Songwriters in the Round: Tolchin, Fitzgerald, Scorzari

Sun Jul 16 2017 7:00pm to 9:30pm
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Jonah Tolchin

Jonah Tolchin - "Diamond Mind"

Immediately after Jonah Tolchin finished recording his new album, 'Thousand Mile Night,' he got behind the wheel and lived it, driving from Muscle Shoals, Alabama, all the way back to his native New Jersey with guitarist Lucas Hamren in one straight shot. By the time the car finally coasted into Hamren's driveway in the early dawn light, the odometer had accumulated 998 miles. The journey wasn't quite over yet, though. Tolchin said his goodbyes, gathered his things from the back seat, and began the walk to his childhood home on nearby Clover Lane. It was precisely two more miles.

The universe is full of signs if you're open to them, and for Jonah Tolchin, there could be no clearer omen than the mileage of that epic trip: he'd had made the perfect album for the perfect moment in his life. Recorded at the legendary FAME Studios (Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin), 'Thousand Mile Night' charts the young songwriter's remarkable growth, both personally and artistically, as he digs deep into the roots of American music with a distinctly modern perspective, tackling everything from love and marriage to life on the road to loneliness and depression with a deft lyrical touch.

The album follows Tolchin's acclaimed Yep Roc debut, 'Clover Lane,' which was recorded in Nashville with a slew of special guests including Los Lobos' Steve Berlin and Deer Tick's John McCauley. NPR called Tolchin "a promising new artist who artfully occupies the gulf between old-school tradition and contemporary appropriation," while Uncut said he "demonstrates the finesse and maturity of someone like Jason Isbell," and Mojo praised him for "adding raw, punk brio to a folk-blues template." Tolchin racked up more than three million plays on Spotify with tracks from the record and toured the US and Europe extensively in support of it, sharing bills with artists like Chuck Prophet, Dave and Phil Alvin, Gregg Allman, Joseph Arthur, and more along the way. When he wasn't on the road, Tolchin was busy showing off his talents behind the board as a producer, heading to Nashville's Bomb Shelter to helm an album for Bill Scorzari and bringing bluesy soul singer Julie Rhodes to record at FAME, where he made such a powerful connection with engineer John Gifford III that he knew he had to return there for 'Thousand Mile Night.'

Ian Fitzgerald

Ian Fitzgerald plays The Old Guitar - "Melinda Down The Line"

Ian Fitzgerald is a folk singer and songwriter. Known for his storytelling and skillful use of language, Ian has independently released five albums of original material while touring throughout the country. Performer Magazine called Ian "a polished songsmith who is high atop a field of great artists breaking through to festival and folk concerts throughout the States." To that end, Ian performed at the 2015 and 2016 Newport Folk Festivals. Ian is currently on our in support of his latest release, You Won't Even Know I'm Gone (2016).

Bill Scorzari

Heartstrings Presents | Bill Scorzari | It's Time

No Depression calls Bill Scorzari "a force. His songwriting is stellar, his picking above par and his voice fits his songs perfectly." Bill Scorzari is a New York-based singer-songwriter, often likened to Sam Baker, Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen and John Prine. March 10, 2017 marked the release of Through These Waves, his second full-length record, produced by Jonah Tolchin (Yep Roc) and engineered, mixed, and mastered at the Bomb Shelter in Nashville, TN. John Platt (WFUV) says of the artist and the album, "Bill Scorzari has a lived-in voice that says, 'Listen to these songs.' They spring from the earth and the ocean with an open heart and the wisdom of experience." The album features a cast of musicians including Joachim Cooder, Laur Joamets, Will Kimbrough, Chris Scruggs, Eamon McLoughlin, Jon Estes, Brent Burke, Kim Richey, Kyle Tuttle and Danny Roaman. In a recent interview, Tolchin calls Bill Scorzari, “one of the greatest songwriters I’ve ever heard.” With sincere and robust lyrics, Scorzari’s raspy vocals usher the listener breezily into his world.