Patricia Vonne Scales New Heights In Her Latest Studio Album: Top of The Mountain

Austin’s Renaissance Woman, Patricia Vonne, is venturing to a whole new land, to reach the pinnacle of her career with her latest album release. Coming May 25th, Vonne is gearing up to tear through the Austin music scene once again with her seventh studio album, Top of The Mountain. A carefully-crafted cornucopia of her trademark vocal range and a devil may care attitude, the Latin-rooted rocker is no amateur.

A 12-track journey, Top of The Mountain perfectly slots together – a jigsaw of femininity and independence that Vonne’s voice solidifies. Distinctively contralto, Vonne is the Tejano embodiment of fierce merited success – taking hold of the Austin music scene with her distinguishing vocals, and dead ass refusal to give it back. With tracks like ‘City is Alive’ though, she deserves the whole damn state, let alone Austin. Beginning with a very rock ‘n’ roll vibe, Vonne’s almost Joan Jett in attitude but with a little more of that classic Texan-charm.

My personal favorite on the album, the punchy guitars complement her voice as she pushes out line after line – drawing a greyscale of city life for the listener; morbid and dangerous, but she makes it sound so exotic, so excitingly diverse. It feels almost like it summarizes the album; the diversity encompasses a conglomeration of the Spanish that she knows so well and the Texas that she calls home.

A little further down the track list is ‘Top of The Mountain’, the album’s namesake single. Straight off the bat, it feels almost-Cher like in vocals but with Vonne’s own twist – her slight accent offsetting her deeper tones in the most beautiful medley within the song. Lyrics that feel like they should be emotional, sad and turbulent, take on a brighter feel when combined with Vonne’s demeanor – positivity shines through and motivation takes hold; we’re going to the top of the mountain, after all.

Join Vonne at the peak of the mountain this coming May, at her album release show on the 26th at The Continental Club!

http://patriciavonne.com/

Author: Megan Matthews

Patricia Vonne at The Continental Club Recap

International musician, actress, producer and animator, Patricia Vonne, shook and rattled Austin’s Continental Club Saturday night with her bilingual blend of Texas border rock and theatrical stage prowess. Through her vibrant musical style, the San Antonio bandolera honors her rich cultural heritage by fusing traditional Anglo rock with the centuries-old Latino flavor of Flamenco, Conjunto and Tejano culminating in a delicious, celebratory musical menudo.

The statuesque Tejana kicked off her set Saturday with speedy rocker “The Cat’s in the Doghouse” before leading into her inspirational “Top of The Mountain.” It wasn’t long before Vonne broke out her signature instrument, the castanets, for the romantic Spanish ballad and Once Upon A Time in Mexico favorite, “Traeme Paz.” Vonne cranked up the theatrics with the riff-rippin’ and high-kickin’ “City is Alive” before seducing the crowd with the Flamenco dance of “Fuente Vaqueros.” She celebrated the independent spirit of women with “Viva Bandolera,” the title track from her recent Spanish compilation album and hit fan-favorite classics “Rattle My Cage”, “Severina” and the Tarantino-esque, Stratocaster surfing “Mexicali de Chispa” before riding out with Hell on wheels in “Rebel Bride” from her highly acclaimed Guitars and Castanets.

Vonne’s entire set at the Continental Club was absolutely fantastico. She is currently hard at work recording her seventh studio album with producers Rick Del Castillo and Michael Ramos. The album is due out in Spring 2018 and will feature co-writes with Alejandro Escovedo, Joe King Carrasco & Willie Nile, among others.

Patricia Vonne at the Continental Club

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Photos by: Mindi Westhoff of Time and Place Photography

Kathy Valentine and The Townsend Present The ‘She Factory’

Kathy Valentine and The Townsend present “She Factory,” a special series assembling the talent of women in the arts on Tuesday, Sept. 19 from 8 to 10 p.m. The first installment in the series, “The Song Pool,” will focus on local female musicians and will feature Nina Diaz, Carolyn Wonderland, Jane Ellen Bryant, Suzanna Choffel, Patricia Vonne and Ruthie Foster. The evening will take place at The Townsend, located at 718 Congress Ave. #100, Austin, Texas 78701. The event is free and open to the public, with a donation requested at the door to benefit The SAFE Alliance.

