John York Brings his Byrds and Beyond Live Show to the Gelenscer House Concert Series in Claremont, California
(This concert will be on October 23rd at The Gelenscer House Concert series. For reservations call #909-596-1266)
In music, as in life, there are those milestone places and those pivotal times when one connection leads
to another, and in a single moment, life is changed for the better. For the relatively new Gelenscer House
Concert series produced by Janice and Andy Gelenscer of Claremont and for singer-songwriter and former
Byrd, John York, this is true in the best sense. Three years ago, the Gelenscers, who have been folk/acoustic
music enthusiasts in the L.A. area for the last 25 years, saw the need for a house concert series to help promote acoustic music in the Inland Empire at the east end of L.A. County. John York, a former member of the 1968 Byrds when the band included Roger McGuinn, Clarence White and Gene Parsons, had been living in the Inland Empire for 15 years. Even though John had recorded two critically successful albums (Claremont Dragon and Arigatou Baby) gigs were becoming sparse. In 2008, in one of the first concerts of their series, Janice and Andy presented a John York concert. As a result of that show John later met folksinger Barry McGuire, and a partnership was formed which has resulted in a busy international touring schedule and a revival of his own solo career. Today with the much awaited release of two new albums, Fanfare for 2, and his collaboration with rock and roll legend, Kim Fowley, a concept album called, West Coast Revelation, John’s tour schedule has been anything but sparse. And now, with a revitalized show he calls “Byrds and Beyond,” his live performance demand will remain steady.
As a part of the re-birth of his live show he has included new collaborations, including support from country-
roots bass player extraordinare, Chad Watson. Chad’s background in country-rock, folk and Americana includes studio and live work with Freddy Fender, Charley Rich and Janis Ian. He was a strong presence during Janis’ comeback 1993 tour and on her Grammy nominated classic, Breaking Silence. Most recently, from 1998 until his death in 2008, Chad worked with Delaney Bramlett of the seminal Americana innovators, Delaney & Bonnie. Chad is widely regarded as one of the finest bass players in roots and Americana music today.
(This clip from YouTube is a great demonstration Chad’s versatility..No bass, but it’s a fine country song he’s performing with his wife, Pam Loe)
John Yorks show has truly earned the title “Byrds and Beyond” because it is not so much about nostalgia as
it is an exploration of some of the finest Americana music of the last 40 years, including Byrds favorites such
as “Turn, Turn, Turn,” and “Mr. Tamborine Man,” but also his original songs, collaborations with Gene Clark and his artistically fine performances on musical gems by artists like Bob Dylan, The Band, and others. The show is a true celebration of great American music, past and present and with his return to The Gelenscers House Concert series, it’s also a welcome homecoming.
(Here John sings Gene Clark’s Gypsy Rider with Carla Olsen. The song is from her album with Gene, So Rebellious A Lover)