Laura Cortese is an instigator of creativity and a builder of community wherever she goes. She wears many hats: fiddler, singer, songwriter multi-instrumentalist and bandleader.
After wending her way from California to Boston, founding a music camp and a festival, and playing and singing with scores of artists, she assembled the Dance Cards: a quartet of singing string players. Their original music is based in the lyrical rituals of folk while exploring new territories of rhythm and sonics. At first glance, the band may resemble a string quartet – there are no guitars to be found. But from the moment Cortese kicks off the title track of her album CALIFORNIA CALLING with angular, percussive strumming and a powerfully sultry vocal, it’s clear that this is something else. This is post-folk that seriously rocks.
Laura Cortese & the Dance Cards is a band who draws inspiration from diverse experiences, communities, and musical traditions, melding them into a refined sound that’s broad-minded but clear-eyed. It’s not a stringband, not a string quartet, not an a cappella group or indie band, but somehow all of those at once, all while staying firmly rooted in an identity as folk instrumentalists. It’s adventurous and complex music delivered with power and heart.