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In-person shows in Lena’s historic listening room in Saratoga Springs
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Shamarr Allen’s New Orleans jazz, R&B and funk create an energetic, joyful mix during his live performances. Expect irresistable grooves mixed with laughter, audience participation, and the very best vibes. Click photo for song.
Greetings – Well, it poured absolute cats and dogs on Saturday all through our annual “Caffe Lena @ SPAC” Festival. We moved into the amphitheater and the several hundred intrepid music fans who showed up had a darn good time, as did our bands who were wowed to be occupying the same stage and dressing rooms as SPAC’s major stars. The setback became a comeback.

This week finds us back in the cozy environs of Caffe Lena, and we’ve got some really special music for you. New Orleans will be well represented by Lilli Lewis on Thursday, and Shamarr Allen (returning for his fourth show!) on Sunday. Everyone knows there’s a special spirit fueling NOLA artists, and these two have it. They get on stage to make people feel good, and they regard you as an essential part of the show. And that’s what makes it folk music. 🙂

See you at the show,
Sample Song |  In-person tickets | Watch on Caffe Lena TV
Sample Song |  In-person tickets | Watch on Caffe Lena TV

New Orleans folk rock diva Lilli Lewis is a soulful powerhouse who sings of social justice in a way that heals and unites. “Storytelling with transformative empathy and classically trained poise.” (NPR) Backed by drums, bass and keyboard, Lilli’s songs range from tender to funky. Colorado duo LVDY opens with gorgeous harmonies.

Sample Song |  In-person tickets | Watch on Caffe Lena TV

Regional favorite Kribs celebrates his 70th birthday with a musical look back at a career that began in northeast coffeehouses in the ’70s with folk classics, then grew into decades of national touring with The Racquette River Rounders, rockabilly band Johnny & The Triumphs and Celtic-country band The McKrells.  He’ll be joined by the folk duo of Orion Kribs on mandolin and Keanen Stark on guitar.

Sample Song |  In-person tickets | Watch on Caffe Lena TV

Ed Schwarzschild is an award-winning novelist and professor. He’s the “doctor” of the group. Iggy Calabria, a jazz musician who once owned a gourmet scratch bakery, is the “baker.” Joined by Chris Gockley on bass and Danny Goodwin on drums they have a sound that “evokes the Velvet Underground.” (Nippertown)  Schwarzchild will take the stage in this afternoon’s Book Festival as an author, and then switch hats to front his band in the evening.

Sample Song |  In-person tickets | Watch on Caffe Lena TV

Hailing from the Lower 9th Ward, Allen is the definition of New Orleans. He’s True Orleans, as he says. He uses jazz, hip-hop, funk and country to make the world a happier place one show at a time. Uplifting messages, dry humor, incredible trumpet chops (as heard in his years with Galactic, John Legend, and The Hot 8 Brass Band) & a fabulous band that will have you cheering & clapping!


As our audience grows, our roster of members gets more diverse. Some members are new to town, and some have been supporters for decades. Some jet around the world following their favorite bands, and others are open mic artists who stay home working on new songs. Some are teens and some are octogenarians; some love jazz and wine, and others prefer banjos and tea. But you all have one thing in common: a love of music. And that one thing seems to be enough for a roomful of all sorts of people to have a wonderful time together. Thanks for creating and sustaining this place of diversity and goodwill.

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