Hey! Manchester promotes gigs by folk, Americana and experimental bands from around the world in Manchester, England. Read more here, see below for our latest shows, check out our previous shows, contact us, or join our mailing list, above.

Upcoming shows: Easy Kill... Kiran Leonard... Sam Outlaw Band... Wedding + Irma Vep... Hannah Nicholson... Adam Torres... Parker Millsap... Laura Gibson... GospelbeacH... Jens Lekman... H.Hawkline... James Yuill... John Murry... Jack Cooper... Danny & The Champions Of The World... Avec Sans... Kiran Leonard... Michael Nau... Good Morning... Jen Cloher... Dotan... Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton... The Dears... Frankie Rose... The Lovely Eggs... The Proper Ornaments... Wesley Gonzalez... CC Smugglers... Julie Byrne... Daniel Romano... Will Varley... Aldous Harding... Skinny Lister + Beans on Toast... Leif Vollebekk... Lowly... Jesca Hoop...

When: 7.30pm on Saturday 8 July 2017
Where: The Eagle Inn, 19 Collier Street, Salford, M3 7DW

We’re delighted to be helping Easy Kill launch their new single, Phantom Pain!

Based out of Manchester’s thick miasmic gloom, Easy Kill describe their music as doom-pop; a sort of melancholy made catchy. Shadowing the introspection of singer/songwriter Theo Tobias’ lyrics, the band’s live show is captivating as it flows dynamically between dreamy reveries and more intense moments of uplift or breakdown.

Since forming in 2013 the group have released two EP’s. Already Entitled and Sermons were both critically well received with the latter achieving widespread airplay. Huw Stevens selected lead single Samson as his ‘Tip of the Week’, whilst second single Not Even Lovers appeared in his 2016 ‘Best of’ playlist.

Easy Kill’s latest project Melanscholar is a full length album following the story of a newly formed ghost as it finds its bearings in the afterlife. It is intended as a metaphor for life with depression. Entirely self-produced by drummer Alex Howes, the new songs are warmer and more atmospheric to match their unworldly setting.

This intimate show marks the release of Easy Kill’s new single, Phantom Pain, via Fierce Panda.

‘Breezy, National-channelling balladry’ – DIY

‘Earnest, emotive pop music’ – Goldflakepaint

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 12 July 2017
Where: Pavilion Theatre, Albert Square, Manchester, M2 5PE

We’re delighted to be working with Manchester International Festival and Sounds From The Other City to present Kiran Leonard: ‘Song of the Husband’.

Hugely precocious and astonishingly prolific, Kiran Leonard had compiled a rich, varied and brilliant catalogue of music even before he celebrated his 21st birthday last year. Now, the Saddleworth native is bringing his new art-and-music project to Festival Square. Song of the Husband was discovered by archaeologists during a recent expedition to an unnamed planet in a distant solar system. Life once thrived on this faraway planet, but all its civilisations have long since been wiped out. Says Leonard, Song of the Husband ‘is living evidence of what artists have to say when their world is dying, in response to problems that cannot be understood, reasoned with or overcome.’ Visit Leonard’s Song of the Husband website for more on the project – then see and hear it first at MIF17.

Tickets are on sale via www.mif.co.uk

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When: 7.30pm on Thursday 27 July 2017
Where: Night & Day Cafe, 26 Oldham St, Manchester, M1 1JN

PLEASE NOTE: Due to exceptional demand, this show has been upgraded to Night & Day Cafe! Original tickets remain valid, and all other details stay the same.

We’re delighted to be working with Sam Outlaw Band for the first time!

Cynicism comes easy, but having a soft heart takes real guts. Sam Outlaw’s new album Tenderheart dares to tread gently and look inward, with unapologetic sentiment and un-ironic nods to country music’s greatest neon rainbow chasers.

Since the release of his 2015 debut Angeleno, Outlaw remains one of LA’s only modern country singers to earn international acclaim. And with his follow-up Tenderheart he shows an impressive refinement of his artistic identity. Sonically, the album further elaborates Outlaw’s ‘SoCal Country’ sound: a sun-bleached, Baja-influenced twang that deftly points to country’s neo-traditionalists and LA’s legendary singer-songwriters. Thematically Tenderheart is a thesis on self-discovery and the power of love – a course set with the opening chords of Everyone’s Looking For Home. The opening track is a cinematic, mariachi-laced meditation on Outlaw’s own conflicted quest for peace amongst the chaos of his chosen path.

