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Shannon McNally W/ Beth Bombara

April 13, 8:00 pm11:00 pm

Central Stage
3524 Washington Ave
St. Louis, MO 63103-1019 United States

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Shannon McNally: Thom Jurek at All Music said it best, “Only Gram Parsons’ term “Cosmic American Music” begins to touch her mercurial, changeling roots aesthetic, … McNally is a Zen-like, post-Beat song poet”. For those who have followed McNally’s nearly twenty year career the thing that most sticks with the listener about her, is the timeless effortlessness that she brings to all she does. With a long catalog and longer list of peers with whom she has written, recorded and toured, McNally continues to turn out great music that defies blatant genre-fication. At home across the American (Americana) music spectrum, the Grammy nominee who’s live music career began on the jam band circuit of the 1990’s with bands like Robert Randolph and Derek Trucks, writes as well as she interprets the songs of others, has a top tier musicality to her craft, a soul stirring voice that immediately grabs one by the heart strings and a troubadour’s wanderlust, not to mention as it turns out, she is also an excellent electric guitar player. Like her anti-hero heros J.J. Cale, Tom Waits, Bob Dylan. Dr. John, and Jim Dickinson, McNally knows who she serves. She serves the song. Her quiet but steady plodding through the many layers of the business of music, hasn’t ever been rewarded with massive fame and fortune but in time that slow burn has become the treasure in and of itself. The part of McNally’s narrative that is often missed is that not only has she self-managed herself for nearly all of her career but that she has also been a stout warrior-like-artist who often went toe-to-toe with label heads and A&R to defend and fight for her visions. She left the major label world after ten years at Capital/EMI to fend for herself on various smaller labels and self-release paradigms. Perhaps the business of music is finally catching up with her independent spirit. We shall see. “She has the voice: bruised, smoky and ornery, right at home where country and soul meet. She has the melodies and the timing – she’s irresistible.” – Jon Pareles, The New York Times Beth Bombara: Beth Bombara’s It All Goes Up is for this moment what Kathleen Edwards’ Back To Me was for the early 2000s. It’s all there – the songwriting first and foremost with a voice that connects on a raw, emotional level alongside production led by Bombara’s undeniable musicality, retaining the intimacy of being wholly conceived by the artist herself. Bombara’s last album, Evergreen, was well-received by fans and media alike. “The likes of Aimee Mann and Jewel are fair comparisons,” noted the L.A. Weekly, “every tone is tinged with emotion, nothing is wasted.” With It All Goes Up, Bombara has risen to a new level and let some light in. “There’s more light, more hope in this record,” she says, “and it feels more positive sonically, as well.” These songs were written during the chaos of the past couple years, and the time found Bombara looking for silver linings, writing to keep herself positive and keep her mind open and fresh. She continues, “During the pandemic I reconnected with an old guitar that had been collecting dust in my closet for many years. It’s a classical guitar, and I wrote a lot of the songs for this record on it, which brought something different to them and took the tone of the record in a new direction.” Bombara’s songwriting certainly did take a turn – upwards, in more ways than one. After studying music in college, she began playing in other people’s bands. It speaks to the depth of her musicianship that she played guitar and percussion in one band, bass in another project, and keys in yet another. So, just in case you weren’t aware – Bombara has talent and ears way beyond those of your average singer-songwriter. Bombara spent years on the road in other bands before encouragement from peers led her to start writing and performing her own music. “I never set out to be a lead singer,” she admits. “I wasn’t comfortable being in the spotlight like that. I struggled with anxiety and talking into a microphone just froze me up.” Yet the songs were there. So Bombara slowly started performing her own material, watering the seeds that would grow into her own flourishing career. After releasing her first album, she was invited to perform in front of 10,000 people at the Missouri Botanical Gardens’ Whitaker Music Festival, and that was a breakthrough moment for her as a performer. “I figured, if I can do that, I can do anything.” AGES 21+ UNLESS ACCOMPANIED BY PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN