On Thursday, November 16th, the Community Center for the Performing Arts proudly welcomes Joy Oladokun to the WOW Hall.
Joy Oladokun documents her life in songs. For as much as she examines her place in the world as the first-generation daughter of Nigerian immigrants and a proud queer Black person, she also celebrates the little details and the simple pleasures of being alive. Of course, the narrator’s humble demeanor belies the gravity of her extraordinary accomplishments thus far—from captivating audiences on sold out tours and late-night television to finding herself with a guitar in hand on the White House lawn in celebration of equality. After grinding it out for years, she reached critical mass with her 2021 major label debut, in defense of my own happiness. It graced countless year-end lists and led Vanity Fair to declare, “Her name is both prescient and redundant. She oozes energy that shifts a room’s center of gravity and makes you happy for it. It is charisma and she has it in spades. It’s the way she approaches her craft too.” Along the way, she’s delivered unforgettable performances on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, PBS’s Austin City Limits and NPR Music’s Tiny Desk (Home) Concert and more and captivated festivalgoers at Bonnaroo, Hangout, Lollapalooza, Newport Folk Festival and Ohana Festival. Not to mention, she’s also appeared on HULU’s Your Attention Please: The Concert and landed prominent syncs on CSI: Vegas, This Is Us, Grey’s Anatomy, And Just Like That and Station 19, to name a few. Plus, she has joined forces with the likes of Chris Stapleton, Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, Lucie Silvas, Noah Kahan and Jason Isbell for collaborations. Now, she takes stock of the trip so far on her highly anticipated forthcoming full-length album, Proof of Life [Amigo Records/Verve Forecast/Republic Records].
Izzy Heltai – Bio 2023
You can hum an Izzy Heltai tune in a moment of introspection or belt it out at the top of a parking garage in the middle of the night; either way, it’s a catharsis. Izzy’s songs grew out of the tireless grind of DIY shows. His early, self-booked tours were both extensive and eccentric; the venues included VFW dive bars, coffee shops, and as the
intermission between two sets of a Grateful Dead cover band. The unpredictability of those settings and audiences inspired Izzy to fine-tune his curious and observational style of songwriting. He learned to simply say the thing.
Izzy’s debut EP Day Plan (5 Songs Written 4 the End of the World) was self-released in 2021. The music is as nimble as it is grounded, walking the seam between confessional lo-fi musings and raucous basement rock. Sonically unpretentious and lyrically relatable, Izzy invites you into his world like a conversation with a friend over a cigarette. Following his win for Singer Songwriter of the Year at the Boston Music Awards, 2022 was truly a breakout year for Izzy. He made his debut at the Austin City Limits Festival, Bonnaroo Music
Festival, and Newport Folk Fest over the course of a few months, and toured coast to coast, logging 20,000+ miles in his trusty van, supporting the likes of Bear’s Den, The Mountain Goats, The Brook and The Bluff, and Liza Anne.
In 2023, Izzy made his SXSW debut in March, performed his single “All Of This Beauty” at the Love Rising Benefit at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, and hit the road this Summer playing festivals from Boston to Canada. Izzy’s new EP titled mostly myself again is out on October 20. The EP was co-produced by Alberto Sewald (Katy Kirby, Jack Van Cleaf) and Ethan Fortenberry (Jack Van Cleaf, Ethansroom). The four song EP came together while Izzy was recovering from a bicycling
accident at home in East Nashville. Izzy is excited to hit the road this Summer and Fall playing Outside Lands Fest in San Francisco, Celebrate Brooklyn opening for The Head and The Heart
in Brooklyn, New York, and opening for Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit at the Ryman Auditorium. The opening lines of Izzy’s new single “Bad Time” offer some hope for the future: “I was surprised / When I felt like myself again / Been a few months since I woke up and felt like this.”