Along the way he also takes a look around, and Tenderheart’s revelations are most potent when filtered through Outlaw’s distinctive Los Angeles vantage point. Bottomless Mimosas is emotionally hollowing in its portrayal of west coast existentialism while Bougainvillea, I Think and Dry In The Sun round out this trio of ‘Los Angeles songs’ that explore the city’s faded beauty and define SoCal Country beyond instrumentation.

Trouble, one of the album’s standouts, makes being bad sound pretty damn good with determined ‘Side A’ swagger and kicks off a song cycle that chronicles a heart’s bend, break and mend. She’s Playing Hard To Get (Rid Of) showcases acerbic wit in teary three-four time, setting the scene for Two Broken Hearts – a wounded lovers’ getaway story with an open ending. Over the course of these thirteen songs it becomes increasingly apparent why his clever intertwining of country tropes and crisp modernism has so impressed country music fans, critics and songwriters alike. (Alt-country pioneer Ryan Adams just recently praised Outlaw, calling his work ‘beyond great songwriting’.)

Angeleno’s critical acclaim also led to 18 months of international touring. He entertained thousands of festival-goers with a prime slot at Stagecoach, made four trips to Europe, toured Australia twice and played several hundred gigs in the USA. After all those miles it’s fitting that Tenderheart bottles the energy of the songs that have become mainstays of his live show. Fan-favourites like Diamond Ring and honky-tonk sing-along All My Life finally get proper studio treatment, along with Look At You Now, a regular highlight of his acoustic tours overseas – where Outlaw is nominated for AmericanaUK’s International Album of the Year alongside Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price.

Not one to mess with a winning combination, Sam called on many of the same musicians that made Angeleno such a success: harmony singer Molly Jenson, pedal steel pro Jeremy Long and guitarist Danny Garcia, along with Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes) and Bo Koster (My Morning Jacket). Produced by Martin Pradler and Outlaw, and recorded in the San Fernando Valley, Tenderheart also features Erwin Vasquez and Mariachi Teocuitatlan, a local mariachi group who appeared in the video for Angeleno’s title track.

Now two years into his new life, Outlaw has learned that great dreams can only be achieved at great cost. And at its core, Tenderheart is the outcome of another lesson learned: if your heart stays true, the sacrifice is worth it.

‘Sam Outlaw is rewriting the sound of Country, 2,000 miles from Nashville’ – CBS This Morning

‘An instant classic’ – NPR Music

Tour support comes from Worry Dolls. Go Get Gone is the debut album from Worry Dolls – a tenacious female duo born out of the joint talents of Zoe Nicol and Rosie Jones. Recorded in Nashville and produced by Neilson Hubbard (Matthew Perryman Jones), a veteran of East Nashville’ s music scene, it features song-writing collaborations with Jeff Cohen (Teitur), Ben Glover (Gretchen Peters), Joe Doyle (Reba Mcentire) and stunning playing from Wild Ponies, Eamon McLoughlin (Ashley Monroe), Kenny Hutson (Little Big Town) and more.

This show is a co-promotion with Please Please You.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7pm on Friday 28 June 2017
Where: Soup Kitchen, 31-33 Spear Street, Manchester M1 1DF

We’re delighted to be working with Wedding and Irma Vep once again – on their co-headlining ‘No Whatever’ tour!

Wedding is the project of songwriter Thomas Craig. The band return, following the move from their birthplace of Berlin to the city of Manchester, with debut LP Mania Whatever on Stockholm label Maternal Voice.

Maternal Voice is the follow-up to 2015’s debut EP – acclaimed by Dummy, HERO, La Blogotheque and The Line of Best Fit.

Irma Vep, born Edwin Stevens in the North Wales town of Llanfairfechan, is a staple in Manchester’s DIY scene and described as wonky psych-pop – like the kind made by Cate Le Bon or Kiran Leonard – with warm and fuzzy guitars, swooning strings, and a gradually unfolding drama.

Lauded by BBC 6 Music’s Marc Riley among others, he has recently released the album No Handshake Blues on Faux Discx.

This show is co-promotion with Comfortable On A Tightrope.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Saturday 5 August 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be helping Hannah Nicholson launch her debut EP!

Blending soulful melancholia with the controlled artistry of a classically trained singer, Hannah Nicholson gives voice to the light and dark of human emotion.

