"...the rhythm and poise with which the members of Jo Henley write and perform is exquisite. Touches of Robbie Robertson and the Band and all who followed in their footsteps echo throughout this collection. The range is beautiful. The lyrics and melodies have a very familiar feel throughout, as if we have dear friends in all these songs—a rare gift indeed." The Noise in review of Jo Henley's latest record The Fall Comes Early.

Return

Join the JH mailing list and get a free download of a live version of "The Fire."

Around These Parts -- Boston CD Release Party! 

Dear friends,

A BIG, warm thank-you to all who came out to our CD release party last week at the The Spire for our new live album Jo Henley Live at The Spire. It was an exciting night with some of our favorite musicians and collaborators joining us, and better yet our good friends at Four String Films captured a bunch of it on video, so look for that very soon.

In the meantime, we are just a few days way from the release of our brand-new studio album we've been diligently working on for the past year, Around These Parts. This one is going to be special, folks. A lot of talented people put a lot of hard work into this, and from a songwriting standpoint I can honestly say that this ranks among the finest stuff the guys and I have ever written and recorded. I will share more details over the weekend, including sneak previews, pre-sale info, tracklisting, etc., but until then, all you need to know is that on Sunday, November 23, we will make our debut at Atwood's Tavern in Cambridge, MA, and celebrate the release of Around These Parts. This will be the very first time the new album will be available for purchase, so this is a very big deal for us. We are playing two sets starting at 9pm on the nose, and it's only $5 to get in. Not to mention, Atwood's is one of the finest venues to see roots/Americana music in this fine city of ours. So mark your calendars and come join us on Sunday, November 23!

See you there!

Andy & JH

JO HENLEY LIVE AT THE SPIRE CD -- Available NOW!!! Podcast



UPDATE: Our brand-new Jo Henley Live at The Spire record is HERE. Those of you who ordered a pre-sale copy, it has been mailed and should be at your doorstep any day now, if it hasn't arrived already.

We will have copies on sale for the first time at our our Jo Henley Live at The Spire CD release party, which will be take place on Friday, November 7 at, appropriately enough, The Spire. (Visit their website and reserve your tickets today!) It was a pleasure to work with Mark Bryant again, who recorded and produced it, and we are all really excited to share it with the world.

Here is the track list:

Inside Out
The Fire
Gonna Make it Right
Bayley-Hazen Road
Save the Last Dance for Us
Clinton's Ditch
Holly
Mohawk > Over the Pine Plains
Promised Paradise
Voyeur Love
Sad Songs and Alcohol

 
You can order Jo Henley Live at the Spire on CD for $15, which includes shipping, and which also comes with an immediate digital download. Or, if you prefer just a digital download, you can purchase it for $10 on our Music page.

In celebration of the occasion, click below for a free download of "The Fire." We hope to see you all there at our CD Release Show on Friday, November 7!!!

Enjoy!!!

 
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  1. The Fire

"Jo Henley Live at The Spire" 

Exciting news!

On June 21, we had the wonderful opportunity to play to a full house at the gorgeous new performing arts center in downtown Plymouth, MA, called The Spire, and have the whole show recorded by producer and friend Mark Bryant for a future live album release. It was an incredible evening on a beautiful summer night, and we couldn't be happier that it was captured and can be shared with our fans who have been clamoring for a live album from us for years.

Well, the time has finally arrived to unveil "Jo Henley Live at The Spire" and celebrate its release with a return to The Spire on Friday, November 7! We will have some special guests joining us, including the incomparable Tony Markellis on bass, as well as a few other surprises to help create another memorable night at The Spire. And, of course, we will have copies of the new CD, hot off the presses!

Mark your calendars and reserve your tickets today!

The String Benders open the show. Music starts promptly at 8pm.

Where's Summer B.? 

Happy August, friends!

I've had the Ben Folds Five song "Where's Summer B.?" stuck in my head all day. Probably because, although it is still August, and my tomato plants are just hitting their stride, there has ever-so-gradually been a crispness creeping into the air, as if to remind us that, alas, summer is winding down.

But it's not gone yet. There are still warm days remaining on the calendar. There are still many more cookouts ahead. And there is still plenty of music to be made before it's all said and done.

