The next show for the Home Routes concert tour is drawing near and this time around those looking to be entertained will be treated to a performance by Claudia Russell and Bruce Kaplan.
The two musicians had played individually in a number of different bands across an eclectic range of genres before uniting 20 years ago and Kaplan said attendees can expect to hear a variety of sounds during their performance.
“We’ve been in all different kinds of bands from western swing, jazz a cappella, bluegrass to pop-rock, so we bring a lot of musical elements into one show and I think the thing that unites all our different styles is the way we play and sing,” said Kaplan.
“Claudia writes most of the songs and has put her unique voice and view of the world, so it’s sort of a tour of all the Americana musical landmarks.”
Kaplan added the pair does its best to build the set so it’s seamless and makes sense musically, that way the shifts in styles don’t come across as jarring to the listeners.
He also noted neither he nor Russell will be beheading any winged creatures during the performance, so it’s hoped that any Ozzy Osborne fans who planned to attend won’t be deterred by the lack of decapitation during their stage show.
Their performances tend to be laid back and interactive, with the pair saying the format of the shows offered by the Home Routes tour is a perfect fit for what they like to do.
“Some people are formal. I’d say we bring homespun humour to the show and we just perform as if you were sitting in our living room,” said Kaplan.
“We want you to get to know us and we want to get to know you.”
Kaplan said some of his musical influences include Iris DeMent, Joni Mitchell, Dave Carter and Tracy Grammer as well as Elvis Costello and Bob Dylan.
Some of Russell’s influences are John Hiatt, Nina Gerber and Laura Nyro.
“And I’m a big John Prine fan as far as writing and quirkiness,” she added.
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Russell has won many accolades from her musicianship including Best New Artist from WUMB FM in Boston, Best Musician in the East Bay Express Reader’s Poll, 2x Kerrville New Folk Songwriting Finalist, and high praise in Sing Out, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Boston Globe.
Lovers Tree, their fifth and most recent CD, was produced by Grammy Winning Bluegrass legend Laurie Lewis and hit #5 on the national Folk DJ Charts.
Russell and Kaplan have toured across the United States, performing in barns, coffeehouses, churches, museums and living rooms, as well outdoors at festivals including Kerrville Folk Festival, Boston Folk Festival, the New Bedford Folk Festival, Black Hawk Folk Festival, and concert appearances at major venues such as McCabe’s, Club Passim, The Turning Point, and more than a dozen appearances at Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage.
“Making music has always been our favorite thing to do, and we put a lot of love into it. In our 20s, I suppose we both wanted to become famous. Now, our mission is simply to move people with our music and have fun.” said Russell.
Russell and Kaplan will be playing at the Dutch Lake Community Centre on Jan. 28 beginning at 7 p.m.