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Happy New Year!

By Bold Apps

Happy New Year!

Dear Friends, 

There are many things afoot as this year begins and I'd love to share them all with you!

UK SOLO TOUR DATES with special guest Sam Amidon:
I’m very excited to be heading out on a solo tour in the UK with special guest Sam Amidon. If you don’t know his music, check it out ASAP! He’s one of my long-time faves. We will be playing some songs together. Good times!

Feb 3rd - Twickenham, England @ The Exchange - Tickets
Feb 4th - Norwich, England @ Norwich Arts Centre - Tickets
Feb 5th - Nottingham, England @ The Bodega Social Club - Tickets
Feb 6th - York, England @ The Cresent - Tickets
Feb 7th - Liverpool, England @ Phase One - Tickets
Feb 8th - Birmingham, England @ St Paul's Church - Tickets
Feb 10th - Winchester, England @ The Railway Inn (2 shows!) - Tickets
Feb 11th - Oxford, England @ The Bullingdon - Tickets

US SOLO TOUR DATES: 
I’ll be bringing my 9 year old son Tennessee to Colorado to show him the Garden of the Gods and other home-state treasures. He is my youngest roadie to date!

Mar 3rd - San Francisco, CA @ Noise Pop / Swedish American Hall - Tickets
w/ Valley Maker, Zelma Stone & Emily Brown
Mar 7th - Seattle, WA @ Tractor Tavern - Tickets
w/ Brenda Xu
Mar 8th - Portland, OR @ Polaris Hall - Tickets
and evening with Laura Veirs
Mar 15th - Colorado Springs, CO @ Side Door - Tickets
w/ Conor Bourgal
Mar 16th - Denver, CO @ Daniels Hall - Tickets
Mar 21st & 22nd - Boise, ID @ Treefort Music Festival - Tickets

"LIBBA" KEEPS ON ROLLING!
My picture book about Elizabeth Cotten, “Libba,” just won the Pacific Northwest Book Award! It’s awesome to see the book making waves a year after publication and to know that more and more people are finding out about this wonderful hero of mine. You can buy a copy HERE at our website, or at your local bookstore or at - GASP! - amazon.com

NEW SONGS:
I’ve written over 90 new songs this fall and winter. Ten of them have stayed off the cutting room floor. I’ll probably have to write about 90 more before we make a new record this summer! As Leonard Cohen said, “If I knew where the good songs came from, I’d go there more often.” 

NEW TOTE BAG: 
Don’t you need a new bag to help you carry all the heavy records you are buying all the time at all the record stores? (Ha ha ha!) You can get one at any of my upcoming shows.  If we have any left after these dates we'll make them available in our shop

ESSAY ABOUT WRITING “LIBBA”:
For those of you who have made it this far… Here is an essay I wrote about the process of making “Libba.” Pictured at the bottom is a photo of Libba’s great-granddaughter Brenda Evans and me backstage in DC last Spring. 

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A New Respect for the Picture Book by Laura Veirs

I’d been reading picture books to my kids for years before writing my own. I’d always taken pleasure in them but never really considered what a deep art form the genre is. It took creating “Libba" to figure that out.

First, let’s take the words. Like in a song or poem, I wanted to get them just right. I wanted them to be musical. I wanted them to flow easily when read aloud. I didn’t want too many of them. I wanted them to be historically accurate and culturally sensitive. I wanted concrete details to hold up the story but I wanted to leave room for the illustrations to do some talking. I wanted good timing and suspense. As I got deeper into the writing process I realized that what I initially thought of as “little kid stuff” was turning out to be a major creative challenge.

I didn’t know enough about African American history or current Black experience so I read about 20 books on those topics. I listened to tons of country blues music. I talked with several people who knew Libba and they gave me excellent information about her life but I wasn’t able to locate any of Libba’s family or inner circle during my first round of interviews so I gave up. Two years later, with the deadline for publication looming, I resolved to find someone. I made an exhaustive family tree from online articles and finally (through several tries on Facebook) found someone in Libba’s family who would grant me an interview: her great-granddaughter Brenda Evans. 

Brenda was raised by Libba in a house of 10 in Washington, D.C in the 50s and 60s. Libba would put Brenda and the other grandkids to sleep by playing them songs on her guitar. Brenda sang beautifully when she was 12 on Libba’s song “Shake Sugaree." Brenda helped me considerably with getting the details and tone right for the book. Over several long phone calls we became friends. When I played a concert in Washington D.C. last Spring Brenda joined me on stage and we sang “Shake Sugaree” together. This was one of many wonderful surprises that came about from writing this book. 