On June 21, Summer Solstice, Jo Henley kicked off this way-too-short season with a hugely successful show at The Spire, downtown Plymouth's beautiful new performing arts center. The whole concert was recorded for a live album--cleverly titled Jo Henley Live at The Spire--and in the weeks since we have been working with Mark Bryant to get that finished, mixed, duplicated, and ready for the world to hear. We feel this is a great and accurate representation of what a live Jo Henley show is. The song is always the focus, the centerpiece, but there is also plenty of extended jamming, improvisation, and risk-taking. You guys are going to dig it.

In the meantime, we are also putting in the final mixing stages of our new studio album Around These Parts, which we have been working on with Tim Lynch for much of this year. I just received a fresh set of mixes yesterday and was ecstatic with that I heard. This one is going to kill. We took our time and really tried to make sure each song is a gem. Whether or not we succeed is, I suppose, up to the public to decide. But we know we made a strong record, and most importantly, we loved making it. In the end, that's all that really matters to us!

So, sort of unexpectedly, here we are with TWO new albums waiting in the wings, all set to be released this fall! It's incredibly exciting. I have listened to each album about a bazillion times and still aren't sick of them; quite the opposite, in fact--which is saying a lot. These two records represent some of the best stuff we have ever done and we are thrilled to share them with you soon, soon, soon.

We have two big shows coming up this month that we want to remind you about. The first is this Saturday evening, August 23, at the Plymouth Waterfront Festival. It's an all-day event, with food, arts and crafts, music, and lots of other activities for the whole family. We are the headliner and will play from 5:45-7:30pm. Come on down to Plymouth this weekend and check it out--and be sure to stick around for our set!

Then next week, Friday, August 29, we return to one of our favorite venues on the planet, Caffe Lena, in Saratoga Springs, close to my hometown. Summer doesn't officially wave goodbye until late September, but Labor Day weekend is what most of us consider the end of the season, so it feels entirely appropriate that we bookend what has been an outstanding summer for the band with a two-set show at Caffe Lena. We have joining us bassist Tony Markellis for the occasion, as well as our friend and former bandmate Jordan Santiago, who will be sitting in with us on fiddle and mandolin.

Caffe Lena is a special place. We hope to see as many familiar faces, and hopefully new ones too, that can fit in that room. We have a few surprises in store for the occasion, including the debut of a bunch of new material, and we will even be dipping into the Jo Henley catalog and dusting off a few songs that we haven't played in a while.

This is an important show for us. Be sure to reserve your tickets today by going here: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/734675

And & JH


 

Jo Henley Live at The Spire 





Dear friends,

First things first:  We want to extend our sincere thanks to all who came out to Club Passim last Monday night! It was such an awesome crowd, engaged from the first note of "Inside Out" to the last note of "The Great Depression"--what else can you ask for in an audience than that?

You know what else was awesome? Watching a room full of people who had never before seen Hayley Sabella perform held captive, and instantly won over, by her masterful songwriting, unassuming charm, and gift-from-God voice. She's hardly a secret anymore--she's making huge strides in her young career already--and it's all well-deserved. Hayley was also  kind enough to jump on stage with us and sing with me on the two songs she guests on on our upcoming studio album, "Deep in the Dirt" and "Wait Till May."

Having old friend Jordan Santiago back with us after close to 4 years was incredibly fun too--and nostalgic, I gotta say. When we made up the setlist before the show, I knew there were certain songs that I, perhaps selfishly, wanted to hear, songs that we'd played so many times on countless tours, on countless stages, in the years during his tenure in the band, and I was really looking forward to reliving those moments: the mandolin flourishes of "The Fire," the razor-sharp and anxiety-filled fiddle in "Inside Out," the big violin solo in "Holly," to name a few, not to mention the interplay with Ben's lead guitar throughout the set. Jordan's a busy guy these days, lending his chops to multiple bands and projects, but he's got an open invite to join us whenever his schedule allows, so you can expect to see (and hear) him at some upcoming shows. Including this one below....

The day after our Cub Passim show, Mark Bryant, who recorded and produced our album Mohawk, asked me if we were interested in playing a show on Saturday, June 21, at The Spire in Plymouth? Free show, he said, and best of all, he would record the whole thing professionally and we would release it as a live album later this summer. Were we on board?

Does a bear...well, you get the idea.

And so...

You are cordially invited to join Jo Henley for a very special FREE concert on Saturday, June 21 at 7pm, at the beautiful new Spire Center for Performing Arts in downtown Plymouth, MA. The entire two-set show will be recorded by Mark Bryant of Seasound Recording Studio.

