Performance

Tamara Usatova

Thursday / March 6, 2014 / 7:30 p.m.
David Friend Recital Hall
921 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115

Vocalist Tamara Usatova presents a concert of original soul, R&B, and jazz tunes written while studying at Berklee.

Admission: 
Free

Open Mic Night

Monday / January 27, 2014 / 7:00 p.m.
Red Room at Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115

The Songwriting Department, in conjunction with the Red Room, is proud to present a new monthly open mic event for Berklee songwriters. The open mic will be held on the last Monday of every month. All current Berklee students are welcome to play.

Those interested in participating can simply sign up at Cafe 939 at 5:30 p.m. on the date of every show. The first 25 writers (and up to 10 alternates) will have a chance to perform one original piece. No covers, and no drum kits, please.

For more information, please contact Bonnie Hayes at bhayes@berklee.edu.

Admission: 
Free

Lily & Madeleine / Shannon Hayden

Thursday / May 1, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Red Room at Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
Massachusetts
United States
02115
Lily and Madeleine

Written by a pair of teenaged sisters over the course of their summer vacation and recorded with a band in just a few days, The Weight of the Globe is a musical snapshot of Lily and Madeleine Jurkiewicz at a pivotal moment in their lives. Madeleine’s off to college, Lily’s sure to follow soon after, and both sisters find themselves pulled in two directions—between a love for the hometown they’ll be leaving behind and their burgeoning wanderlust. When the sisters began writing together just over a year ago, nobody expected their first song, “In the Middle,” to rack up a quarter of a million YouTube views. 

The recording project that became the Weight EP started with producer Paul Mahern (John Mellencamp, the Fray), who had fallen in love with the duo’s earlier YouTube videos, and invited the sisters to the studio. Each song on the album was written as a discrete, self-contained folk-pop statement, but holds together like a collection of interconnected short stories. Taken as a whole, the songs chart a journey from love to disillusionment to heartbreak. There’s nothing calculated about the album. It’s as sincere as it is precociously sophisticated—and it marks the auspicious debut of a spectacularly talented musical family. 

 

Doing what is expected isn't something everyone does well. Following years of classical training at the highest level, Shannon Hayden's very nontraditional interpretation of cello performance is an example of why doing the unexpected is a good thing. Occasional heavy outbursts of distortion with elements bordering noise punk are matched with layers of lush ambiance combining both current and traditional styles with all the virtuosity of a player redefining our expectations of maturing young prodigies. Some musicians make you feel good about where music is headed and Shannon Hayden is one of them.

MLK Celebration in Music

Friday / January 24, 2014 / 7:00 p.m.
David Friend Recital Hall
921 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115

Join us for a multimedia show of music inspired by the messages of Martin Luther King Jr. The event features Phil Lima performing a musical rendition of the "I Have a Dream" speech,  Berklee alumna and inspired vocalist Renese King singing "Lift Every Voice and Sing," and Matt Jenson's band, Liquid Revolution (www.liquidrevolution.net), performing lively reggae originals that will tap into many of today's social justice issues.

Admission: 
Free

Noah Gundersen / Armon Jay

Wednesday / March 26, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Red Room at Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115
Noah Gunderson
Armon Jay

Noah Gundersen, lead singer of the the Courage (also known as Noah Gundersen and the Courage), hails from Centralia, Washington, a small town 85 miles south of Seattle. Gundersen has been making music since childhood, learning piano at a young age and later teaching himself guitar. He often played in cafés as a teen, and occasionally with his younger sister, Abby Gundersen, with whom he has been formally producing music since 2005. 

Gundersen’s music banks on strong lead vocals, boasting a poetic and lyrical charm, backed by ambient backgrounds of strings and percussion. Gundersen’s music has been called a blend of melancholy folk and electric euphoria, occasionally drawing comparisons to the likes of Elijah WymanDavid Wilcox, and Damien Rice. Drawing the attention of crowds across the South Puget Sound region, Noah Gundersen regularly performs in a variety of settings, ranging from small college basements to more prestigious venues such as the Triple Door, the Crocodile Cafe, and the Columbia City Theater.

Watch a music video for Noah Gundersen's "David" here:

For Armon Jay, the making of his new album, Everything’s Different, Nothing’s Changed, was a two-year journey from darkness into sunlight, from what he calls desolation to consolation, the culmination of sleepless nights where he saw his faith tested, but his hope ultimately restored, through a set of songs that speaks from the very core of his being.
 
From the pain of “Edge of the Dark” and “Flight from Sorrow” to the breakthrough of “The Harvest” and “Carry Through,” from the painful self-awareness of “To Be Honest” and “I’m Not Home Yet” to the optimism of “Tomorrow” and “Sunlight,” neatly summarized by the transparently autobiographical title track, Jay lets us glimpse his deepest fears and darkest anxieties, while pointing the way toward salvation. “It’s like I’m stuck in between the cure and the disease,” he sings. “I’m walking straight just in a crooked way.”
 
