Date(s) - Wed. Feb. 15, 2023
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
It seems like we have two totally separate musical ecosystems today. One is the world of Super Bowl halftime shows, Grammy hot takes, and Ticketmaster plundering. In that world, music listeners are “fans” whose value to the art form begins and ends with the contribution of clicks and eyeballs. Then there is the world of Songwriters in the Round at the Center for Arts at the Armory. In this world, music listeners are participants. In this world, performers and audiences treat each other (to quote Dickens) “as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures b
ound on other journeys.” In this world, we’re all on the same team.
We are proud to welcome Ella McDonald to our circle for the first time. A folk and R&B songwriter, they have been building a following in Boston the old-fashioned way — one house concert, one open mic night, one listener’s heart at a time. Michael J. Johnson is back with his quirky blend of postapocalyptic pop and soul-baring ballads. Eva Gertz is a wizard of the keys and a bard of the open road. And your host David Thorne Scott will try his best to keep up.
It’s not Valentine’s Day but you can be sure there will be love songs. Make a date to see us at Songwriters in the Round on Wednesday, February 15, 7pm.
Songwriters in the Round
Wednesday February 15, 7pm-8:30pm
Arts at the Armory Café
Four songwriters, trading songs and swapping stories. And you have a front row seat.
Four songwriters take the stage, seated in a comfortable semi-circle. They take turns playing songs, occasionally joining in with each other on harmony vocals or guitar licks. The format encourages conversation between the writers, which gives the audience an opportunity to hear these creative people talk as if in their own living rooms. Inspired by the “guitar pulls” of the legendary Bluebird Café in Nashville.
Hosted by Somerville singer/songwriter David Thorne Scott. Held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month from 7:00-8:30 p.m. Suggested donation is $10.
Part of the ROOTED Armory Café Series. Café menu is available here: https://artsatthearmory.org/
Beer and wine also available!
You might hear a young up-and-coming pro, an established mid-career performer and mentor, and a cherished elder of the scene — all sharing music. The growing relationships will warm your heart and enrich your soul. Come every week as the lineup shifts and new friends are made.
Our songwriters this week
Ella McDonald is a Cambridge-based musician and songwriter whose thoughtful, intimate lyricism glides from haunting to healing in the same breath. Their 2018 debut album, February, is a lyrical exploration of her growth in friendship, self love, and queerness, and musically melds folk and R&B influences into a cohesive body. After spending last summer as a Lead Audio Technician at Interlochen in Michigan, they are working on recording their sophomore album. Ella’s creative spirit pulls from her experiences as a community organizer and their passion for cooking, photography, and music. You can find Ella on Instagram and TikTok at @ella.mcd, and on Spotify and Apple Music as Ella McDonald.
Michael J. Johnson is a vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and engineer/producer. He has been blessed to share the stage with artists such as Jon Secada (EMI), Lari White (RCA), Dawnn Lewis (A Different World), Take Six, Bob Dorough (Schoolhouse Rock) and Kevin Nealon (Saturday Night Live). In the studio, he has performed on numerous soundtracks and album projects. Michael has also produced and engineered nationally distributed acts whose musical genres span from hardcore punk to hip/hop to classical. He is a nationally recognized composer and arranger, an ASCAP member, and a voting member of the Recording Academy. He currently resides in Boston, Massachusetts, and is a Professor at Berklee College of Music in the Contemporary Writing and Production program. https://linktr.ee/mikejjohnson
Eva Gertz is a singing pianist and artist of many mediums, born and raised in Melrose, MA. She attended Berklee College of Music (class of 2015) and now teaches arranging in the Contemporary Writing and Production department of the college. During the time in between, she lived in Brooklyn, NY for six years, arranged for a Broadway production, assisted top-rank composers, and performed as a dueling pianist on cruise ships and at piano bars. She has been self-producing and releasing original music along with creative music videos for five years now. During a transitional time last year, Eva moved out of her NY apartment and went on a spontaneous solo road trip for five months. The music she wrote on the journey is currently in the progress of becoming her next album, titled “Worth The Drive.” www.evagertz.com
David Thorne Scott is a singer and songwriter in jazz and Americana styles. A longtime resident of Somerville, he organized Songwriters in the Round to foster a creative, dynamic music scene here. He believes that music can bring a community together like nothing else. “At a time of great conflict in our country – when words often fail us – music has the power to bridge divides… David Thorne Scott explores the intersection of Jazz and Americana, city and country, instrumentation and lyrics to create lush compositions and covers that are unifying, and healing, in their beauty.” – Laurie Fanell, Eponymous Review www.davidthornescott.com