Nestled beneath a turn of the century building at 107th and Broadway, lies the Upper West Side’s Underground Lounge, a laid-back New York City gastropub that features live performances regularly. With its vaulted brick ceilings, which lend lovely acoustics for its musicians, and its speak-easy style ambience, the Underground Lounge provides the perfect escape for those looking to get away from the chain restaurants and endless sprawl of the Upper West Side’s corporate banks that seem to dominate these days.In the 13th year of this Upper West Side’s venue, as it seems like a vestige from the old days of New York City, its the perfect place to enjoy the high lonesome, blues-ridden sounds of Jake La Botz this Monday, January 20th at 9pm. La Botz is a singer/songwriter and guitarist, but not in the sense of some skinny-jeaned Austin, Tx hipster whining about his girlfriend, not at all. He’s more of an old-school travelling troubadour, who studied at the feet of some of America’s oldest original bluesmen and picked up right where they left off.
Hailing from Chicago, at a young age La Botz tracked down the great Honeyboy Edwards, old running partner of the legendary Robert Johnson, and forged a friendship that lasted until Honeyboy passed away, which makes his style of playing directly linked to the founding father of American blues, a quality which Jake possesses with humble dignity. His songs are as heartfelt as they come and just dark enough to make one see the light. His voice has the honesty of Lou Reed but more in tune and with the echoes of blues-grit with a polished country twang. Though steeped in Americana traditions, Jake’s voice and sound is all his own. He’s lent quite a few of his songs as well as his own personal acting skills to many films over the years, as well as theater productions, most notably Stephen King’s Ghosts Of Darkland County.
He’s also worked with the great actor/director Steve Buscemi over the years, who’s a big fan of Jake’s and refers to him as the “modern day Hank Williams.” After hearing songs of his like “The Devil Lives In My Throat” one can see why Buscemi would make such a heavy statement. With the strip-mall clientele creeping more and more over the island of Manhattan hearing a genuine artist like Jake La Botz in a bastion of coolness that is the Underground Lounge, is quite the anecdote. Monday, January 20th at 9pm, be there!