Calendar of Events
|Sat, Jun 24|
|Freedom Night [open mic]||Bring your spoken words, your songs, your jokes...|
Sign up starts at 7:30. Hosted by Angelica Engel.
|Fri, Jul 7|
|The Madtown Poetry Open Mic||John Burroughs is a Cleveland-based author and publisher, known for his dynamic performances, whose most recent poetry chapbooks include Water Works [2017, The Poet's Haven], Electric Company [Writing Knights Press], Beat Attitude [NightBallet Press], It Takes More Than Chance to Make Change [The Poet's Haven] and The Eater of the Absurd [NightBallet Press]. In a previous life, he served as playwright and occasional music director in residence for the Ministry of Theatre at Ohio's Marion Correctional Institution. He won the first poetry slam he ever competed in. His blog was ranked number one on MySpace when he left in 2007 to create his own website. Later he co-founded the infamous Lix and Kix Poetry Extravaganza and almost-annual Snoetry: A Winter Wordfest. But he is perhaps most proud of his work, since 2008, as founding editor of Crisis Chronicles Press, publishing provocative work from around the world. This is his first-ever trip to Wisconsin.|
The Madtown Poetry Open Mic, hosted by Ron Czerwien at Mother Fool's Coffeehouse, welcomes all forms of poetry. Readers in the open mic are invited to read their original work for up to five minutes. Sign up starts at 7:30pm and the event begins at 8:00pm.
For over ten years Ron hosted poetry readings as well as an open mic at Avol's Bookstore in Madison. His poems have appeared both on-line and in print journals. His manuscript, "The Office of Uncomfortable Admissions," received an honorable mention in the Concrete Wolf Chapbook Contest. Ron serves on the board of The Council for Wisconsin Writers, and sells used and out-of-print books on-line under the name Avol's Books LLC. If you have questions about the open mic, call Ron at 608-255-4730, or email him at email@example.com.
|Sat, Jul 8|
|The Resonant Rogues - $7||American folk music has always had a populist perspective, a vision of music made by the people, for the people. Asheville, North Carolina roots band The Resonant Rogues know this well, for theyâve traveled the byways and highways of America, even crossed the water to Europe and the Mediterranean with instruments and songs in tow. Anchored by the songwriting duo Sparrow and Keith Smith, the Rogues have shared songs with train-hoppers in New Orleans, busked on the streets of Budapest, learned Turkish Romani dance in Istanbul, and marched in protest in the hills of Appalachia. Throughout, the stories theyâve heard and the people theyâve met have fueled their music, which abounds with influences like Eastern European Romani brass bands, New Orleans street jazz, old-time stringbands, Woody Guthrie anti-fascist folk, French jazz manouche, and Middle Eastern rhythms. Itâs not easy to pull off such a bold combination of genres, but The Resonant Rogues learned this music in person from the people who created it, so they have a tie to each tradition and a working knowledge of what this music means to the ordinary people that make this music every day. Itâs a tintype view on the modern world,a cracked image that reflects the past through a prism of the future.|
On their new album, Hands in the Dirt, The Resonant Rogues bring these stories and influences to the fore, all filtered through a thoroughly contemporary perspective. The title track speaks to a younger generationâs renewed interest in sustainable gardening and agriculture, but pulses like an old country blues song. Opening track âMuddy River,â pulls from the banjo/fiddle pulse of stringband music, but speaks to the ever-increasing speed of change. The song âAm I Rightâ channels the swing of American doo-wop, blended with New Orleans second- line influences and fueled by the tenor sax of Ashevilleâs Ben Colvin (and Sparrowâs accordion). To make Hands in the dirt, The Resonant Rogues drew from their rich net- work of musical friends in the progressive Appalachian city of Asheville, North Carolina, like fiddler Drayton Aldridge, bassist Craig Sandberg, pedal steel player Matt Smith, cellist Franklin Keel, and drummer Mattick Frick. However, for their final song on the album, the powerfully moving protest song, âCanât Come In,â they invited a new friend, Basher Balleh, a Syrian refugee musician and country singer living in Istanbul who plays with the band Country for Syria. The song references classic folk tropes like John Hurtâs âMake Me A Pallet on the Floorâ to talk about the current anti-immigration sentiment in the United States. Itâs a scary new world today, but The Resonant Rogues make music that refuses to shy away from our current reality. They make music for the people they meet every day who are affected by our current policies, and they make music to take us through these dark times.
|Fri, Jul 21|
|Approaching Happiness with Krish Mohan - $7|
|Approaching Happiness with Krish Mohan at Mother Fool's|
Featuring Jason Hillman & Stevie Leigh Crutcher!
