Select Page
View this email in your browser
Afro-Indigenous singer-songwriter Julian Taylor is our pick for this month’s Bright Series. He was honored as Solo Artist of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards and received two Juno Award nominations in 2021.
Click photo for sample song.

Greetings – You turned out for shows in droves over the holidays and you refilled Lena’s coffers with your amazingly generous donations. What a feeling, after this very challenging year, to be made strong by a community that believes in the power of music. What better way to celebrate than to bring people together for great shows, grow the School of Music, and serve the wider community with healing, energizing music. On behalf of our Board and staff, we are grateful for your generosity and we are deeply honored to work for you.

See you at the show,

7 PM Open Mic Night
7 PM Jazz at Caffe Lena: Chuck Lamb Trio ft. Ralph Lalama
8 PM “Live From Caffe Lena” on WEXT 97.7 or 106.1 FM
10:30 AM Folk Club Kids
2:45 PM School: After School Youth Ensemble 
3:45 PM School: After School Youth Folk Ensemble
4:35 PM School: After School Youth Folk Ensemble
7 PM & 12 AM “Live From Caffe Lena” on Folk Music Notebook
12 PM  School: Adult “Learn to Jam” Class
1:30 PM 10 Minutes w/ Mateo & Sarah Facebook Live – Trivia Challenge & News!
7 PM The Bright Series: Julian Taylor
7 PM The Figgs Celebrate Josh Chambers    (LOW TICKET ALERT)
4 PM Roomful of Blues    (8 PM is SOLD OUT)
9 AM Dharma Meditation with Pierre Zimmerman
MLK Celebration
3 PM Little Folks Show with Nikara Warren Trio
6:30 Interview with Artist / 7 PM Nikara Warren Trio  (LOW TICKET ALERT!)
Tuesday, Jan 10 / 7 PM / $27.88
Jazz at Caffe Lena
Chuck Lamb Trio

Special guest Ralph Lalama
In-person tickets
Watch on Caffe Lena TV
Pianist Chuck Lamb will be joined by drummer Jeff Siegel and bassist Rich Syracuse, along with this month’s very special guest, NYC saxophonist Ralph Lalama. Lalama is a GRAMMY-winner with great swing and great melodic ideas. Critic Zan Stewart put it succinctly: “Lalama is a grand, modern-minded storyteller…a 1st-class jazz soloist.” Lalama is now with the famed Vanguard Jazz Orchestra.

Thursday, Jan 12 / 7 PM / $22.50
Bright Series: Julian Taylor
In-person tickets
Watch on Caffe Lena TV
This Canadian singer-songwriter is a major label veteran, Toronto music scene staple, and musical chameleon. Newly reborn as a singer-songwriter, he’s enjoying a surge of popularity. His 2020 acoustic album, The Ridge, earned 1 million plays on Spotify, airplay from America to Australia to the U.K. and earned Taylor Solo Artist of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. Raised on soul, hip-hop, blues, Americana and ‘90s alternative, Taylor has embraced his identity as a Black man of Mohawk and West Indian roots. In his warm, charismatic way, he explores themes of identity, loss, struggle, spirituality and connection.

Friday, Jan 13 / 7 PM / $27.88 / LOW TICKET ALERT
The Figgs Celebrate Josh Chambers
In-person tickets
Watch on Caffe Lena TV
This show is made possible from a generous donation from the Chambers family to celebrate the legacy of Josh Chambers, a close friend of The Figgs. Chambers made a name for himself as a musician, playwright and director. His band Throwdown Bouquet and his theater troupe Fovea Floods brought a multitude of exciting, wild, brash and brilliant shows to Caffe Lena throughout the ’90s and 2000s. Josh passed away in February, 2021. We’ll hear some of Josh’s songs and words as part of tonight’s show.

The Figgs are one of Saratoga best known exports to the national pop music scene. Mike Gent (guitar, vocals), Pete Donnelly (bass, vocals), and Pete Hayes (drums, vocals) are still going strong more than 35 years after they launched. They’ve served as Graham Parker’s band for multiple tours & records, toured as the backing band for Tommy Stinson (The Replacements), and performed with a who’s who of the rock pantheon. In 2021, they were inducted into the Capital Region Music Hall of Fame and 2022 saw the release of their 16th LP, Chemical Shake.

Saturday, Jan 14 / $40.78

Roomful of Blues
4 PM – Tickets available

Watch on Caffe Lena TVOne of the tightest, most joyful blues ensembles you’ll find anywhere! Currently an eight-piece unit led by guitarist Chris Vachon, the band has never sounded fresher or stronger in its 50 years. Their winning combination of jump, swing, blues, R&B and soul keeps on rockin’ in 2023!

Sunday, Jan 15 / 3 PM / FREE
 Dr. King Celebration Weekend:
Little Folks Show with Nikara Warren Trio

Register here
Watch from home
Vibraphonist Nikara is the grand-daughter of renowned jazz pianist Kenny Barron. Nikara’s band will introduce children to jazz as part of the story of America. This free concert is part of Saratoga’s annual Dr. King Celebration Weekend.

Made possible by Claudia & Kevin Bright and Polyset

Sunday, Jan 15
6:30 Interview / 7 PM Concert / FREE  / LOW TICKET ALERT 
Dr. King Celebration Weekend
with Nikara Warren Trio
Register / Watch on Caffe Lena TV
“Songs are the soul of a movement,” is the theme for this year’s Dr. King Celebration Weekend in Saratoga. Music and song give expression to pain and grief as well as joy, hope and the resilience of the human spirit. This is reflected in the work of vibraphonist, composer, arranger, and educator Nikara Warren. Her post-modern patchwork of influences and her fearless musicality honor her Black ancestry with a joyous celebration of cultures & resilience. We will begin the program with an interview of Nikara conducted by Vivian Nesbitt for Art of the Song, a radio show broadast on NPR stations around the country.


This year we are ramping up a new “Social Music for Seniors” program. Many studies have shown that music improves cognition, life-satisfaction and general health–for all ages. Our new daytime classes for those age 50+ engage the hands and the brain in a new activity, build friendships, and reawaken the social self. We’re grateful for your membership support because it means we can deliver the power of music to adults through friendly, daytime group classes. So far, it’s going great!

Caffe Lena has nearly 1,000 active members. These folks are planting songs and growing community with their annual donations. They also get the best seats in the house, early access to special shows and some neat swag. Learn More

View CaffeLena.tv subscription options.
There’s still time to see last weekend’s shows!