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Date: Saturday, July 6 2019
Time: 7:30 PM to 11:00 PM
Leo Rondeau deals in stories candid and honest and plainspoken. Based in Nashville TN, his own story finds root in the Turtle Mountains of North Dakota, where Rondeau grew up surrounded by country music listeners and pickers spanning three generations. “It was always around me,” he says.
Rondeau is first and foremost a songwriter. As a boy, he took immediate interest in writing and has maintained a deep respect for studying one’s own life through song. He calls himself a lifelong musician, and to hear him play will take the wind out of anyone who says otherwise. In his writing, Rondeau has been heavily influenced by the dolorous and at times bleak illustrations of Hank Williams, Jimmie Rodgers and Townes Van Zandt. His marked presence within the scenes of his stories is even reminiscent of early Tom Waits tunes in their somber appreciation of the darker realities of life.
The listener finds a departure from these influences, however, in Rondeau’s trademark hopefulness. A steady appreciation of life in all its twinges and sorrows, victories and joys.
While country music is ostensibly known for wearing hearts on shirtsleeves, Rondeau is a musician for whom the man and the music are inextricable. A man singing under his breath as he walks down an empty street. A doleful sound on the wind and a pleasant harmony.