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Women’s Voices Chorus Winter Concert: Song of the Universal @ University United Methodist Church
Jan 21 @ 3:00 pm – 4:15 pm

Women’s Voices Chorus Winter concert, Song of the Universal, will explore themes of war, the wish for peace, and the redemptive powers of nature, love and mercy. Music will include works by American composer Abbie Betinis, Estonian composer Vjelo Tormis, Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo, and more. Featuring a string ensemble and dancers. Deborah Hollis, Accompanist. Allan Friedman, Artistic Director.

Samedi Gras Great Big Fat Saturday Bash @ Old Murphy School
Feb 10 @ 8:00 pm – 11:00 pm

Durham Mardi Gras is kicking off your Samedi Gras Saturday night New Orleans style with the frenetic, hyperkinetic and wildly popular Ellis Dyson and the Shambles, plus Durham’s most beloved second line band, the Bulltown Strutters. Put on your dancing shoes!

As if that weren’t enough, we’re going to follow the old New Orleans tradition and give away a bowl of free red beans and rice to the first 100 people in the door. You can wash it down with the finest beer in the Triangle, on tap from Hillsborough’s Mystery Brewing Company.

All proceeds benefit Durham Mardi Gras to help provide a free and open Fat Tuesday for all of Durham. See you there!

Uni, Starbenders @ Local 506
Feb 10 @ 8:00 pm

New York’s Uni (featuring Kemp Muhl of The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger) teams up with Atlanta’s Starbenders for this spectacular glam-rock show.

Cool John Ferguson – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Feb 23 @ 8:30 pm – 11:00 pm

You have to hear Cool John Ferguson to believe it. The legendary Taj Mahal had this praise for Cool John: “He is among the five greatest guitarists in the world — he ranks with the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Wes Montgomery, and Django Reinhardt.”

Self-taught electric guitarist Cool John Ferguson was born in the Sea Islands of South Carolina, and his Gullah heritage and the gospel music of his upbringing inform his approach to the blues. A frequent performer at blues festivals around the world, Cool John was named “most outstanding guitarist” by Living Blues Magazine two years straight.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream (presented by Playmakers Repertory Company) @ The ArtsCenter
Feb 24 all-day





PlayMakers has cut the Bard’s most magical comedy to a fun and frenzied 80 minutes, so you can have your Shakespeare to go! Each of the ten tour stops is absolutely free to audience members. What are you waiting for?

Vieux Farka Touré @ The ArtsCenter
Mar 1 @ 8:00 pm

Often referred to as “The Hendrix of the Sahara”, Vieux Farka Touré is the son of legendary Malian guitar player Ali Farka Touré. Touré has worked with artists such as John Scofield, Dave Matthews and Soulive’s Eric Krasno and performed at the opening concert for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. With each new project, Vieux expands his horizons, embraces new challenges and further entrenches his reputation as one of the world’s most talented and innovative musicians.

“From album to album, Vieux Farka Touré is one of the most respected guitarists and musicians in the world.”
— ICI Musique, CBC

“This is the devotional, earthy soul of Mali, channeled through a six-string electric guitar.”

— Monolith Cocktail

Kaki King @ TheArtsCenter
Mar 2 all-day

Hailed by Rolling Stone as “a genre unto herself,” composer and guitarist Kaki King is a true iconoclast. Over the past 10 years the Brooklyn-based artist has released six extraordinarily diverse and distinctive albums, performed with such icons as Foo Fighters, Timbaland, and The Mountain Goats, contributed to a variety of film and TV soundtracks, and played to an increasingly fervent following of music lovers on innumerable world tours. She brings to The ArtsCenter her latest project, The Neck is a Bridge to the Body, a visionary multi-media synesthetic performance that uses projection mapping to reimagine the surface of her guitar as the stage for a luminous exploration of the mythology of the instrument.

“King’s latest project…accentuates the guitar as a shape-shifter, gliding across genres such as jazz, shoegazing, Latin roots, and heavy alternative rock across…a spectacle unlike any other.”

– PopMatters

Nee Ningy Band Album Release Show – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 2 @ 8:00 pm – 11:00 pm

A band with a sound unlike any other, Nee Ningy presents an uncommon blend of American and European traditional tunes from blues, southern old time, and Cajun to Swedish walking music, Scottish reels, and the French bourrée.
Celebrating the release of their 2017 album “The Parlour Sessions.”

The Nee Ningys were big on the festival scene in the late 70’s and 80’s. With seemingly every sound and instrument on earth at their disposal (except guitar – no guitars!), they get called world music, corralling everything from Cajun to Appalachian music, Tex-Mex, and French and English folk songs into one joyful sound. But maybe we can just call them funk. It’s all just funky, dirty, down-to-earth, shout-it-out music, reaching into the gut of every culture and genre for that thing that makes you feel alive.

Cantari presents “à la Française” @ Chapel of the Cross
Mar 3 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Music by Renaissance and Modern composers with French connections.

Lockdown – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 3 @ 8:30 pm

Fronted by the powerful pipes of singer Taneka Clemons, Lockdown brings high-energy hip-shaking blues and soul straight from the heart of Durham.

Kat Cunning LIVE @ Cat’s Cradle @ Cat's Cradle
Mar 7 all-day

Rising voice on the NYC arts scene Kat Cunning draws from her study of dance as well as her time on stage as a Broadway actress (Dangerous Liaisons, Cirque Du Soleil’s Paramour, Sleep No More) to blend pop, soul, and Baroque arrangements.

