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Dar Raises The Bar

03:01 PM Wednesday 7/28/10 | |

Do you prefer poignant songwriting combined with a lyrical expertise and messages resounding with emotion and deep inner appeal? Dar Williams’ summer / fall tour begins this Sunday in Northern California. Need we say more?

There’s something about seeing someone playing their heart out for you while at the same time deliver words and music that cuts right to the bone of the human experience. Like those that came before her, Williams forgoes glitz and schmaltz to deliver an honest folk experience drawing on her own life experiences as she breaks down the barrier between performer and audience, making the evening feel like an old friend has dropped in for a visit.

Williams’ last studio album, 2008’s Promised Land, serves as a good introduction for those just getting acquainted with her work as well as reaffirming the artist / fan bond for longtime listeners. Produced by Brad Wood and featuring guest appearances by Marshall Crenshaw, Suzanne Vega and the Jayhawks’ Gary Louris, this isn’t your father’s folk music. It’s modern yet nostalgic, complex yet simple as it dives into social and political topics.

Williams has a “best of” collection coming out this fall, but don’t expect a package of old tracks packaged under a new cover. Instead, it’s 12 newly recorded acoustic tracks produced by Louris as well as a set of classic faves.

Williams embarks on her late summer / early fall journey this Sunday in Berkeley, Calif., at the Freight & Salvage. Other West Coast stops include The Palms in Winters, Calif., Aug. 2; Kuumbwa Jazz Center in Santa Cruz Aug. 3 and Tower Theatre in Bend, Ore., Aug. 5.

A couple of weeks later Williams appears on the East Coast, playing the National Heritage Museum in Lexington, Mass., Aug. 15; Keswick Theatre in Glenside, Pa., Aug. 18; Avalon Theatre in Easton, Md., Sept. 10 and the New Hope Winery in New Hope, Pa., Sept. 11.

The itinerary also includes shows in Fort Lauderdale, Seattle, St. Petersburg and New York City. For more information on Dar Williams, just click here for the artist’s website and here for the Dar Williams Music channel on YouTube.