This Saturday, April 6, Kathleen performs live at Heart Tribe in Fairfax, CA at 7pm!

KATHLEEN’S SHOW! THIS COMING SATURDAY: April 6 at Heart Tribe in Fairfax!

DATE:  Saturday, April 6
TIME:  Doors open 6:45pm and Show at 7pm
WHERE:  Heart Tribe 7 Bolinas Road Fairfax, CA 94930
COST:  $20 Advance, $25 at the Door
TICKETS: Purchase Tickets Here

Please come join Kathleen Dunbar for this intimate limited seating engagement. Advance tickets recommended to reserve your seat! Purchase Tickets Here 

• This will be a celebration of specially selected songs from her musical catalog.
• You’ll hear songs from her first three albums, including her most recently released album Liars, Cutthroats and Dames. Plus a sneak peek into songs from her upcoming fourth album of love songs, Smoochy Smoo.
• Let her beguile and bewitch you, inspire you, break your heart, and make you laugh! Her songs are vignettes into our very-human temptations and redemptions, with a good dose of humor whilst the angels and devils bet which way we go at the crossroads.
• You can listen to Kathleen here: kathleendunbar.com

Kathleen Dunbar and her literally amazing band of talented Better Devils, achieves a rare and utterly unique blend of musical and lyrical symmetry. Highly recommended!”—Russell David“Kathleen Dunbar has just renewed my appreciation for story-telling songs. The genres mix beautifully to form a potent eye of the storm into which you’ll gladly be swept.”—Music Emissions

This will be an intimate evening with Kathleen–Advanced Tickets recommended. Purchase Tickets Here 

Kathleen Dunbar San Francisco Singer-Songwriter Kathleen Dunbar performs her blend of rootsy, humorous, and spellbinding storytelling about tragedy and redemption through her original song compositions in the Americana tradition. Join her on a musical journey into the darkness of the heart, love, betrayal, steamy romance, and the transformation of the spirit after passing through the flames. These are stories about us as we face the circumstances we humans get ourselves into and the choices that we ultimately make—some of them funky, some of them ending in the dark, others rising into the light of morning.

For this intimate evening Kathleen will be joined by her guitarist, producer and multi-instrumentalist Gawain Mathews and stand up bass player Ben Levine.

Gawain Mathews gigs with Kathleen Dunbar as her guitarist and banjo player. His magic thread runs all through the music you hear. Gawain is Kathleen’s arranger and producer. On her CDs he plays guitar, mandola, banjo, keyboards, pedal steel, accordion and percussion. Gawain hails from the wilds of Wales and the hot deserts of Utah (he prefers clouds to sun). He brings multiple skills as producer and arranger and years of musicianship in a wide range of styles. He’s toured as guitarist for Mickey Hart. Gawain has had his original music featured on Fox’s American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance. Currently he’s a music producer in the San Francisco Bay Area working with a diverse roster of clients and styles.

Ben Levine is a bassist whose performing career has taken him to all 50 States, Europe, China, Canada, and Central America. He has performed as a sideman with some of the top recording stars in country music including multi-platinum artists Neal McCoy and Mark Wills, as well as former American Idol Josh Gracin. Ben is also a founding member of the groundbreaking bluegrass tribute band “Honeywagon” whose 2003 album “Green Day Blue Grass” spent over a year in the top 10 of Billboard’s Bluegrass Album Chart reaching as high as the #3 position. Ben was also a featured performer on the Grammy winning classical album “Guitar Heroes” by the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. An active musician in the Bay Area, Ben teaches at Diablo Valley College and performs with several popular local groups including, The Boombox, Bell and Co., Haulin’ Oats, and The Urban Outlaws. Visit Ben’s bluegrass site at: http://honeywagonmusic.com

This will be an intimate evening with Kathleen. Advance Tickets recommended.

Dive Deeper into my New CD “Liars, Cutthroats and Dames.” The Back Story behind my song “Circus.” Get a FREE SONG DOWNLOAD!

Hello Everybody!