Having previously performed as one half of the Manchester based psych-folk duo Bird to Beast, she has now crafted her own individual musical identity: a blend of choral, electro and folk, stitched together with a thread that runs from J. S. Bach to Jane Weaver.

With a debut an EP released shortly, she plays an exclusive launch show with string quartet at the Castle Hotel.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 16 August 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with Adam Torres for the first time.

In 2006, 20-year-old Adam Torres released his debut album Nostra Nova. The album’s 11 songs are idiosyncratic and varied – as are many great songs – with each existing as its own little world. It’s influenced by the works of visual artist Adolf Wolfli and C.G. Jung, and it’s the sound of Torres making something beautiful. With many truly breathtaking moments throughout, it feels full of promise, and is simultaneously weathered and young. A DIY self-release, Nostra Nova found deep, long-lasting roots within the small Athens, OH community at the time, but didn’t resonate farther until much later.

Following its release, Torres went back to college and turned his focus to other interests. But all the while, he never stopped playing music, writing songs, or performing, even while living in Ecuador on and off for two years, teaching English and volunteering in rural villages in the Ecuadorian Andes, among other things. In 2011, Torres moved to Austin, TX and enrolled in graduate school at the University of Texas, and upon finishing, spent two years working for the state of Texas on a project aimed at cleaning the water quality of the Rio Grande River in South Texas.

Having penned more than 100 songs since 2006, he quietly released his first music since Nostra Nova in 2012 through DC cassette-label DZ Tapes, which featured tape-recorded demos made inside the apartments he lived in during his time in Ecuador.

In 2015, Nostra Nova saw a small reissue. Called a ‘cult classic’ by The A.V. Club, the album finally achieved its due, earning additional praise from Stereogum, VICE, Popmatters, All Music Guide, and Flavorwire, which wrote of Torres as ‘someone who was, at an early age, able to connect his own odd experiences to the concept of life itself in an almost innate way’.

In many respects, that description is a good start at capturing the magic of Torres’ music. There’s a persisting theme that threads through his own story as well as his forthcoming new LP, Pearls To Swine. Within the cosmos of the album, characters experience a sort of misadventure and persevere, casting light on the way life can lead you down a path that’s far from where you wanted to be. Pearls To Swine maps Torres’ complicated history as a songwriter and musician: it’s the sound of someone who discovered the value in his own devotion to music, and how writing and songs are extensions of his own journey. He embeds his own folklore within his high-lonesome sounding, deeply felt and moving brand of folk music.

Across the album, Torres crafts uniquely cinematic soundscapes, ranging through a thoughtfully languid waltz Juniper Arms (inspired by Edward Abbey’s iconic book of nature writing Desert Solitaire), and on the evocative, uneasy Some Beast Will Find You By Name. It wends through the lush, gently undulating High Lonesome to the lonely sweep of the Raymond Carver-signalling Where I’m Calling From, and travels from the foreboding, sinuous Outlands to the deceptively buoyant cascade of Mountain River. Nature abounds on Pearls To Swine – which also examines the tension of the natural versus the constructed, and survival – filled with imagery of juniper trees, deserts, blood moons, rivers, plains, and big western skies that gives it a distinctively southwestern feel. His style acknowledges the classic singer-songwriter tradition, allowing the rhythm sounds to support the structure of songs, while his affecting falsetto conjures the spirit of traditional vocalists such as John Jacob Niles and Robbie Basho.

Pearls To Swine was recorded over eight days in January at Austin’s Cacophony Recorders, which overlooks the Colorado River valley. Working alongside co-producer and mixer Erik Wofford (Bill Callahan, Black Angels, M. Ward, Okkervil River), Torres chose the analog route, recording and mixing directly to tape to allow for more finality and less overthought. This method in turn lends a natural, warm, and almost magical realism atmosphere to the songs – like a high-stakes live show captured in a fantastical setting. The core rhythm was captured live and augmented by a few overdubs, and Torres is joined on the album by the players in his band: Thor Harris (of Swans; on conga drums, vibraphone, and percussion), Aisha Burns (violin), and Dailey Tolliver (bass/piano), with drum kit performances by Matthew Shepherd and Rodolfo Villareal III.

