Passim Monday Discovery Series
July 9th: Sisters Mann and Tina & Her Pony
August 13th: Violet Bell and Melanie Brulée & Her Bad Manners
The Discovery Series is a monthly event sponsored by Nine Athens Music to bring new artists into the Passim community. Through the Discovery Series, we provide a platform to connect new artists with a music-loving audience. These artists may be brand new to the club or may have performed at our campfire. festivals, but the Discovery Series features artists in a room filled with our dedicated members.
Sisters Mann (Alexandra and Lauren Mann) is a blend of identical twin blood harmonies and sensitive fingerpicking guitar. Sultry and effortless harmonies, blending together like only the voices of twin sisters can, combined with honest original songs is what you can expect to hear from Sisters Mann. Lead singer and keyboardist, Lauren, brings a seductive yet innocent presence to the stage, while Alexandra excites and electrifies with her dynamic fingerpicking and vocal harmonies.
With the lucky coincidence of being co-writers since birth, Sisters Mann is a confirmation that sometimes two brains are better than one. Whether they’re on stage or writing songs together, their unconditional love for each other is unmistakable, and they channel this into an authentic and honest performance.
Mixing the diverse musical styles of their multicultural hometown of Miami with the grassroots Americana vibe of Nashville helps create their original sound. Sisters Mann is a force to be reckoned with whether they are performing in one of the largest festivals in the world, Calle Ocho, or in intimate songwriting clubs like The Blue Bird Café. Through their music and their performances it is clear that Sisters Mann embraces what it means to be partners for life.
Tina & Her Pony
Tina & Her Pony met in Asheville, N.C. in 2009. Tina Collins (tenor banjo, tenor ukulele, guitar, vocals) and Quetzal Jordan (cello, guitar, vocals) spent two years holed up in the high desert mountain town of Taos, New Mexico, making music and friends, and becoming one of the iconic artist colony’s most beloved performing acts.
Tina and Her Pony released their full length, self-titled debut album in March 2012. The album was mixed and mastered in Oakland, Calif. with Myles Boisen (The Tigerlilies; Kronos Quartet) and features trumpeter Chris Grady (also featured on Tom Waits’ Mule Variations). After an 18 month album release tour spanning the United States and Canada, they established a new home base in Asheville, NC and began recording their forthcoming album, Champion at Echo Mountain Recording studio. Champion draws inspiration from and meditates on dreams, the subconscious, and death. The album will be released November 3rd 2017.
Collins and Jordan’s songwriting incorporates complexities in harmony and arrangement that queer the american folk tradition. Their unique sound draws inspiration from artists such as Nickel Creek, Sarah Jarosz, Gillian Welch and Crooked Still.
Violet Bell cites a wide range of influences – from Debussy to Nina Simone, D’angelo to Lou Reed, their unique sound blends folk, soul, bluegrass, blues, and classical. On stage, the energy between Lizzy Ross and Omar Ruiz-Lopez is fiery, intimate and intuitive. Since forming in March 2016, Violet Bell has played over 250 shows, earning fans from FL to VT with long stretches on the road.
In May 2018, Violet Bell recorded a full-length debut album, Honey in my Heart, at the Fidelitorium in Kernersville with Jason Richmond (Dom Flemons, Steep Canyon Rangers, Nneena Freelon, Avett Brothers). Honey in my Heart is set for international release in early 2019 and features 11 original songs.
Prior to forming Violet Bell, Ruiz-Lopez toured with Jonathan Byrd, Crystal Bright, Steph Stewart, and Chocolate Suede, and composed several original pieces for the Durham Symphony Orchestra. Ross has been a two-time Kerrville New Folk finalist and won Floydfest’s On the Rise contest, a Carolina Music Award, and an Emerging Artist Grant from the Durham Arts Council.
Melanie Brulée & Her Bad Manners
Born in Cornwall Ontario to bilingual parents, Toronto-based Melanie Brulée interweaves her native language into her art like she crisscrosses musical genres: with ease.
From the first listen, you can hear how her years living in Australia and France have influenced her style and sound. The first offering rich surf-style guitar tones and catchy hooks and the latter blurring the lines between audience and performer, like a speakeasy cabaret. What most might call Americana, folk-rock or country music, Melanie colours with her own distinctive essence, bringing a vintage respect to a modern sound. Seeing her ease onstage, it’s clear that’s where she feels most at home, quickly winning over audiences with her charisma.
Melanie’s striking stage presence, unique vocal stylings and expressive confidence have opened several doors for her since the release of her French album Débridée (2015), giving her the chance to build a solid team including management, booking, distribution and publishing. Critically acclaimed by media in Québec as well as across Canada, the album earned Melanie a Stingray Music Rising Star Award as well as three Trille Or nominations at Canada’s largest recognition of excellence in the arts outside of Québec. Melanie was featured on the official Ontario 150 anthem ‘A Place to Stand’ which was highly distributed across the province during 2017.