FREE DOWNLOAD of “Circus”
For a limited time get a FREE DOWNLOAD of my song Circus from my just released album Liars, Cutthroats and Dames. Here’s the link:
https://kathleendunbarmusic.com/get-a-free-download-here

THE BACK STORY BEHIND MY SONG “Circus”
Where do my songs come from? I feel they might be playing in some other universe and I receive a transmission right into my radio heart-brain. Somehow I “hear” them and out they flow from my voice and pen! The original impetus for the song “Circus” on my brand new album Liars, Cutthroats and Dames is a dream I had one night! In the dream I was laying in a large bed on a mezzanine with the various wild acts of a circus happening on every level of the oddly shaped building. Suddenly a knife thrower appeared and threw his knifes with lightning speed all around my body, outlining me! He was almost completely accurate. One of the knives gave a papercut graze to my cheek. In the dream I wondered, “Hm, I wonder if it’s a good idea or not to date him?” Ha! I woke up and thought, “My god! This is a song!” and proceeded to tell the story of the knifethrower. You will hear in the instrumental section a theramin, an instrument I love, which renders so well the tight-rope drama of the circus. My producer-multi-instrumentalist Gawain Mathews perfectly arranged the song with an organ carrying forward the larger than life pulse of the circus, and plays the idiosyncratic voices of an accordion, mandola, banjo and guitar. We got a big virtual “Piatti” symbol crash. And BIG thanks to Nicholas Daniel Wlodarszyk for his completely awesome comic trombone. Here’s the opening lyrics:

a freak as a boy on the far side of hell
he lived by his wits in a crumbling motel

with the eyes of a gunner, a rock steady aim
all that he lacked was a good looking dame



charm won the girl and the damage was done

his prospects weren’t much but it sounded like fun

when the call comes for you and you step in the ring

inside the big tent you get to be king!



. . . for the rest of the lyrics click here: https://kathleendunbar.bandcamp.com/track/circus

HOW TO LISTEN TO THE ENTIRE CD: You can listen to complete tracks of the entire album at this link on my Store page: https://www.kathleendunbarmusic.com/store
You can listen to all of the songs on the album three times for free before being prompted to purchase. You can purchase the album via Itunes, Amazon, etc. simply by visiting the links on my website Store page. In addition to offering a digital download, you can also order a physical CD from CDBaby—again, right there on my Store page.

PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD:
Please feel free to forward this to anyone who you feel would like to accompany me on this musical journey. Thank you in advance for your support, my dears!

Love, Kathleen

Photography by Joseph Feusi
All songs copyrighted by Kathleen Dunbar

Kathleen ON THE RADIO Monday May 25 Labor Day 3:30-ish on SF Community Radio

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Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 8.39.09 PMRADIO INTERVIEW: Kathleen will be interviewed on Blue Lew’s SFCR Radio show this Monday, May 25!
WHEN: Monday, May 25, Labor Day
TIME: Somewhere between 3:30 and 5:30!
SHOW: The Blue Lew Show
INTERNET RADIO: To listen to the interview and music from my current and my upcoming CDs here’s how ya do it:
1) Go to this link: http://savekusf.org/shows
2) On the right side under the banner entitled Listen to SFCR click on the link that says, Launch Live365 Player. You can see what it looks like in the picture at the top here.
3) A screen will appear and you’ll immediately be tuned in! You can see what it looks like on the picture below.

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We Wowed ‘Em at Bill Cook’s Barn!

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Thanks to everyone who helped make the gig at Bill Cook’s Barn an amazing show! Bill says, “Kathleen’s music and her band are top class. Wow! Her songs are diverse, sensitive, powerful and spellbinding.”