Next, let’s consider the pictures. When the illustrations capture the imagination and draw the reader into the world of the story they make the book. If done badly they can break the book. I had very little say over who the illustrator would be (this is typical in picture book publishing). I hadn’t heard of Tatyana Fazlalizadeh but when I saw her work online I loved it and had a feeling she would do the story justice. I couldn’t be happier with how Tatyana captured Libba’s gentle but powerful essence. Tatyana's work is remarkable especially because this was her picture book debut. 

From the first seed of an idea to publication “Libba” took seven years to come to life. (The book takes seven minutes to read.) This book was a labor of love that I’m grateful for because I read picture books with a new eye now. Some of my childhood favorites - “George and Martha”, “Little Fur Family”, “The Amazing Bone” and “Where the Wild Things Are” - strike me now as works of genius on par with any other art form.

 

I can’t believe you made it to the end! 

As always, thank you for everything. I couldn’t keep doing this stuff without y’all. 

Best,
Laura and Team Raven Marching Band

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END-OF-YEAR UPDATE

By Bold Apps

END-OF-YEAR UPDATE
On the day after Thanksgiving I reflect on my gratitude for a wonderful year. My friends and family are healthy and happy (despite our country being run by monsters) and we have music, art, literature and nature to soothe our souls. This was a productive year for me on many levels and I’m grateful to all the fans, managers, editors, family members, collaborators and friends who have helped support my endeavors. 

NEW ALBUM - My new album “The Lookout” received great reviews and many of you came out and supported our Spring and Fall tours in the US and Europe. Thanks for the love! You can buy the album HERE.

NEW BOOK - My historical biography picture book about Elizabeth Cotten came out as well. It received several starred reviews, a Parent’s Choice Award and was short-listed for the Pacific Northwest Book Award. It’s called “Libba” and you can buy it HERE.

NEW PODCAST - I also launched a podcast called Midnight Lightning about the lives of musician parents. Though I’ve put the podcast on hold for the time being I learned an immense amount from doing interviews with 15 awesome women. You can listen to it HERE.

NEW STUDIO - My husband Tucker and I purchased a building near our home for a new recording studio - our “forever studio” (hopefully!) It used to be a motorcycle gang hangout - if only those walls could talk! The build-out of the studio has been a huge and expensive undertaking but it is nearing completion. I look forward to making albums there and to hearing all the other incredible music to come out of there in the near future. Go Tucker and all the folks who are bringing this thing to life!

SHOWS COMING UP:
I’m looking forward to a string of solo shows coming up soon: 
Dec 30th - Los Angeles, CA @ Moroccan Lounge - Tickets
w/ Tara Jane O'Neil

UK DATES W/ SPECIAL GUEST SAM AMIDON
Feb 3rd - Twickenham, England @ The Exchange - Tickets
Feb 4th - Norwich, England @ Norwich Arts Centre - Tickets
Feb 5th - Nottingham, England @ The Bodega Social Club - Tickets
Feb 6th - York, England @ The Cresent - Tickets
Feb 7th - Liverpool, England @ Phase One - Tickets
Feb 8th - Birmingham, England @ St Paul's Church - Tickets
Feb 10th - Winchester, England @ The Railway Inn (early show) - Tickets
Feb 10th - Winchester, England @ The Railway Inn (late show) - Tickets
Feb 11th - Oxford, England @ The Bullingdon - Tickets

Mar 21-22nd - Boise, ID @ Treefort Music Festival - Tickets

MORE US SPRING DATES SOON!

You can buy tickets HERE.

THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR ONGOING SUPPORT!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Best, 
Laura and Team Raven Marching Band

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Nonesuch Reissues! The Lookout Fall Tour!

By Laura Veirs Admin

Nonesuch Reissues!  The Lookout Fall Tour!
On October 12th - Year of Meteors, Saltbreakers and Carbon Glacier are being reissued for the first time in over 10 years on CD and limited edition LP!

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New Video - Lightning Rod!

By Laura Veirs Admin

New Video - Lightning Rod!

Dear Friends, 

I’m happy to share with you this video for a song off of my upcoming album, “The Lookout.” The song is called “Lightning Rod.” 

