To use the famous Monty Python’s Flying Circus catch phrase, “and now, for something completely different”, Aten Place will present an evening of raucous rock’n’roll with Igor and the Red Elvises.

    If Igor and Red Elvises aren't in the middle of a tour, they are getting ready for the next one - this is a group that is constantly in motion and consistently evolving. Singer, songwriter, guitarist and showman extraordinaire Igor Yuzov is perpetually globetrotting and in the process he has found scores of wildly talented, entertaining musicians to bring into the fold of this increasingly international party band.

     Red Elvises started as a Russian group, playing what they dubbed "Siberian Surf Rock". Since then the band has included musicians from many other countries including United States, Israel, Puerto Rico and Bulgaria, to name just a few. Everyone who performs with them for any length of time brings something different both energetically and musically. At various times shows have included keyboards, accordions, sax, clarinet, trumpet, flute, banjo, mandolin, tuba and many other instruments. Old and new fans alike can expect to be surprised at shows again and again, however the roots of Red Elvises remain the same: Igor's unique brand of humor combined with guitar based rock'n'roll that makes audiences want to sing, dance, scream and shout.

     German born Igor Yuzov grew up in the former Soviet Union, where folk music was the norm and rock'n'roll was illegal. A rebellious streak, however, led him to seek out the forbidden records, which could be secretly traded in some places for those who knew where to look. As soon as it became possible, Igor left Russia for America with his folk band Limpopo. The "Crazy Russian Folk'n'Roll" group were personally greeted by Ronald Reagan and proceeded to win Ed McMahon's Star Search.

     Red Elvises began in 1995 after Igor dreamed that Elvis Presley came to him and told him to start playing rock'n'roll. Not one to say no to the King, Igor and his Russian friends started playing on Santa Monica's 3rd Street Promenade. Their street musician days did not last long, however, as they drew such huge crowds that the City of Santa Monica brought them to court and ordered them off the streets. Since then Red Elvises have been constantly touring, with occasional breaks from the road to record an album or take part in film and television projects. This constant work for the last 15 years has led to them gaining a world-wide following, with successful tours all over North America, Europe and Russia (Red Elvises bootlegs have been found in Siberia).

     Igor & Red Elvises have declined several major record deals, preferring to maintain independent status and produce all their own work. This includes 11 studio albums, one live album, a live concert DVD and a Greatest Hits compilation. Added to their long resume is work in film (Six String Samurai, Mail Order Bride, Armageddon, Skippy) and television (Melrose Place, Fastlane, Penn and Teller's Sin City Extravaganza, VH-1 Behind the Music, MTV). They can be found playing everything from large festivals to private parties, small venues to massive stages such as 2005's Live 8 Benefit Concert. Whatever the event, wherever Igor & Red Elvises go, they bring the party with them.


Summer 2017 Schedule

Saturday, June 24, 2017

7:30 pm

Yellow Room Gang

Saturday, July 1 , 2017

7:30 pm

Igor and the Red Elvises

Saturday, July 8, 2017

7:30 pm

The String Doctors

Saturday, July 22, 2017

7:30 pm

The RFD Boys

Saturday, July 29, 2017

7:30 pm

Jenny DeVoe

Saturday, August 5, 2017

7:30 pm

Funky Butt Brass Band

Saturday, August 12, 2017

7:30 pm

Moors and McCumber

Saturday, August 19, 2017

7:30 pm

The Steel City Rovers

      In the summer of 2012, we were excited to be able to showcase several well established individual performing artists in one evenings show.  As expected, the show was exceptional night of original acoustic music.  The artists called themselves the Yellow Room Gang.

     Their beginnings were in December of 2004.  In that year, eight award winning Michigan singer/songwriters met for the first time in the yellow living room of David Tamulevich (member of the Gang, and Mustard's Retreat).  It started as a monthly sharing and critique session.  The idea was to have each singer to bring their newest song, in whatever stage of completion it was, and share it, critique it, and hopefully make it better.  The artists were all familiar names to Michigan audiences: David Barret, Jim Bizer, Annie Capps, Kitty Donohoe, Michael Hough ( the other half of Mustard's Retrea, Jan Krist, David Tamulevich and Matt Watroba.

     The group found it was more than helpful and illuminating, it was fun.  They pretty quickly decided to try doing concerts together.  It shouldn’t have surprised them when the shows became incredibly successful.  The shows were presented in a round robin format, and the ensembles magic and camaraderie translated into an awesome stage presence.  The audiences loved it.   

     The Yellow Room Gang is now celebrating their 13th year, which also includes the release of 4 highly acclaimed CDs.

    The artists that will be featured at this season opening performance will be Annie and Rod Capps, Michael Hough and David Tamulevich ( Mustard's Retreat) and Matt Watroba.

