FEATURED Musician

October 2017

Rose Gabriel and Ordinary Elephant

Featured Musicians This month features outstanding musicians form the Austin area. The music kicks off at 1:00 p.m. with Rose Gabriel. An El Paso-born songwriter, Rose picked up a guitar at age 13, which was a natural thing to do in her family. Her father was a regular fixture at The Lobby, a lounge across the border in Juarez, Mexico, where he sand and played piano. Her stepfather taught her to play guitar, starting with songs by Johnny Cash and Joan Baez, two artists that still influence her songwriting. On her 2017 debut EP, Desert Flowers, Gabriel writes songs that were born on the Rio Grande, like El Paso Blues, Maria, and Pastel Boxes. She creates lyrics about people on the border who are honest, hard-working and compassionate. Drawing on her childhood and personal experience in her songs, you encounter grit and soul, ballads and honky tonks, love and loss, heartache and gratitude. Rose Gabriel’s melodies groove with Latin influences and swing with a bit of country; her driving rhythms will linger in your soul and ears. Listen to her music at https://rosegabriel.bandcamp.com. Music continues at 2:15 p.m. with an extended set by the very talented duo Ordinary Elephant. A collaboration of the husband and wife duo, Crystal and Pete Damore, Ordinary Elephant captivates listeners with insightful writing, effortless harmonies, and intertwined banjo and guitar. Pete and Crystal met at a weekly songwriter night in Bryan, Texas, in 2009, and began co-writing and developing their sound, moving to Houston two years later. Their debut album, Dusty Words & Cardboard Boxes, garnered a nomination for Vocal Duo of the Year at the 2014 Texas Music Awards. Since then, they have won recognition and many awards for their songs and music. While influenced by musicians such as Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Guy Clark, Darrell Scott, and Mary Gauthier, they have a style all their own. Pete’s understated and melodic banjo weaves through Crystal’s steady rhythm guitar, and poetic lyrics are purposefully delivered in rich harmony. Their 2017 release, Before I Go, established them nationally and internationally, with the album reaching No. 2 on the Folk DJ Chart. Crystal and Pete have lived the song’s message—being moved to create, perform, and put everything into what they do. Today, Ordinary Elephant happily call the road home after shedding most of their possessions in 2014 to take on nomadic life. Living full-time in a van and travel trailer with their dogs, they are exploring the country and finding attentive audiences with whom to share the conversation of their music. Preview their music of at www.ordinaryelephant.net.

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