The Mammals

(((folkYEAH!))) Presents

The Mammals


Sun · March 4, 2018

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

$18 adv / $20 door

This event is all ages

The Mammals
The Mammals
"The Mammals' newest tune, 'Culture War,' gets right to the heart of the fight for the American soul." - No Depression

"Some of the best, most inspirational musicians I know just released this gem." - Lukas Graham

"The best song I have heard yet describing the feeling of our country." - Music for Occupy

"Easily a new favorite." - Daytrotter

"The Mammals don’t suffer from multiple genre syndrome, they celebrate it as if gleefully aware that the sound barriers separating old-timey music, vintage pop and contemporary folk are as permeable as cotton.” - Washington Post


THE MAMMALS: Think, Dance, Feel on new album, Sunshiner

Every time The Mammals take the stage there is something real at stake. Maybe it’s the risk-hungry spirit that the band’s songwriters Mike Merenda & Ruth Ungar adopted thru their youthful theater training, or maybe it’s that fiercely authentic, music-as-mission mindset learned from their elders. This folk music is not about suspenders and whiskey, although those are both beautiful things. The Mammals come to change the world, to connect timid generations, heal sore hearts, and enchant tired minds, one soulful, joyful show at a time.

“It’s basically ‘think, dance, feel’” says Ungar of the repertoire on their forthcoming album. Songs like “Culture War” and “My Baby Drinks Water” directly recognize the rifts between people and planet. Then they whoop up a ruckus on fiddle, banjo, guitar, bass and drums as if to stomp the last shreds of worry into oblivion. And it’s no secret that some of their songs, particularly Ungar’s earthy blues and jazz-tinged numbers, will make a grown mammal cry. And that’s ok too.

Unless you’re one of those people who prefers politics and entertainment served separately, The Mammals’ holistic approach to life and music is refreshing. Their songs and stage banter are 100% down to earth, they tour as a family, and they produce a community music festival near their home in Woodstock, NY twice a year called the Hoot. After performing at the first annual Summer Hoot in 2013, Pete Seeger wrote, "Dear Mike & Ruthy — Your Hoot was one of the best song gatherings I've seen in all my 94 years."

The Mammals audience tends to be three-fold: there are those who remember 1960’s Pete Seeger concerts and delight in the band for carrying the torch, the subsequent generation who moshed to the 2004 iteration of The Mammals which included founding Mammal Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, and a new generation of inspired, active, Americana music lovers who swooned to The Mike + Ruthy Band thru the last decade and now eagerly witness a new fire and grit emerging from their favorite songwriters.

Why is this new, full-band energy unleashing itself right now? “November 2016 was a turning point that made us all draw a slow breath,” says Ungar. “Overnight our earlier political-edged songs became relevant again. We felt compelled to reclaim the old mission of The Mammals, and mix a bit more politics and spirit-raising ho-down into our live shows.”

Over the past decade, Merenda wrote dozens of political songs and was thinking about putting them all together in a project called ’69 Protest Songs’ he explains, “but a full album of topical lyrics is too much to listen to. When Pete [Seeger] sang heavy activist anthems he couched each one in a fun, diverse set-list that kept the energy shifting and flowing. We’re doing our best to carry on that tradition.”

"Sunshiner" is the title-track, a gentle and smile-inducing singalong with hope for the future. "Yes my Daddy was a miner / but I'm gonna be a sunshiner" croons Merenda, who penned the song last year even before learning that solar panels were installed on the roof of a Kentucky coal mining museum. "If that's not hopeful I don't know what is!"

The Mammals / SUNSHINER will be released April 20, 2018 on Humble Abode Music (HAM 016)
Ismay is a Dark Americana band based out of coastal range of Northern California. Influenced largely by traditional American music, Ismay's songs connect themes of environmental and social justice with scenes of the American West.
Venue Information:
The Chapel
777 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA, 94110