             In the summer of 2015, Aten Place introduced it’s patrons to a group of very talented artists who tour under the name of The String Doctors.  The group consisted of several very familiar faces that have grace our stage individually, or as part of other groups.  These artists have joined forces to present an evening of extraordinary musicianship, story-telling, stage banter and original as well as traditional acoustic music.

   The String Doctors is comprised of well-known individual performing artists Joel Mabus, Ray Kamalay, Peter Knupfer and Dave Rosin.  

     Joel Mabus leads the group in so many ways.  His superb songwriting, guitar and mandolin rhythms and savvy stage presence brings unexpected banter and newborn songs to center stage.  Ray Kamalay is the crooner and jokester.  His sparkling guitar lends both hot solos and luscious chords.  Peter Knupfer, on fiddle, has been a popular freelance and session fiddler who has won fiddle championships in Wisconsin (1976) and Kansas (1995).   His swinging, bluesy fiddle style will have you leavin’ your seat and tappin’ your feet.  Dave Rosin brings up the bottom on standup bass who is an accomplished jazz bassist and teacher of all stringed instruments.   Together these four are The String Doctors, and they will bring a new kind of country swing to your lives, for your dancing and listening pleasure, and their “Michigan” humor will top off an evening of exceptional entertainment.

       Jennie DeVoe graced the Aten Place stage for the first time in  2013, and made a return engagement in 2015.  Most of the 2015 show was recorded and released as a ‘live CD’;  “Picking Flowers on the Moon”, recorded in the ‘big Barn’ – Aten Place.  What a tribute to us and a great CD to boot.

    Jennie is one of the most personable and audience engaging artists that has ever played our venue.  She immediately connects with the crowd with her soulful-blues-americana music, that is a unique marriage of folk and funk, sprinkled with rhythm and blues and a few well-chosen covers.  Her attraction hits an audience of all ages.  She is at her best in front of a listening audience (our venue), never failing to mesmerize and captivate with her talent, humor and personality.  Jennie is a master at drawing the audience in with her anecdotes and personal stories between each song.   It will be very difficult to attend this show and leave at the end of the night  without feeling like she's your personal friend.

     Jennie DeVoe is the kind of singer who makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand at attention.  Jennie is traveling with her small band that is compressed of Bill Ritter on bass and Brett Lodde on guitar.  To watch her work is to fall in love with someone who is in love with what they do.  One part power, two parts raw emotion. Jennie is the perfect blend of spirit, style and originality.

     Get ready for an evening of New Orleans style jazz and blues with the St. Louis, MO based Funky Butt Brass Band.

     As many of our patrons know, we take an extended traveling vacation each year in the fall following our last concert, searching for new music and artists.  This year, we spent several days in New Orleans, and the music we heard made us think that the ‘NOLA sound’ could be a really fun and different evening at Aten Place.  Our search for the right group resulted in the Funky Butt Brass Band.

    The Funky Butt Brass Band was formed in 2008 by six musicians who respect

and revere the New Orleans brass band tradition. The FBBB takes traditional drums NOLA brass tunes and add a contemporary twist. In a typical Funky Butt show, you’ll hear plenty of Crescent City jazz, but also Chicago blues, Memphis soul, Southern rock and St. Louis R&B.

     The band has been named Best Funk/Soul Band by the Riverfront Times for the past five years. Funky Butt Brass Band has played such prestigious festivals as the King Biscuit Blues Fest (Helena, AR), Gumbo Ya Ya (Rock Island, IL), the Big Muddy Blues Festival (St. Louis, MO), Roots N Blues N BBQ (Columbia, MO) and Blissfest (Harbor Springs, MI) and have opened for some legendary Louisiana artists, including Dr. John and the Lower 911, Rebirth Brass Band, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Bonerama, the New Orleans Sus- pects and the Royal Southern Brotherhood.

     The FBBB is comprised of musicians Aaron Chandler, on Trombone, Vocals, Austin Cebulske, Sax, Vocals, Tim Halpin, Guitar, Vocals Cody Henry, Sousaphone, and Adam Hucke, Trumpet, Vocals, and Ron Sikes on Drums.

     Funky Butt Brass Band released its debut CD, Cut The Body Loose, in the summer of 2009. A second CD, You Can Trust The Funky Butt Brass Band, entered the world in 2011. Later that year, on the heels of a successful annual holiday show, the band went into the studio and recorded a holiday EP entitled Shiny Christmas Balls. Their most recent record, Sugar Sugar Whomp Whomp was released in late 2014 and features nine funkified original songs along with three New Orleans classics..

