With a name like Bummer City, the DIY organization doesn’t live up to its name. It flips it on its head—for the better.
The Boston-based group, which goes by its full name of the Bummer City Historical Society, acts as a combination consulting group, brain trust, event coordinator, and friend huddle to bring out the best of what our city has to offer but is too shy to share. Though not technically a booking group, Bummer City aims to promote the art of women, people of color, queer folk, and marginalized people without the same audience as those of the privileged. It’s a lofty task to take on, hence why it doesn’t take the full booking gig, which in turn allows it to create shows with the best of intentions.
Just look at this Thursday’s show. On Nov 10, it’s bringing intimate performances to Hostelling International Boston to keep hearts warm as temperatures drop. Ellen Kempner of Palehound, Sage Schmett, and more are set to perform. Don’t ignore that “and more.” Show up 30 minutes early and you could be one of those performers; the rest is an open mic for musicians, artists, and readers alike. In striving to foster inclusivity, Bummer City is self-aware enough to recognize it doesn’t know every good act out there.
But wait, there’s more. Thursday’s show is a fundraiser for Ladyfest Boston, with 100 percent of proceeds going to the 2017 edition of Ladyfest Boston, a community-based and volunteer-run festival that highlights artists that are underrepresented in music communities.
There to give voice to it all is Kempner, the woman responsible for one of the best local albums of 2015, Dry Food, and some of the most captivating live sets we’ve seen. From slower material like “Dixie” to the tricky finger-work of “Cinnamon,” Kempner knows how to use Palehound as a multifaceted band that taps into every emotion. As a headliner, though performing without the rest of her band, she guarantees a set that will keep you singing long after you leave, heart soaring in tune.
So, when it’s put that way, this show sure sounds like a real bummer, huh?
ELLEN OF PALEHOUND, SAGE SCHMETT, OPEN MIC. THU 11.10. HOSTELLING INTERNATIONAL BOSTON, 19 STUART ST., BOSTON. 7PM/ALL AGES/$0-10. FACEBOOK.COM/EVENTS/533408793530858/.