"Because seasons are changing
I have so much to say"
A lustrous sheen of shimmering electronic orchestration frames the evocative voice of singer/songwriter Lindy LaFontaine. Segueing effortlessly from an intimate lower timbre into a soaring arc, it is a voice of rare power: It is the sound of her soul.
On her debut solo EP, This too, In time, Shall pass, Lindy worked with producer Stewart Myers (Rachael Yamagata, Jason Mraz, Rhett Miller) and a cast of world-class musicians including pianist Patrick Warren, and guitarist Mark Goldenberg, to craft celestial soundscapes that mirror the tone of the songs. "My writing tends to be atmospheric," she notes. "The piano is my tool, but because I'm interested in rhythm I translate that to phrasing as a vocalist." Two trip-hop remixes, "I Do" and "Sunday", expand the atmospherics and the possibilities.
LaFontaine prefers to work at night without a set clock, a consequence, she says, of having grown up in extraordinary locales from Bangladesh to Washington D.C.; Cairo, Egypt to California. At 16, Lindy was enrolled in San Francisco's prestigious High School for the Performing Arts and at 18 was the second American to ever be invited to study at Sir Paul McCartney's Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) in the UK. Soon after, she toured Spain as a backup vocalist with Chanteuse Maria Jose Hernandez.
Graduating from LIPA with honors, she returned to the U.S. and a quick succession of cities: New York City, Washington, D.C., and Las Vegas, before staking her claim in San Francisco. In D.C., the band she fronted, Kyro, made impressive industry inroads. As a solo artist, LaFontaine completes that promise.
In March, 2011, Lindy’s cover of “Low” by Cracker, won Best Cover Song at The 10th Independent Music Awards. The judging panel included Seal, Fall Out Boy, Portishead, McCoy Tyner, Counting Crows, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne, Suzanne Vega, Jesse Harris, Tom Waits, Aimee Mann, Jonatha Brooke among other notable artists and music industry professionals.
LaFontaine believes that her music is well suited to travelers on journeys both outbound and inward. A deeply introspective writer, she relates that her unusual childhood has given her a substantial emotional center. "I spent a lot of time by myself and in my head. I was aware of this, I did a lot of imagining." Hints of these locales color the arrangements and sensibilities of her art. She recalls the prayer call of the muezzin echoing through the streets of Cairo and the hypnotic rhythmic patterns of the doumbek. "I could hear counter rhythms and ghost notes in the types of beats they play. I grew up really feeling that."
The title of the EP is a phrase that Lindy's mother would use to comfort her. "Anytime I had a problem, would feel alone, or struggled to fit in, she would say it. I have it tattooed around my ankle and on a big sign in my studio. The meaning is very deep and it is a part of me." Multi-textured, complex and soulful, This Too, in Time, Shall Pass is a transcendent introduction to an artist whose music is her home.
Eric Wood - Drums
Rachel Turner Houk - Cello
Marc Levine - Bass
Currently recording "This too, In time, Shall pass" release date: Summer, 2011 !! Produced by Lindy LaFontaine, Michael Winger and Stewart Myers.
"I Do (PSM Remix)"
self-titled EP, 2005.
Your Daily Lick: Lindy LaFontaine
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This Too, in Time, Shall Pass EP (self-released) Singer-songwriter LaFontaine, who recently reloc...This Too, in Time, Shall Pass EP (self-released)
Singer-songwriter LaFontaine, who recently relocated to the East Bay from the East Coast, is working to establish herself in a new scene. If this EP is any indication, she shouldn’t have much trouble; although it features only three songs, two of which receive trip-hop remixes, the record showcases a complex pop style that’s both sensual and mystical.
- Nate Seltenrich
New Music Spotlight
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Passionate and soulful are two words that can describe the wonderful music of Lindy LaFontaine. Her ...Passionate and soulful are two words that can describe the wonderful music of Lindy LaFontaine. Her debut solo EP, "This Too, In Time, Shall Pass" is full of colorful and delightful lyrics that showcases the Singer/Songwriter enormous storytelling abilities. Her voice is another strong feature to this artist's appeal as she sings with power and heart that music fans will find enjoyable. Check out this recent spotlight of Lindy LaFontaine with our Webzine that reveals many cool things about this artist. Enjoy!