Check it out here @ Stereogum this morning!

The video was made by two artists from the Basque region of Spain: Izar Etxeberria (illustrations) and Eñaut Uribesalgo (animations). Izar tagged me on Instagram last fall because she had hand-written some of my lyrics to an old song. When I saw her handwriting I thought, “This is beautiful. I wonder if she will do the lettering for my album art?” I messaged her to ask if she would be interested and she was! You can see her hand-lettering for the album below. I LOVE IT!  

Izar and Eñaut have thoughtfully made this new video which explores the wonder of creation. (The song features our two kids, Oz and Tennessee as well as our niece Cora on backing vocals. :))  Izar has a background in biology (and you’ll see she nods to my background in geology with the spreading tectonic plates) and is the perfect, unexpected fit for this song and for my album art. Although social media bothers me in many ways I’m so glad that it connected me to these brilliant artists halfway across the world!

All the best, 

Laura and Team Raven Marching Band

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New single - Watch Fire - featuring Sufjan Stevens

By Laura Veirs Admin

New single - Watch Fire - featuring Sufjan Stevens

Hey everyone!

A lyric video for my new single “Watch Fire” featuring Sufjan Stevens premiers today at Pitchfork! Preorder my new album at lauraveirs.com and receive an instant download of the song. The lyric video is by Lauren Stelling; the handwriting is by Spanish artist Izar Etxeberria, with the "Lookout" eye provided by Anisa Makhoul.  Also, FYI Sufjan is playing at the Oscars next week! Congrats to him!


About “Watch Fire”: I’m not sure if you’ve heard wolves howling in the wild but there’s no mistaking their sound. It’s nothing like the howling of wind; it's much more eerie and sinister. “Watch Fire” is about protecting the vulnerable among us and how I feel vulnerable, too, in this political climate. You can hear that in the lyric “underneath this dome of red / white dog circling overhead.

It was an honor to have Sufjan sing on this track as I admire him a lot. I heard his voice on this song when I wrote it. We’ve been friends for a long time and he’s given me quite a few artistic pep talks over the years. I sang on his Carrie and Lowell sessions so it’s nice to have him on my record this time around.

Also, some more tour dates up at lauraveirs.com - new ones with my buddy M. Ward! Hope to see you soon... Thanks for sharing the word about this new album and tour!

 

Love, 
Laura

 

2018 TOUR DATES


MN Music Summit Keynote Address
APR 13 - St. Paul, MN @ St. Catherine University–College For Women

APRIL TOUR (supporting M. Ward)
APR 14 - Pittsburgh, PA @ Club Café
APR 15 - Charleston, WV @ Mountain Stage Culture Center Theater
APR 17 - Asheville, NC @ The Orange Peel
APR 18 - Knoxville, TN @ Bijou Theatre
APR 19 - Saxapahaw, NC @ Haw River Ballroom
APR 21 - Macon, GA @ Hargray Capitol Theatre

APR 29 - Portland, OR @ Music Millenium (solo in-store)

MAY US TOUR (w/ The Hackles)
MAY 18 - Seattle, WA @ Fremont Abbey Arts Center
MAY 19 - Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
MAY 21 - San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel
MAY 22 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo
MAY 24 - Brooklyn, NY @ Rough Trade
MAY 25 - Cambridge, MA @ Middle East
MAY 26 - Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle
MAY 27 - Washington, DC @ Union Stage

MAY & JUNE EU/UK TOUR
MAY 29 - Paris, France @ Le Café de la Danse
MAY 30 - Brussels, Belgium @ Ancienne Belgique
MAY 31 - Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Bitterzoet
JUN 2 - Sheffield, England @ The HUBs
JUN 3 - Leeds, England @ Leeds Brudenell Social Club
JUN 4 - Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear, England @ The Cluny
JUN 5 - Glasgow, Scotland @ Oran Mor
JUN 6 - Manchester, England @ The Deaf Institute
JUN 8 - London, England @ Union Chapel
JUN 9 - Cardiff, Wales @ Church of St John the Evangelist
JUN 10 - Bristol, England @ The Thekla
JUN 11 - Brighton, East Sussex, England @ The Komedia

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The Lookout!

By Laura Veirs Admin

The Lookout!

