Saturday, February 9, 2013
Joanna Cazden and Debra Cowan
This concert celebrates 30 years of Caltech Folk Music Society concerts by presenting the very first performer who appeared on the series. Joanna Cazden's music was an inspiration to series founders Brian Toby and Simon Davies, and she returns to Caltech after a long absence (her last show was in 1998) for a generous set of her best originals, and a few folk and Yiddish classics. In the intervening years, she's been busy as a nationally-known speech and voice therapist. Her singing voice has grown deeper and clearer with time, and as always these days, her guitar-picking will be backed up by husband Scott Wilkinson on woodwinds and brass. Daugher of composer and musicologist Norman Cazden and language-education specialist Courtney Borden Cazden, Joanna grew up in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New York, surrounded by classical, traditional folk and protest music. She toured nationally as a singer-songwriter in the 1970s and was active in the anti-war, feminist and environmental movements of the time. She currently performs with several ensembles in Southern California and leads a Yiddish-language chorus with her husband. We know her as a very fine singer who sings with commitment, as well as a sense of fun.
As well as returning to our roots with Joanna, we are proud to present a new artist to our series, Debra Cowan. Originally from California, she now lives in Massachusetts and tours the United States and the British Isles. Rosanne Cash wrote about her most recent recording, Fond Desire Farewell, "Debra has a voice which beautifully combines Celtic and Appalachian sensibilities. She and Dave Mattacks have created a deeply satisfying, lyrical and musically elegant record." She is not a songwriter, but in the tradition of early Judy Collins and Joan Baez, she combines wonderful arrangements of American and British traditional songs with a few noteworthy compositions by contemporary writers. Debra plays guitar and also sings a capella.
Don't miss this strong double billing and help celebrates 30 years of outstanding folk music at Caltech.