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Lawrence (Opening)

The Westcott Theatre , Syracuse, NY

As NPR writes, “siblings Clyde and Gracie Lawrence are not your typical pair.” Clyde Lawrence and Gracie Lawrence have been writing songs and listening to countless Stevie Wonder, Randy Newman, and Aretha Franklin records in their family’s New York City apartment since they were little kids. After years of playing together, they officially created Lawrence, an eight-piece soul-pop band comprised of musician friends from childhood and college. The band has since gained a devoted following for its high-energy, keyboard-driven sound, which features tight, energetic horns, explosive lead vocals, and fully-live arrangements.

In June 2019, Lawrence became the first band to sign with Beautiful Mind Records, the label of Grammy-winning producer/songwriter/artist Jon Bellion, and within a few months embarked as support on Bellion’s Summer 2019 Glory Sound Prep Tour. Lawrence has since released the Bellion-produced singles “Casualty” (performed live on NBC’s Today Show), “It’s Not All About You,” “The Weather,” “Freckles,” and “Don’t Lose Sight,” which have garnered tens of millions of streams across all platforms and have had multiple viral moments on Tik Tok and Instagram. The singles are a part of the band’s new album, Hotel TV, which is out now and will be performed on their 2021 Fall headline tour.

The signing to Beautiful Mind followed the release of Lawrence’s sophomore album, Living Room. Upon its release in September of 2018, Living Room promptly reached #2 on the iTunes R&B/Soul chart, earned a featured placement on Spotify’s “New Music Friday” playlist, and led the band to its late-night television debut on NBC’s Last Call with Carson Daly. Co-produced by bandmates Jordan Cohen and Jonny Koh, as well as Brooklyn-based producer Eli Crews and Clyde and Gracie themselves, Living Room chronicles the trials and tribulations of growing up, including break-ups, make-ups, a family loss, and the attempt to find harmony between excitement, anxiety, melancholy, and empowerment.

Lawrence first rose to prominence in 2016 when they released their debut LP Breakfast (2016), which received attention and praise from a variety of sources ranging from NPR’s All Things Considered to Stephen Curry’s social media. Produced by Grammy Award winner Eric Krasno (Lettuce/Tedeschi Trucks/Soulive), Breakfast includes guest performances by NYC soul/funk mainstays Adam Deitch (Lettuce), Cory Henry (Cory Henry & the Funk Apostles, Snarky Puppy), and Maurice “Mobetta” Brown (Anderson .Paak, Tedeschi Trucks Band).

Lawrence has sold out headline shows across the country and appeared at festivals including Bonnaroo, Outside Lands, Firefly, Okeechobee, Hangout, and many more. The band has also opened for notable acts such as Lake Street Dive, Vulfpeck, Jon Bellion, Soulive, Jacob Collier, Blues Traveler, O.A.R, Bernhoft, and others.

In addition to the band, Clyde and Gracie have also amassed considerable resumes with other artistic pursuits. Clyde has written songs and score for film and television, including Disney’s Noelle (2019), Steven Spielberg’s Animaniacs (2020), Landline (2017), The Rewrite (2015), Music and Lyrics (2007), and even Miss Congeniality (2000), for which he wrote the theme song at age five. Gracie is an accomplished actress, appearing as a series regular alongside John Caroll Lynch, Leslie Odom Jr., and Sturgill Simpson in the CBS All-Access murder mystery One Dollar. Gracie has also appeared on Broadway in Brighton Beach Memoirs (2009), in films such as The Sitter (2011) and Did You Hear About the Morgans? (2009), and in tv shows including The Good Wife (2012), The Americans (2014), and Younger (2015).

Supported by: Sarah Gross

Sarah Gross is a singer, songwriter, and producer from Mastic Beach, NY and a fourth-year student at Syracuse University. Years ago, her journey as a recording artist began with her debut EP Between Stars. Five singles, one album, and countless performances later, Sarah has solidified herself as a staple of Syracuse University’s music scene and a rising voice in Americana.

In October 2021, Sarah will be releasing The Riversides, the follow-up EP to her debut album Songs from the Passenger Seat. The lead single, “Undertow,” will be on all streaming services on September 17th.

$15-55

NY Songwriter Round feat. Unruly Mane, Andrew Pierson Share (of Mountain Laurel), Sarah Gross

Rockwood Music Hall Stage 3, NYC

Current New York City guidelines may restrict access to this event. Please visit our COVID-19 Information page for the most updated information regarding vaccine, testing, and mask requirements.

NY Songwriter Round

The artists will be performing in the round, sharing stripped down acoustic versions of their songs and telling some of the stories that inspired them.

featuring...

