July 29 2021 Had a great Interview with Steve Houk’s “Living on Music” web show. But our home wifi is so bad on the farm that I stepped over to the local library to avail myself of a good connection!

Interview with Steve Houk’s “Living on Music” web show

Julia Kasdorf- Motel review


Julia Kasdorf Motel

The independent, roots music business is a tough one. It can be pure and innocent, bound by good times, family, and friends. It can be tawdry, exploitive, and unfaithful.

Sort of like motels.

Motels are the thing of childhood memories—a respite (“It has a pool!”) after a day of driving through an Oregon heatwave, a safe haven for youthful hijinks with family.

Motels are meeting places for the illicit and forbidden, places where one can lose themselves for an hour, a weekend, or eternity.

Julia Kasdorf, a member of the Washington, D.C. Americana and roots community, released Motel regionally a few years ago, and is firing it up for wider distribution this summer. A fine decision as the album is Powerful.

With Lucinda’s focused fire, Mary Chapin’s lyrical eloquence, and Eliza’s poised presence, Kasdorf has crafted a set of memorable songs, eight originals, a pair from the Peter, Paul, & Mary oeuvre, and an A.P. Carter classic.

While the covers are more than enjoyable (especially “Long Chain” and “Lover’s Farewell,”) it is on her originals that Kasdorf clearly shines. She inhabits each song as if it were a living entity. “Motel” is a moving vignette of solitude, and by the time she roared her way though “Cool Water,” we were hitting ‘replay’ and starting all over.

As a songwriter, Kasdorf creates vivid pictures with her chosen lyrics, revealing her influences and history through the rhythms with which she populates her songs. A groovy bass line (Lynn Kasdorf, and last heard on Domenic Cicala’s Come On Over: The Honky Tonk Duetsmakes “The Minute I’m Gone” pulse with bluesy longing, and the tempo just pulls us closer.

The protest song we all need to hear—and actually listen to—is “Blue Veil.” Like several of these songs—according to copyright dates—this one goes back awhile, but the message remains the same: we’ve screwed up our planet and we aren’t in any hurry to make amends.

“When I fall down, I reach for you” she sings in “Cool Water,” a testament to faithful support and unwavering understanding: “It’s just my way, but thank God for you.” Again, Lynn Kasdorf shines, laying out all kinds of groovy, pleasing reso/pedal steel noises.

If Julia Kasdorf’s voice is the last ‘under-known’ I get to promote, I can die satisfied—give her a listen. My gosh. “Cold Saturday” revisits significant memories without sentimentality, while “Walk Your Dog” is a rock ‘n’ roll party just shy of three minutes. She visits New Orleans with “Girls Gotta Know” and “The Minute I’m Gone,” stretching from country-rooted folk to groove-infused slow burners.

The independent roots music business hasn’t gotten any easier since Motel was first released. Julia Kasdorf’s Motel is a special album, one I suggest you investigate if you missed it the first time around: there is only one way to genuinely support roots musicians—BUY their music!

A review of my album MOTEL that makes total sense to me! “Smart songs written and delivered with a rocker’s heart, you can taste the dust from the back roads she takes you down here.”

Julia Kasdorf voted Best Local Musician 2020!

Loudoun Times Mirror , March 29, 2020
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Ready To Rock & Roll
Singer Julia Kasdorf at the Top of Her Game

julia kasdorf live music performer
J&RB, Franklin Park, Purcellville VA (Photo Tacy Judd)

Julia Kasdorf’s powerful vocals are well known to area music lovers through her decade-long collaboration with the alt-country group One Horse Town. As the singer entered the new decade, she put
together a new band—with an accent on rock and roll—and embarked on a thriving solo career.
Kasdorf shared the stage for years with her friend and fellow vocalist Janet Emma Garbe in One Horse Town. Both singers moved on to new projects a few years ago, and Kasdorf is now a regular on the local winery circuit with her acoustic solo show and takes things up a notch at gigs with her band The Ready Boys.
Julia and The Ready Boys will get the joint jumping at Purcellville’s Catoctin Creek Distilling Company Saturday, Aug. 16, the latest in a series of concerts at the craft distillery’s base of operations on Main Street. Kasdorf’s rock show includes lots of familiar rock covers, from the Eagles to the Beatles to David Bowie, given a new twist by Kasdorf’s rich vocals. For the singer, it’s all about giving the audience a chance to let loose and have fun.
“To me, going out to hear live music is really fun, and I like to provide fun,” Kasdorf said. “I want people to be moved to get up and dance and get out of where they’re at. There’s so much fun in dancing and responding to live music. It kind of takes you away. It’s kind of like the way adults play.”   Continue Reading

 Leesburg Today, Aug 2014

One Horse Town Thrills Young and Old

Julia Kasdorf’s performance by itself – whole-hearted, unabashed, sincere, unself-concious – kept me on my feet even after chairs opened up.  And it got some folks nodding to the beat who probably rarely even turn up their car radios. She so completely and clearly loved what she was doing that we had no choice but to love it too – everybody in the room.  She gave us all she had, left everything onstage. By the end she barely had enough voice left to say Good night. If she’s that good when she’s under the weather, I’d like to see her when she’s well.

Mark Dewey, Blueridge Leader, 2007

Review of “Dawn Will Deliver” by One Horse Town, featuring Julia Kasdorf and Janet Emma Garbe

ALTHOUGH ONE HORSE TOWN took home a Wammy this spring for best new artist, “Dawn Will Deliver” scarcely sounds like an album you’d expect to hear from a fledgling band.

Some of the credit has to go to keyboardist Jon Carroll, Mary Chapin Carpenter’s longtime collaborator, who produced and plays on this release. But no doubt Carroll would be the first to acknowledge that he had a lot to work with during the sessions that produced this gem, starting with the tunes composed by band members Janet Emma Garbe and Julia Kasdorf. They write country songs, all right, but they’re big country songs, often spirited or spiritual and strongly influenced by blues, bluegrass, honky-tonk and Southwestern swing traditions. Garbe and Kasdorf are also terrific singers who occasionally evoke shades of artists such as Anne Murray (on “Heart of Indigo”) to Bobbie Gentry (“Willie”) and frequently forge striking harmonies. What makes their contributions shine all the brighter is a series of colorful arrangements featuring several stellar musicians, including pedal steel guitarist Lynn Kasdorf, guitarist Stuart Martin and fiddler-mandolinist Tom McLaughlin, among others.

Mike Joyce, Washington Post,  June 2007

Review of “Dawn Will Deliver” by One Horse Town, featuring Julia Kasdorf and Janet Emma Garbe

Taking their cue from regional success story Last Train Home — as well as taking their rhythm section of drummer Martin Lynds and bassist Jim Gray — Washington, D.C., band One Horse Town works its magic with strong songwriting, glorious harmonies, and roots-based melodies that linger like welcome guests. Vocalist Janet Emma Garbe and vocalist-guitarist Julia Kasdorf, whose husband Lynn Kasdorf flavors the tunes with tasteful steel and dobro, are skillfully sincere but also playful and loose on “Stronger”, “Language Of Goodbye” and “Heart Of Indigo”. All the elements come together on the rollicking and rolling “On The Mountain”; everyone’s contributions combine to create a wickedly catchy number. The ace in the hole is veteran producer Jon Carroll, who lends a powerful piano and keyboard presence throughout.

Buzz Mcclain, No Depression, Nov 2006.