Terri Binion puts serious spotlight on Florida songwriters with debut of 'Duets' series

by

comment
Terri Binion and Jordan Foley at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion and Jordan Foley at Will's Pub
THIS LITTLE UNDERGROUND
Duets with Terri Binion and Jordan Foley, Will's Pub, May 22

Few treat the songwriter tradition with as much respect as Orlando Americana queen Terri Binion. That care isn’t just limited to her own distinguished work. Inspired by what she saw as host of the quiet indoor stage at Mike Dunn’s Folk Yeah festival, she organized an evening that’s a true songwriter spotlight.
Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub
Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub
Rather than the typical bar show, the debut of Duets was arranged as a listening room experience with tables brought in and signs requesting quiet during the performances. Co-hosted by fellow local Americana luminary Jordan Foley, the event featured pairings that cut a nice, broad cross section of the area’s current folk scene.
Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub
Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion's Duets at Will's Pub
Featured duets included Central Florida country-rocker Luke Wagner with Ed Isola (banjoist of local indie-folk band the 502s) and Orlando folk-popper Nicholas Roberts with Kit.
Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub
Kit and Nicholas Roberts at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Kit and Nicholas Roberts at Will's Pub
On the traditional end of the spectrum, Rachel Decker and Tommy Cooper of the Oak Hill Drifters played in their classic country style. Their Louvin Brothers cover certifies that.
Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub
Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub
The set also included a Decker-penned song that’s not only never been performed out before, but is so intensely and tragically personal that it ended in onstage tears. Goddamn, that’s laying it on the line there.
Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub
On the opposite end of that was Renee Arozqueta, who was accompanied by fellow Swamp Sista Amy Robbins. Certainly the least conventionally folk artist of the lot, the quirky and irrepressible Arozqueta gave a glimpse inside her kaleidoscopic soul and sound, which entailed the only percussion of the night, a costume jumpsuit and a Moldy Peaches cover (“Steak for Chicken”).
Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub
Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub
Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub
Although perhaps the least known quantities, Patrick Hagerman and Joshua Reilly were one of the night’s most seamless duos. Both are now Floridian – Hagerman local and Reilly from the Tampa Bay area – but the two go way back as bandmates in Illinois, which probably explains their mature chemistry, though the set was split evenly between their respective solo material.
Joshua Reilly and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Joshua Reilly and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub
Joshua Reilly and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Joshua Reilly and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub
Hopefully, the exposure of this night will urge Hagerman to play out more and Reilly to come back into town. After their set, Terri Binion joined Hagerman to perform Dylan’s “You’re a Big Girl Now.”
Terri Binion and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion and Patrick Hagerman at Will's Pub
To close the night, co-hosts Binion and Foley did their own duets, exceptionally elegant covers of “Harvest Moon” and “Love Hurts.”
Terri Binion and Jordan Foley at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Terri Binion and Jordan Foley at Will's Pub
After the good reception for this debut, there’s lots of fellowship in the air and talks of a follow-up. Let’s hope that happens because Duets is both worthy and ripe to become a series. It’s one of the most intimate and artist-focused local showcases to come along in a while. It’s a format that breeds collaboration and presents even familiar voices in new, revealing light. All of it combined to make the inaugural event a radiant affair as local as it was authentic.
Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Ed Isola and Luke Wagner at Will's Pub
Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Tommy Cooper and Rachel Decker at Will's Pub
Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Amy Robbins and Renee Arozqueta at Will's Pub

Follow Bao on Twitter (@baolehuu)
Email Bao: baolehuu@orlandoweekly.com