Guitar-strumming troubadours aren't rare birds. They're commonly sighted across Hampton Roads. But two of them landing in the region this month stand out from the flock.
Steve Forbert, the songwriter best known for his 1980 hit "Romeo's Tune," will play a house concert Sunday, Oct. 23 in Norfolk. Will Kimbrough, a tunesmith who has collaborated with artists ranging from Jimmy Buffett to Todd Snider, will play Saturday, Oct. 29 at The Bena Country Store Gloucester County.
While Forbert is considered by some to be a one-hit wonder, he's released at least 13 albums of mostly orignal tunes. His career has spanned more than 30 years. His most recent release, "The Place and The Time," arrived in 2009.
"The singer-songwriter's boyish looks and sensitive, scratchy voice are eternally youthful and his tunes retain the same mix of dry humor, storytelling honesty, and inviting pop melodies," wrote Hal Horowitz in an otherwise luke-warm review of "The Place and The Time" on allmusic.com.
Kimbrough isn't as well-known, but he's respected as a performer and composer. He's in demand as a touring sideman and as a studio musician and songwriter. He's worked with Emmylou Harris, John Prine, Kim Richey, Rodney Crowell, Amy Rigby and ... Steve Forbert.
I remember a tour-de-force show Kimbrough put on in Smithfield back in 2008. Using a looping pedal to double or triple his acoustic guitar lines, he put on a solo performance that was powered by technology, dexterity and soul.
His most recent solo disc is "Wings" released in 2009. He wrote the title tune with Jimmy Buffett.
Here's an e-mail announcement about the Forbert show:
North Shore Point House Concerts
A house concert series in Norfolk, VA hosted by Jim Morrison
We are taking reservations for our show on Sunday, Oct. 23 at 7 p.m. with Steve Forbert, a songwriter who began scoring radio hits with songs like "Romeo's Tune" in the late 1970s and continues to write great songs today.
This will be a Sunday evening show with an early start. There will be limited seating unless reservations top 150 people, then we will rent the tent. Priority will be given to those who attended the Zoe Muth and Kevin Welch shows.
This is the concluding show of out 10th anniversary year. We're looking forward to a great slate of shows in 2012.
The 2012 schedule so far:
March 3, 2012, Danny Schmidt and Carrie Elkin
April 14, 2012 Kim Richey.
May 19, 2012, Eric Brace and Peter Cooper.
Past shows include Marshall Crenshaw, Dave Alvin, Jimmy LaFave, Peter Case, Eliza Gilkyson, Don Dixon and Marti Jones and dozens of others.
[To request tickets contact:]
North Shore Point House Concerts
Magic Moments: A Decade of House Concerts « Semi-Regular Raves 'n' Rants
Here's a press release about the Kimbrough concert:
Named 2004 Instrumentalist of the Year by the Americana Music Association, Will Kimbrough is sometimes dubbed "The Alien," in recognition of his other-worldly guitar-playing prowess.
Saturday, Oct. 29 at 8 p.m., he peforms at The Bena Country Store in southernGloucester County.
The Alabama native is fresh off a summer tour with Emmylou Harris, and has also shared stages and studios with - and written songs for - Rosanne Cash, Rodney Crowell, Steve Earle, John Prine and Mark Knopler of Dire Straits, among many others.
His start came with Will and the Bushmen and a major record label deal; he later released a record on John Prine's "Oh Boy!" label. Kimbrough has toured and recorded extensively with Songwriting Hall of Famer Rodney Crowell, and produced two critically acclaimed albums for folk star Todd Snider, with whom he has also toured extensively. He co-wrote four songs on Jimmy Buffett's 2009 album "Buffet Hotel."
An Entertainment Weekly reviewer said his latest CD, Wings, contains "eloquent lyrics and mood-conjuring instrumentation," saying the album is "a must for listeners seeking an enduring alternative to the ephemeral fluff ruling the airwaves."
The Bena Country Store & Almost Square Picture Framing is located in a 107-year-old general store building at 8835 Guinea Road in Hayes, Va. For information, visit www.almostsquare.net.