DURANGO, Colo. – Presenting an evening of raw musical emotion, soulful singing and finely honed musical virtuosity that promises to be good for the spirit, Ruthie Foster and Paul Thorn as Soul Salvation take the stage at the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012, 7 p.m.
Steeped in the tradition of American music, Foster and Thorn blend blues, rock, gospel, folk, R&B and country music with “a whole lotta soul,” adding contemporary twists to their original music. They write of humanity and redemption, songs that have earned them enthusiastic fans and high praise from press and promoters alike. At the Concert Hall, the pair is set to perform independently as well as together with Foster’s band.
Both Foster and Thorn are said to have forged compelling paths for the next generation of songwriting blues and soul artists, taking their careers to new heights with their most recent releases: Foster’s intimate January 2012 album, Let It Burn, and Thorn’s June 2010 release, Pimps & Preachers. It is their live shows, however, that have established Foster and Thorn as two of America’s freshest and finest performers.
Rich with honest spirituality and possessing vocal abilities that have critics comparing her to Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin, Ruthie Foster’s passionate songs and scintillating performances make for an uplifting experience. Winner of the 2011 Blues Music Koko Taylor Award for Traditional Blues Female Artist of the Year, Foster was catapulted to the forefront of the blues/roots world on the strength of her relentless touring along with her 2009 Grammy-nominated, The Truth According to Ruthie Foster. The power of Foster’s voice carries the music, and emerges from the tradition that bred such voices as Mavis Staples and James Brown.
Noted Blurt magazine, “Ruthie Foster has established herself as a down-home diva whose assurance and authority have put her on a certain path to stardom.”
View a video of the making of Ruthie Foster’s Let it Burn at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxP4o-fLkFY&feature=youtu.be.
Paul Thorn has proven to be an authentic voice in the modern blues scene, bridging classic forms with 21st century sensibility. Born in Tupelo, Miss., and raised among the same spirit (and actual people) who nurtured a young Elvis Presley during generations prior, Thorn has opened for Bonnie Raitt, Mark Knopfler and John Prine, among other headliners, and made some of the most emotionally restless, yet fully accessible music of today.
With his autobiographical Pimps & Preachers, Thorn embraces opposites, which leads to a unity of spirit in his music that is brought fully to life by his gift as a narrative writer. Thorn writes about his Southern upbringing and lessons learned from his mentors, including his Pentecostal minister father and his uncle, who was literally a pimp.
According to the Newark Star Ledger, Paul Thorn’s “gruff voice has gotten him compared to Springsteen and Tom Waits. But when he sits down to write, he’s more like John Prine.”
View Paul Thorn backstage with NPR and performing on Mountain Stage at http://www.npr.org/2010/05/24/127092419/paul-thorn-on-mountain-stage.
Tickets for Soul Salvation featuring Ruthie Foster and Paul Thorn – $30/$40 – are available on-line at www.durangoconcerts.com or by calling 970.247.7657, or at the Ticket Office in Downtown Durango at 7th St. and Main Ave. All sales final.
Showtime is 7 p.m., with doors to the Concert Hall and concessions, serving beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages and snacks, opening at 6 p.m.
The Community Concert Hall is a not-for-profit, multi-use performance venue located on the campus of Fort Lewis College. Its ability to bring a diverse spectrum of shows to Southwest Colorado is made possible through a partnership with the college, a state-supported, independent institution of higher education, as well as through financial and in-kind contributions from generous members of the community.