A STAR HAS BURNT MY EYE: The Strange Case of Connie Converse
Performed by Howard Fishman (with special guests)
Joe's Pub favorite Howard Fishman,
whose previous tributes here have included investigations of Lonnie
Johnson's late career catalog, Hoagy Carmichael's lesser-known songs,
and a Herculean three-night marathon interpretation of Bob Dylan and The
Band's complete "Basement Tapes" sessions (a show later
programmed to headline Lincoln Center's American Songbook series) now
turns his attention to yet another obscure, compelling body of work: the
songs of singer, guitarist and composer Connie Converse.
Acclaimed singer, guitarist, composer and bandleader Howard Fishman filters a deep passion for New Orleans soul, Brooklyn grit, open-hearted country, blues, classical, and gospel music through a completely original, experimental aesthetic, to create a sound entirely his own.
Fishman began his career on the streets of New Orleans and in the subways of New York, experiences that still resonate in his “disarmingly un-showbizy” concerts (Backstage). A pioneer of the Brooklyn music scene, Fishman “brings a feeling to a room that is reunion-like. Everyone there is part of a community…it can’t be helped.” (11211 Magazine).
A testament to his wide-ranging appeal, Fishman has appeared on bills with such diverse artists as Califone, Odetta, Yo-Yo Ma, Maceo Parker, Robyn Hitchcock, Nellie McKay, and Allen Holdsworth. He is a frequent NPR guest, making feature-length appearances on “Fresh Air” with Terry Gross, “World Cafe,” “The Leonard Lopate Show,” “Word of Mouth,” and “Soundcheck,” among others.
Fishman’s travels and omnivorous cultural curiosity inform his constantly-expanding repertoire of special projects, from his original oratorio “we are destroyed,” about The Donner Party, to his multi-media musical travelogue “No Further Instructions,” to his New Orleans-inspired Biting Fish Brass Band, to his “Basement Tapes Project,” featuring the music of Bob Dylan and The Band. He has released ten albums to date. The New York Times has written that his music "transcends time and idiom."