Isaac: I just listened to one of your songs titled, "I Do (This too, In time, Shall Pass)". What was the inspiration for making this song and your new album?
Lindy: I first started writing "I Do" when living in Las Vegas. I was a lounge singer at the time and really needed a creative outlet :) I wrote a lot then. Vegas is a very lonely place and can make you feel isolated from the rest of the world hence the opening line "Here I lye alone, soon I will become, one with everything, in the universe". I knew there was more to life than my own (at the time) reality. It's about feeling trapped, feeling stuck but knowing that there's more to life than what you experience when you're living in an unfulfilling lifestyle.
Isaac: Who were your influences?
Lindy: Don't all musicians love this question...I'll separate this into a couple categories.
Music that made me want to become a musician:
Michael Jackson, Peter Gabriel, Tori Amos, Nirvana, STP, Sublime, Fleetwood Mac, Jeff Buckley, REM, Stevie Wonder...to name a few.
Music that lead me to my music style:
Morcheeba, Sneaker Pimps, Fun Lovin Criminals, Zero 7, Air, The Verve, Massive Attack, Radiohead.
Isaac: What do you consider to have been the highlight(s) and lowpoint(s) of your career to date?
Lindy: There have been so many of each :) I'd say the major highlights were attending the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts in Liverpool, England. I got to rub elbows with and learn from some of the greats such as Paul McCartney, George Martin and Malcolm Mclaren. I toured Spain as a backing vocalist for a popular Spanish singer/songwriter for a summer. I had to sing in Spanish and not knowing the language, it was a real challenge and loads of fun. Starting my own originals band "Kyro" in Washington DC was a major milestone. I had always been a songwriter but had never performed my songs with a band till then. We did quite well in the DC area. And now in my current band "Lindy LaFontaine", we're gaining popularity very quickly, playing at fantastic venues and hearing my music on San Francisco local radio is pretty sweet.
Ok, low points vary really. I'll address the major one. In 2002, I was living in Manhattan working as a bartender at a heavy metal bar. I had to do a lot of shouting over the music and developed a nodule on my vocal chords which made me completely hoarse. I was unable to sing for over a year until I developed a way to sing with it. My own method really, which I teach now as a vocal coach in the SF Bay Area. Bad times, but totally worth it. I sound better then ever and have certainly developed soul.
Isaac: Brief history about your background plus the style of music you play.
Lindy: My history is anything but brief so I'll throw out the interesting stuff, list style.
Grew up in Egypt, Was captain of the cheerleading team in high school, Got expelled from school in Egypt in 10th grade, Ended up at a Performing Arts High School in SF, Went to the Paul McCartney School in Liverpool, Been in over 15 bands, Worked with many producers as a session vocalist, and have been on TV many times (Discovery Channel commercials, Commercials in Egypt for cookies, Travel Channel and local Fox channel, dubbed the most eccentric voice coach in SF).
My style of music is sort of a cross between Trip-Hop and Pop (the good Pop, not the Disney pop :) I like to call it Trip-Pop. Think Sneaker Pimps meets Peter Gabriel...it's vibey, complex, soulful and definitely has a good groove.
Isaac: How easy is it to gets gigs for you as an artist/band? What is the live music scene like in your area?
Lindy: I've been very lucky with gigs in San Francisco. Fortunately I have a few connections with local musicians and promoters who have found me some excellent gigs. I have a few very cool gigs coming up in a few weeks, really excited about that. But I have also experienced the down site of the local scene while trying to find my own gigs. Many local booking agents are far more concerned about draw than talent. Since I only moved to SF 6 months ago, I'm still building a following so I can't guarantee many people will show. It's kind of a catch 22.
The live music scene is totally varied. There's a place for just about everything but I would have to say the main styles that I keep running into are current Alternative/Rock (you know, the whiny kind), and then there are many singer/songwriters and it's totally varied from amateur (bedroom folk singers as I like to call them) to excellent musicians sans bands.
One point that I'd love to make is that it's very hard to distinguish yourself as a professional musician especially being a female singer/songwriter. People get an immediate idea in their heads when hearing that. I'd like to state for the record that I, and many other female singers, are actually musicians. There are many stereotypes (many of them true) but you can't always judge a book by its cover...
