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Monthly Update
Brent's Pastrami Reuben

Brent's Pastrami Reuben

Janis relaxed in Baja

Janis relaxed in Baja

Yes, this is how close they get

Yes, this is how close they get

Janis, Tom, & Natalia backstage

Janis, Tom, & Natalia backstage

Janis, the Mautes, and a birthday cake

Janis, the Mautes, and a birthday cake

Janis & MT Winter

Janis & MT Winter

Janis, Pete et al Clearwater

Janis, Pete et al Clearwater

Janis & Phoebe Snow Cast Party by Mark

Janis & Phoebe Snow Cast Party by Mark

Janis, Jerry Lewis & Mike Douglas

Janis, Jerry Lewis & Mike Douglas

Janisand the Del McCoury band

Janisand the Del McCoury band

The Wedding group

The Wedding group

May 18, 2011

As I continue trying to juggle being self-managed with writing, performing, and all the other things I want to do, more and more things slip through the cracks. The monthly updates, for instance. I was waiting until our LA trip was over, to tell you that we got to hang backstage at Big Bang Theory! and watch a run-through with Bill Prady and Chuck Lorre. Then I wanted to tell you about Brent's Deli and the best pastrami sandwich in the universe. And whale-watching in Baja with National Geographic.

Except by the time I was ready with that, I wanted to wait and see how the US tour went. (Who would have thought one of this years' highlights would be Logan, Utah?!) And then I was in Florida with Natalia Zukerman, but I also wanted to see how the dates with Tom Paxton and Natalia went (they were fabulous). Then I was waiting until the European dates were finalized, and the Joan Maute/Gail Kerbaugh LRC in Hilton Head was done (it was fantastic).

Somewhere in there I turned sixty, much to my astonishment - Debra and Lee strung Mylar all over the front of my hotel door and took me out for lobster (there's never enough lobster), and fans brought me gifts and sang "Happy Birthday" all week long. I was kind of waiting to see if I survived it before I wrote an update.

Then I wanted to tell you about the amazing day I spent with noted feminist theologian Miriam Therese Winter, author of Paradoxology, promoter of quantum theology, and one of my favorite people in the universe. I did my laundry in her basement while we talked about women, religion, politics, and the world as we wish it would be.

Those of you following my occasional message forum bursts know that I was asked to record one of her songs, and wound up instead adapting her spoken-word piece "You Are the Song", which has become "I Am the One." I'll be recording it next month for the tribute album, and of course wanted to wait until I had more information to give you. Which I don't yet. But I did get to sing it for her, privately and then publicly, and tell her that in my own small tribute to her, I'd be donating all my royalties from the project to the Medical Mission Sisters.

Well. Nothing like a Jewish songwriter and a Catholic sister spending a few days together to bring home the importance of family! Before I knew it, it was Passover. My little crew and I headed for Nahant to stay with Uncle Bernie and Aunt Emily, feasting on lobster and walking by the ocean... well, I really didn't feel like doing a website update then! Besides, I was waiting on the UK tour dates to be finalized, and rushing to organize a last-minute living room concert in Brooklyn. (That makes two this year, with another two upcoming. Go Pearl Foundation!)

We headed south for a Clearwater benefit in Tarrytown, where I got to spend time with old friends like Peter Yarrow, Jay Ungar & Molly Mason, the ever-delightful and superbly talented David Amram, and Bernice Reagon - and play piano behind Pete Seeger! Around the corner, we discovered something called a Kyoto iced coffee at Coffee Labs and fell in love. (Though sadly, the equipment is far too expensive for any of us... but still, one can hope they open a branch in Nashville!)

Right around then, my old friend Phoebe Snow died. It hit me like a ton of bricks; Phoebe was always one of my favorite writers, and such a fine singer that my contracts actually stated I would not have to follow her on stage. (The only other time I've ever demanded that is when I worked with Richie Havens.) She was also my contemporary, which brought my birthday home a little more forcefully than I'd have liked. And I still didn't have final European tour dates!

I found out Between the Lines is being re-issued on Boxstar Records in vinyl and in a gold CD, so I wanted to tell you about that... but I still don't have release dates... then Peter Cunningham found a treasure trove of old photos, and I had to vet them out for use on other projects, but I wanted to show you this one of me with Jerry Lewis... and then it was time to go home!

