True Life Trio’s music is all about harmony. The fiery voices of these three women spin and interweave, traveling from Ukrainian village tunes, to Greek polyphony to Louisiana two-steps. Bulgaria to the Bayou. On paper, it’s an unlikely combination but in person, it feels just right. Like the rugged mountains, tangled love and legends about which they sing, TLT shows are full of stories and passion. Interspersed with gorgeous vocal performances are tales of their travels and song collecting that bring immediacy to each tune and envelop their audiences in a knowing, warm embrace. You don’t have to speak all of the myriad languages in which TLT sings to be transported to other worlds with them–they bring you right along. True Life Trio’s singing exudes untamed joy. They met in Kitka Women’s Vocal Ensemble and soon found their affinity extended beyond Balkan music to the far reaches of Europe and America. Their music is an elixir of ancient traditional songs made new, tasty choral arrangements and inspired original compositions. They have been enchanting audiences in their San Francisco Bay Area home and all across the West for more than a decade with their finely-honed, heart-centered, “concert hall meets front porch” performances. True Life Trio is celebrating the release of their third studio album, At My Window and will be joined by bassist Paul Brown and percussionist Dan Auvil.
Gradina is a Balkan music ensemble, having been based in the North Bay area since 2001. They sing songs both a cappella and with instrumental accompaniment, leaning toward traditional songs and arrangements.