New Soft Shoe To Mark 13th Anniversary with Special Show at Forest City Brewery

Cleveland group pays tribute to the late Gram Parsons

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Cleveland’s the New Soft Shoe, a group that covers tunes by the late, great singer-songwriter Gram Parsons, will celebrate its 13-year anniversary with an album tribute and special guests when it performs at 7 p.m. on Thursday at Forest City Brewery. The event has a $5 cover charge at the door.

The New Soft Shoe has made its home at Forest City Brewery since 2018, performing on the second Thursday of every month in the Brewery’s Waldorf Room or outside in the Atlantic Beer Garden. The band had its first show at the Happy Dog in 2010, kicking off a monthly tradition that created a following among fans of the cult hero.

“Forest City Brewery is the perfect place for the band to play these songs; its homegrown vibe makes our Gram community feel completely comfortable,” says band member Brent Kirby in a press release. “It feels like these songs belong in that space.”

Gram Parsons died in 1973 at the age of 26, but in the space of the five years before his death, he wrote incredible songs and performed with the International Submarine Band, the Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers. He schooled the Rolling Stones on country music and recorded two critically acclaimed solo records, GP and Grievous Angel. Never having achieved commercial success, Parsons became a cult figure whose influence is still felt today.

For the first set on Thursday, the New Soft Shoe will play the entirety of Gram Parsons debut solo album, GP, which was released 50 years ago in 1973.

“The record was a statement of Parsons’s vision of merging country, rock, gospel and soul, something he called 'Cosmic American Music' but also had a foot firmly planted in his love for traditional country music,” reads the press release about the anniversary show.

The second set will feature many of Parsons’s more well known songs with special guests who have performed with the band over the years. Rachel Brown, Thor Platter, Justin Gorski, Anthony Papaleo, Ray Flanagan, Freddy Perez-Stable and Leslie Basalla will join the band onstage to sing and play their favorite Parsons songs.

“Gram’s songs are so durable, so well written, and we always look forward to playing them. I think our community of fans who come out every month to see us understand that and have that same passion.” Kirby says.

The current New Soft Shoe lineup features Andy Leach (guitar, vocals), Kirby
(acoustic guitar, vocals), Chris Hanna (keys), Jon Niefeld (drums) and Tom Prebish (bass, vocals).

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About The Author

Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected]
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