The evening is further supported by local Austin female-owned businesses including Janifer Wheeler of Wheelhouse Learning Solutions and the Texas Business Women – Capital City Chapter, Darla Sees of Sees HR Consulting, Caroline Jones of Great American Smiles Dentistry, Grace Lanni of All About that Brand and Austin Chapter, e-Women Network, Conni Reed of Consuela, Heather Wagner Reed of Juice Consulting, Maria Groten and Stephanie Kincheloe of Love Cycle Studio and Ruel Ellis of Conversation Piece Marketing and PR. Cupprimo Cupcakery, Facial5 Dermacare, Good Life and Soul Nectar Series will provide additional merchandise for artists. Attendee raffle prizes will be provided by Mosaic Weighted Blankets, Spa Social and Trusty Oak. All types of sponsorship opportunities are currently available. For information on sponsoring, please contact janifer.wheeler@gmail.com.

“At this ‘She Factory’ event, ‘The Song Pool’ brings together a variety of women songwriter/performers in an interactive, casual environment to play some of their songs and discuss with both the audience, and the other performers, the art of songwriting,” said Kathy Valentine. “She may discuss the specific song, what inspired it or how songwriting in general impacts, narrates or expresses aspects of her life.”

“Providing opportunities for local, female-owned businesses to support local, female musicians just makes sense, considering all of us operate in a space of entrepreneurial creativity,” said Janifer Wheeler, president of Texas Business Women – Capital City Chapter, owner of Wheelhouse Learning Solutions and founding member of Black Fret. “When women come together to encourage, empower and enlighten each other, our world is a better place.”

Valentine was inspired to start this series to highlight the talent and artistic endeavors of women and bring together the communities of women in the arts and businesses. As an investor in The Townsend, she sees the venue as an ideal place to implement innovative events, a place to bring to fruition her desire to contribute to the Austin community. She Factory gives the audience a look behind the curtain into the artistic process as part of the entertainment. It forges relationships between female led business leaders and artists, empowering and supporting each other. To enable a charity such as The SAFE Alliance to benefit from door donations brings the event into a pay-it-forward circle.
Valentine recently released a new album “Tonewrecker” with her band The Bluebonnets and is planning to play a solo show on Aug. 19, opening for Peter Holsapple at The Townsend. She is also releasing solo singles this year to benefit an Austin charity which will be announced at the end of the year. She is nearing completion on her first memoir to be published by UT Press with an accompanying soundtrack. Valentine also took on a supporting acting role in “The Transcendents,” the debut film from New York playwright Derek Ahonen.

Finally, Valentine is partnering with Conni Reed, owner of local Austin fashion brand Consuela, producing a product that highlights female musicians and provides a useful, innovative purpose: a hand bag with a detachable guitar strap. The line is currently in early stages of creation with plans soon to be announced. Valentine will be launching a brand new website in September, highlighting the various aspects of her diverse and busy life as a musician, writer, spokesperson and speaker.

“As a woman getting close to another milestone—60 years old in less than two years, I’m very focused on what I want to accomplish,” said Valentine. “I wish to leave as many statements and expressions of myself as possible, in as many mediums as possible. Raising my daughter, along with her father, is the most important aspect of my life, but there are new career chapters ahead of me as well. I’m exceedingly proud of the legacy of the Go-Go’s and our place in music history. Presently, my hope is to continue inspiring women to keep in mind that whether we are in our 40s, 50s, 60s or beyond, we can remain challenged, engaged, open and motivated. My goals are that all my endeavors be part of a platform that enables me to bring about positive change in the community, country and world.”

Kathy Valentine - photo credit Christopher Durst

Photo By: Christopher Durst

Patricia Vonne Wins “Best Animation” At The Madrid International Film Festival

Patricia Vonne is back from Madrid with the Best Animation award for “Huerta de San Vicente,” a music video and homage to Spanish poet Federico García Lorca. The Texas native, musician, actress & two time SXSW best female vocalist winner adds another award to her growing accolades. The video, from the song featured on Vonne’s album Firebird and her Spanish compilation album Viva Bandolera, is no stranger to awards. It was the “Grand Prize” winner in the Latin category for the John Lennon Songwriting contest in 2009. Vonne celebrates the win with two upcoming July shows in San Antonio and Austin. Details below.