Unruly Mane

Unruly Mane was formed in 2015 by married duo Leea Scarola and Steven Scarola, who were inspired to make music that honored their Irish and Italian roots. That sentiment birthed their first EP entitled Roots which combines boot-stomping sing-a-longs with tales of bravery, heartbreak, love, and perseverance. Building off their diverse musical backgrounds, Steve and Leea have combined their love of rock, pop, and folk to create the signature sound of Unruly Mane. Steve Scarola began his songwriting journey as lead guitarist and songwriter for the critically acclaimed pop-rock band, Push Play. Steve co-wrote Midnight Romeo which got national radio play and reached #17 on the top 40 charts in 2009. After playing with Push Play for 5 years, Steve went to Fordham University where he met his now-wife, Leea, and together they formed La La Lush. La La Lush grew a strong cult following at Fordham and across NYC, leading them to sell out venues like Bowery Ballroom, share bills with Grouplove, appear at music festivals like SXSW, and get a feature spot in GEICO's Indie Across America Campaign. After gaining a loyal fanbase from years of live shows in New York City, Unruly Mane has expanded their reach globally, having performed in Kenya, Ireland, and Canada. In 2020, Unruly Mane worked tirelessly in the studio with engineer Skylar Adler (of The Sound Is Fine and The Nico Blues), with plans to release various singles throughout 2021.

Andrew Pierson (of Mountain Laurel)

Andrew Pierson is a songwriter, vocalist and rhythm guitarist in the folk rock band Mountain Laurel, the oft told tale of a college cover band turned indie rock group. In the fall of 2014, the band began playing bars and rooftop parties alike in their beloved Bronx, New York as a cover band called Seabass and the Fellas. After graduating, the group stuck together to continue playing shows in the New York City metro area, and embarked on their foray into original music in the Fall of 2020 with the release of their debut single, The Weather. Informed by Phish and Dave Matthews Band shows at the Hartford Meadows, classic rock on FM radio’s 95.9 the Fox, and their parents’ Stevie Wonder and Fleetwood Mac records, Mountain Laurel’s sound transcends the typical indie rock genre to include influences of folk, jazz, rock, pop, and country music.

Sarah Gross

Recently turning 21, Sarah Gross has been transforming audiences with her original music and unique sound. Sarah is not only a songwriter and vocalist, but also has a passion for recording and producing her own music as well as others. Though young, Sarah's love for performing and collaborating with other musicians has been a driving force in her life. Now, Sarah has just released her album “Songs from the Passenger Seat” and plans to release more music this fall. Overall, Sarah’s music is grounded in folk, but has evolved to include elements of jazz, funk, rock, and soul. Though she draws from various influences, her goals remain centered: to create music that compels you to move, and to empower you to shatter glass ceilings.

General Admission Seated

There is a two drink minimum per show

TERMS & CONDITIONS: By entering Rockwood Music Hall, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and relinquish Rockwood Music Hall from any and all liability. Please note these guidelines are subject to change at any time, without notice.

$12

Sammy Rae & The Friends (opening)

The Westcott Theatre , Syracuse, NY

SAMMY RAE & THE FRIENDS

LET’S THROW A PARTY

Biography

For as much as Sammy Rae & The Friends may be a band, this collective of eight musicians, dreamers, and artists considers itself a family first.

Fronted by singer and songwriter Sammy Rae, the group flourishes in any spotlight with a combination of all-for-one and one-for-all camaraderie, palpable chemistry, deft virtuosity, and vocal fireworks. Their sound is a mélange of Sammy’s influences, rooted in classic rock, folk, and funk and sprinkled with soul and jazz. Complete with a rhythm section, horn section, keyboards, and two backup singers, Sammy Rae & The Friends have delivered their high-energy, spirited and unrestrained shows to sold-out audiences in the Northeast and beyond, including New York City’s Le Poisson Rouge, Boston’s The Sinclair, Burlington’s Higher Ground and Chicago’s Schubas. After packing houses and racking up 15 million-plus streams, the band welcomes everyone into this family on the 2021 EP, Let’s Throw A Party [Nettwerk].

“Because we come from so many different spaces and studies of music, we’re able to create something very unique,” Sammy states. “We learn from one another as we’re playing together. We’re grateful to have found people who speak the same language, but also speak their own. We have a vision for longevity. The only way that works is if we behave as a family. We’re all very grateful to have the support of one another. This is a large group of people where everyone plays an important role. It’s the lunch table I always wanted as a kid.”