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Thanks to my smokin’ hot band: The Better Devils, an amazing trio of topnotch touring and studio musicians:
Gawain Mathews, most recently he’s been the touring guitarist for Grateful Dead’s Mickey Hart.
Kevin Hayes, drummer for Robert Cray, including on Cray’s Emmy-award winning album Take Your Shoes Off.
Paul Olguin, bass player for the likes of Bob Weir, Elvin Bishop, Maria Muldaur, Huey Lewis, and more.KathBillsBarn-10

  • Host Bill Cook served up his legendary hospitality—his preshow dinner and the truly amazing venue—a “barn” that Bill has converted into a large premier performance and dance space. His high end sound system and the barn’s acoustics are a band’s and an KathBillsBarn-13audience’s dream!
  • Thank you Megan for your very careful attention and the super-kind gift of your presence and experience, and for altering your flight to go on a redeye in order to videotape me!
  • Thank you Gabriella for your enthusiasm, it really touched my heart—keep your creativity coming!
  • Behind-the-scenes Key Man Joseph Feusi did his usual magic that we know about because everything ran smoothly! and thanks for the delightful Bill’s Barnyard photo of the Band!
  • Michael Garrigues was a wonderful surprise guest—thanks for your awesome performance photos!
  • And as always—to my wonderful fans—much, much love! What an amazing feeling to look out in the audience and see you all grooving to the experience!

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Awesome performance photos by Michael Garrigues, Foglifter Media
Bill’s barnyard photo by Joseph Feusi, Mentor Extraordinaire!
Listen to and purchase my original songs at katheendunbarmusic.com 

Upcoming Gig May 16 at Bill’s Barn!

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Bill Cook is hosting me, Kathleen Dunbar,
and my band The Better Devils in his “Barn”

I’m putting on a really cool show down just South of Pescadero in
Bill Cook’s Barn. Bill has turned his barn into a premier venue showcase. It has a state of the art sound system. Plenty of room for dancing. A fire pit outside to talk to friends and cook marshmallows. Lots of parking. Beautiful countryside. And this show comes with a free turkey dinner prepared by Bill with all the fixin’s!!!
4pm dinner; 6pm showtime!

Go this link for all the info: Info For Kathleen’s Saturday May 16th Show

Or, let me tell ya about it right now: 

DATE: SATURDAY MAY 16th
TIME: 4pm/dinner 6pm/show
WHERE: 10350 Cabrillo Hwy, Pescadero ½ mile south of Bean Hollow Beach, East Side, American Flag marks the driveway
DINNER: Is DONATED by Bill!— TURKEY DINNER with FRESH LOCAL VEGETABLES And you are invited to bring a small potluck fav to share
COST: $20 donation to the band suggested, but if it’s not in your budget… Please come! Your attendance is the best contribution!!!
VENUE: Plenty of comfortable seating, room to dance, great sound! Outdoor fire pit to toast marshmallows in! The sunset over the Pacific Ocean! Beautiful countryside!

ABOUT BILL’S “BARN”: Bill has transformed his “Barn” into · A beautiful large premier performance & dance space with a great sound system · Bill’s Barn sits on a beautiful piece of property where you can dance & listen inside · Hang outside in the glorious countryside & watch the sun go down along Highway 1 · Sit around the fire pit in the evening · Partake of his famous Turkey dinner with all the trimmings · Plenty of free parking · Feel free to bring family, friends and a bit of food or drink to share! · KIDS WELCOME! No RSVP necessary

ABOUT ME: San Francisco Singer-Songwriter Kathleen Dunbar Webpage: http://www.kathleendunbarmusic.com
Hear me on Pandora! My band and I have delighted audiences at Peri’s, The Uptown, Rudramandir, Underground SF, Mutiny Radio and numerous local house concerts. I’ll be performing original songs in the Americana tradition from my first two CDs as well as my upcoming CD Liars, Cutthroats and Dames, all produced by multi-instrumentalist and recently touring guitarist for Mickey Hart, Gawain Mathews.

