Come celebrate the release of San Francisco based singer-songwriter Liz Kennedy’s new album Hike Up Your Socks. Liz will be performing songs from the new album along with selections from her previous recordings with a few of her friends and Bay Area greats including guitarist Joel Jaffe, drummer Billy Johnson, bassist Marc Levine, background vocalist Omega Rae, Lorin Rowan on mandolin and guitar, accordionist Pete Contino, keyboardist Hardy Hemphill, and Suzy Thompson on fiddle.
On the new album Hike Up Your Socks, a collection of soulful and poetic narratives, Kennedy finds fresh ways to define rootsy – including bringing in legendary bluesman Taj Mahal who plays harmonica on the front porch ballad “Love Gave Me Away” and contributes his inimitable vocals and banjo to the buoyant opener “Everyone Knows How It Goes.”
The 12-track collection is produced by Joel Jaffe whose credits include Maria Muldaur, Lenny Williams and Magic Christian. Jaffe helmed all Kennedy’s previous recordings, Clean White Shirt, A Good Peach, Nothing Like an Angel and Speed Bump.
“Everyone Knows How It Goes” introduces the sound of the album. Kennedy wrote the tune after heading off with a pack of her old friends to Desert Trip, the 2016 classic rock festival in Indio, CA some affectionately dubbed “Oldchella”. “This song is a tribute to Neil Young and also to Taj Mahal, who joined me in recording it,” Kennedy says. “It is a tribute to the fine music that defined us and still does. We would all just be lumps of skin and hair in a corner somewhere without that music holding us together, giving us shape and form. We worshipped them all, and we learned their songs in cramped rooms ‘with candles and wine.’ ”
“The album is more rootsy than anything I’ve done before in two ways,” she says. “First, there’s the overall acoustic sound of the instruments, incorporating rock and blues elements, coupled with the fact that I’m digging deeper into my own folk music roots as a kid of the 60’s.”
The collection reflects Kennedy’s storytelling and songwriting style that has been compared to Leonard Cohen, Paul Simon, Randy Newman and Tom Waits.