SMALL POTATOES, Friday 12/12, 8pm, @ The Yellow Moon Cafe in Cobden, a Cousin Andy’s Concert Series Event

December 9th, 2014

The Chicago based folk duo of Jacquie Manning and Rich Prezioso say it has taken them years of careful indecision to develop a repertoire they describe as “Celtic to Cowboy.” Superb musicianship and showmanship, award-winning songwriting, and a strong sense of tradition has made them, as Dirty Linen Magazine once said, “one of the most polished, inventive, and entertaining shows on the circuit.”

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We welcome Small Potatoes back for what has become their annual Christmas show in Southern Illinois.  Jacquie and Rich are sure to help us get into the holiday spirit with some season-appropriate music, but also are likely to sprinkle in some of our favorites, as well as a new offering or two. 

(Photo by Neale Eckstein @ The Kerrville Folk Festival 2011)

For more information about Small Potatoes CLICK HERE 

For more information about The Yellow Moon Cafe CLICK HERE — and call 618.893.2233 for dinner reservations for before the show

Bottle Rocket Cabaret, Friday, December 5th, 7:30pm

November 18th, 2014

We welcome Bottle Rocket Cabaret to Cousin Andy’s Concert Series on Friday, December 5th, at 7:30pm.  We’ll be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd for this week’s show.

Bottle Rocket Cabaret is the duo comprised of award winning musicians John Latini and Jamie-Sue Seal.  The pair presents a lively collection of songs and fills in the gaps with superb vocals, masterful guitar playing and vintage flair.  Often drawing comparisons to the iconic duo “Delaney and Bonnie” for their soulful vocals and bluesy approach, their roots-based repertoire also reveals glimpses of jazz standards, gospel, musical theater and opera house follies.

 ”Jamie-Sue Seal and John Latini put together musical shows that go way beyond the aging hipster folk crap.  Exceptional musicianship combined with enormous wit and engaging showmanship, they are the real deal.  If their show comes to town-BE THERE!”    -Michael Curths, Presenter and Promoter

For more info CLICK HERE 

KRISTA DETOR, Friday, November 14th, 8PM @ The Yellow Moon Cafe in Cobden

November 7th, 2014

We happily welcome Krista Detor back to Cousin Andy’s Concert Series on Friday, November 14th at 8pm.  This week’s show will be at The Yellow Moon Cafe in Cobden.

Says Neil Pearson, Producer of the Darwin Songhouse: “Krista is one of the very finest modern songwriters at writing within character; and her ability to convey the emotions of the people that inhabit her songs is utterly convincing and believable. The range of situations and circumstances her characters occupy, and the compelling way the narratives are delivered make one of the most flexible and empathetic writers. Her understanding of the human condition and her ability to express the motivation for her characters give her songs real impact and resonance with the listener.”

The Boston Herald says, simply, “All songwriters shouldbe this good..”

For more info about Krista, CLICK HERE 

For more info about The Yellow Moon Cafe, CLICK HERE (call 618.893.2233 for reservations)

MARK STUART, Friday, November 7th, 7:30pm

October 28th, 2014

We welcome Mark Stuart back to Cousin Andy’s Concert Series on Friday, November 7th.  We’ll be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd for this show.

After growing up in Nashville, TN and playing professionally from age 15 on, Mark Stuart set his sights on being a recording/touring artist. Much of the time in the 1980s and 1990s he fronted his own roots music band in the US southeast. The rock, blues, country, and folk mixture that poured from his vocals/guitar/piano/songwriting defined him as being more versatile than most artists, musically speaking. Some periods he toured with Texas legend Freddy Fender, or folk-rocker Steve Forbert. Then, there were stints with country-rocker Steve Earle (who became his brother in-law). While being an opening act (with wife, Stacey Earle) for folk icon Joan Baez, Stuart so enamored the headliner that she would bring him onstage during her show to showcase his guitar work. 

This year, Mark Stuart is touring heavily solo and his performances are littered with great guitar pieces, self-penned songs from his solo records and duo records. Also, he does “tribute” songs to those notable artists he used to work for, and, includes fascinating stories about the experiences along the way.

