a treasure hidden in plain sight," while the Austin Chronicle declared, "there are few contemporaries that compare. He's become a master craftsman on the order of Guy Clark and John Prine."
Cleaves will hit the road this summer and fall in support of the album. For updated tour dates, visit slaidcleaves.com/tour
Lucy Dacus is done thinking small. Two years after her 2016 debut, No Burden, won her unanimous acclaim as one of rock's most promising new voices, Dacus returns on March 2 with Historian, a remarkably assured 10-track statement of intent. It finds her unafraid to take on the big questions â the life-or-death reckonings, and the ones that just feel that way. It's a record full of bracing realizations, tearful declarations and moments of hard-won peace, expressed in lyrics that feel destined for countless yearbook quotes and first tattoos.
"This is the album I needed to make," says Dacus, who views Historian as her definitive statement as a songwriter and musician. "Everything after this is a bonus."
She emphasizes that she does not take her newfound platform as a touring musician for granted. "I have this job where I get to talk to people I don't know every night," she remembers thinking on the long van rides across America to support No Burden. Realizing that she would have a dramatically expanded audience for her second album, she felt an urgent call to make something worthwhile: "The next record should be the thing that's most important to say."
The past year, with its electoral disasters and other assorted heartbreaks, has been a rough one for many of us, Dacus included. She found solace in crafting a thoughtful narrative arc for Historian, writing a concept album about cautious optimism in the face of adversity, with thematic links between songs that reveal themselves on repeat listens. "It starts out dark and ends hopeful, but it gets darker in between; it goes to the deepest, darkest, place and then breaks," she explains. "What I'm trying to say throughout the album is that hope survives, even in the face of the worst stuff."
Dacus and her band recorded the album in Nashville last March, re-teaming with No Burden producer Collin Pastore, and mixed it a few months later with A-list studio wizard John Congleton. The sound they created, with substantial input from multi-instrumentalist and live guitarist Jacob Blizard, is far richer and fuller than the debut â an outward flowering of dynamic, living, breathing rock and roll. Dacus' remarkable sense of melody and composition are the driving force throughout, giving Historian the immersive feel of an album made by an artist in full command of her powers.
The album opens with a striking three-track run. First comes "Night Shift," the only breakup song Dacus has ever written: "In five years I hope the songs feel like covers, dedicated to new lovers," she memorably declares. Next is the catchy, upbeat first single "Addictions," inspired in part by the dislocated feeling of life on the road and the lure of familiarity ("Iâm just calling cause Iâm used to it/And youâll pick up cause youâre not a quitterâ¦"), followed by "The Shell," a reflection on (and embrace of) creative burnout. There's nothing tentative about this opening sequence. Right away, it's clear that Dacus is on a new level of truth-telling and melodic grace.
Another key highlight is track five, "Yours & Mine" â "the centerpiece where the whole album hinges in on itself," Dacus says. Using a call-and-response format, she wrestles with the question of how best to participate in a community broken by injustice and fear while staying true to what one believes is right. "It's about realizing your power as a person, and deciding to do the less safe but ultimately more powerful move, which is to move physically forward â show up and march â and move forward politically," says Dacus, who began writing the song during the 2015 Baltimore Uprising against systemic racism.
Historian closes with two stunning songs: "Pillar of Truth," a heartfelt tribute to Dacus' late grandmother, and "Historians," which sums up the album's complex lessons about loss. "From the first song to 'Pillar of Truth,' the message is: You can't avoid these things, so accept them. There's ways to go about it with grace and gratefulness," she says. "Then 'Historians' says that even if you can say that, there's still fear, and loss is terrifying. You still love things, so it's going to hurt. But dark isn't bad. It's good to know that.â
Ween - Presented by Opus One & PromoWest North Shore
Since 2015, Chillent's one of a kind "soul stew" of Jewish-flavored funk, rock, jazz, and blues has heated up Pittsburgh's favorite venues, festivals, and airwaves.
Chillent's generous helpings of original compositions, deep covers, and funky interpretations of Jewish classics have fans comparing their live performances to "klezmer Phish," and "Maceo Parker at a bar mitzvah."