Thursday, May 11, 2017

Great Northwest Music Tour

Alialujah Choir

7 p.m.
All ages welcome

About Great Northwest Music Tour

One of McMenamins' favorite musical traditions, the Great Northwest Music Tour has delivered the finest regional and national talent to our historic hotels for over a decade. With its early start time, family-friendly setting and no admission charge, it has become one of the best ways to catch both rising acts and longtime favorites.

We've run well over a hundred of these one-of-a-kind music tours through our hotel properties... join us as we raise a toast to hundreds more to come!

About Alialujah Choir

"Rich with gorgeous vocal harmonies and soft-but-twisting musical arrangements usually associated with old-school groups like CSNY or the Hollies" - The Willamette Week

"On the standout track "A House a Home" every third line finds Shearer, Selzer, and Farah singing together in bone-chilling, otherworldly attunement that eventually collapses into an astral haze of hand claps and improvised piano. And even in the more gossamer moments on their self-titled debut-of which there are many-all of their voices come together and resound above the spare instrumentation, thus packing the exhilarating punch of a sprawling chorale." - The Portland Mercury

"It took four years, but something has come of it: The Alialujah Choir, the Portland folk-pop supergroup's self-titled debut, featuring 10 tracks following the bare-bones template set by that first song [A House, A Home], of minimal instrumentation framed around goosebump-raising three-part harmonies." - The Willamette Week

Alialujah Choir came about when three well-known members of Portland, Oregon's notable music scene took time away from the comforts and constraints of their primary bands (Weinland, Norfolk & Western, M.Ward) to focus on the natural beauty they found when singing songs from their more personal artistic quivers.

The songs immerse the singers as their voices entwine with one another and then expand. Sparse arrangements create an open bed for two, three, and four part vocal harmony, while instrumentation that ranges from a guitar to an upright piano to a Theremin and a marching drum, allow Alialujah Choir to sing their stories in ethereal allure. The new album (out February 14, 2015), entitled "Big Picture Show" showcases fuller arrangements than the previous self-titled album, expanding the band's sound that reflects the energy and grandiosity of their live performances.

Paradoxically, this story then began where most stories would end - in a cemetery. It was a benefit album for the preservation of Portland's oldest burial ground, The Lone Fir Cemetery. The vibrant and heartfelt song, "A House, A Home" (a historical fiction piece about the hidden and forbidden relationship of two mental patients) reached the ears of a local filmmaker, who became haunted with its suggestions of an underground love story. In stunning fashion, he put the song's ghosts on screen. Collaborating with the band to visualize the tale, "A House, A Home" evolved into a multi-award winning short film.

Soon, a full-length album emerged. What began as friends around a piano gradually became the sprawling canvas for an ongoing collective art project. Various member projects include a book of short stories with musical scores, the release of a graphic novel, a grant funded dance project with a live score, and a stop motion film about a love between two nautical lemurs (subsequent soundtrack to be scored by Alialujah Choir). On the road a trail of video captures unique incidents, like a spontaneous performance in an abandoned blueberry stand (see the band's YouTube channel), while a shared love of photography often catches the band's most creative moments, forever trapping them in amber.

With the enlistment of a few local luminaries from Blind Pilot, Hook & Anchor and Neko Case's band, Alialujah Choir now boasts an extended lineup that reflects the majestic sounds of the new album while preserving the intimate sensibilities the band was founded upon.