For more info on Mark, CLICK HERE

PATCHOULI, Friday, 10/17, 8pm – Yellow Moon Cafe in Cobden

October 7th, 2014

Nationally touring, award winning songwriter Julie Patchouli and master guitarist Bruce Hecksel light up the air with sparkling acoustic sounds and their powerful contagious chemistry. Famous for that smiling voice that instantly turns a bad day into a good one, Patchouli’s down-to-earth, hopeful songwriting is “New American Folk” blending elements of folk, pop, flamenco and jazz with world beat rhythms. Patchouli’s sound has been described as “the harmonies of Simon & Garfunkel meet the guitar brilliance of the Gipsy Kings.

Patchouli represents the very top echelon of today’s acoustic performers, bringing the highest level of skill together with the passion, experience and joy that are a rare combination indeed.

We welcome Patchouli back to Southern Illinois on October 17th!

For more info about Patchouli CLICK HERE

For more info about The Yellow Moon Cafe CLICK HERE

ANNE HILLS, Friday, October 3rd, 7:30pm

September 22nd, 2014


“Anne Hills is such an exquisite singer that it’s understandable that people might be swept up in the pure beauty of her voice and thereby overlook her writing. That would be a mistake. For me, Anne’s writing, in songs like ‘Follow That Road’ and many others, is as direct, melodic and deep as any work being done today. She is quite simply one of my absolute favorite songwriters.”  Tom Paxton

Whether she is singing her own song, the words of 6 year old Opal Whiteley, or the Hoosier poet James Whitcomb Riley; accompanied with her guitar, banjo, or simply a Tibetan bell, she puts her whole heart and soul into the moment. So, even if you haven’t become familiar with her voice (featured often on XM/Sirius Folk Radio, The Midnight Special & many other folk shows) you won’t want to miss a chance to hear her songs and stories in person.

You would be scrolling through this post for a while if all of Anne’s awards, accomplishments, and recognitions were listed here.  Suffice it to say, Anne’s show is a musical treat you do not want to miss!

For more information about Anne, CLICK HERE.

This week’s show will be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd in Carbondale.

DANNY ELLIS Friday, September 19th, 7:30pm, COGS Fellowship Hall

September 5th, 2014

We welcome Danny Ellis to Cousin Andy’s Friday, September 19th, for the opening show of the Southern Illinois Irish Festival 2014.  We’ll be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd for this show.

“There are those rare musicians that are also poets and storytellers, who can bend time and space and language so it penetrates into the deepest places of the human soul. Danny Ellis is one, and his music has shattered and embraced me with the severe grace.” –  WILLIAM PAUL YOUNG, bestselling author of The Shack
“Danny’s music slays me. He has one of the best ‘live’ voices I’ve ever heard.” — BONNIE RAITT

“800 Voices ” is one of the best CDs I’ve heard in a long, long time, I couldn’t turn it off till it was done, which is rare for me.” — PEGGY SEEGER  

Music has been the main driving force in Danny Ellis’ life almost since he was born (in Dublin City). Born in a time and place where everyone sang, his mother would sing for the family every night by the fire before bedtime; “her voice so filled with emotion, that sometimes she’d almost scare us.” Danny’s songs are startlingly personal, exploring waters seldom plumbed by other writers and are gauged to “crack your heart wide open”. His writing is tapestried with a rare emotional depth and acute understanding of human nature—garnered on an orphanage playground with 800 wild kids.  “In that tough orphanage, every kind of personality, even the most guarded, revealed its secrets over time. Hopefully my writing holds some of the insights and healing that has blessed my own life. I write a lot about relationships because they are a metaphor for an indefinable inner journey, expressed in everyday terms. You might say I’m obsessed with trying to express the inexpressible, to touch the invisible.”

GINA FORSYTH Friday, September 5th, 7:30pm, COGS fellowship hall

September 3rd, 2014

We welcome Gina Forsyth back to Cousin Andy’s this Friday night.  We’ll be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd this week. 

New Orleans-based Gina Forsyth is an award-winning singer/songwriter, who is known for her wizardry on fiddle and guitar. With an alto as unique as it is soulful, unpretentious songs that cut straight to the heart, and a wicked sense of humor, her live performances are legend. Considered one of the best Cajun fiddlers in Louisiana (no small feat), Gina is in demand from other great Louisiana musicians to play club gigs and festivals.

Born in Florida and raised in Alabama, Gina grew up on hymns, country songs, and old time fiddle tunes. In the mid-1980s, she moved to New Orleans to study classical and jazz violin at Loyola University and quickly developed an irrevocable passion for Cajun music.