We will have Jordan joining us again, as well as a couple of other guests, as we perform songs spanning our entire catalog, from our debut EP Long Way Home to our upcoming studio album Around These Parts--and yes, there will be plenty of jamming, which is what many of you who see us live have come to expect from us. I know that bands say this all the time, but we've never meant it more than we do now: this will be a night you won't want to miss!

This amazing venue, The Spire, is a former Methodist church built in 1886 that has been completely renovated and turned into a modern, world-class music and arts center, with a full recording studio, while still retaining all of its old-world historic and architectural charm. In just a few short months of its opening, The Spire has hosted performances by popular local artists and good friends of ours Jake Hill and Hayley Sabella, as well as folk legends Tom Rush and Dave Mallett, among others.

Admission to the show is absolutely free, and wine, beer, and other refreshments will be available for purchase.

We need your help, though. June 21 is coming up fast, and we want as many of you there as can possibly fit. A live show is only as good as the crowd's energy. So I hope you will spread the word, tell all your friends, pack the room, and be part of creating a magical evening!

Andy & JH


www.spirecenter.org

www.johenley.com

Wait Till May 

On Monday, moved by the emotional weight of this year's Boston Marathon after all that took place last year, and feeling a bit detached having spent the day away from my adopted hometown for the first time in 13 years--albeit for a good reason: studio time to work on the new album--I decided to post a close-to-done-but-still-unfinished song off our upcoming album on my facebook page and the Jo Henley facebook page called "Wait Till May."

The bluest of our new songs, "Wait Till May" is a reflection on last year's bombing and what it felt like to live in Boston during that time. It opens with the narrator--me, it's fairly safe to presume--wakes up in the middle of the night only to learn that there is a manhunt underway and the city is on lockdown.(Here's what I wrote last April about that day, the days leading up to it, and the days following.) I do not usually write topical songs, but this one flowed; I didn't have much of a choice but to embrace the flow. One of the gifts of being a songwriter is that I have an outlet to deal with moments or periods of struggle and tension. It's not foolproof--I still keep things bottled up, just as we all do from time to time--but I imagine that having a tangible way to process troubling moments is, well, better than not. "Wait Till May" was my therapy. I just so happen to have amazingly talented friends and bandmates and, in this case, guest musicians, to help me turn my therapy into soundscapes.

"Wait Till May," in addition to Ben on electric guitar and me on vocals and acoustic guitar, features the beautiful vocals of Hayley Sabella and the sublime violin work of an old friend, Jordan Santiago. Jordan needs no introduction to most of you reading this. He brings his effortless talents to this track, as well as several others on the upcoming record. And as for Hayley, if you think she sounds amazing on "Wait Till May," then you are in for a real treat when you eventually hear another new one called "Deep in the Dirt." We are beyond thrilled to have both of them on the record.

Speaking of Hayley Sabella, she will be joining us for a very special evening on June 2 at Club Passim in Cambridge, MA. She will play a set of her own before we hit the stage, and we of course will invite her up there to play some songs with us. And Jordan will also be sitting in with us too, which is not only super exciting (and nostalgic) for us, but I know is welcome news to all our fans. Seriously, you do not want to miss this show. I will post more info about our Club Passim performance soon, but in the meantime, circle your calendars, call your babysitters, invite your friends--this is going to be a special night of music.

In the meantime, you can catch us here:

Friday, May 2--The Banner--Rockland, MA. 8pm
Saturday, May 10--Mocha Maya's--Shelburne Falls, MA. 8pm
Saturday, May 17--T-Bones Roadhouse--Plymouth, MA. Noon.
Monday, June 2--Club Passim--Cambridge, MA. 8pm.

See you down the road...
Andy & JH

 

Winterlong 

February 4, 2014

Hello friends!

Lots of good Jo Henley news to share! First and foremost, our new album, tentatively titled Around These Parts, is well underway. We've had two big, productive sessions in Upstate New York with Tim Lynch at The Recording Company and are just about done with all the basic tracks. So far, we're pumped. This is going to be an excellent record. I am often asked what this one will be like. Truthfully, that's hard for me to answer right now. Making a record is a little like a painter who paints with his nose close to a huge canvas, and it's only when he steps back that he can really take it all in and see the whole picture, so to speak. That's sort of how we feel right now. We're too close to it to be able to say exactly how the final product will turn out.

