Songwriters in the Raw w/ Jessica Smucker, Andrew Pauls, and Mike P. Ryan
- Sun, Feb 26
Run Time: 210 min.
~ Sunday February 26, 2023 ~ Doors @ 6:30PM, Showtime @ 7:00PM ~ $20 Advance/$25 Day-of ~
Songwriters in the Raw
Mike P. Ryan
Born and raised in rural Oklahoma, Mike’s humble roots and keen eye for detail help him craft songs full of vivid images that have been aptly described as “honest portraits of real people painted on a canvas of beautiful music.” Often compared to Robert Earl Keen, Slaid Cleaves, and Jeffrey Foucault Mike has been called “a master storyteller who takes his listeners on an unforgettable journey with every song”
Mike has won a host of national and international songwriting awards and has been a two-time finalist in The Kerrville Folk Festival’s prestigious “New Folk” songwriting competition. A gifted live performer and a natural raconteur, Mike engages and entertains audiences at music venues, folk festivals, and songwriting events from coast to coast. An avid student of the craft of songwriting, Mike teaches songwriting workshops and seminars to songwriters of every experience level. A former Army paratrooper who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, Mike volunteers with a number of veteran-focused charities. His debut CD, American Tales, was released in 2015. His follow-up At Home In The Darkness was released in 2018.
Themes of hope, sadness, and striving fill Andrew Pauls’s original songs. Rooted in traditional American folk music, Andrew’s lyrics dance with soulful banjo and guitar playing to create relatable and thought-provoking songs. In Andrew’s music, listeners will hear influences from songwriting veterans John Prine and Bob Dylan as well as contemporary artists such as Mandolin Orange and The Tallest Man on Earth.
Andrew’s first full-length album, released in 2016, describes the joy and excitement of exploring new places and the difficulty of leaving home behind. Minimal instrumentation and simple production give the record an intimate, stripped-down feel, inviting the listener to pull up a chair and lean in close.
In addition to his solo work, Andrew occasionally performs with the band Theory Expats. The pop- and jazz-infused folk trio has performed throughout the east coast and midwest regions. Theory Expats released their first EP in 2015 and their sophomore project in 2017.
Andrew performs often in the Lancaster area and he lives there with his spouse Laura and all of their instruments. He is interested in the way music can hold together a world that can feel as if it is falling apart.
Jessica Smucker believes that the best way to change the world is to channel our pain into connection. She’s been creating captivating melodies with intimate lyrics since 2005. Her songs have a way of reaching deeply into people’s souls and inviting the kind of reflection that feels both reassuring and unsettling. Her relatable themes include the simultaneous rush and terror of falling in love, and the tricks and techniques we all use to shield ourselves from the kinds of knowledge that might lead to pain.
Based in Lancaster, PA, Jessica was raised in the Mennonite faith tradition by a family full of storytellers, activists, adventurers, and pranksters. Jessica has toured nationwide, and performs regularly throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern U.S. Her discography spans from 2008-2020 and includes two EPs and three full-length albums. Between the summers of 2021-2022 she released five more singles, including synth-pop anthems “Dinosaurs,” “Rose of Jericho,” and “Phoenix,” and piano ballads “Stones to Throw” and “War of Attrition.” Her fourth studio album, After the Meteor, is planned for release in 2023.
Jessica has won or placed in numerous national songwriting contests including SolarFest’s Singer/Songwriter Showcase Competition, the Connecticut Folk Festival Song Competition, and the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest. In her life beyond music, Jessica is a published poet and essayist, a social justice warrior, a freakishly good Scrabble player, and mother to two of the smartest people she’s ever met in real life!