Posted in music | pictures | tour dates on April 8, 2009

photos by Bryan Bruchman, words by Andrew Frisicano

Shilpa Ray

For others, the concerns are more about day-to-day practicalities. As South by Southwest has grown bigger and more decentralized - this year it has twice as many acts as in 2003 - bands have been adding more and more performances to their itineraries, hoping to register the most impressions on the crowd. Shilpa Ray, an unsigned Brooklyn singer with a powerfully raw voice and a fierce technique on the harmonium, has eight showcases lined up, and for her the big question is simply endurance.

"It's a challenge: how good of a musician are you?" she said. "I wonder if I can do it, if I can sustain my voice for so long and stay consistent."

For her showcase at Club de Ville on Wednesday night, the audience included at least one record executive who said he was competing with another label to sign her. But Ms. Ray, who canceled a tour to make it to Austin, said she knew that even with a record contract success was far from guaranteed. And besides, she added, she is fine with roughing it at South by Southwest.

"Maybe in the past there were your pampered rock stars hanging out," she said. "But then there's the people like us who climb out of clown cars and try to make things work." [NY Times]

The Club de Ville show mentioned above was the Brooklyn Vegan SXSW showcase, where Shilpa performed at along with Bell, Loch Lomond, Those Darlins, Phosphorescent, and Deer Tick. It's also where the pictures in this post were taken.

Shilpa has a short spring tour scheduled for April. That includes two hometown shows: on Wednesday, April 8th, Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers play Death By Audio (tonight) with Coin Under Tongue, My Education and Guisante. Then, they'll perform at a Benefit Concert For The Hearing Impaired at the Bell House on Wednesday, April 22nd with Depreciation Guild, Hooray for Earth, and Kino.

Shilpa also has a May Pianos residency on her schedule. She'll perform Wednesdays at the NYC venue, starting May 13th with Drink Up Buttercup, Wild Yaks & more.

Shilpa Ray is *also* on the bill for a Sly Stone Tribute Concert taking place July 16th at Castle Clinton. Presumably that will be a free show with a large cast of characters performing. Stay tuned for more details. All tour dates and more SXSW photos below...

Shilpa Ray

Shilpa Ray

Shilpa Ray

Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers - 2009 Tour Dates
4/08 Brooklyn, NY - Death by Audio with Coin Under Tongue, My Education and Guisante
4/10 Philadelphia, PA - The Fire with Goodbye Etc., Honah Lee
4/11 Buffalo, NY - Sugar City
4/12 Rochester, NY - Bug Jar with Cartwright and Gun Trouble
4/13 Cleveland, OH - Beachland Tavern with Uno Lady & Mosquito Bandito
4/14 Detroit, MI - Lager House
4/15 Toledo, OH - Woodchucks
4/16 Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle with Alla & Pezzettino
4/17 Athens, OH - The Union- Blackoutfest with Cheater Slicks, Greg Ashley Band, TV Ghost & More
4/18 Columbus, OH - Café Bourbon St
4/22 Brooklyn, NY - Bell House - Benefit for the Deaf with Deprecation Guild, Hurray for Earth & Kino
5/13 New York, NY - Pianos with Drink Up Buttercup, the Wild Yaks & more
5/20 New York, NY - Pianos with Ford & Fitzroy, Overlord and Higgins
5/27 New York, NY - Pianos with Secret Toy Surprise, Native Black & the Octagon
7/16 New York, NY - Castle Clinton: Sly Stone Tribute Concert

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Comments (15)

Hooray For Earth is awesome! And, can't wait to see this girl too.

Posted by yo | April 8, 2009 3:57 PM

This fabulous lady should already be signed. Not necessarily for rock star status at SXSW, but so we can get her over here in Europe!
Get on it, industry people!

Posted by Camille | April 8, 2009 4:00 PM

Any idea how shilpa fits into tonight's lineup? What time/order bands are going on? Much obliged.

Posted by bigjim | April 8, 2009 4:02 PM

She will be signed within within the month. What a tremendous voice and musical talent.

Her opposite is that "art" rock vocalist from Ponytail. What a joke. I feel badly for her good band.

Posted by anonymous | April 8, 2009 4:57 PM

just for the record I love Shilpa Ray and Ponytail

Posted by naked | April 8, 2009 5:14 PM

seconded. Love Shilpa, love ponytail, not only for Molly's energy and voice-as-instrment but for the musicianship of the guitarists and drummer.

4:57, great job you're a closed-minded twit! Feel better?

Posted by Anonymous | April 8, 2009 6:49 PM

bruchman, higgins, and the octagon mentioned all in one post? <3

Posted by Anonymous | April 8, 2009 7:42 PM

Here's the order for tonight:

8 EGM (Guisante from Barcelona)
9 My Education (from Austin)
10 Coin Under Tongue (Brooklyn)
11 Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers

Posted by steven matrick | April 8, 2009 7:45 PM

Jay Braun, you rock. good choice in musicians!

Posted by Andrew | April 8, 2009 11:45 PM

glad to see so many of Shilpa's friends and band posting comments on this blog! let's be honest...

Posted by friends | April 9, 2009 12:23 AM

To 12:23 -- I don't know her from fucking Eve. Found her through BV and was hooked. Bought Beat the Devil disc. Shocker -- good new music can win people over.

Posted by snailboy | April 9, 2009 12:52 AM

Haha, thanks anon 7:42. Yay Serious Business.

Posted by Bryan | April 9, 2009 1:45 AM

everytime brooklyn vegan covers shilpa they loose like 10 cool points. this band is so lame

Posted by Anonymous | April 9, 2009 9:24 AM

there are more recordings from shilpa's previous band, beat the devil, on cd baby.

http://cdbaby.com/cd/beatthedevil2

Posted by Anonymous | April 10, 2009 1:44 PM

Check out the lineup for Shilpa's 5/27 Pianos show. Is there really a band named "Secret Toy Surprise"? This show is more expensive then the rest of the residency and the only date that she is not in the last time slot. Possibly a secret show of some sort?

Posted by Anonymous | April 25, 2009 10:03 PM

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