Eli Lev, Tyler Westcott, Bryan Williams
Monday, August 8, 7pm doors/8pm show, $7 **
Eli Lev, Tyler Westcott, Bryan Williams
Bryan Williams www.facebook.com/bryanchristopherwilliams
Award-winning singer-songwriter and global citizen Eli Lev’s empathic writing and infectious folk-based sensibility has been his universal passport into our collective hearts.
Over the last five years, the Maryland-based artist released his epic debut, Four Directions, which compiles four conceptual EPs (All Roads East 2017, Way Out West 2018, Deep South 2019, True North 2021) into one 20-song statement. The indigenous traditions he learned during his time as an eighth-grade English teacher on the Navajo Nation in Northern Arizona were his inspiration for the critically acclaimed tune tome. Together, the series imaginatively and intrepidly connects spheres and generations within a body of work that is irresistibly uplifting, emotionally resonant, and down-to-earth authentic.
Eli grew up in the diverse suburb of Silver Spring, Maryland, where a blending of incongruous backgrounds made an indelible impact on his pan-culture perspective. Prior to music calling Eli, he studied in Bloomington, Indiana, taught in the US, and lived in Tel Aviv and Andorra, before returning to the US to get a master’s degree in English Education.
Now, Eli is setting out on new adventures. His latest 2022 release, Walk. Talk. Dance. Sing., is an inner travel monologue from the pandemic and beyond. It vibrantly blends Eli’s classic acoustic guitar and upfront vocal aesthetic with refreshingly diverse sounds, spanning pop, lo-fi rock, electronic, indie, folk, and Caribbean-kissed musicality. The refreshing five-song collection compiles his songwriting during the pandemic, capturing the highs, lows, and all the emotions in between during our global crisis. The new EP’s eclectic flair is also an homage to the life-changing power of classic mixtapes, and how a broad array of exposure to new sounds can send someone on a lifelong journey.
Eli’s releases have earned critical praise from magazines such as American Songwriter, Paste Magazine, and IU Alumni; online outlets including BuzzFeed, CBS Radio, AXS, and The Bluegrass Situation; and have received national folk radio support along with placement on prominent industry Spotify playlists. In 2019, Eli Lev won multiple industry awards for his work: his second album Way Out West won a Washington Area Music Award (WAMMIE) for “Best Country/Americana album,” while his single “Chasing Daylight” won a grand prize in the SAW Mid-Atlantic Songwriting Competition and in 2021, he won another WAMMIE for ‘Best Pop Artist’ in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area.
Like classic folk musicians before him, Eli’s real home is the road. He’s played hundreds of shows, locally, nationally, and internationally. Select highlights include performing at the Kennedy Center Millennium stage; his album release at Pearl Street Warehouse in DC; the DC Music Rocks Festival at the legendary 9:30 Club; his appearance at the National Cherry Blossom Festival; and multiple European tours.
“I’m always moving, and that is driven by my desire to connect with people. The joy there is in learning about cultures, and seeing common threads woven into the fabric of our seemingly disparate lives,” Eli says. “Music taps into what is universal; it breaks down boundaries.”
Eli has the distinction of being able to make a living as a full-time musician due to his work ethic and his career savvy. In 2017, he founded Eli Lev Music, LLC, which, despite being a grass-roots business venture, attracts major press coverage and international attention. Eli has also been adept at crowdfunding—he’s conducted two successful Kickstarter campaigns—and he was an early adopter of Patreon. His model and success story have made him an inspirational artistic example, and music coaching companies have taken note. Eli is now a top-level coach and business leader for Modern Musician, a platform that teaches other artists and bands the skills needed to have profitable music careers.
“Lev, his craft and his success are indicative of some of the truly incredible things that modern music technology has made possible. By connecting with thousands of people from across the globe and sharing a message of unity, Lev is able to enjoy one of the greatest things that anyone—especially musicians—can enjoy: community.” – American Songwriter
“His approach to folk music proves that folk is much more than a genre to Eli. His sound and dynamics are genuine, heartfelt, and make listeners feel something.” – No Depression
Here’s a full set live on stage at The Kennedy Center: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GW6KwInZRo
Here’s an interview with Levi: https://thebluegrasssituation.com/read/bgs-55-eli-lev
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