SHOW REVIEW: Alison Self

Posted by: Necci – Feb 20, 2012


Alison Self, Ariel Rubin
Wednesday, February 15 at Balliceaux

A wave of soulful, full-bodied hymns accompanied by the charming sound of a ukulele filled the classy concert hall of this Fan favorite venue Wednesday evening. Alison Self, a local folk/Americana treasure, opened the room with renditions of mid-century toe-tappers along with some of her originals, all lashed together beautifully with the lulling strings of her ukulele. Following her was Massachusetts native and fellow ukulele strummer Ariel Rubin.

These two "ukeladies" each delivered a pleasant listening experience that was well received, but Alison stole the show. It was either her chilling vocal notes hit perfectly on time and in key, or her ability to get the crowd smiling and attentive with lighthearted oldies like "Wish I was a Single Girl Again."

Alison was born in Petersburg, Virginia and says she has been singing since she learned to talk. She had a brief stay in Main but moved back and in 2005 picked up the ukulele. From there she started playing the local hot spots like the Camel, Balliceaux and Gallery 5 and started to gain her reputation.

Now, Alison is hosting a Roots/Americana showcase called "Twangtown Thursdays" every fourth Thursday of the month at Balliceaux with her side project Sweet Fern featuring Josh Bearman from The Hot Seats. "Me and Josh Bearman started doing Sweet Fern in the fall, about November of last year, and we've played a pretty good amount," Alison said. Sweet Fern, a Country-duet outfit, will open each fourth Thursday for a selected Roots/Americana band in the area or passing through. "We will open for whoever is playing, and then give the night to them, pretty much," Alison said.

Alison Self doing "Won't You Be Kind To Me" and "I Wish I Was A Single Girl Again"

By Jeff Knight