Two Michigan singer-songwriters will inject some heart and soul into metro Detroit Saturday.
Adam Plomaritas and Kylee Phillips will share emotive selections during their co-headlining Feb. 12 show at Livonia’s Trinity House Theatre. Both sets will melt away the wintry blues and provide a warm, spring-like welcome.
Ahead of Saturday’s soulful show, The Stratton Setlist chatted with Plomaritas and Phillips about their current inspirations, live sets and musical plans for 2022.
TSS: How has your 2022 been so far? What’s been inspiring you these days as an artist, songwriter and musician?
AP: 2022 has been off to a good start, all things considered. I started it off playing a Caribbean cruise for a week. Since then, I’ve been in the studio a bit and coaching high schoolers for the singing competition, Future Stars, in Ann Arbor. I’ll be the musical director for the show, which happens later in February.
What inspires me generally in songwriting are my wife and three sons. It’s also the struggle of being a professional musician and all of the trappings of fighting through insecurity and enjoying your own and others’ art, and being jealous of their success and reveling in it at the same time as they’re often my friends.
Two things I’ve taken in that have affected me greatly in the past year – The Ken Burns documentary on the history of country music and the “Cocaine & Rhinestones” podcast by Tyler Mahan Coe. Some processing of those will surely spill out onto the stage at Trinity House.
KP: I’ve been experiencing a lot of personal challenges and upheaval, but also so much growth and hope as of late. I’ve been more grateful than ever for the outlet that songwriting is to me. During this season, it’s felt more like a necessity than a choice.
TSS: What plans do you have for your Feb. 12 show at Trinity House Theatre?
AP: I’m super excited to be joined by Michael Harrington on pedal steel guitar and Ken Pesick on bass. Pedal steel is such a beautiful instrument, and a lot of people have never heard one live.
KP: I’ll be performing solo on Feb. 12, which is always exciting and scary at the same time. It forces me to be brave and to let the songs kind of speak for themselves. With that said, I’m sure I’ll talk way too much on stage as I usually do. I’ll be playing an almost entirely new set of originals, but I’ll be throwing a couple of heartbreaking covers in there for good measure.
TSS: What do you enjoy most about sharing the stage with one another? How do you each create an engaging live experience for the audience?
AP: I’ve played with Kylee a couple of times now, and I’ve seen her a time or two more. Her voice is magic. Her songs and playing are just as poetic as her lyrics. Kylee is able to write and sing serious songs without coming off as pretentious, which can be very difficult to do. The songs and her singing are beautiful, but still accessible. She is a joy, and I’m so glad to be sharing a bill with her again.
KP: I think Adam and I balance each other out well because my songs are firmly planted in melancholy, and he brings a bit more fun and energy to his sets. It will be a nice palate cleanser after my self-described “sad girl pop.” I’ll also be joining him for a duet, which is such a pleasure. He’s an incredible vocalist and so much fun to sing with.
TSS: What’s special to you about performing at Trinity House Theatre? How does that venue provide a strong sense of community for our local music scene?
AP: Trinity House is a beautiful space in both a visual and aural aesthetic, and it’s especially good for acoustic music. I just saw my pals Rin Tarsy and Amy Petty perform at Trinity House recently and had the realization that the atmosphere and intimate audience really showcase the “song.” It was like all of the passion and experience that went into writing each song was really able to come through in front of that intimate audience.
KP: Trinity House is such a special place to perform because it’s so intimate. That’s big part of why I’m planning to debut so many new songs at this show. It feels like you’re performing for a small group of friends, and you can make yourself vulnerable in a way you can’t do elsewhere.
TSS: What’s on the horizon for you this winter and spring? Any plans to write, record or release new material?
AP: The never-ending EP is almost done! I’ll be working with fans on the best way to release it. I’ve already got more material that is ready to record, and I plan on doing that much more quickly. I’m really looking forward to festival season this summer. I’m hopeful that a lot of the festivals that have needed to cancel or go virtual due to the pandemic are able to happen in person.
KP: I’ve been writing songs like a mad woman over the past year or so, and I’m hoping to record some of those songs very soon. I think I’ve been more vulnerable and honest than ever in my songwriting, but I find that the songs I think are the most specific to my experience tend to be the most universal. It would be exciting to put some of those out into the world.
John Bommarito will share a pre-recorded interview with Plomaritas during his Acoustic Alternatives radio show at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 10 on WHFR-FM (89.3). He went to Plomaritas’ home studio for a chat and performance to discuss his upcoming release and Trinity House Theatre show.
Adam Plomaritas & Kylee Phillips
8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 12
Trinity House Theatre, 38840 Six Mile Road in Livonia