Having lost a dear, dear friend to cancer recently, I was even more determined to give my body the best shot by keeping my medical checks up-to-date, so when I finally got here I had my eyes checked, bone density, blood work, mammogram, pap smear, dental - and amazingly enough after all that road time, everything is great. (Thanks for asking.) I wanted to wait until the results to do my update.

Then I got to go to a Del McCoury recording session, and I was waiting to tell you about that. (It was fantastic - what an amazing bunch of players! And just about the sweetest folk you can imagine.) Also did harmonies for my old friend and co-writer Jon Vezner on his new CD. And was waiting for the European dates to be finalized.

My European agent, Paul Fenn, was in town last week and we spent some good time together, talking about European tour managers for this run (don't ask), hotel prices (really don't ask), and how soon the UK dates would be finalized.

Then Pat and I began watching our friend George R. R. Martin's series Game of Thrones, and I wanted to brag that he and his partner Parris McBride were among the five people who stood up for us when we were married in 2003, and offer my public congratulations to them on this stunning success, but I really wanted to finish reading the series before I posted anything. And see if any of my tour dates were anywhere near the filming. Which I still don't know.

But finally, just this morning, the tour dates are finished and up on the website. I'm home, in one piece, trying to cope with weather swings here in Nashville - set out my basil and cilantro a little while ago in 80 degree weather, then watched it swing down to 50 this week. I feel like it's already fall, and I'm already in Europe.

Life could be worse, at sixty.

Best,

Janis Ian

Janis

We are reading: George Alec Effinger, pretty much everything.
We are listening to: Sarah Jarosz' stunning new CD, Follow Me Down.

Hot News
  • Store closed until December 26, except for digital orders!

    Our store will be temporarily closed until Friday, December 26th.

     

    Watch for our annual "January White Sale," coming from January 16th through January 25th.

  • The Singer & the Song receives prestigious Voice Arts nomination!

    A ten week project that is "among the best singing I've ever done" is now beginning to receive worldwide recognition.

  • Janis and Tommy Emmanuel!

    Tommy Emmanuel joins Janis at the Philadelphia Folk Festival - and there's video!

[more hot news]

Tour Dates

click on any date for full information
click again to close that date

All tour dates updated on December 6, 2014

  • February 18

    The Rhythm Room, Phoenix, AZ

    The Rhythm Room

    Phoenix, AZ

    Phone: (602) 265-4842

    Visit the venue's website

    One of Janis' favorite clubs, the Rhythm Room is a funky, friendly place with fantastic audiences! Anything can happen - one visit, her dressing room was a converted closet (cleaned and dusted, but a little airless.) Another time, 3 people in the front row called in a pizza order just before she went onstage, left the room to meet the delivery guy and pay, brought the pizza back to their seats, ate it, then left during her fifth song. (We have no idea why they came in the first place.) Janis says "We call places like the Rhythm Room 'hot & sweaty gigs' because that's what they are - and those places are where you can experiment, take chances, try out newer material. Great gig."

  • Friday February 20

    Rio Grande Theatre, Las Cruces, NM

    Rio Grande Theatre

    Las Cruces, NM

    Phone: (877)466-3404

    Visit the venue's website

    A first-time event for Janis; in 40+ years of touring, she's never played Las Cruces. Very exciting!

  • Sunday February 22

    TBA, Santa Fe, NM

    TBA

    Santa Fe, NM

    Phone: TBA

    Visit the venue's website

    You'll know when we know!

  • Monday Feburary 23

    TBA, Santa Fe, NM

    TBA

    Santa Fe, NM

    Phone: TBA

    Visit the venue's website

    You'll know when we know!

  • Wednesday March 4th with Tom Paxton

    South Orange Performing Arts Center, South Orange, NJ

    South Orange Performing Arts Center

    South Orange, NJ

    Phone: 973-313-2787

    Visit the venue's website

    Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show, at New York's famed Village Gate. Janis was just 13 years old. She received a standing ovation but since she was nervous and already headed back to her seat, she had no idea it was happening. (She also hadn't attended enough concerts to know that you were supposed to take an encore!) Tom, along with Lou Gossett Jr and a couple of other performers, urged her to "Go back, kid! Go back!"