Approaching Happiness: What makes us happy? Comedian Krish Mohan explores the idea of Happiness and perceptions of mental illness in todayâs society. He removing the stigmas associated with immigration, drugs, gun control, racism and being accountable for the problems weâve created, all revolving around the subject of mental health. Will he find out how we can all approach happiness?
Krish is a socially conscious Indian standup comedian and writer who regularly performs at small theaters, bars, comedy clubs, colleges and DIY venues across the country. He focuses on idea based stand-up tackling race, religion, immigration, relationships, political and social issues. With his quirky attitude, charming personality, and intelligent humor, Krish captivates and engages audiences of all backgrounds. He has had a highly rated & hit IndyFringe & the Capital Fringe Festival show. He has been featured on NPR and in the Arch City Comedy Festival.
âan honest, funny approach to describe how his expectations of moving to America didnât line up with reality; how he has handled racismâŚ; his relationship with his parents who raised him to be a devout Hindu, yet he is no longer faithful; and even sex educationâ -NUVO (Indianapolis)
âMohanâs material is frequently clever if not uproariously funnyâ Roger Caitlin of the Washington Post
âIf you appreciate comedians that deliver a message with style and truth, and make you LOL while theyâre delivering the message, then go see the Indian Comedian, unless of courseâŚyouâre racist.â -Randy Clark from IndyFringe Talks
âhe is a thinking manâs comedian and an astute one at that.â -Tom Alvarez of the Examiner
âa playful, provocative stand-up routineâ -The DCist
âwry observations about how heâs treated in America as an immigrant, though he uses where he was born and what he looks like as a jumping-off point, not a crutchâ -IndyStar
ââtouchyâ subjects are addressed with a personal approach from lifelong experienceâ -Ben Daniels of the DC Metro Theater Arts
âHis insights on racism and alienation are presented with a light-hearted touch, which can be very difficult to pull off, especially in our current climate.â -Wendy Carson of Plays with John & Wendy
Audiences have called Krishâs show âbrilliantâ, âhilariousâ and ârefreshingâ as he âskewers mainstream American ignorance: a nation of foreigners doesnât seem to know what to make of themâ.
|Sat, Aug 5|
|The Fremonts w/ Kendra Swanson - $7||Born in New York City and raised in Boulder, Colorado, The Fremonts weave Midwestern ghost stories into restless Americana music. Stephanie Dodd (originally from Fremont, Nebraska - vocals/keyboard/xylophone/accordion) and Justin Badger (originally from Fremont, California - vocals/guitar/kick drum) lace their sound with bluegrass, country, blues, folk and indie pop influences. By blending Doddâs lyrical voice and Badgerâs turbulent style, they take on a range of topics from sprawling tales of escape and ambition to quiet disenchantment with traditional roles in American family life. In their three years of creating music together, The Fremonts have unearthed fresh authenticity in their writing and performances through dedicated practice and community building.|
Kendra Swanson is an independent folk music performer and songwriter. With strong, expressive vocals and energetic instrumentation, she applies a timeless sound to original compositions written from (and about) the American heartland. It has been described as "soulful," "homey," "sincere," and "heartfelt," delivered with a passionate voice that cuts through the loudest of bars (and the hardest of hearts). A multi-instrumentalist, Kendra writes most of her music on guitar and banjo, but performs as fiddler and violist with several local bands. As a soloist, she has shared bills with the likes of Charlie Parr, Ralph Stanley, The Waydown Wanderers, The Howlin' Brothers, Danny Barnes, the Quebe Sisters, and The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.
In 2011, after discovering folk music while living abroad, Kendra started playing the banjo in a conquest for a deeper understanding of her homeland and its identity, and met many wonderful folk musicians and writers in the Rock River Valley. It has been in the pursuit of folk music and writing that she has found deep joy and satisfaction in expression. She independently recorded and released her first album "Carry Your Shoes," and sold it on the streets.