8:00pm Saturday, May 31st

Joel Harrison and Mother Stump

with guests:

The Anthony Pirog Telecaster Tribute



Two shows in two nights!  We also have a show the following night, Sunday, June 1st, with Sonus Umbra and Might Could.  Click here for that show!




Joel Harrison and Mother Stump

Joel Harrison (guitar)
Michael Bates (bass)
Jeremy Clemons (drums)

“Best unknown guitarist in America… he plays like Danny Gatton and John Scofield in a barfight.” Brent Black- criticaljazz.com

For many years, guitarist Joel Harrison claimed he had no roots. Growing up in Washington D.C., a place whose identity and values are always in drift, Harrison was convinced he had to “go out into the world with a shovel and plant something of my own,” he says in his liner notes to Mother Stump, his latest album on Silver Spring, MD-based Cuneiform Records, a fitting home for a record paying tribute to the artist’s DC-upbringing.

But as we often discover, time and distance have a way of putting things in perspective. Looking back, Harrison realized that Washington D.C. was, in fact, a town whose musical gravity overpowered whatever ephemeral political and cultural winds might blow. “I had to move away and get older to see those roots,” Harrison says. “You can hear them on this record.”

“Washington D.C. was quite a segregated place in the 1960s and ’70s, and yet the musicians were inclusive and open in their tastes,” Harrison recalls. A plethora of genres were represented around town. One could hear bluegrass by The Seldom Scene andThe Country Gentlemen, and soul, jazz, and funk by Roberta Flack, The Blackbyrds, Terry Plumeri, and Ron Holloway. Blues was a pervasive force represented by Roy Buchanan, The Nighthawks, and the legendary Powerhouse Blues Band that featured Tom Principato. On the folk scene were people like Jorma Kaukonen, Emmylou Harris, and John Fahey.

“I remember seeing psychedelic rock groups, maybe backed by a light show, at Pipeline Coffee House or at Fort Reno ? bands like Tractor, Tinsel’d Sin, Crank, Grits, or Grin (with Nils Lofgren). There were outliers like Root Boy Slim and Evan Johns. “On any given night there might be a redneck band from Southern Maryland, a hillbilly band from nearby West Virginia, or an infusion of urban blues and Philly soul. The people who affected me the most, welcomed it all into their guitar playing.”

When Harrison discovered local guitarist Danny Gatton, he became a quick devotee. “If I ever had an idol, it was he,” Harrison says. “I followed him around like a stray dog in the early and mid ’70s, sometimes placing a cassette recorder on a beer-stained table in one of the many low-rent bars he inhabited.” Gatton’s ability to incorporate many streams of American music, such as country, blues, jazz, rockabilly, and funk, would play an important role in Harrison’s own future development as a genre-crossing guitarist.

“It was an amazing time in which to come of age musically. Minds were open, blueprints were being created, invention was everywhere, and yet strong tradition anchored the experimentation. You’d go way beyond the borders, but there was still that tangle of roots that stretched beneath and across the town.” Harrison says in his liners.




Anthony Pirog Telecaster Tribute Band

Anthony Pirog (guitar)
Bobby Muncy (sax)
Nathan Lincoln Decusatis (organ)
Nathan Kawaller (bass)
Larry Ferguson (drums)


Performing in genres as diverse as experimental jazz to surf to roots rock and rockabilly, Anthony Pirog is one of the most versitile guitarists around. He’s a regular part of the “Out of Your Head” experimental jazz collective that haunts Baltimore’s Windup Space on Tuesday evenings. He plays in several of his own projects including The Anthony Pirog Trio, Quintet, Sextet, and Septet. He’s also half of the duo Janel and Anthony (who played at Orion last year). He’s performed with dozens of influential musicians including avant jazzers Henry Kaiser, Elliot Sharp, Michal Formanek, Mary Halvorson, William Hooker, and Tatsuya Nakatani – with roots rock legend Bill Kirchen (Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen), and with avant electronica’s Jeff Surak. He also led a 22-member ensemble through a performance of Terry Riley’s “In C” at the 2011 Sonic Circuits Festival in DC. These (and other) influences find their place in his own compositions and color his interpretations of other composers’ works. Their Orion performance will include the music of Danny Gatton, Roy Buchannan, and many other masters of the Telecaster guitar!

Da Rulz!

  • All Ages Show
  • BYOB – coolers welcome
  • Small folding chairs – I have some but you’re welcome to bring your own
  • Show at 8:00pm – doors at around 7:30.  Or so.
  • Cover is $15 (all of which goes to the bands – not a penny to the venue!)
  • driving directions