Isaac: What do you think of the state of Pop music at the moment? Do you listen to radio much at all? Has the Internet helped music grow or hindered it in your opinion?
Lindy: I don't think Pop music is a style anymore. I think it's just mainstream. I would say anything from Disney crap to Hip-Hop is Pop these days. Some of it is awesome, a lot of it sucks. I have a hard time getting into "factory made music", music created by a producer who writes hits based on what works every time. The musicians out there will know what I mean. I think it's got its place, I just don't want it to be called "music". I feel like the younger generation is totally jaded by growing up with this formulaic, processed music but my band mates keep assuring me it's a passing phase. :) As an optimist, I believe them.
I listen to the radio in the shower, that's it. I want to know what's out there; I just don't want to listen to most of it. I have friends who filter the good new stuff for me.
The Internet is here to stay. I can't say that it's hindered music but it has definitely changed the music business forever. I think it's made it pretty hard for music lovers to find the good stuff since anyone with a computer and some money can promote their music no matter how crappy they are. I, on the other hand, am a starving artist so even though I've worked my whole life at my music. I just can't afford the studio time, disc and merch production and the marketing. I have to spend all day and night doing all of this myself. It consumes me. Good thing I don't have a choice. I live through my music.
Isaac: If you could create a fantasy band - what would be the line-up and why?
Lindy: haha, the one I have now! I've got a great lineup. I sing leads and play keys, my guitar player, LEDENHED is a fantastic guitar player and singer. He totally gets my vibe and is awesome with the soundscapes. I also have a trumpet player, Kevin Alvarez, who I've known since high school. Obviously he gets my style too ;) I'd say the only thing I'd love to add would be a DJ. Currently, we use backing tracks to get that electronic feel but it would be great to have someone working it live on stage.
Isaac: What CD's do you currently have available and where can they be purchased from?
Lindy: My first CD is self-titled (Lindy Lafontaine). It has 3 songs on it and they were all recorded in Liverpool. These were the first songs I ever wrote. I still love them. I also have a single out called "I Do (PSM Remix)". It's sort of a sneak peak into the new album "This too, In time, Shall pass" which I'm currently saving money to finish. My guess is it will be available by March. All my music is (and will be) available on iTunes, Amazon, CD Baby and many other places on the web.
Isaac: Where can fans access your music, videos, blogs, and anything else about you online?
Lindy: Just type my name into a Google search. haha. To be more specific, you can find most of these things on my Official Website: myspace.com/LindyLaFontaine www.LindyLaFontaine.com and all the other common sites such as MySpace: myspace.com/LindyLaFontaine, Facebook: www.facebook.com/people/Lindy-LaFontaine/628991334, ReverbNation: reverbnation.com/LindyLaFontaine, Last.FM: last.fm/music/Lindy+LaFontaine (I really like this site) and probably just about everywhere else you can think of.
Isaac: Message to your fans?
Lindy: Thank you for all the encouraging emails. It really means the world to me. Being a musician is hard and sometimes seemingly thankless. Receiving an email from a fan telling me how my song has moved them can make it all worth it.
Keep looking out for the new CD! I promise I'll finish it as soon as I have the money! haha. And please come to my shows. The more of you who show up, the more chances you'll have of seeing me play at a quality venue.
I promise to keep at it for the rest of my life!
-Isaac Davis Jr., MBA
This too In time Shall pass by Lindy LaFontaine
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I was introduced to Lindy's music when she dropped me an e-mail and invited me to check out her EPK ...I was introduced to Lindy's music when she dropped me an e-mail and invited me to check out her EPK (electronic press kit) on SonicBids which features tracks from her first EP. I get many such invitations and as often as not I don't find anything that resonates with my musical tastes and even less often do I find music that I simply enjoy and want to share with others. My trip up to Lindy's SonicBids site was definitely worth the effort and to my surprise fell into the latter category which is music that I want to share with my readers.
