What: a Folkus Project concert
Who: Jonathan Byrd
Blurb: Eclectic, substantive songs, rich with contemporary imagery and textures yet rooted in tradition
Where: May Memorial Unitarian Universalist Society
3800 East Genesee St, Syracuse,
just inside the Syracuse city limits from Dewitt)
When: Friday, Sept. 18 at 8 p.m.
Artist's website: jonathanbyrd.com
Artist's MySpace site: myspace.com/jonathanbyrd
About: Jonathan Byrd
The Folkus Project is pleased to open its 2009 fall season with innovative singer/songwriter Jonathan Byrd. The prototype of the minstrel and storyteller, Byrd blends traditional styles and modern sensibilities as he spins his tales of love, life, and death in America. His stunning instrumental work and soulful singing, full of surprises and spontaneity, give each of his live performances its own magic. Byrd constantly evolves in new musical directions and each incarnation has proven to be masterful. His latest CD, "The Law and the Lonesome," sounds as if Hank Williams and Townes Van Zandt met on the high plains and told ghost stories. Full of desperate people and their dark familiars - crows, coyotes, and sudden storms - these new songs bring together the best of Byrd's southern roots and the increasingly strong influence of Texas.
"Jonathan Byrd doesn't sing songs; he sings truth." - performingsongwriter.com
Byrd's work is always evolving, but his traditional roots are always there in his simple, poetic storytelling and classic flatpick guitar style. Balancing originality with a profound respect for acoustic musical traditions, his songs manage to be completely unique and as comfortable as an old favorite. Rooted in the mountains of his home state, North Carolina, they sound as if they were pulled from a long-lost ballad collection. Byrd's lyrics are inventive; his images and metaphors refreshingly original. This is creative, compelling music, drawn from old school string music but crafted with global influences.