ABOUT MY BAND: I’ll be accompanied by my smokin’ hot band The Better Devils: An amazing trio of topnotch touring and studio musicians:
GAWAIN MATHEWS Most recently he’s been the touring guitarist for Grateful Dead’s Mickey Hart
KEVIN HAYES Drummer for Robert Cray, including on Cray’s Emmy-award winning album Take Your Shoes Off
PAUL OLGUIN Bass player for the likes of Bob Weir, Elvin Bishop, Maria Muldaur, Huey Lewis, & more

DIRECTIONS FROM SF–THREE DIFFERENT WAYS:
To Take Hwy 1: Take a relaxing scenic drive along the coast of California on Hwy 1 down from SF
To Take 280 + Hwy 1: Zip down 280 to the cutover on 92 then down Hwy 1
To Take Skyline: Take Skyline/35 down to Alice’s restaurant and cut over on 84 past La Honda to Hwy 1
DIRECTIONS FROM SANTA CRUZ:
From Santa Cruz Come on up Hwy 1

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What Did You Dream Last Night?

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What Did You Dream Last Night?

The rain was coming. I was soon to marry a man. However, an attractive woman appeared in the crowd at the coffee shop, and I thought, hm, I’ll marry her! Both the man and the woman were shining creatures, like small bright airplanes ready to take off, or scarves flying loose and high in the wind.

The window of the coffee shop took up an entire wall. Outside was a narrow street and buildings of old gray stone. There was a view to a woodland. The first drops of rain fell upon the street and in the woods. In my own body I felt the delicious holding-in before the release. I could feel the trees out on the wood’s verge also holding very still in the last moment of anticipation before opening to drink the rain.

The door of the coffee shop rang its bell and I turned to see a bewildered individual enter and make his way inside. He wore a coat softened with wear and the beginnings of the rain. His thin straight hair hadn’t been combed. It took me a moment to realize that he was presenting himself to me: his soft coat and his eyes, and something else: He held out his hands to me, both of them, palms downward. At first I didn’t understand.

The shop was crowded with people talking and waiting for their coffee drinks, faces and bodies expectantly turned towards the espresso machine. He’d threaded his way through the people and stood looking sideways between two energetic types. He looked up at me, beiA-What Did You Dream Last Night 11-29-14ng slightly shorter than my own six feet.

Something about this fellow, and all my thoughts of marriage—which seemed like a fun dash through life—fell out of my head. I knew without asking that he’d found me through a kind of physical intuition, like following the furtherest tendril of a plant back along to its root, and here, he had come to that vigorous source—me—as though we were kin.

He smiled, and waited for me to look at his hands.

The thing that shifted me, that took me from the world of the air to the ground around me, were his eyes. They showed me his inward world, and what I saw gave me a frisson of fear—here was a weary angel sad for the need for a coat in a town of stone and damp, and also a human creature given eyes to see who had used those eyes for all they were worth and found them wanting. He was on the knife edge of something momentous, and he had come to show me. He had an air of shock about him, but also relief. And he seemed to offer kindness, if I wanted to take it.

I looked closely at his hands, out-held, palm down, and by that reflex we have to mirror another’s gestures, I held out my own hands and looked at them. I gasped! Out of the ends of my left middle and index fingers something protruded. Tough little stems growing right out of my finger ends. Without a word he gave a little gesture, a “me too” of emphasis with his hands, and I saw that the both of us were sending out green shoots.

I was horrified. What was happening to me? With an instinct for the worst, before I knew it I’d taken off my shoes. My feet, normally pale with their unsunned days, had gone red—the veins, bright and swirling, showed clearly through the skin. My feet looked like pot-bound plants, when the gardenerA-What Did You Dream Last Night 11-29-14 has at last struck off the pots to find them a larger home to root.

I know I panicked at first. I don’t even remember leaving the coffee shop, or the hours afterwards. While I could still walk and get about, before I was completely transformed into a tree—for surely that was what was happening—I had to find the place I wanted to root, to remain. Losing the ability to move my body, I still wanted to move my eyes—I actually believed it mattered what I would look out and see. In short, I wanted to have a view. I didn’t remember seeing in the face of my kindly friend that he knew, and was trying to show me, that soon the eyes wouldn’t matter either.