Lindy has created an impressive EP that will certainly whet the appetite of the listener for her full length album which is due out later this year. There are 5 tracks on this EP but only three original tunes while the final two tracks are remixes of tracks one and two. I could have wished for 5 different tunes on this EP but the two remixed tracks are sufficiently unique interpretations of the songs that it makes up for the fact that there are only three original tracks. Lindy's vocals have a way of inviting listeners to step into her world and join her on her journey through some interesting musical landscapes. The production values on this EP are top notch and along with some talented musicians combine to provide a perfect backdrop to allow the strength of Lindy's voice to shine through.
One of the standout tracks is actually the remixed version of Sunday which gives the listener some idea of what Lindy is capable of. Not only does it have a slow groove beat that draws you into the song but Lindy's vocals himmer on the surface of these grooves as the listener finds themselves drifting away with the laid back atmosphere that this song creates. This song will definitely not disappoint.
This EP is certainly a worthy first effort for Lindy and will offer listeners an emotionally satisfying experience as well as production values that shows that a lot of thought went into the songs that were included on this set. Lindy shows herself to be a serious singer/songwriter on this EP with the talent and the aptitude to go far in the music industry. This EP is easy to listen to and retains its appeal even after listening to it several times through. You can expect to hear more from Lindy in the months ahead and if this first collection is any indication I'm sure she will be a force to reckon with. Bottom line go out and get your copy now.
Music Feedback Report for Lindy LaFontaine's "Free to Breathe"
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This release stands out compared to most of the music we hear. Lead vocals are the first thing that...This release stands out compared to most of the music we hear.
Lead vocals are the first thing that most listeners pay attention to, so a great performance is essential. Your lead vocals really grabbed us. We don't tag a lot of releases as having great lead vocals, so this is an excellent strength for you to have.
"Free to Breathe" had a logical structure and all the parts were distinct. A good song structure generally has both repetition and surprise, and you nailed it.
Is there a songwriting element more important than the chorus? Lindy can hang with the best jams we hear as far as the choruses are concerned. Keep writing those anthems.
Above almost everything else, melody is an essential musical quality. Lindy's jumped out at us. Good melodies don't come easy; you should be proud.
Tuesday Night Diner: Lindy LaFontaine Interview!
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This week, we have a brush with greatness. Vocalist/songwriter Lindy LaFontaine once attended a perf...This week, we have a brush with greatness. Vocalist/songwriter Lindy LaFontaine once attended a performing arts academy in Liverpool, UK, which happens to have a really cool headmaster: none other than Sir Paul McCartney himself! She was even given private songwriting lessons by the Beatle himself. Wow! True story. And this academy is so selective, they didn`t accept her until AFTER she was accepted by legendary American academies Juilliard and Berklee.
So this tells you something about the caliber of talent we`re dealing with here. She`s a superb vocalist, and she`s currently creating an album of finely crafted trip hop songs. She introduces us Americans to this genre which is well established in the UK.
She brings a world view to the music, and even to our interview. Her earliest memories are of Bangladesh, after which her parents moved her to Cairo, Egypt, where she grew up. Cairo left such an imprint on her formative years that her band`s name is a variant spelled as KYRO. She lived on both the east and west coasts of the U.S., and of course, there was that once in a lifetime stint in Liverpool. But finally, she calls Northern California`s San Francisco Bay Area home. We`re lucky to have her here. Listen to her voice, and be enchanted!
If you`re near Oakland, California this Friday, Oct. 15th, check her out live at the Uptown Nightclub.
2011 Twirlie Award Winners
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Here is the complete list of 2011 Twirlie Award Winners, presented live on Twirl Radio, Saturday, Fe...Here is the complete list of 2011 Twirlie Award Winners, presented live on Twirl Radio, Saturday, February 5, 2011, in Sacramento, California. Congratulations to all, and more importantly, a big thank you to all the great independent musicians who make it possible for me to do this radio show.
Female Vocalist of the Year
Lindy LaFontaine Sings I Do
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American Singer – Songwriter Lindy LaFontaine draws inspiration for her music from her personal expe...American Singer – Songwriter Lindy LaFontaine draws inspiration for her music from her personal experiences such as relationships and the many parts of the world in which she has lived. As the daughter and the only child of parents she describes as being hippies and who have spent their lives involved in humanitarian work on behalf of women and children in numerous countries, Lindy LaFontaine and her music are like a kaleidoscope. Those colors and reflections are beautifully displayed in the songs that will appear on Ms. LaFontaine’s new album, This Too, In Time, Shall Pass that will be released September 21st.