My 10th album is done and dusted! I wrote songs every day for over a year to get this batch.  My longtime producer (and husband) Tucker Martine recorded and produced it last Summer. Many dear friends played on it including special guests Sufjan Stevens and Jim James. It’s a concept album about the fragility of precious things. It’s about the importance of looking out for each other. I’m proud of this one and hope you enjoy it! Thanks to all involved!

The Lookout LP/CD/Digital
Street date: April 13th, 2018  |  Pre-order album: HERE NOW!
First 100 pre-ordered CDS and vinyl will arrive SIGNED BY ME before street date. All pre-orders will include a download of the 1st single.


First single/video: "Everybody Needs You” - watch HERE NOW!
Directed by Lance Bangs, artwork by Marissa Paternoster (Screaming Females)


US, UK & European Full Band Tour! See dates below!

This music is coming out in N. America on my (literal) Mom-and-Pop label Raven Marching Band. Bella Union is our partner overseas. It keeps us afloat when you share the news with friends, buy albums, buy tickets to shows or all of the above! THANK YOU FOR YOUR ONGOING SUPPORT! I’m grateful I get to make music for a living. 

Love, 
Laura and Team Raven Marching Band


 

US TOUR

5/18/18 - Seattle @ Fremont Abbey Arts Center - BUY TICKETS  
5/19/18 - Portland @ Mississippi Studios - BUY TICKETS
5/21/18 - San Francisco @ The Chapel - BUY TICKETS
5/22/18 - Los Angeles @ The Echo - BUY TICKETS
5/24/18 - Brooklyn, NY @ Rough Trade - On Sale Friday 2/2 
5/25/18 - Cambridge, MA @ Middle East (upstairs) - BUY TICKETS
5/26/18 - Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle - BUY TICKETS
5/27/18 - Washington DC @ Union Stage - BUY TICKETS



UK/EU TOUR
5/29/18 - Paris @ Le Café de la Danse - On Sale Friday 2/2
5/30/18 - Brussels @ Ancienne Belgique (upstairs) - On Sale Friday 2/2
5/31/18 - Amsterdam @ Bitterzoet - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/2/18 - Sheffield, England @ The HUBs - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/3/18 - Leeds, England @ Brudenell Social Club - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/4/18 - Newcastle upon Tyne, England @ The Cluny - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/5/18 - Glasgow, Scotland @ Oran Mor - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/6/18 - Manchester, England @ The Deaf Institute - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/8/18 - London, England @ Union Chapel - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/9/18 - Cardiff, Wales @ Church of St John the Evangelist - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/10/18 - Bristol, England @ The Thekla - On Sale Friday 2/2
6/11/18 - Brighton, East Sussex, England @ The Komedia - On Sale Friday 2/2

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Libba: The Magnificent Musical Life of Elizabeth Cotten

By Laura Veirs Admin

Libba: The Magnificent Musical Life of Elizabeth Cotten
I’m excited to announce that my first picture book is in stores today in the US, Canada and the UK! It’s about one of my guitar heroines, Elizabeth Cotten. It was beautifully illustrated by NYC artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh and is being published by Chronicle Books. Thanks to everyone who made this book a reality. It was a years-long process and I learned a LOT!
 
I’ll be playing “Freight Train” and reading/signing soon:
01/28/18        Portland, OR    Green Bean Books at 11 am 
02/04/18        Seattle, WA      Third Place Books (Seward Park) at 11 am 
02/10/18        Portland, OR    Powell’s Books at 11 am 
 
You can also buy the book online at amazon.comindiebound.orgbarnesandnobel.com or chroniclebooks.com.
 
Enjoy,
Laura

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Midnight Lightning with Laura Veirs!

By Laura Veirs Admin

Midnight Lightning with Laura Veirs!
Happy New Year! I’ve been working for many months on a new podcast! It’s called Midnight Lightning and it's about the lives of musician parents. You can hear the trailer episode on iTunes today, and on Jan. 3 we will run our first episode with legendary bassist Carol Kaye. Episodes will come out every Wednesday for 13 weeks after that. The first season is mothers (and I hope to do a second season with fathers sometime down the line). 
 
You can listen/subscribe now at iTunes or at midnightlightning.net. Follow us on instagram at midnightlightningpodcast
 
Hope you enjoy the interviews! I’ve had a lot of fun doing them.
 
More news about my new Elizabeth Cotten picture book and new album coming soon… Thanks for your ongoing support!
 
All the best, 
Laura and Team Midnight Lightning

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