Over the last 20 years, Gina has evolved into one of the most respected folk artists in America. In 2001, cult folk label Waterbug released her debut CD, You Are Here, which was quickly heralded as “…an eclectic, beautifully played testament to choosing the right personnel and crafting a great song.” (Daily Advertiser, Lafayette, LA).

Gina has become a Cousin Andy’s favorite and we are excited to have her return to offer us another evening of stories and songs.

Click HERE for more info

FALL FOLKSTRAVAGANZA XV, Friday, August 22nd, 7pm, in the fellowhip hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd in Carbondale

August 16th, 2014
Cousin Andy’s concerts most often occur on the first and third Fridays of each month and usually alternate between Church of The Good Shepherd’s fellowship hall in Carbondale and the Yellow Moon Cafe in downtown Cobden.  Cousin Andy’s, a not-for-profit concert series, relies upon the generosity of our audiences to pay our out-of-town performers.  We use the donations received at our FOLKSTRAVAGANZA benefit shows to allow us to make up any shortfall in the week-to-week “door” for a particular concert.  Your contributions allow Cousin Andy’s to continue to bring nationally and internationally known songwriters to our area.

Cousin Andy’s kicks off our 21st season of bringing the finest folk music to Southern Illinois with our annual Fall Folkstravaganza benefit show, featuring some of our favorite local musicians.  As usual, our benefit show will be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd in Carbondale.

This year’s Fall Folkstravaganza features a nice array of styles of folk music.  Our performers will be THE DORIANS (Bryan Kelso Crow, Elana Floyd-Kennett, Mike Shanahan, and Mickey Soltys), BLACKBERRY BLOSSOM BAND (Andrea Stader, Gary Childers, RuthAnn Levinson, and others), and TRANSCENDENTAL COWBOYS (Doug Anderson and Randy Auxier).

The Dorians, offering songs and dance music from the Irish and Scottish traditions, perform throughout the midwest at festivals, conferences, colleges and other schools.  The are known throughout the region as premier performers of traditional and Irish and Celtic music.

The Blackberry Blossoms Band primarily features old timey folk, old old country, and Americana.  In addition to multi-part vocal harmonies, arrangements may include autoharp, dulcimer, mandolin, guitar, and upright bass.

When Doug Anderson and Randy Auxier perform together as the Transcendental Cowboys, they play their own songs, songs by friends, songs by enemies, and songs by people they don’t even know (but you might) — Americana, blues, folk, country, and some things that simply defy classification.

THE CANTRELLS, Friday, May 9th, 7:30pm

May 5th, 2014

We welcome Al and Emily Cantrell back to Cousin Andy’s  Concert Series this Friday.  We’ll be in the fellowship hall of The Church of The Good Shepherd for our last show of this Cousin Andy’s season. 

The Cantrells have been touring and performing their original folk and bluegrass music in concerts and festivals since 1985. Their performances feature Emily Cantrell’s songs, her strong rhythm guitar (especially her swing style), Al Cantrell’s contest-winning fiddling in traditional, swing and Irish styles, their duet harmonies, “fiddlesticks” (“playing the straws”) and a wide variety of songs from bluegrass to Broadway musicals. 

Al and Emily are on the ever-growing list of Cousin Andy’s favorites.  A few years ago, Marlene Shepherd, then a regular entertainment writer for The Southern Illinoisan wrote:    

Ask Al Cantrell what makes his acoustic duo so popular, and he’ll point to his wife, Emily.  “It’s because she writes songs which have popular themes, love songs in a lot of respects,” he says. “Also, they have an imagery that allows you to use your imagination. Sometimes it takes you out to a scene in the Rocky Mountains on some river. Sometimes it’s a scene where an owl is flying toward you.”  Ask Emily Cantrell the same question, and she’ll point to Al’s fine fiddling. As you may have guessed, it’s the combination of Emily’s and Al’s gifts that have earned The Cantrells critical acclaim.  Emily’s impressive vocal range and imaginative lyrics plays beautifully with the flick of Al’s fiddle and mandolin. Or as the Nashville Tennessean put it: “She sings like an angel, he plays like the devil.”

For more info about The Cantrells CLICK HERE

Photo by Tim Piazza