Photo: Louise Bichan

Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards – “California Calling” (video) (premiere)

Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards create a stunning, forward-looking sound that charts a path for innovation in folk music.

Laura Cortese calls California home, although she earned her musical chops on the Boston roots music scene as she studied at the city’s prestigious Berklee School of Music. Playing alongside artists such as Band of Horses, Pete Seeger, Rose Cousins, and Uncle Earl further honed Cortese’s skills and now she has fully arrived with her band the Dance Cards. Back on 6 October, Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards released their debut recording California Calling, which features consummate musicianship, gorgeous vocals, and modern sonic arrangements married to the warmest of acoustic folk playing. It’s a stunning, forward-looking sound that charts a path for further innovation in folk music.

The perfect way to discover this group’s music is the title track “California Calling”, which Cortese penned as a loving tribute to her home state. The song takes on new poignant meaning as the wildfires rage in the Golden State. Cortese says, “My heart is breaking for those affected by the wildfires in California. Our song ‘California Calling’ was intended as a love letter to California and now seems sadly prescient. I hope the song can serve as an anthem of hope and resilience that always characterized my home state.”

Today Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards are beginning their tour and it’s a perfect chance to catch this rising folk band in concert.


10/19 Branchburg, Township, NJ, Rarity Valley Theater

10/20 Warren, RI, CommonFence Music

10/21 Portland, ME, One Longfellow Square

10/22 Cambridge, CA, Oberon

10/24 Berkeley, CA, Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse

10/25 Felton, CA, Don Quixote’s

10/26 Arcata, CA, Arcata Playhouse

10/27 Exclusive Video Screening & Live Performance – Portland, OR

10/28 Seattle, WA, Seattle Folk Lore Society

10/29 Los Angeles, CA, Hotel Cafe

11/05 Moab, UT, Moab Folk Fest

11/08 Saranac Lake, NY, Blue Seed Studios

11/09 Saratoga Springs, NY, Caffe lena

11/10 New York, NY, Rockwood 3

11/11 Easton, MD, Avalon Theater

11/12 Lancaster, PA, Tigh Mhary

11/16 Penninsula, OH, GAR Hall

11/18 Madison, WI, Crescendo Madison

11/19 Minneapolis, MN, Aster Cafe

11/29 Toronto, ON, The Burdock

12/01 Toronto, ON, Folk North Conference