‘After almost a decade, the gorgeous voice of singer-songwriter Adam Torres remains the spotlight, but his songs have grown wider and more elemental’ – Pitchfork

‘Some of the purest, restorative, most unburdened music imaginable’ – Mojo

This show is a co-promotion with Now Wave.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 16 August 2017
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re delighted to be working with Parker Millsap for the first time!

At only 24 years of age, Oklahoma native Parker Millsap is quickly making a name for himself with his captivating live performances, soulful sound and character-driven narratives. He recently wrapped up a banner year, which included his network television debut on Conan, an invitation to play with Elton John at the Apple Music Festival, an Austin City Limits taping and an Americana Music Association nomination for Album of the Year, as well as winning the International Folk Music Awards’ Artist Of the Year. Parker’s most recent release, The Very Last Day, has received praise from The New York Times, The Boston Globe, LA Times, Austin Chronicle and Rolling Stone to name a few.

Parker grew up in the tiny town of Purcell, OK (pop. 5,952) where he attended a Pentecostal church with his family three times a week for most of his youth. Though Parker doesn’t consider himself very religious these days, the experiences engraved upon him inform his songwriting. Blending that fire and brimstone preaching with rock, country, blues and Waits-ian imagery, he has created a sound uniquely his own.

Parker first picked up an acoustic guitar at nine, then plugged in and went electric after getting into Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan, eventually starting a cover band, Fever in Blue, with classmate Michael Rose who still plays bass with him today. After graduating high school, he moved to Northern California, where he interned at Prairie Sun Recording, the studio where Tom Waits recorded Bone Machine and Mule Variations. Returning to Oklahoma, he put down the electric guitar and got into songwriting, releasing an indie album in 2012, Palisade, which he sold from the back of his van.

A trip to Nashville found Parker playing at the Tin Pan South songwriter’s festival, where his performance impressed Old Crow Medicine Show‘s manager so much that he invited Parker to open a string of dates for the band, later leading to a slot on their New Year’s Eve gig at the Ryman Auditorium. Parker has also opened dates for Jason Isbell, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Lake Street Dive, Lucinda Williams and Shovels & Rope.

‘I like to set goals for myself that are impossible to reach,’ he explains. ‘That way, I always have something to aim for, a better song, different characters, new stories. I just want to pay the bills and feed my dog, and maybe buy a new guitar every now and then. That’s all I need. I don’t want to be Elvis Presley, but I wouldn’t complain if a million girls screamed for me, either. Just don’t tell my girlfriend that.’ Parker Millsap is ready to share his Oklahoma roots with the rest of the country, and, hopefully, the world.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Wednesday 23 August 2017
Where: Gullivers, 109 Oldham Street, Manchester, M4 1LW

We’re excited to be working with City Slang’s Laura Gibson, creator of one of the best albums of 2016, once again! This time, for a solo show at Gullivers.

Laura-Gibson-Soup-Kitchen-Manchester

In late summer of 2014, following the release of her highly praised 2012 album La Grande, Laura Gibson packed her things and moved from Portland to New York to study Creative Writing and have some time away from music. For the first part of that journey she took the ‘Empire Builder’, a legendary train that connects the Pacific North West with Chicago.

Just as she’d begun to feel settled, on March 26, 2015, her apartment building in the Lower East Side blew up from a gas explosion, killing two and injuring many. Laura was unharmed, but lost almost all that she owned and had been working on. All identification, musical instruments, stacks of notebooks, and every word she had written in the past several years was reduced to a pile of rubble.

She spent the next few months rebuilding her life, bouncing between friends’ couches and guest rooms, and finishing her second semester, and all the while rewriting the lyrics she had lost, a recovery made possible by the help and support from hundreds of friends, fans and strangers.

Now, she presents her new album, aptly titled Empire Builder, and released in April 2016 through City Slang. Equally raw and focused, Empire Builder captures a life blown open: an individual mid-transformation. Gibson’s most personal record to date, it marks a huge leap forward as a songwriter, composer and producer.

She gathered a stellar band of dear old friends: guitarist/bassist Dave Depper (Death Cab for Cutie, Menomena), drummer/percussionist Dan Hunt (Neko Case) and composer/violinist Peter Broderick. Other contributors include Nate Query of The Decemberists and vocalist Alela Diane. Gibson co-produced the record with John Askew (Neko Case, The Dodos), spending her school breaks in his home studio, and in Broderick’s studio on the Oregon coast. With Askew’s encouragement, Gibson returned to the recordings soon after the explosion. Having lost her guitar, which she had played on every record and show since the beginning, they decided to keep many of the scratch tracks from the original demos, building around them to create the final album.

