It looks like 2012 will be a big year for Western New York’s Grace Stumberg.
The singer/songwriter has signed on as personal assistant to the one and only Joan Baez. Stumberg will accompany Baez on her tour of the United Kingdom beginning in February, and she’ll continue her duties as an outreach educator for Music Is Art while on the road, with updates published via Baez’s tour blog. Stumberg and her band will then take to the road, making it as far as Los Angeles on a six-week jaunt in April before returning home to celebrate the release of the follow-up to her 2010 CD debut.
Prior to the onset of this whirlwind of activity, the Grace Stumberg Band will share a bill today (Feb. 1) in the Sportsmen’s Tavern (326 Amherst St.) with Toronto’s rather brilliant new wave/alternative outfit the Ruby Spirit, a band already revered in these parts for scintillating gigs in Mohawk Place and the Town Ballroom in 2011.
The Brass Monkeez will open the show at 7 p.m. A $10 cover will go to benefit Music Is Art’s "Music In Action: community outreach program.
-- Jeff Miers