The Pop / Trip Hop / Alternative artist collaborated with producer Stewart Myers (Rachael Yamagata, Jason Mraz, Rhett Miller), keyboardist Patrick Warren (Stevie Nicks, Macy Gray, Beth Hart, Fiona Apple, Melissa Etheridge), guitarist Mark Goldenberg (Al Stewart, George Jones, Linda Rondstadt, Chicago, Peter Cetera, Melissa Etheridge) and drummer Brian Jones, to weave beautiful musical tapestries such as “Free To Breathe,” a song that showcases Lindy LaFontaine’s incredible vocal gifts.
“Everybody is going to translate “Free To Breathe,” differently. It was definitely about a relationship. I think most of my songs have a little bit about relationships in them. It is about relying on other people and how in the end we are really all alone. I definitely talk about that with all of the songs. That was about a relationship that I was in that really made me feel smothered, but I put myself in that situation. You do that sometimes. It is like, why am I doing this to myself? It is when you can’t even define yourself without them. You give up a big part of yourself to be with them, but it is the same part that is scary. It is the independent part of yourself and you just know it is going to blow-up someday. I felt that I was on to that pretty early in the game and that is pretty well what that song is about. Now I am “Free To Breathe,” and I am talking about the relationship (she had). In fact, there are a few of the songs that are about my relationship, which was my first love,” she says.
Lindy LaFontaine’s parents would move just about every year or two while she was growing up and contrary to what one might surmise, Ms. LaFontaine says that she did not find that nomadic lifestyle difficult, as that was all that she knew. In fact that pattern has continued into her adult life, as she has moved numerous times.
“It wasn’t difficult for me at all and in fact I lived a lot in my head. I really did. I remember things that I used to think about all of the time. I remember contemplating about anything from a phrase to philosophy, religion and all sorts of weird things. I was really, really young and I just had so much time to think about this stuff,” says Ms. LaFontaine.
“A lot of things stem from childhood periods and that was my childhood. I didn’t have siblings to bounce things off of, so I very much lived in my head. I do think about that (how it influences her creative instincts) a lot to answer your question. I end up questioning myself a lot (today), my songwriting, my life and absolutely everything, because my upbringing was so abnormal. Often times I will find that people do things very differently than I will do them. There are certain things that everybody knows that I don’t know, including songwriting. There are formulas that I don’t agree with necessarily. It is not that I don’t contemplate them or that I don’t like them. I do go out there and seek this knowledge. I know a lot of people who want to do songwriting and who say that they are very against learning songwriting. Any kind of knowledge is going to just make it less you, less real (is what they say) and I don’t buy that. I think the more that you know the better, yet at the same time, the stuff that I do know, the stuff that is mainstream and that quote unquote works, I don’t agree with. I think that also stems from moving around all of the time and just not thinking the way that other people think,” she says.
Although, neither of her parents are musicians, singers or songwriters, Lindy LaFontaine’s father’s musical taste buds did provide inspiration for her early in life.
“My father loves music and he listened to a lot of Doo Wop when I was growing up. I can’t talk to most people about it these days, because they don’t know what Doo Wop is. The harmonies are so cool and the vocals are amazing. I remember sitting there and picking out the different harmonies when I was three and four years old. I remember the song that I first listened to like a musician. I don’t know how to explain it. I sat there and I listened to the musicality of it (versus) just listening to it. When I was two and one half, I had one of those Fisher Price tape recorders with a microphone. I was listening to the song “The Three Little Fishies,” and it is an old Jazz song. The harmonies are really cool and I remember listening to it and getting into it. I was feeling it with my eyes closed (she laughs). I remember that moment and thinking, this is awesome. It just sort of took off from there. I had these cassettes that I recorded myself singing on. It was a dual cassette. I would flip it over and I would record another harmony over myself. I would keep doing that and eventually on a cassette you can’t make anything out. It just gets that distorted. I was in Bangladesh at the time,” she recalls.
Ms. LaFontaine says the progression in her music is evident when one considers her three chord song “Sunday,” written eight years ago, compared to the multiple chords that comprise “Feel To Breathe.”