Kat recently released her stunning debut singles “Baby” and “Wild Poppies” in 2017 which garnered over 110,000 streams, charted on HypeMachine’s Top 20, and tipped BBC’s Annie Mac to dub her a “New Name” to watch this year. Her sultry voice has already earned praise from the likes of The New York Times, Huffington Post, BlackBook, + more.

Kat has announced a North American tour as lead support for acclaimed singer-songwriter LP (aka Laura Pergolizzi) that will be coming through Carrboro, NC.

Dry Reef w/ Raptor Taxi + Candy Ambulance at The Cave @ The Cave
Mar 8 @ 9:00 pm

Dry Reef with Raptor Taxi & Candy Ambulance.
$5 cover. 9pm.

Formed in the summer of 2014, grunge-influenced Candy Ambulance of upstate NY are Caitlin Barker, Jesse Bolduc & Jon Cantiello. Lifelong friends and musical mates, Bolduc & Cantiello rescued Barker from a wealthy engagement prospect and whisked her away to the land of DIY punk. Poppy melodies, dynamic vocal changes and half naked live shows have solidified this rock trio as always entertaining, unabashed fun.

Boasting a healthy and frequent tour schedule the band has played with notable acts such as Screaming Females, Speedy Ortiz, Daddy Issues, and Dorothy.


DRY REEF is a group dedicated to establishing a wave of high-energy, uplifting music. Rooted in the rock/reggae sound that put them on the map, the young group incorporates inflections of indie-surf rock and electronic post-rock forming a refreshing, organic sound you cannot ignore. These 23-year-olds are rapidly evolving from dreamers to decision-leaders in the industry.

With the 2018 release of their “Alright Revival EP” the band portrays their rapid growth in performing, creating, and exploring their sound throughout 2017, and the excitement is felt with every song.


Raptor Taxi prides itself on its ability to guarantee customers smooth rides throughout the space time continuum. Whether your stop is a street down, or Alpha Centauri 12 million years in the future, Raptor Taxi will get you there. Born in Raleigh, Raptor Taxi consists of self-proclaimed local bass legend Willis Tew, distinguished percussion cosmonaut Ross Brock, and a shitty-ass guitarist named Jordan Boyle. Warning: “May be responsible for leaving your face in the form of a puddle.”

Alexa Rose – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 9 @ 8:30 pm – 11:00 pm

Blue Ridge-based singer Alexa Rose has the rare ability to find strikingly original melodies that nevertheless sound like they must have existed for a long time, stored away maybe in the ether of creativity, self-evident and awaiting discovery. Moving deftly between complex dexterity and heart-tugging familiarity, Rose evokes the bright vocal experimentalism of Joni Mitchell and Joanna Newsom while maintaining the brassy attitude and simple refrains that run straight through American roots music from mountain ballads to rock-n-roll.

*Part of every tab at the Bullpen goes to help Music Maker Relief Foundation sustain American roots music by directly supporting the artists who make it.*

Chapel Hill Philharmonia Presents “Via the Appian Way” Classical Concert @ Moeser Auditorium
Mar 11 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm

The Chapel Hill Philharmonia presents a concert of vivid pictorial music. Conductor Donald Oehler leads off the orchestra with Beethoven’s dramatic “Coriolan Overture”. Oboist Anna Lampidis, known nationally and abroad, is featured in Mozart’s “Oboe Concerto”. The program concludes with Respighi’s “Pines of Rome”, a well-known spectacular tone poem. This program is supported by the NC Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

Abe Reid // Harvey Dalton Arnold – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 16 @ 8:30 pm – 11:00 pm

Abe Reid and Harvey Dalton Arnold are two of North Carolina’s truest blues practitioners. Abe learned at the feet of the Piedmont blues greats, and is the former winner of the International Blues Competition. Harvey played bass with the iconic southern rock band The Outlaws, and is known for his lefty slide blues style. They’re coming together for a night of raw and rocking blues, boogie, and southern rock n roll.


Chuck Cotton, Tad Walters & T.A. James – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 23 @ 8:30 pm – 11:00 pm

Chuck Cotton (drums), Tad Walters (guitar, harmonica), and T.A. James (bass) join together for a night of blues and beers!

$1 of every draft pint sold goes to benefit the Music Maker Relief Foundation and their mission to support American roots musicians.

Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen – Live at the Bullpen @ The Bullpen
Mar 24 @ 8:30 pm

Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen is an unstoppable force in the blues, channeling all the pathos and style of Koko Taylor, Aretha Franklin, and Etta James with her own sharp sense of humor, dramatic flair, and real-world outlook. To see Pat perform is to experience the power of the blues to talk back to trouble, celebrate life, and keep it moving no matter what, all while throwing the most fabulous party.

Griffin House @ Cats Cradle
Apr 6 all-day

Griffin House’s songs infuse roots, rock, blues and country to create a blend of songs and images that set him apart from other songwriters. Recording and performing for over a decade, House has toured with Ron Sexsmith, Patti Scialfa, Josh Ritter, and many others. He received early critical acclaim on CBS Sunday Morning, and his songs have since been featured in countless films and television shows. His intelligent, heart-felt lyrics and melodies in such songs as “The Guy Who Says Goodbye to You Is Out of His Mind” and “Better Than Love” are radio mainstays. House is on Tour in support of his current release SO ON AND SO FORTH – a collection of original tunes that are considered some of his best yet and sure to please both old and new fans.

Charles Latham + Simone Finally @ The Station
Apr 7 @ 8:00 pm

Two of Durham’s finest troubadours!

VOICES presents “Castles and Cottages” @ University United Methodist Church
May 4 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm

English coronation music, British choral gems, folksongs from Scotland and America.

Jordan Winslow, soprano
Laura Alexander, mezzo-soprano
Derek Jackenheimer, tenor
Derek Gracey, baritone