Peter Holsapple & Chris Stamey
Peter and Chris grew up together in Winston-Salem, NC, and started playing music together in the late 60s in middle school—and have really never stopped. They have released two acclaimed collaborative records, 1991's Mavericks and 2009’s Here & Now, and have a deep catalog of songs from the dB’s and solo projects, as well. Both have new releases, Peter with a new solo album, Game Day (Omnivore), and Chris a songwriting memoir, A Spy in the House of Loud: New York Songs and Stories (Univ. of Texas Press). Expect not only great songs but some great stories as well. Through countless bands along the way—including Rittenhouse Square, Little Diesel, Sneakers, the H-Bombs, the dB’s, Continental Drifters, the Golden Palominos—and recording sessions and sideman stints with the likes of R.E.M., Bob Mould and Hootie and the Blowfish, the two have maintained a deep musical connection. Having relocated to Durham, NC, from New Orleans in 2006, Peter is constantly evident in international musical situations while Chris produces many records each year at Modern Recording, his home base in Chapel Hill, NC.
Shellye Valauskas Experience
It took nearly a decade, but The Shellye Valauskas Experience (Shellye Valauskas and Dean Falcone) released their second recording, History of Panic, on February 10, 2018. History of Panic, their first full-length album, is the follow-up to the 2008 EP Box It Up, which was named one of the top 10 local releases in the yearly roundups in the New Haven Register and New Haven Advocate. Recorded at Q Division Studios in Somerville, and Firehouse 12 in New Haven, History of Panic features collaborations with artists who have shaped their sound in one way or another – legendary drummer Dave Mattacks (Fairport Convention, XTC, Paul McCartney), Jon Auer (The Posies, Big Star, Dynamo Royale) and Matt Pynn (Dwight Yoakam, Miley Cyrus), as well as New England favorites Ed Valauskas (Juliana Hatfield, The Gravel Pit), Scott Janovitz (The Figgs, Graham Parker), Jen D’Angora (Jenny Dee & the Deelinquents, The Downbeat 5), Abbie Barrett, and Brendan Haley. Also on the album is drummer Jim Balga who goes back to the early ’80s with Falcone, as members of legendary New Haven pop combo The Excerpts (which also included Jon Brion).
Based in the New Haven area, Valauskas (a high school biology teacher) and Falcone (who wears many hats) have been making music together for years. In addition to being Valauskas' songwriting collaborator, bandmate & producer, Falcone has served the Connecticut music scene since the early ’80s with Jon Brion in The Excerpts, his own Dean and the Dragsters and a host of others. He has also worked on a national level collaborating with Norah Jones, Brian May (Queen), Aimee Mann, Lydia Loveless, Susannah Hoffs and Neko Case. On History of Panic, produced by Falcone, their shared love of the punchy pop of Crowded House, The Posies and Aimee Mann helps them nail a distinctive, accessible, radio-friendly sound from the start.