Frederic Yonnet and Angie Stone Added to Yoshi's San Francisco Lineup, 1/26 & 2/28-3/2
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by BWW News Desk
Yoshi's San Francisco on Fillmore Street just added the following concerts at its world-renowned venue: Frédéric Yonnet with special guest (Sat, Jan 26, 8 & 10pm) and Angie Stone (Thu-Sat, Feb 28-Mar 2). For more information on these shows, go to http://yoshis.com/sanfrancisco.
Yoshi's San Francisco is located at 1330 Fillmore Street in San Francisco, Calif. For tickets and more information, call 415.655.5600 or visit http://yoshis.com/sanfrancisco. For dinner reservations, call 415.655.5600 or go to http://yoshis.com/sanfrancisco/restaurant.
Using an instrument many have owned but few have mastered, urban jazz harmonicist, Frédéric Yonnet's musical skills and stage presence crush every preconceived notion you've ever had about the harmonica.
Regarded for decades as the choice instrument of street musicians and loners who wanted to express themselves through country music or the blues, in Yonnet's hands the harmonica becomes something altogether different; a lead voice in urban jazz, R&B and hip-hop. With each performance, stereotypical walls come tumbling down as Yonnet presents the harmonica in a refreshing and modern context that is boldly stylish, enchantingly cool and absorbingly brilliant.
Just listen to his sound. It funks. It rocks. It hips and hops. It grooves. It sways. It testifies. It prays. It has a reverence for gospel, blues and jazz while appealing to a generation bred on pop rock and hip-hop.
Born in Normandy, France to a Parisian father and French Guyanese Creole mother, Yonnet lived in and around Paris most of his life. As a child, he and his dad performed comedy routines in theaters throughout France and by 14, he decided to literally march to the beat of his own drum. After a short stint as a drummer, Yonnet revisited an instrument he had received as a child, the harmonica. "I got kicked out of bands because I kept trying to play the melody on the drums," says Yonnet. "On the harmonica, I can play both the melody and the rhythm. Plus they're lighter to carry."
These days, the U.S.-based Yonnet travels with pedal boards, mixers, amps, microphones and more than 50 diatonic harmonicas. "I'm pretty intense on the harmonica and I like to have the 'sharpest ax' at all times." To be sure, he's not afraid to wield it. There aren't many musicians who would go tête-à-tête with Stevie Wonder on the harmonica, but Yonnet has proved himself more than capable. "Frédéric Yonnet - a Wonder disciple - had a crazy harmonica duel that almost sent Stevie flying off the stage in a frenzy," said Fox News following their performance at Madison Square Garden. Without a doubt, Yonnet's friendship with Wonder has been his biggest musical inspiration.
At the same show in 2007, Prince first witnessed Yonnet's expert musicianship, exhilarating panache and inexhaustible stage presence. It would be months before their paths crossed again, but when they did, Prince seized the opportunity to have Yonnet jam with him and his band at a house party. "Genius recognizes genius," said saxophonist Mike Phillips, who performed with them that night and witnessed the energy that Yonnet brought to the band. Since then, Yonnet has recorded with Prince and performed with him as a featured guest at numerous shows, including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and on Prince's 20Ten European tour.
While Yonnet enjoys the excitement of performing with some of the world's greatest music legends, he knows that it's the technical mastery of his instrument - along with innovative collaborations and solo projects - that will earn him recognition as one of the greatest harmonica players in the world.
Thu-Sat, Feb 28-Mar 2, 8 & 10pm
If Angie Stone had her way, she'd sit down next to every single one of her fans and pour out her heart - and soul - to them. She'd empower them with hard-earned wisdom; lessons learned from her very own heartache and happiness, mistakes and triumphs that led her to three Grammy Award nominations, two Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards, and four Top 10 R&B albums (with her The Art of Love & War going all the way to number one). And with her new album, Rich Girl¸ the neo-soul songwriter has done just that, delivering a powerfully intimate collection of songs that wrap themselves around you like a warm embrace full of love and compassion, strength and wit.
"I spent a lot of time over the past few years working with other people, writing with them, working with producers. And then one day I realized that while I was doing everything I could to help them succeed and watching them grow, I was losing pieces of myself in the process." she explains "I shaved a lot of my originality off when merging with so many other people. Fans weren't getting Angie Stone. They were getting Angie and so-and-so. I knew I had to get back to my own music and skills. It's time for Angie to do Angie." That journey returned Stone to her songwriting roots, determined to record an album where making great music and sharing her soul were the only things that mattered.