I stood still on the street at the edge of town. The rain had paused, but the cool wet of it went deeply and refreshingly into me as I breathed. I thought of a beautiful country I’d seen in dreams: large old spreading trees tucked in a narrow valley, where a river poured itself over huge stones. Then immediately I was drawn to the mountains of another dream-place, where the pines stood and sighed out of the old sand of risen seabeds. I was searching my mind madly for the right place, when the still small voice said, no, none of those—you must go to—Colorado! I was an aspen, don’t you know. Colorado has miles of them.

My rational mind didn’t want to go to somewhere as “commonplace” as Colorado if I could go anywhere of my own imagining. But the wise voice knew better. I saw a little ridge that fell down at its end into a canyon. Across the wA-What Did You Dream Last Night 11-29-14ay the wall of the mountain rose to a great height. The air was full of unrained rain, the clouds as yet not letting down their water, but as full as they could be before letting all of it go.

I am sorry to say that I was unkind to my tree-kin man. Caring only about my own fear, I ran off and left him. It makes sense to me now that he didn’t speak—perhaps he’d already lost the ability to do so, or if he hadn’t, what words could possibly express this change! I had been terrified when faced with no choice in the matter. But as the dream ended the scrambling terrified energy of my mind began to lift up and off me as I settled down onto the mountain ridge, and the rain began to fall gently upon me. I woke and began to retell the tale to myself, as one does with dreams, bringing it from the depths of the magic land, like a rough gem unearthed which points to the mystery of the whole treasure. And I began to wonder: the tree man had been excited to see me, and kind, and I’d missed that in my panic. I realized he knew enough to surrender, and to invite me into the mystery, a real zen koan of a place. An enigma . . .

. . . out of sorts, but curious, I got out of bed, opened my computer, and looked up a place I’d once travelled to, in Colorado, a place called Crested Butte. I’d hiked near there—all this in the waking world mind you—on the top of the world one late spring. I’d walked through meadows of blue lupine, and stopped to drink water near a patch of white albino lupine that tumbled over both sides of the path. Tired out after miles of walking, and needing to get to my next destination to sleep, that long evening I’d driven through an aspen grove that lasted miles upon miles, and remembered what I’d read in the guide-book: That such large stands of western aspens are a single individual grown from one seedling. One such forest in neighboring Utah is estimated to be 80,000 years old and among the oldest known living organisms on earth, and is the heaviest living organism at 13 million pounds. The roots send up shoots that live up to a hundred and thirty years, when they die and are absorbed in the forest soil to nourish the roots, and other shoots are sent A-What Did You Dream Last Night? up. Fires may destroy the surface trees, but the roots send up new growth and the forest lives both under the ground and in the living air once again.

We are individual raindrops in a storm of melted air that is eventually taken to the sea, where we are both the drops and the whole. We are, too, the trees upon the mountain in a fling of color and trembling and white bodies full of birds, and we are the one root that holds them all, and we are the mystery out of which all this beauty comes. So, it is good to drink coffee, to marry and to fall apart if that’s what helps us learn, to desire and wonder, and walk where our feet take us and talk madly and quietly and angrily and kindly and sometimes not at all and to use our limbs and hands to live this incredible thing that is life. And in the end to fall back into the earth after the wild beautiful riot of the body is finished.

We are the rain and the rained on. The body and the source. And so, I think, I was visited with an angel in my dream, with wild shoots growing out of his finger ends, kindly pointing the way.

Photos by Kathleen Dunbar

For a song about becoming a tree, try this one from my CD Finally Home. It’s called “Sweet Rain” and you can find it on Bandcamp or kathleendunbarmusic.com

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Live Video of Kathleen Dunbar and The Better Devils

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I had a great time performing at Peri’s in Fairfax on 11/24/13 with my awesome band, The Better Devils: Thanks and Big Hugs to Gawain Mathews on Guitar, Paul Olguin on Bass, Jon Arkin on Drums, Joseph Feusi as Sound Tech and Videographer, Tamarind Free Jones for her love and Album Photography, and Jennifer Cortright for her love and a fab Green Room! Rock on! Here’s my original song, Lilah!

Please have a listen to me on this video!