Some musical collaborations seem fated to exist only in the studio, like some unstable isotope created under controlled lab conditions. Other partnerships are torn apart by the stressful potholes of the road, while still others expire with the termination of a record contract.
The project known as Red Horse, while technically just a few years old, carries with it a history forged in long-standing friendship – a bond that seems only to have strengthened through live performance.
Labelmates on the folk music imprint Red House Records, the “supergroup” of Eliza Gilkyson, John Gorka and Lucy Kaplansky , came about not so much by commercial expediency as it did via a genuine respect for each other’s music – a quality borne out by the fact that the three accomplished songwriters take turns singing each other’s compositions, as well as introducing new originals and reinterpreting old favorites that range from Neil Young to Traditional anonymous.
Performing together and separately, this dream team of Americana stylists finds a perfect setting for their songcraft on the night of Saturday, March 23, 2013, when Red Horse comes riding in to the Pollak Theatre at Monmouth University – the acclaimed acoustic-music venue where Lucy Kaplansky previously appeared as a member (with Dar Williams and Richard Shindell) of the trio Cry Cry Cry.
Kaplansky, the veteran Village musician and clinical psychologist whose latest album Reunion finds her interpreting songs by Eliza Gilkyson (as well as by Woody Guthrie and The Beatles), continues a working relationship with globetrotting multi-instrumentalist (and native New Jerseyan) John Gorka that dates back to a World Trade Center concert just prior to 9/11.
In 2010, Gorka and Kaplansky teamed in the studio with Gilkyson – the Grammy nominated, second-generation folkie (singer-songwriter father Terry sang on hits by The Weavers, and was Oscar-nominated for the Disney song “The Bare Necessities”), whose own string of Red House recordings includes 2011’s Roses at the End of Time.
For the artists, the resulting Red Horse was an experience that resonated well beyond the tour that supported the album’s original release – and the three partners have since made it a point to take time out from their ongoing solo careers, in order to reunite periodically under the Red Horse banner. It’s a road that brings the trio of travelers to the West Long Branch campus, in an 8 p.m. event presented as part of the 2012-2013 Performing Arts Series by the Center for the Arts at Monmouth.
The Performing Arts series continues into Spring 2013 with concerts by John Hammond (April 5), Step Afrika (April 12), Southside Johnny and the Poor Fools, and Roger McGuinn (April 19). For additional information on these and other events, or to purchase tickets, please contact the Monmouth University Performing Arts Box Office at 732-263-6889, or online at www.monmouth.edu/arts. To schedule an interview, please contact Eileen Chapman at 732-571-3512.