'Mongrel folk' music, satire set this Friday at Key City Cabaret
Orville Johnson, left, and Mark Graham offer folk music and wry humor.
By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News
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Johnson, known for guitar and country singing, and Graham, noted for harmonica and comedy, will step up at 8 p.m. in the snug playhouse at 419 Washington St.
Tickets are $15 at www.KeyCityPublicTheatre.org and 360-385-KCPT (5278).
“Wry humor, virtuoso harmonica, soulful blues, hot pickin' and sweet country vocals — that's what you get,” the pair promises on www.MongrelFolk.com.
Johnson and Graham, who have been on Garrison Keillor's “A Prairie Home Companion” and played at folk festivals across the nation, have a new record out: “Bitter Truth.”
That may sound tough on the ear. But the men declare that the album is a mosaic of humor and old-fashioned storytelling alongside “mythology, religious blasphemy, guitar, social criticism, harmonica, dramatic tension, dobro, death, birth and old-time music.”
Johnson grew up in a small Illinois town, developing his musical skills singing in church and playing in rock bands in middle school.
He learned guitar and dobro, influenced by Doc Watson and Chuck Berry, and began performing all over the country.
In 1978, Johnson moved to Seattle, where he co-founded the folk-rock group The Dynamic Logs and gigged beside John Lee Hooker, Richie Havens and Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Taylor.
Johnson also is an author and a teacher of music workshops all over the world.
Graham's game is penning offbeat songs such as “Zen Gospel Singing” and “I've Seen Your Aura and It's Ugly.”
He was raised in the Northwest and developed a passion early on for musical satire. He's also a harmonica player with a distinct bluesy-bluegrass style.
These Kings of Mongrel Folk are the next in a concert series that will bring the contemporary folk band Uncle Bonsai to the Key City Playhouse on Sept. 14 and vocalist Sylvia Herold on Sept. 27.
Tickets and information for these shows, co-sponsored by George Rezendes' Toolshed SoundLab studio in Port Townsend, are likewise available at www.KeyCityPublicTheatre.org and 360-379-0195.
Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last modified: August 26. 2013 6:18PM