FFJN 11/3: The Roswell Sisters

Kristi Callan and I know each other through the indie pop music scene and Harry Nilsson fandom. I love close vocal harmonies and at the last Nilsson birthday tribute we got to talking and she told me she was part of a group called the Roswell Sisters. I thought they’d be great addition to our eclectic First Fridays Jazz Night.

Check out this résumé!

A captivating close-harmony group from Los Angeles, modeled loosely on the legendary jazzy New Orleans 30s band the Boswell Sisters, but bringing unexpected, eccentric, and occasionally even glam rock touches to that vintage vocal style. Group leader Justin Tanner has a special gift for arranging songs from the 20s and 30s straight through to originals by Roswells pianist Kristian Hoffman in classic “old tyme” tight, dense harmonies, dazzling in their complexity. Justin (tenor) is a noted Los Angeles playwright (“Zombie Attack,” “Pot Mom,” “Day Drinkers”) and a classically trained pianist. Lisa Jenio (alto), lead singer and songwriter for L.A. pop band Candypants, has also collaborated with the Negro Problem and Ronnie Spector. Kristi Callan uses her varied experience working with a wide range of artists from David Gray to Dave Davies to her own alt-country band, Dime Box and 80s girl group Wednesday Week, to inform her role as the emotive soprano in the group. 

The Roswell Sisters are backed by Kristian Hoffman (Ann Magnuson, Prince Poppycock, Rufus Wainwright, Mumps, Klaus Nomi) on piano and Pierre Smith (El Vez, Ann Magnuson, New Marines, Human Hands) on guitar. The response to this young combo has been wildly enthusiastic, and audiences have been transfixed by the gorgeous harmonies the Roswells bring to classic 30s songs like “Shuffle Off to Buffalo” and modern pop gems like the Mumps’ “Just Look, Don’t Touch.”

From their show-stopping version of “42nd Street” to their spectacular original “Imaginary Friend,” the group delivers a mesmerizing performance every time. The Roswells have played eclectic venues all over the greater Los Angeles area and are currently in the studio recording their debut.

And on 11/3 they’ll be with us!


Date City Venue
Short Appearance / Guest Artist
Thursday, 06/20/24 Los Angeles, CA (Strong Words at) St. Francis Center
Time: 7:30pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 3621 Brunswick Ave. 3621 Brunswick Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90039 Related post.
Jason Luckett Pasadena Residency: First Fridays Jazz Night w/ JL & Friends
Friday, 07/05/24 Pasadena, CA Lyd & Mo Photography
Time: 8:00pm. Admission: $20 suggested donation. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 27 N Mentor Ave.

Featured Artists:
Katie Ferrara
Jason Luckett

Related post. Buy Tickets
Short Appearance / Guest Artist
Tuesday, 07/09/24 Los Angeles Molly Malone’s
Time: 7:30pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 575 S. Fairfax Ave. Venue phone: (323) 935-1577.

Nilsson Tribute

Jazz Vespers
Sunday, 07/14/24 Pasadena, CA All Saints Episcopal Church
Time: 5:00pm. Admission: Free. Age restrictions: All Ages. Address: 132 North Euclid Avenue. Jazz Vespers at All Saints Church in Pasadena. Related post.

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