         James Moors and Kort McCumber grew up in different places and listening to different kinds of music – classical, rock, bluegrass, you name it. But when they met ten years ago they knew they’d found something golden.  Since then, they’ve been cultivating their wide-ranging musical influences in songs that delve into love and life through haunting lyrics, soaring harmonies, and dazzling instrumental proficiency.

     Both James and Kort are independently successful solo artists who together have a unique blend of harmonies and instrumentation.  The duet met at the Rocky Mountain Folk Festival in 2005 and have been performing and writing together ever since. Embracing a bigger sound than most duos, they switch up instruments on almost every song (playing guitar, mandolin, piano, bouzouki, fiddle, harmonica, cello, 12-string guitar and Dobro), creating catchy melodies that are big, bright and electrifying to watch live.    

     Based in Superior, Wisconsin, James Moors has been heralded for his warm-hearted spirit that makes you want to hear more.  Colorado artist Kort McCumber plays a variety of instruments (guitar, banjo, mandolin, harmonica, piano) in his own brand of Americana that is one part rock and blues and two parts country bluegrass.  His songwriting abilities have made him a Colorado favorite and garnered him national and international recognition. Together, Moors and McCumber provide the whole family with an evening of musical memories that will be stuck in your head and hummed for weeks after the show.

          Each year, in our endeavor to offer a variety of music genres, we look for a Celtic group to introduce to our audiences.  This year’s selection is a cross-pollination of Celtic and North American traditional rock  in the form of what the band refers to lovingly as “Celtibilly”.  The sound is infectious, and so is their lively performance.

     Widely recognized as one of the top Celtic bands in Ontario, the Steel City Rovers play festivals and venues throughout Canada and the north central and eastern US including Michigan (Kalamazoo, Port Huron, Three Rivers, Saline, Three Oaks).   This will be their first visit to our venue.

      The Steel City Rovers, and their Celtibilly sound, have in a few short years, risen to perform internationally on multiple coveted stages, along with being nominated for numerous music awards.   Their music is original and works to the top the traditional radio charts.   Their stage performance is commanding and the dynamic musicianship is simply electric to witness in person. 

    This will be an evening that will be filled with high energy, top quality music, Canadian humor (eh) and should not be missed.  To help you understand the group’s subtle humor, one only needs to read their copyright infringement warning on their website:  “Unauthorized use of Steel City Rover material is not exactly prohibited, and it would probably help us at this point anyhow, but if you use it for evil, beware the long and certain reach of Karma's Army of Flying Monkeys. They have absolutely no sense of humor.”

Saturday, July 15, 2017

7:30 pm

Mulebone

   Mulebone made their first musical appearance at Aten Place in the summer of 2015.  They immediately became a hit, and our patrons made them one of the most requested returning artists that we have ever had.

    This Brooklyn-based musical duo consists of Excello Studios owner Hugh Pool on guitar, boot board, vocals, and harmonica, and John Ragusa on any number of flutes, tin whistles, jaw harp, and Conch shells.  Together in Mulebone, Hugh and John play slide guitar boogies, 1 chord trance riffs a la Howlin Wolf the up-tempo rags of Reverend Gary Davis and country blues of all shapes and colors. Sometimes they play close to the source, almost as if tracing the image, and at other moments, they re-examine the source, float above it, take a new look as one understanding their home from a distant land.

     Mulebone music spent 15 weeks in the Top 100 Albums in America.  Along with playing live and TV appearances, they won blues artist of the year at radio stations from Seattle, Washington to Red Bank, New Jersey. Any given week, you may find them playing clubs in NYC or entertaining at private parties thrown by David Rockefeller, Bruce Wasserstein and list of other East Coast residents who are enthusiastic about bringing these boys in for a party by road, sea or air.

     This is a long awaited return visit from a truly talented bluegrass band, The RFD Boys.  Their first appearance on our stage was in 2010, and we have been looking for a time when we could work them back into our summer schedule ever since.

     In October 1969, when the RFD Boys played their first concert together, they were still U-M students, and bluegrass was as unknown here as cable TV in the Ozarks. Today it's as common as e-mail in Appalachia, and the RFD Boys are still going strong. Though they've turned their degrees into full-time, offstage careers, their music has taken them all over Michigan and the Midwest, and as far away as Germany, France, Australia and Malta. In the last three decades they've shared stages with a who's who of bluegrass and country musicians, from Bill Monroe and Ralph Stanley to Ricky Skaggs and Randy Travis.

