NPR Music — Tiny Desk Concerts
And now, here’s Tom Brosseau on the radio, on NPR, and while a listener does not straightaway recognize the cadence and distinct voice, there comes that smile of recognition when the identity is finally laid bare. Even when Tom lived here and was part of a duo with Gregory Page called the American Folk Singers, and the two of them were perfecting songs older than rocks, you knew that Brosseau was not really one of us in the way that Page is. For example, when the singer/songwriter would circle back around to San Diego, he’d book himself into a little pink theater in North Park called the Candy Company. Picture Tom walking door-to-door here, packing his guitar and copies of his CD in an attempt to recoup the production money lent him by his grandmother: “Hello, my name is Tom Brosseau,” is how it went, he once told the Reader. “I’m from Grand Forks, North Dakota. I play folk music. I’m new in town. I have an album of music for sale. I know you’ll like it.”
- Friday, May 13, 2016, 8 p.m.
3536 Adams Avenue,
Brosseau’s is an engaging, wry collection of melodies that is cheated by calling it folk music. He came here directly from his childhood home in North Dakota in 2001, and he found his place immediately within the singer/songwriter contingent. He had a little something special, and in order to make good and have a career in music he did the right thing: he moved out and took up with the larger scene at Largo. I lost track of him after he settled into an artist-friendly suburb of Los Angeles called Silver Lake; the Fat Cat recording artist has since put out 11 albums. One of them, called Grand Forks, recorded in 2007, is about the Red River flood that devastated Brosseau’s hometown in 1997. Word is he’ll be performing that record live in its entirety when he returns to San Diego.
Rob Thorsen, Owen Burke, and Gregory Page also perform.