Thanks to raising close to $14,000 on Kickstarter, Jay was able to travel to producer Joshua James’ idyllic Willamette Mountain on a one-acre farm against the beautiful backdrop of American Fork, Utah, to record the album in two eventful weeks. James, introduced to Jay by mutual friend, singer/songwriter Noah Gundersen, proved a valuable partner, not just producing the album, but serving as “farmer, mountain climber, goat herder, high-tailin’ bike rider and a bit of a wild man,” helping Jay get over his fear of heights as well as failure. The album was mixed in Los Angeles by Todd Burke, who has worked with the likes of Ben Harper and Jack Johnson in his Monrovia studio.

 

Admission: 
$10 in advance, $12 day of show, general admission

Paradise Fears / Sunderland

Friday / February 14, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Red Room at Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115
Paradise Fears
Sunderland

Paradise Fears is an American alternative, pop/rock band from Vermillion, South Dakota. In 2011, the band released its debut full-length album, Yours Truly, and set out to promote itself on several major U.S. pop/rock tours. In six months, it sold 24,000 total records, peaked at No. 9 on Billboard's Uncharted Chart, and generated a powerful and active digital following. This landed the band tours with All Time Low, the Ready Set, the Cab, the Summer Set, and Forever the Sickest Kids. During the summer of 2012, the band sold out headlining shows in eight major U.S. markets.

The band has since released its most recent EP, Battle Scars. Along with its original music, the band has released several covers on YouTube, including a cover of "Payphone" by Maroon 5 that has accumulated over 2.8 million views. 

Watch a video for "Who You Are" by Paradise Fears here:

In a musical age where pop/rock bands seem to be a struggling breed, Sunderland has resisted the pressure to change its musical direction and passion, and it has thrived as a result. Combining elements of popular music with its own traditional rock style and heartfelt lyrics, these young songwriters have created a polished and genuine sound. Since starting out in high school, the independent band has shared stages with some of the world's top acts, including Weezer, Panic! at the Disco, the All-American Rejects, Boys Like Girls, Parachute, Bowling for Soup, and the Plain White T's, among many others. Additionally, the combination of winning national contests, heavy touring, and high-caliber one-off shows has won the band a large and loyal fan base.

Established in Boston in 2004, the Fenway Recordings Sessions is a regular concert series featuring a mix of established acts and the best new and developing indie artists playing the city's clubs, along with occasional special guest DJs.

Admission: 
Sold Out

Creative Ensemble Collective Boston 2014

Saturday / January 11, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Red Room at Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
02115

The Creative Ensemble Collective, in association with Berklee College of Music, presents the final concert of the second annual CEC Boston Workshop. The performance includes an international lineup and features new music composed and developed as part of the weeklong program.

The CEC is a nonprofit organization fostering and expanding the development and dissemination of exceptional and diverse music through live performances and studio recordings. The CEC facilitates intensive music workshops focused on collaboration, improvisation, composition, performance, and studio work in cities around the world.

Admission: 
Free

Giorgi Mikadze Group

Tuesday / February 18, 2014 / 9:15 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
02115
Giorgi Mikadze

Giorgi Mikadze and his group will perform both original and famous pop tune arrangements mixed with different genres, such as Georgian folk, jazz, and fusion.

Mikadze began playing piano at age five and performed a piano concerto with a symphony orchestra by age 12. Hailing from Tbilisi, Georgia, Mikadze started composing music at age 14 and, after discovering the music of Oscar Peterson, quickly fell in love with jazz.

After graduating from the V. Sarajishvili Tbilisi State Conservatoire, Mikadze earned a full scholarship to Berklee College of Music, where he has become known for his skill as a fantastic pianist and a composer adept at many styles. He was recently selected for the competitive Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Program at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., where he performed for three nights.

Mikadze has also performed with the Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra and the Berklee Symphony Orchestra. He served as musical director for Berklee’s tribute to Quincy Jones and he has composed for plays at the Rustaveli National Theatre in Georgia. He has played jazz with renowned artists such as Roy Hargrove, Patti Austin, and Justin DiCioccio, among others, and he has received awards at international piano competitions in Georgia, Ukraine, and the United States.

Watch Giorgi Mikadze perform "Georgian Shepherd" with his trio here:

Admission: 
Free

Can Kemal: Dreams of Bosphorus

Tuesday / February 18, 2014 / 8:15 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
02115
Can Kemal

Turkish drummer Can Kemal presents his senior recital, performing compositions from both the traditional and modern Turkish repertoire in a contemporary group setting. He will be accompanied by diverse musicians from the Middle East and the United States. As a group, they will bring the sounds of Bosphorus, the body of water between Europe and Asia in the city of Istanbul.

Admission: 
Free

Nicolas Sylvestre Group

Monday / February 3, 2014 / 8:15 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
02115
Nicolas Sylvestre Group

Nick Sylvestre and his quintet will play a collection of jazz pieces and some original compositions.

Admission: 
Free

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