     At a recent concert at the Ark, where they've been the house bluegrass band for the last thirty years, the audience ranged from three-year-olds to grandparents who might have gone to college with the "Boys." The atmosphere is festive, the crowd clapping and stomping from the first tune and hollering out requests between songs. The more reticent write their favorites on napkins and stuff them in the red mailbox standing beside the stage. The Boys check their "mail" regularly, and with a repertoire of nearly 750 pieces, they're tough to stump. They have originals, like guitarist and lead singer Charlie Roehrig's "Sit by the River," a lovely ode to the Charles River, and to his grandfather, who had Charlie convinced it was named after him. It's been recorded by the Country Gentlemen and even wound up on their "best of" album. Charlie's heartfelt tenor is perfectly suited to bluegrass, and decades of singing together have blended the Boys' three-part and four-part harmonies to the smoothness of Kentucky bourbon.

      Since last time the RFD Boys were at Aten Place, their founder and fiddle player, Richard Dieterle, lost his battle with cancer.  The new fiddle player is David Mosher.  For over 20 years, David Mosher has had the good fortune to perform, write, produce, record and teach music full time. Based in Southeast Michigan, he's stitched himself throughout the fabric of the state's musical community as a sideman for some of the states best known performers, including Kitty Donohoe, Matt Watroba and many others, as well as a band member of the Black Thorn, The Raisin’ Pickers.


FRIDAY, August 25, 2017

7:30 pm

The Ragbirds



AND



SATURDAY, August 26, 2017

7:30 pm

The Ragbirds


Call to be placed on waiting list

231-549-2076







         Our very final show before closing the doors on our 23-years of presenting Concerts in the Barn will bring back one our favorite bands, The Ragbirds.  Those that have seen their shows at our venue know that the music and evening will truly be magical.  The perfect group of artist to help us close our venue with flare, panache and grandeur.

    The Ragbird’s music is a genre-bending hybrid of indie-pop melodies, global rhythms and songwriting styles influenced from all over the world. The Ragbirds developed a well-deserved reputation as one of the most dynamic, high-spirited live bands in roots music.

     In 2008, The Ragbirds were introduced to the Aten Place patrons, and their enthusiasm and talent became an immediate hit.  Like a mix tape made by a well-traveled friend, The Ragbirds music is diverse and foreign, yet somehow familiar. The Ragbirds' shows are always fun affairs, with front person Erin Zindle dancing her way through multiple genres that can include a Cajun-zydeco tune, followed by an Americana-bluegrass song, then a sea shanty.

     The Ragbirds songs strike a balance between home and adventure, drawing upon elements of Pop, Gypsy, Afro-Cuban, Celtic, Middle Eastern and African sounds, with a little Cajun spice.   Erin’s energy, songwriting and multi-instrumental talent easily demands attention.  Her infectious smile and positive message, spun through her poetic lyrical loom, skillfully switches between violin, mandolin, accordion, banjo and percussion, all while dancing.

     “It’s folk-rock music at the heart of it”, says Zindle, who started the band with her husband, percussionist Randall Moore, “but I’m influenced and moved by sounds from all over the world”.  This interest in world music came first from her own roots.  With two Irish grandmothers, the young violinist struck ancestral gold when she discovered Celtic fiddling as a teenager. 

      Zindle and Moore began their relationship busking on the streets of Ann Arbor with Celtic and gypsy fiddling over tricky beats of tambourine,  Middle-Eastern doumbek and tabla.  In 2005 the duo gathered three band mates and began to record Erin’s original songs.  This recording was released a few months later as The Ragbirds debut album “Yes Nearby”.   Erin’s brother T.J. Zindle, has had a longtime appreciation for rock and roll, and brings that influence into the mix.  The deep-seated grooves, performed by the three-piece rhythm section of drummer Jon Brown, percussionist Moore and bassist Dan Jones, mix punch with precision.

     For all their traveling, The Ragbirds maintain a steady connection to their home base.  While reflecting on Michigan, Erin had this to say “… It’s a beautiful place to be, snuggled in the Great Lakes, close enough to hold hands with Canada. It is connected to a secret, mysterious, magical place called the U.P., but most of all there is an amazingly talented and humbly supportive music community that spreads through the state, clustered into groups in Ann Arbor and Lansing, Grand Rapids, Flint, Traverse City and Detroit. The scene (and scenery) keeps us fueled with love and inspiration.”

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 at 2:00 pm

Children’s Matinee

Karen Bonnici Czarnik

Storyteller

     Linking her musical and theatrical work with the traditions of storytelling, her performances inspire audiences of all ages. Karen incorporates physical animation, characters, and stories and songs, both old and new to create an enlivening experience. Accompanying herself on the autoharp, she creates an interactive experience for audiences with her unique collection of traditional and original works. Karen’s performances, workshops, and classes for storytelling groups, schools, libraries, story slams, festivals, and more offer “edutainment” through the art of Storytelling.

     Karen has been a Performing Artist since childhood, and has been involved in a variety of performance roles. In 1996, Karen discovered the world of storytelling, and has been mesmerized, enchanted and engaged in the art form ever since.

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