Grammy-nominated multi-instrumentalist and singer, Barbara Higbie, and the iconic singer/songwriter Cris Williamson bring a mixture of new material and old favorites to one of their favorite cities, Occidental. Without a doubt, the very real friendship binding these two brings a powerful mixture guaranteed to delight, inspire, cheer and comfort.
Tickets are $28/Advance and $34 at the door (if available – this show will most likely sell out in advance). Get tickets online via brownpapertickets.com.
Doors will open at 6 PM, beer/wine/refreshments available. Seating is first come first served (reserved seating for OCA members only).
Decades before indie labels were the norm, and years before women had any real access to the industry, Cris Williamson was busy changing the face of popular music. In 1975, the twenty-something former schoolteacher recorded The Changer and the Changed, for her brainchild, Olivia Records, the first woman-owned woman-focused record company. Her music and voice quickly became an essential part of the soundtrack of a movement, and was the cornerstone of what would become known as women’s music, music created, performed, and marketed specifically for and by women. Today, that recording, The Changer and the Changed, remains one of the best-selling independent releases of all time.
For Cris, the music became the vehicle for something larger. Her lyrics appear on a regular basis in books and thesis papers. Her albums are part of the curriculum for women’s studies courses, and thousands of people who may not even know her name join their voices in “Song of the Soul” around campfires and places of worship. She is embraced by women. She is sampled in hip-hop. Her music is used by midwives welcoming life into the world, while hospice choirs sing her songs in tender sacred escort. “She is often considered a treasure, passed hand-to-hand, person-to-person,” says the Boston Phoenix, “Williamson is a heroic character whose tireless activism continues.”
Today, with 31 full albums to her credit, Cris continues to tour the acoustic circuit adding new material at each juncture. Her performance career includes three sold-out shows at Carnegie Hall and the headlining of many of the great folk festivals, including Newport, Kerrville, Moab, and Vancouver.
Cris’s new album, her 32nd, Motherland, produced by Julie Wolf, was released in November 2017. Cris is currently touring the new material, teaching songwriting, working with choruses and orchestras and enjoying collaboration with her talented pals. Last year, Cris shared the honors with Judy Dlugacz when the two received a Legacy Award from the Americana Music Association.
A professional musician since age 17, Barbara has played everything from Traditional Jazz, Bluegrass and Irish to New Classical Music, Blues, and African Pop. She is known for her ability to compose in a style that is both genre-bending and accessible. A Grammy-nominated, Grammy award-winning composer, pianist, fiddler, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Barbara Higbie has performed on more than 100 albums, including Carlos Santana’s 2007 release. Her latest solo release, 2014’s Scenes from Life was recorded at Lucas Films Skywalker Sound.
As a solo artist, Barbaras first solo CD Signs of Life was named a Washington Post Top Ten of the Year. Four other solo releases, I Surrender, Variations on a Happy Ending and Alive in Berkeley and last years Scenes from Life followed to much critical acclaim. In 2011, Higbie was the first ever Artist in Residence at the prestigious west coast Jazz Club, Yoshi’s, where she created two new bands. Roots music, Hills to Hollers with icons Linda Tillery and Laurie Lewis, and the exotic Cello Heaven with cellists Joan Jeanreneau of Kronos Quartet fame and new age star, Jami Sieber.
Higbie has 13 solo and group recordings to her name, as well as contributions to 10 compilations that have sold in the millions. She was the first female instrumentalist to compose and record for Windham Hill Records, 1982’s Tideline, a duet project with violinist, Darol Anger. Tideline’s unique sound became an instant classic, thanks in part to Higbies innovative and moving compositions. One of her pieces from Tideline, True Story, was downloaded on Pandora in 2014 more than 850,000 times. In June of 2015, Tideline was re-issued on Adventure Records. 1984 was an important year when Higbie recorded with Anger, Mike Marshall and Andy Narrell, Live at the Montreux Jazz Festival for Windham Hill Records, a landmark genre-defining album. Her composition To Be became Montreux’s radio/VH-1 hit. She toured worldwide with Montreux until 1990.
In addition to her instrumental music, Higbie’s singer-songwriter work, 2 CDs with vocal dynamo, Teresa Trull, on Olivia Records and 2 solo CDs on Slowbaby Records have won her critical acclaim and a large, devoted nationwide following.