Vonne enthusiastically states about the win, “I feel deeply grateful and honored to be recognized with this prestigious award from my ancestral country of Spain for paying homage to the dynamic spirit of Federico García Lorca & all that he represents through his life & his works.” “Huerta de San Vicente” premiered at Cine Las Americas International Film Festival and will screen from August 1–6 in her hometown for the San Antonio Film Festival.

The stunning stop motion animation was inspired by her visit to Huerta de San Vicente in Granada, Spain where Lorca wrote many of his works. Considered one of the most influential Spanish poets of the 20th century, García Lorca died tragically during the Spanish Civil War, but his spirit lives on through his art, with energy and spirit as palpable as Vonne’s own works.

Vonne has just returned from a 37 date European Tour and is now in the studio recording her seventh studio album with producers Rick Del Castillo and Michael Ramos featuring co-writes with Alejandro Escovedo, Joe King Carrasco & Willie Nile, among others.

We spoke with Vonne after her return from Madrid. Read what the lovely and talented artist had to say about “Huerta de San Vicente” and her time in Spain below.

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Can you provide a little background into your award winning video?

I wrote “Huerta de San Vicente” about the Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca. My ancestry is from Spain and Mexico and I am a ninth generation Tejana. I have always felt the importance of preserving my Latin cultural heritage through my music which is why all my albums are bilingual.

I collaborated with fellow San Antonio musician/artist Michael Martin who drew Lorca. Since Lorca was an accomplished pianist, I wanted the piano solo to be real hands so I also hired artist Johnny Villarreal to rotoscope over the live movement. Using stop-motion photography, I shot and edited it which took a year to make from start to finish.

How was your recent trip to Spain and the Madrid International Film Festival?

The video just won ‘Best Animation’ at the Madrid International Film Festival. I was invited by his niece, Laura García Lorca, to attend an exhibition celebrating his life at the Residencia de Estudiantes (Student’s Residence) where he studied Law, Philosophy and Literature. He also met his influential friends Salvador Dali and Luis Buñuel at this progressive school. So, it all came together so beautifully. It was truly a gift from God. It felt like Lorca invited me for this special trip as payback for keeping his spirit alive.

What first attracted you to Lorca’s life and literature?

I first heard about him through my eldest sister. I am one of ten children and we’re all pretty much into the arts. So, my eldest sister was in a play that was called “Yerma.” I remember asking her about the play and why she was drawn to it and the first thing she said was ‘it was written by a Spanish poet and his name is…” When she said his name, it sounded like the most iconic name I could ever imagine. It just impressed me so much. “Federico Garcia Lorca.” It made me want to learn more about him especially because of our Spanish ancestry.

And what did you find as you researched Lorca?

I discovered he was not only a poet, but also a concert pianist, a playwright, a theater director and so much more. He was very much a maverick of his time who provided social commentary about what was going on. He helped keep the art of Flamenco alive which my sisters and I love dancing Flamenco. Ironically, he was persecuted at the end of his short life in 1936 by a firing squad at the beginning of the Spanish Civil War. It was a very sad ending to his life. But, at the same time, through my animation and song, I wanted the video to be celebratory.

What do you remember most about visiting his home/museum in Granada?

In his bedroom, there was a poetry book on his desk. The curator chose me to read it. The poem was “Despedida/Farewell” which is depicted in the video. In the poem Lorca expresses the fact that when he died to leave the balcony doors open so people could see the Alhambra palace and the Sierra Mountains which inspired him.

Can you explain some of the imagery used in the video?

I drew a little figure using black sand in the animation that represents his ghost. The poems filter out the window as the balcony doors open releasing his spirit. I infused excerpts from a couple of my favorite poems of his. The poems are in Spanish and then translated to English with red ink that signifies blood because he gave his blood and he gave his passion through his poetry and I try to bring that to life with the animation.
This video was such an amazing project to work on and I’m honored it is being recognized in celebration of his life for all that Lorca represents.

Huerta de San Vicente” will screen during the San Antonio Film Festival on August 3rd at 7:00pm at the Tobin Center.

Patricia Vonne Performing in Austin, TX!
Date: Saturday July 29, 2017
Venue: One-2-One Bar
Address: 1509 S Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78704
Time/Price/Ages: 8:30pm / $12 / 21+
Link: http://holdmyticket.com/event/284626

For additional information visit: http://patriciavonne.com/

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