Going into this project, I was inspired by one of my favorite records, Waylon Jennings' Dreaming My Dreams. I love most all of his records from the '70s, but this one in particular is special. Waylon was the quintessential outlaw, with the beard and the cigarette hanging out the side of his mouth and the deep voice and the bluster. Like Paul Bunyan with a Telecaster. But Dreaming My Dreams is quiet and soothing and sparse, and my copy on vinyl sounds...well, it sounds just how a good old vinyl record should sound. And it always makes me think of winter. So, as fall began to slowly give way to winter, and fallen leaves were being replaced by fallen snow, I found myself wanting to write songs that sound like that record, and silent fields of snow, and crackling fireplaces, and hearty stews slow-cooking all day on the stove to warm us on cold nights. Ben is a Waylon fan, too, so it wasn't hard to dig in and try to capture the essence of what our version of that record, and the beautiful bleakness of winter, might be.

Of course, blueprints are made to be broken (or something like that!) Around These Parts may have been inspired by Ol' Waylon, but it sounds distinctly like a Jo Henley album, with our style and sensibilities and musical fingerprints everywhere. It is colorful and ambitious, full of story-songs and characters down on their luck yet always full of hope that life gets better right around the corner.

There will be 10 new songs, special guests joining us on a few tunes, and it will all be pressed onto 180 gram vinyl, because it only makes sense that it should. Yes, we will also have CDs available and digital downloads, but this felt like a batch of songs destined to spin on a turntable.

In two weeks we return for another big session, which should wrap up the basic tracks. We expect to be mixing next month and get it out to be pressed by late April.

If you have seen us in the past couple months, you've probably met our newest member of the Jo Henley family, bassist Kyle Stephens. A native of Scituate, MA, and a member of a local Grateful Dead cover band called The Mystical Misfits, Kyle brings his chops, his cool demeanor, and his sense of humor to Jo Henley. We are excited to have him aboard, so please be sure to say hello and introduce yourself when you see him at our shows!

In the meantime, here is a video we recently acquired from our friend Brad Glass, who took this when we played at The Blue Moon Coffeehouse in Rockland, MA, last December. Our buddy and bassist from our pre-Jo Henley days Kurt Jorgensen is joining us on bass for the occasion. Enjoy!

We have a few very special announcements to make very soon, so stay tuned....



Around These Parts 

December 11, 2013

The last time we played one of our favorite venues, T-Bones Roadhouse in Plymouth, MA, was October 19. My wife Ellen was very pregnant by then, but still a couple weeks shy of her due date. We--the band--had been preparing for the newest member of my family by slowing things down and clearing the Jo Henley calendar for a little while, allowing me some time to keep close to home. I didn't want to be at a gig somewhere, get a call that the baby was on its way, like, RIGHT NOW!, and have to leave in a flurry of madness to get to the hospital in time, so it only made sense to not book anything for a few weeks leading up to the due date. And then on the other end, I wanted to keep our schedule mostly free after the baby arrived. To use one of my son's favorite phrases, I needed to "cool it down."

Cool it down. Yes, indeed, Anthony.

In June, my wife (already quite pregnant by then) and I looked around our cramped two-bedroom apartment in Brighton, decided we needed more space, and did what any rational couple with a three year old and another on the way would do: we went house hunting. We headed out of the city and up to the North Shore, found a small blue ranch on a quiet street with a yard big enough for cookouts and several raised garden beds and room for kids to run around, and made an offer. Two hours before we took the stage in late July at Putnam Den in Saratoga Springs, I got a phone call to say our offer was accepted. (We were wofing down doughboys outside Esperanta on Caroline St., to be exact.)

We closed on our house on September 30. We moved in October 2. Jo Henley played T-Bones on October 19. And on October 20, my son was born. Two weeks early. Yup. Nuts. Had he decided 24 hours earlier that he'd had enough and was ready to come into this world, I would have been that crazed dad driving like a frigging lunatic on his way to the hospital, trying to make it in time!

Well, Anthony, I've cooled it down long enough. It's time to heat it up again.

2013 was an incredible year for me, one that was split into almost two equal halves. In the first half, Jo Henley released the incredbly well-received The Fall Comes Early record and toured behind it and promoted the heck out of it. And I just told you all about the second half.