    The show these two old friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "The sum is greater than the parts." In addition to singing old favorites like "Ramblin' Boy" and "At 17", they sing one another's songs, add harmony and instrumentals, and share the stage for what feels like far too short a time.

    Don't miss this once in a lifetime opportunity!

  • Thursday March 5th with Tom Paxton

    Tarrytown Music Hall, Tarrytown, NY

    Tarrytown Music Hall

    Tarrytown, NY

    Phone: 877-840-0457

    Visit the venue's website

    Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show, at New York's famed Village Gate. Janis was just 13 years old. She received a standing ovation but since she was nervous and already headed back to her seat, she had no idea it was happening. (She also hadn't attended enough concerts to know that you were supposed to take an encore!) Tom, along with Lou Gossett Jr and a couple of other performers, urged her to "Go back, kid! Go back!"

    The show these two old friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalistextraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "The sum is greater than the parts." In addition to singing old favorites like "Ramblin' Boy" and "At 17", they sing one another's songs, add harmony and instrumentals, and share the stage for far too short a time.

    Don't miss it!

  • Friday March 6 with Tom Paxton

    The City Winery, New York, NY

    The City Winery

    New York, NY

    Phone: 212-608-0555 X 714

    Visit the venue's website

    Finally, Janis and Tom in New York! This is a great venue, great sound, great performers. Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show; Janis was just 13 years old. She took the stage with Tom, Lou Gossett Jr., Phil Ochs, Eric Anderson, and other folk singers to get a standing ovation and two encores.

    The show these two old friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "the sum is greater than the parts". They'll each be doing a solo set, so you'll still get to hear songs like "At 17", but they'll also be singing on one another's songs, harmonizing, playing backup, and kidding around. Don't miss it!

  • Saturday March 7 - with Tom Paxton

    Patchogue Theatre, Patchogue, NY

    Patchogue Theatre

    Patchogue, NY

    Phone: (631) 207-1313

    Visit the venue's website

    Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show, at New York's famed Village Gate. Janis was just 13 years old. She received a standing ovation but since she was nervous and already headed back to her seat, she had no idea it was happening. (She also hadn't attended enough concerts to know that you were supposed to take an encore!) Tom, along with Lou Gossett Jr, Phil Ochs, and a few other performers, urged her to "Go back, kid - go back!"

    The show these two dear friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "the sum is greater than the parts." In addition to singing old favorites like "Ramblin' Boy" and "At 17", they sing on each others' songs, add harmonies and instrumentals, and share the stage for what feels like far too short a time.

    Don't miss this once in a lifetime opportunity!

  • Sunday March 8 with Tom Paxton

    Marasco Performing Arts Center, Monroe Township, NJ

    Marasco Performing Arts Center

    Monroe Township, NJ

    Phone: (732) 521-4400

    Visit the venue's website

    Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show, at New York's famed Village Gate. Janis was just 13 years old. She received a standing ovation but since she was nervous and already headed back to her seat, she had no idea it was happening. (She also hadn't attended enough concerts to know that you were supposed to take an encore!) Tom, along with Lou Gossett Jr and a couple of other performers, urged her to "Go back, kid! Go back!"

    The show these two old friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "The sum is greater than the parts." In addition to singing old favorites like "Ramblin' Boy" and "At 17", they sing one another's songs, add harmony and instrumentals, and share the stage for far too short a time.

    Don't miss it!

  • Wednesday March 18 with Tom Paxton

    The Dakota, Minneapolis, MN

    The Dakota

    Minneapolis, MN

    Phone: (612) 332-5299

    Visit the venue's website

    Tom Paxton was at Janis' very first public show, at New York's famed Village Gate. Janis was just 13 years old. She received a standing ovation but since she was nervous and already headed back to her seat, she had no idea it was happening. (She also hadn't attended enough concerts to know that you were supposed to take an encore!) Tom, along with Lou Gossett Jr and a couple of other performers, urged her to "Go back, kid! Go back!"

    The show these two old friends put on, with the able assistance of multi-instrumentalistextraordinaire Robin Bullock, is living proof that "The sum is greater than the parts." In addition to singing old favorites like "Ramblin' Boy" and "At 17", they sing one another's songs, add harmony and instrumentals, and share the stage for far too short a time.

    Don't miss it!

[full tour dates list]

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