« OiVaVoi, Belgium, Aug 20 | Main | Clarinet Masterclasses, Tzfat, Israel, Aug 22-29 »

Charming Hostess, San Francisco, Aug 20

band publicity photoCharming Hostess
Fri, Aug 20, 10ish
San Francisco
Cafe Du Nord
2170 Market Street
w/ Dresden Dolls

"Their voices radiate female energy and their singing transforms the spirit."
—San Francisco Chronicle

"Eisenberg's songs are hilarious and touching—they run the gamut from hard-edged and powerful to sweet and soulful."
--New Yorker

Jewlia Eisenberg and the critically acclaimed group Charming Hostess perform new work from their a cappella tour de force SARAJEVO BLUES (Tzadik, 9/04). The Nerdy-Sexy-Commie-Girlies of Charming Hostess come to town to make ambitious music for voices and rock out at the same time. Their upcoming CD sets work by Bosnian poet Semezdin Mehmedinovic as a form of love and resistance to the brutalization of war. The poems honor a cosmopolitan city that for many years successfully rejected the limits of nationalism and militarism. Semezdin will be joining Charming Hostess, opening the evening with readings from his new work.

Charming Hostess is three women in a whirl of eerie harmony, hot rhythm, and radical braininess. Their music is intensely physical, rooted in the body--voices and vocal percussion, handclaps and heartbeats, sex-breath and silence. Charming Hostess lives where Jewish and African diasporas collide, incorporating doo-wop, Pygmy counterpoint, Balkan harmony and Andalusian melody. Our last CD (Trilectic, Tzadik) explored the political/erotic nexus of philosopher Walter Benjamin with humor and sensuality.

In SARAJEVO BLUES, Charming Hostess takes history and news as a context, but steers towards poetry as a way to focus on real human experience, on particularity and wholeness. The pieces are about daily life under siege in Sarajevo. Some explicitly speak of war, and some of cafe culture, urban ideology, or the ridiculousness of communist bureaucratic cant. Woven into the text are philosophical musings about freedom, fear, nationalism, and the nature of evil. It sounds heavy and dark, but we swear it's mostly about the triumph of the human spirit. A good time will be had by all!

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)