Sammy Rae & The Friends built this kind of trust one show at a time. As the story goes, our fearless leader grew up in Derby, CT, learned piano, and penned her first crop of songs at just 12-years-old. Under the spell of everyone from Queen to Ella Fitzgerald to Bruce Springsteen, she honed her voice. By high school, she cut her teeth in local venues, even releasing a series of independent solo records before college. New York eventually called to the songstress as she enrolled in Manhattan College during 2013. Toughing it out tooth and nail in The Big Apple, she left college in 2014 to pursue music full-time and threw down at countless gigs while continuing to write and record at a prolific pace. At the same time, crowds doubled with every rapturous performance as they built an inclusive safe space for fans everywhere.

During 2018, Sammy’s debut EP The Good Life caught fire. Along the way, the lineup—C-Bass Chiriboga [drums], James Quinlan [bass], Will Leet [guitar/keys], Myra Moon [backing vocals], Kaya Kulu [backing vocals], Max Zooi [tenor saxophone/synths], and Kellon Anderson [alto saxophone]—crystallized, and The Friends rallied behind her at sold out shows in world-renowned venues such as The Brooklyn Bowl and Le Poisson Rouge.

Meanwhile, the single “Kick It To Me” eclipsed 3.7 million Spotify streams as “Talk It Up” and “The Feeling” also each surpassed the 2 million mark.

The unit only grew stronger.

While the band considers themselves the “8 faces of The Friends,” they advocate for the importance of their community. Avid music fans themselves, they pride themselves on this original grass-roots, word-of-mouth growth. The Friends is their community of followers, artists and creatives who help in the creation of their songs and sustenance of the project—their mixing engineer, band photographer, graphic designer, budget manager, and everyone who hangs around the shows supporting the vision. Shows are safe spaces to feel overwhelmed with love and acceptance. “Friends” in the audience are encouraged to dress how they like, dance how they like, join the party and form person-to-person Friendships. Sammy Rae & The Friends shows are like a house party, a church of rock and roll, and shot in the arm of affirmation of individuality.

“Over the last two years, we really solidified the band identity,” she goes on. “Because of my bandmates’ support and that of the fan base, it gave me the courage to try new things, move into abstract ideas, and be honest. It felt like time to really tell my story without a filter.”

That’s just what she did on “Jackie Onassis” and the piano ballad “Living Room Floor,” heralding Let’s Throw A Party. Igniting 2021, the single “Creo Lo Sientes” [feat. C-Bass] dips in and out of a Latin rhythm punctuated by hypnotic handclaps, boisterous horns, vintage synths, and a flirty bilingual refrain with the Spanish lyrics penned by C-Bass, as informed by some of the band’s native-Spanish speaking friends and family members.

“I wanted to take a stab at a love song,” she recalls. “I had this idea of ‘The Talking phase’. It’s the first couple weeks of a relationship where you know something’s brewing. The song follows a budding romance as these two people are very clear about how they feel, yet they haven’t explicitly stated it yet. It gets lost in translation, so to speak. We have a wonderful Spanish speaking fan base, so I wanted these lyrics to capture vibe.”

Then, there’s the energetic, enthralling, and ebullient title track “Let’s Throw A Party.” It bottles the unpredictable and undeniable energy of the live show into a genre-blurring anthem, flickering between moments of swinging big band-style jazz, funkified guitar, heavenly harmonies, and grand piano bliss courtesy of Sammy.

“It’s the song I’m most excited about,” she smiles. “I’ve always loved multi-part song structures. I was thinking about aging with grace and a sense of humor instead of resentment. It’s like, ‘I know the world is going to shit, but let’s throw a party’. No matter what’s going on in the chaos, there’s always something to throw a party about.”

In the end, it’s not a party without Friends.

“We want to make feel-good music that encourages people to insert themselves into the songs,” she leaves off. “Community is the biggest thing for us. When I write these songs, it’s usually me and my banjo or me and a keyboard. I’m a folk artist who wants to be a Rockstar—and I’m a queer female band leader in New York City. I just love music. I listen to music all day every day from all eras and genres. At the same time, I’m a people person who loves my friends. Now, we’re all in this together.”

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Supported by: Sarah Gross

Sarah Gross is a singer, songwriter, and producer from Mastic Beach, NY and a fourth-year student at Syracuse University. Years ago, her journey as a recording artist began with her debut EP Between Stars. Five singles, one album, and countless performances later, Sarah has solidified herself as a staple of Syracuse University’s music scene and a rising voice in Americana.

In October 2021, Sarah will be releasing The Riversides, the follow-up EP to her debut album Songs from the Passenger Seat. The lead single, “Undertow,” will be on all streaming services on September 17th.

$20-30