Within her fiction studies in grad school, Gibson is finding her legs as a storyteller. Amid trauma, loss and recovery, she rediscovered songwriting as a means of understanding her own life and choices. Empire Builder grapples with independence, womanhood, solitude, connection and aloneness. If Gibson has a thesis, it’s perhaps within the final words of the title track: ‘Hurry up and lose me / Hurry up and find me again.’ With clear-eyed honesty, urgency and warmth, Empire Builder succeeds in capturing the moment between loss and rediscovery.

‘There isn’t a song here that isn’t a low-key delight’ – Q Magazine

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7.30pm on Sunday 27 August 2017
Where: The Castle Hotel, 66 Oldham Street, Manchester M4 1LE

We’re delighted to be working with GospelbeacH plus Miranda Lee Richards.

Brent Rademaker of further, Beachwood Sparks and The Tyde brings his new band GospelbeacH over the UK for the first time this summer. The touring band also features ex-Slowdive and Mojave 3 drummer Ian McCutcheon. GospelbeacH play dreamy American roots music, with their new album Another Summer Of Love is released 16 June on Alive Naturalsound.

On Another Summer Of Love, like Gram Parsons, Rademaker has drawn nourishment from the openness of Southern California and the sunny, hopeful feeling that epitomises his work is in full effect here. From the kick-off In The Desert, which slyly references The Jam to the jaunty swing of You’re Already Home, which pays a subtle tribute to Rademaker’s hero Chris Hillman’s Girl With No Name, this is what Americana is supposed to be and sometimes is not. Smart, informed, soulful, well-executed and avoiding the slick assembly-line of 2017 Nashville, this is the kind of record that true fans of well-crafted tuneful rock live for.

Tour support comes from Miranda Lee Richards and her band. Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Miranda Lee Richards started her musical career when she became friends with Kirk Hammet from Metallica, who taught her to play guitar. Early demos of her songs reached the ears of Anton Newcombe, and she joined his band The Brian Jonestown Massacre. She sang on their albums Give It Back, Bringing It All Back Home Again and Stung Out In Heaven, and appeared with them in the seminal documentary DIG!.

Her music a mix of folk, psychedelia, country and indie pop, with her new album Existential Beast released 16 June on Invisible Hands Music.

Opening the show is Nick Mitchell. Currently a member of One-Eleven Heavy with members of Royal Trux, Wooden Wand and Ryley Walker Band, Manchester guitarist Nick Mitchell forges simple, spontaneously composed arrangements over which he plays delicate and roaring solos recalling Hiiragi Fukuda and Jerry Garcia in equal measure.

This show is a co-promotion with Please Please You and Bad Paintings.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from the bar (no booking fee), Piccadilly Records, Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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When: 7pm on Monday 28 August 2017
Where: Band on the Wall, 26 Swan Street, Manchester M4 5JZ

When: 7.30pm on Thursday 31 August 2017
Where: Trades Club, Holme Street, Hebden Bridge, HX7 8EE

We’re delighted to be working with Jens Lekman again – for his rescheduled Manchester date, plus an intimate visit to Hebden Bridge!

Jens Lekman recently wrapped up a sold out solo tour of the US where he played new material live for the first time ever.

Life Will See You Now, his first album since 2012’s I Know What Love Isn’t, was released on Secretly Canadian in February 2017. Produced by Ewan Pearson and featuring guest vocals from Tracey Thorn, it has gone on to gain critical praise – with The Observer acclaiming it as ‘a gospel worth spreading’.

Following a March tour that took in Leeds, Jens returns to the UK in August, with this intimate date in Hebden Bridge – plus a re-arranged Manchester show.

Support at both shows comes from New York’s Mega Bog. Mega Bog’s second album Happy Together was released February 2017 via Nicey. Ben Levinson of Tiny Mix Tapes describes it as ‘a labyrinthian DIY-pop exploration of violence, social spaces, and lived experiences’.

MANCHESTER: This date is a rescheduled show, following the March postponement. Original tickets remain valid – and a limited number of returns are available via Seetickets.com.

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HEBDEN BRIDGE: Book tickets now. Tickets are also available from the bar (no booking fee), Wegottickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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