Sara Petite Band plus The Shadow Mountain Bank Perform at Pappy and Harriet’s in Pioneertown
** Sara Petite Band – (Set time: 8:00 PM)
There is no medical evidence to prove that Lucinda Williams, Nanci Griffith and Carrie Rodriguez joined forces to mother a fully-grown musician daughter. But if they did, San Diego singer-songwriter Sara Petite would be the likely outcome.” – George Varga, San Diego Union Times.
She could sing a buzzard off a Slop Wagon,” said Mojo Nixon of Sara Petite. Winner of the 2012 prestigious Chris Austin songwriting contest at Merlefest, the San Diego artist is releasing her fourth album August 1st. The Circus Comes To Town was written before and after the death of her partner Johnny Kuhlken.
“It’s a full perspective of the human being – jealousy, infidelity, fun, wit, tragedy, pain, loss, perseverance, substance abuse, shame, guilt and just plain silliness.”
Not just a original voice, Petite is a natural songwriter, evidenced by the fact in her first-ever songwriting competition, three of her songs advanced in the International Songwriting Competition in 2005, with two making it to the semi-finals. Since then, she has been honored in the West Coast Songwriter’s Competition; Great American Songwriter’s Competition; Great Waters Folk Festival Song Contest (Top 5 finalist); San Diego Music Awards (2nd). In 2006, Petite earned the Grand Prize in the 2006 Portland Songwriting Contest. On stage, Petite has opened for such major headliners as Josh Turner, Shooter Jennings, Trent Thomlinson, Richie McDonald, John Eddie, Todd Snider, Ralph Stanley, Steve Poltz, Lance Miller and Bert Jansch.
Eleven years from her debut, Tiger Mountain, the title of Sara Petite’s latest album is at odds with the miles of experience in her voice. What had once been a musical pastime turned into a sanity-saving career choice, that in turn transformed her personal struggles into artistic fuel. This latest set explores intimate themes of restlessness, desire, discovery, love, loss and recovery, and though the shuffling rhythms and moody horns suggest Johnny Cash, there’s a delicate vulnerability in Petite’s voice that Cash’s baritone couldn’t have sustained. Petite makes palpable the broken heart of “Getting Over You” with lyrical detail whose innocuousness turns out to be its revelation. She turns in an original drinking song with “Monkey on My Back,” and finds self-confidence in the surreal Tom Petty-influenced dream of “Good 2 B Me.” Recorded with her band (who get a terrific showcase on the swampy “Sweet Pea Patch”), rather than the Nashville studio hands of her earlier releases, the album has a more organic and exploratory feel – both of which complement an artist who’s fully come into her own as an autobiographical writer. If you’ve been following Petite’s career, you’ll be pleased with her continuing growth as an artist, and if you’re new, this is a great place to jump in.
** The Shadow Mountain Band – (Set time: 5:00 PM)
The Shadow Mountain Band specializes in mountain-style harmonies with lively acoustic backup. They feature Traditional Mountain Music, Hillbilly Gospels (think- ‘oh Brother, Where art Thou’) and Bluegrass, along with eclectic originals and completely reworked contemporary tunes. Music critics have begun to call their style ‘desert grass’.