Laurie Lewis is a rare musician. She’s best known as a fiddler, and yet she’s twice won Female Vocalist of the Year honors from the International Bluegrass Music Association, plays guitar in her current band The Right Hands and steps out on string bass as well. She’s at home in bluegrass, country, folk and Americana. She’s both a celebrated songwriter and a gifted interpreter of other writers’ songs. Laurie Lewis and her band The Right Hands will perform at The Palms Playhouse on Friday, March 15 starting at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22 ($18 with student ID). “I have been playing at The Palms since the early 1980s,” wrote Lewis previously, “when it was situated in a drafty sheet-metal barn in Davis.” Lewis called The Palms’ current location in the Winters Opera House “a great space, with very lively acoustics.” Lewis’ 2016 Grammy-nominated album, “The Hazel & Alice Sessions,” pays tribute to bluegrass pioneers Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard, who helped open the genres’ doors to women. Lewis is one of the musicians who stepped through and, along with one of her first bands, the Good Ol’ Persons, opened that door wider for both women and people born outside the genre’s Appalachian base. The relaxed smoothness and almost conversational tone of Lewis’ vocal delivery reflects both her California roots and her affinity for country and folk in addition to bluegrass. Her clear vocals and instrumental dexterity have won her some choice collaborations, ranging from bluegrass great Ralph Stanley to Americana headliner Dave Alvin, with whom she performed at The Palms as part of The Guilty Women. On March 15, Lewis will perform with her bluegrass outfit The Right Hands. In addition to Lewis on lead vocals and guitar, the band is Lewis’ long-time musical partner Tom Rozum on mandolin and vocals, Patrick Sauber on banjo and vocals, Brandon Godman on fiddle and most recent addition Haselden Ciaccio on bass. Lewis’ additional honors include winning IBMA Song of the Year for “Who Will Watch the Home Place,” and sharing awards for “True Life Blues: The Songs of Bill Monroe” (IBMA Album of the Year, Grammy Bluegrass Album of the Year) and “Follow Me Back to the Fold: A Tribute to Women in Bluegrass” (IBMA Recorded Event of the Year). Lewis and Rozum’s “Oak and the Laurel” received a Grammy nomination for Best Traditional Folk Album. Although Lewis started in bluegrass, she’s not hemmed in by tradition. Does she still see herself as a bluegrass musician? “I’ve always thought that bluegrass was basically a singer-songwriter with string band,” she wrote. “Think Bill Monroe, Carter Stanley, Lester Flatt, etc. I like to think that I fit that description and trajectory of the music rather well. I realize that not many ‘traditionalists’ would put me in that camp, and I don’t really care. “The good thing is I’m able to express myself in a way that sounds like me, and people either like it or not. I like to do what I do, and it fits comfortably in the bluegrass camp in my head.” Tickets are available at Pacific Ace Hardware in Winters, Armadillo Music in Davis, Davids’ Broken Note in Woodland, online via The Palms’ website and Eventbrite and at the door if not sold out. For more information, visit palmsplayhouse.com and laurielewis.com. Listen to Laurie Lewis and The Right Hands here.]]>
Laurie Lewis and The Right Hands bring bluegrass, country to The Palms on Friday, March 15
Laurie Lewis and her band The Right Hands will perform at The Palms Playhouse on Friday, March 15 starting at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22 ($18 with student ID).