Lindy LaFrontaine describes her new album “This is a very somber album and there is definitely hope in it, but it is not something that I would call “up.” I had a really difficult time in my twenties and I am now thirty-one and that can go on the record, because I don’t care. During the last six or seven years I had a really hard time trying to survive as a musician. I don’t even think that you have to be a musician just trying to survive for anybody is hard. Trying to stay afloat and to remain happy at the same time is very difficult to do. A lot of what I write is about not giving up hope, because I see people doing that all around me and it is really sad to see. That is something that I don’t do. That is either a brain function that I have or I don’t have. Lots of people are the opposite and I see the difference there and I write about it. There is a lot of hopefulness in the music if that makes sense. I might be going about it the backwards way.”
Lindy LaFontaine’s song “I Do,” should have concertgoers getting up out of their seats. This is a spectacular performance by a songwriter who truly knows how to communicate her thoughts and feelings through her lyrics and then impeccably phrase them, as her vocals evoke a strong emotional response from the listener. The arrangement and the musicianship are stunning. Like another Pop – Alternative singer-songwriter, Paula Cole, Lindy LaFontaine possesses the same ability to engage the listener and then draw them into her music, until with her lyrics branded upon their hearts they echo her words back to her.
When she graduated from her high school, the School of the Arts in San Francisco, Lindy LaFontaine was accepted at Berklee School of Music, Juilliard and the Tisch School of Arts at NYU, however, she decided to refine her music skills in England, when her application to the Liverpool Institute of the Performing Arts was accepted.
It was while at a job fair that Lindy LaFontaine first became aware of the Liverpool Institute of the Performing Arts. “It was only two years old and they had a big picture of Paul McCartney on their little booth. My mom pulled me over to the booth and she said, ‘Look at that one. I love Paul McCartney.’ I didn’t know The Beatles that much. I liked the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album. I know a lot about The Beatles now. I applied there (Liverpool) and they were the last ones to accept me. They took forever and they made me audition to audition. They also asked for press clippings (she laughs). You have to be famous to go there. That is why I was one of the youngest people there. The average age was about thirty. There were a lot of people there in their forties and fifties. There was one guy there in his seventies and he was cool. I think that I might have been the first American and if not the first, the second. It is three years to get your Bachelor (degree). I was in Liverpool for three years and then I moved down to Derbyshire (for one year),” she says.
Ms. LaFontaine’s cover of the song “Low,” by Cracker, which she recorded while living in Liverpool resurfaced earlier this year when it was selected as the Best Cover Song at the 10th Independent Music Awards. The panel of judges included; Seal, McCoy Tyner, Counting Crows, Aerosmith, Suzanne Vega, Tom Waits, Aimee Mann and Jonatha Brooke to name just a few of the notable artists who gave her recording the thumbs up.
The award came as a surprise to Lindy LaFrontaine. “I didn’t even enter the song. Somebody else and I still do not know who, entered the song into the competition. I would have remembered if I had entered it, because it is thirty dollars to enter a song and I certainly wouldn’t have sent that song in. It got pretty popular on the web. It went a little viral. Someone sent it in and I received an email saying I was nominated and I was one of the top five finalists in the cover song category and they would get back to me in about a month to let me know who won the judges’ votes. I won.”
You can listen to the music of Lindy LaFontaine, including some songs from her new album This Too, In Time, Shall Pass, at her reverbnation website.
I tailor the set lists to meet the needs of the particular venue. I perform mostly originals with occasional covers.
The set list may consist of the following:
This too, In time, Shall pass
Free to Breathe
I Might Not Love You
I Love You
I Question Myself
Don't Walk Out
Sing to Me
Him & Her & Me
A few of my covers:
Air - All I Need
Alanis Morrisette - Uninvited
Annie Lennox - Don't let it Bring you Down
Chris Isaak - Wicked Game
Cracker - Low
Massive Attack - Teardrop
Morcheeba - The Sea
Nirvana - Heart Shaped Box
Portishead - Glory Box
Sneaker Pimps - Six Underground
Bitter Sweet Symphony - The Verve
Zero 7 - The Waiting Line
There are no upcoming dates at this time.