Award-winning duo Neptune’s Car make their long-awaited Sundilla debut on Friday, April 22. Showtime at the AUUF is 7:30; admission at the door will be $15, but advance tickets cost just $12 and are available at Spicer’s Music, Blooming Colors, and online at www.sundillamusic.com. Free coffee, tea, water and food will be available, but the audience is welcome to bring whatever food or beverage they prefer.
Neptune’s Car is Holly Hanson and Steve Hayes; they have been performing together since 2006. In that time they have placed two albums and three songs in the Folk Radio Top Five, including a #1 song with “Lighthouse Keeper.” Since their first album they have been a mainstay on many “Best of” lists, including The Sundilla Radio Hour.
Along the way they have received a plethora of awards and recognitions, including an “Outstanding Achievement in Songwriting Award” from The Great American Song Contest in 2015, a main stage appearance at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, and an Official Showcase at the Folk Alliance Region Midwest conference.
It is impossible to describe Neptune’s Car without using the word “harmony.” Holly’s light soprano blends perfectly with Steve’s warm tenor. From there, vibrant lyrics and compelling melodies nestle in inviting arrangements, telling stories rich in detail, with lyrics as beautiful as the poet’s work. Music critics have not been shy when writing about Neptune’s Car, with lines such as “Holly and Steve have perfect harmonies. Their eloquent stories paint wonderful pictures of imagery matched with a sweet upbeat melody. They introduce each song with wit and sensitivity, most based on reality,” “These two musicians have a comfortable and friendly stage presence that has the audience relaxed and captivated. Holly’s confident, sweet voice caresses her lyrics as Steve’s tasteful guitar licks and back-up vocals add the gilding that puts a shine on their well-polished tunes,” and “there are hints of Nickel Creek and Alison Krauss but Neptune’s Car do not need to be compared to any other artists. This is a strong musical duo whose music can stand on its own two feet.”
Steve comes from a musical family, from a grandfather who played guitar, banjo, and ukulele, to his brother, a founding member of Old Crow Medicine Show. He’s an award-winning guitar player who can play just about anything with strings; from his first gig at age thirteen, to his ten-year association with Holly, he’s played all kinds of music including rock, country, jazz, funk, blues, and, of course, folk. Holly played music all through school, then took a hiatus to raise her kids. After a successful open mike appearance, she jumped back into performing. You can hear several influences in Steve and Holly’s music, from vivid story songs like John Prine’s, to intricate guitar work inspired by Tony Rice.
Their unique name comes from the true story of a clipper ship captained by Mary Patten. In 1857, despite being pregnant, caring for her sick husband, and fighting off mutiny from the first mate, Mary successfully navigated the ship, Neptune’s Car, around Cape Horn to San Francisco. Some of the musicians Neptune’s Car has performed with include John Batdorf, Dana and Susan Robinson, The Steel Wheels, Mustard’s Retreat, Anne Hills, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem, and David Mallett… just to name a few.
Since their first CD dropped in our lap, we have wanted to bring Neptune’s Car to Sundilla; five years later, the dream is about to come true. And a dream coming true is something you don’t want to miss, so join us at the AUUf on Friday, April 22 for the Sundilla debut of Neptune’s Car. Showtime is 7:30, and admission is $15 at the door; $12 advance tickets are available at Spicer’s Music, Blooming Colors, and online at www.sundillamusic.com.