2014 is going to be a monster year for Jo Henley as a band, and we're not going to wait for the calendar to flip to start making it happen. On December 26, we're headed back to Tim Lynch's studio, The Recording Company, in Upstate NY for a week to begin tracking a new record. Earler this year, Ben emailed me an instrumental piece he'd written called "Bayley-Hazen Road." I was in my car at the time. I downloaded it, hooked my phone up to my speakers with one of those god-awful cassette adapter thingies, and played it a few times. The music was fantastic, and instantly compelling. The melody came to me quickly. I didn't have any specfic lyrics, but Ben later told me the title of the song and a bit about the history behind it, which gave me direction and focus. I loved the song right away, and its vibe, its mood and beat and character, set the tone for all the songs that followed.

I would be lying if I told you we know exactly what our gameplan is with this new record, because we don't. Ben, Mike, and I have a good bunch of songs that we are really psyched about, general arrangements, some cool ideas as to how we want to approach the recording, and I have a working title: Around These Parts. Tim Lynch is going to record and produce it, and and Tony Markellis is going to provide his incomparable bass skills once again, so how can it turn out to be anything but awesome? It is going to be a winter album, something to throw on on those cold, peaceful mornings when it feels like you are the only one awake on the planet, and the world outside is bare and blanketed in snow and starkly beautiful. In my new house, the windows in both the kitchen and living room face stunning watercolor sunrises each morning. That, I'm sure, has something to do with where my mind is taking these songs lyrically. Not to mention...oh, know knows? I suppose to say anything more about it is premature. (A winter album that we plan to release in the late spring, just in time for summer! Perfect timing!)

We have a bunch of other plans in the works for 2014, too, including an EP, a summer tour, a tour out west in the fall, and a documentary. I can't wait. Life is good.

Stay tuned...

Andy & JH


 

"The Fall Comes Early" reviewed in The Noise 

Well-known Boston music publication The Noise--infamous for its no-holds-barred reviews--recently gave our lastest release The Fall Comes Early a write-up in their September issue. I must say, this one felt good. Check it out...

JO HENLEY
The Fall Comes Early
11 tracks

With this fourth full-length album under their belts, the rhythm and poise with which the members of Jo Henley (Andy Campolieto, Ben Lee, Tony Markellis  and Mike Dingley) write and perform is exquisite. Touches of Robbie Robertson and the Band and all who followed in their footsteps echo throughout this collection.  The range is beautiful. The lyrics and melodies have a very familiar feel throughout, as if we have dear friends in all these songs—a rare gift indeed.

“Big City” is an instrumental surprise, soft and edgy but haunting and soothing at the same time.  What movie soundtrack can we all place this in?  In this selection, as well as the album’s namesake, “The Fall Comes Early,” I hear romance in Ireland.  It takes me back to one of my favorite movies, Bill Forsyth’s Local Hero featuring Mark Knopfler’s fabulous soundtrack.

A neat Luther Perkins riff is perfect for delivering “I’m Gonna Find It” with some fine picking by the band’s stellar lead guitarist, Ben Lee.

Right from the start, “I Used to Be Young” is simple and uncluttered but sticks in your head, in a good way.

The traditional “Amazing Grace” is the last track, the sweet tea served after this delicious musical spread.

These guys should be on the AMA (Americana Music Association) charts, right up there with Guy Clark, Dawes, and Steve Earle.    (Jim Marchese)
 

Jo Henley August News 

Tonight we are heading up to Gloucester to play a private party in beautiful Cape Ann. I wish we could bring you with us! But you can still get your JH fix this weekend:  We are thrilled to be headlining the Pembroke Arts Festival tomorrow, August 10, in Pembroke, MA. We are playing a two-hour set under the stars from 7-9pm. It's free, and there are exciting events going on all day long, so come out early and stay for the music. Summer is going fast--take advantage of it while it's here.

Jo Henley has enjoyed some strong press over the last week. Esteemed Boston-area music critic Jay Miller wrote a nice piece about the band and our latest record in last week's Patriot Ledger, and the good folks at The Alternate Root included our instrumental "Big City" in their Top 10 Songs of the Week. Check it out.

Thank you to everyone who came out to our show with Abbie Barrett at Club Passim on Monday night. It's always special to play that legendary venue, and this week's show did not disappoint. The room was full, the vibe was perfect, and we can't wait to do it again soon!

See you tomorrow night in Pembroke!

Andy & JH
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