Low Cut Connie Treefort Music Hall Boise
“This record is all kink and no shame,” says Adam Weiner of ART DEALERS, the tough, sexy and tender new album coming from Low Cut Connie. “With Low Cut Connie, I try to create a safe space for you to just absolutely get your freak on.” For years now, Low Cut Connie has built its grassroots coalition of oddballs, underdogs, and fun-loving weirdos with songs that celebrate life on the fringes of polite society. The band’s infamously wild, passionate live shows provide a total release - of stress, of inhibition, of shame - working up a primordial rock n roll sweat for fans to get blissfully soaked in. The new album, and its full-length companion film, sizzle with that same cathartic sweat, reminding us that it's time to get dirty again, and to feel alive. ART DEALERS sits at the intersection of sleazy and soulful - a collection of risky, romantic, life-affirming anthems, all dedicated to you. “I think rock n roll exists to be a red-blooded, countercultural medium,” says Weiner, who has performed under the Low Cut Connie moniker for over a decade, "You're supposed to get your hair messed-up." That imperative comes through in the adults-only tone of songs like the opening “Tell Me Something I Don’t Know,” a sinuous, lurid rocker that sounds like walking through depraved Times Square in 1978 - neon-lit and nasty with a snapping beat. The speedy, fuzzed-up garage-rocker “Whips and Chains" calls out Trump and the current wave of neo-fascism, without ever losing its boogie rhythm section. But there’s also tenderness behind the curtain here, as on the yearning first single "Are You Gonna Run?" and "Call Out My Name", which evoke the sweet sad love that punky boys like the New York Dolls and the Ramones used to have for tough girls like the Ronettes and the Shangri-La's. The sounds throughout the record comprise a grimy modern urban landscape, a soulful but broken place that Weiner and his band (including rock n roll guitar hero, Will Donnelly, in his 9th year in Low Cut Connie) have been gravitating towards throughout the band's history. Weiner grew up amid the lawns and strip malls of suburban New Jersey, and his own teen dreams were lit up by the beacon of the big city, where he could shed his skin like so many artists before. “If you think about it, so many great artists who we associate with the city were actually bridge and tunnel people,” Adam said. “Patti Smith, Lou Reed, Springsteen. Debbie Harry, Robert Mapplethorpe. People who came from the burbs had this vision of what they could achieve in the city, what attracted them to this art life, who they could turn into and what impressions they could make - if they could just get there.” ART DEALERS is in many ways a tribute to that feeling at the pumping heart of the city - that enlightened buzz that can come in a packed hothouse of creativity and free expression. Songs like the Grace Jones styled "Take Me to the Place" and the penetrating title song point to all the people who cross those bridges, who choose the art life, who find their liberation on the edges of propriety. ART DEALERS isn’t constrained by a gender binary, either. “When I’m onstage, I am the freest, most uninhibited version of myself,” Weiner explains. “It's total freedom of spirit and body. Over the years, that freedom has given me more confidence to write songs from a perspective that isn't necessarily male. I’ve slowly been walking toward a more gender-fluid voice with Low Cut Connie." Weiner's first steady gig at age 21 was as a piano-player in a drag karaoke bar in Manhattan called Pegasus, a seedy place where trans people, gay, straight and otherwise would gather around Weiner's piano in a benevolent yet fully debauched array. "There are so many songs that came out of that bar for me. Things like 'Shake It Little Tina [the single off of Low Cut Connie's Hi Honey album]" But it wasn't until ART DEALERS that he fully allowed himself to let the gender binary go so completely on songs like the upcoming single "Don't Get Fresh With Me," "Wonderful Boy," and "Sleaze Me On" (with its sweet refrain "Treat me like a modern girl!"). Says Weiner, "I have no idea the gender identity of those songs. And that feels real comfy for me, the 'not knowing'." ART DEALERS goes out to all the outsiders. On the no-fucks-to-give anthem "King of the Jews," Weiner gets deep in the weeds of his personal and ethnic outsider identity. “There are just so many entry points these days to antisemitism, so my absolute unapologetic full-frontal Jewiness feels more needed now, I guess,” he says. “My Jewiness gives me an outsider perspective and humor that I wouldn't trade for any goddamn thing, and the minute I start hiding that, I'm dishonoring myself. Shedding shame is a key element of Low Cut Connie.” Weiner feels like a certain dark prince of rock n roll was a companion to him on this whole album and film project. “I felt like Lou Reed was riding with me the whole time I was making Art Dealers,” he said. “Lou was the toughest motherfucker out there, a subversive Jew like me - but he had a real rock n’roll heart underneath it all." ART DEALERS comes on the heels of a few very busy years for Low Cut Connie. During the height of COVID lockdowns, Adam and Low Cut Connie guitarist Will Donnelly did the near-impossible with their “Tough Cookies” live-streaming rock and soul variety shows. Even in a bathrobe, from his South Philly guest bedroom, Adam managed to generate the electricity of a live show - twice a week, no less - earning him the New Yorker’s newly-minted laurel of “Pandemic Person of the Year” in 2020. The broadcasts drew hundreds of thousands of viewers from more than forty countries, who joined previous appreciators like Bruce Springsteen (who invited Weiner backstage on Broadway in 2018) Barack Obama (an early adopter, who included the band on his official Spotify favorites playlist in 2015) and Elton John (who both praised the band from his own concert stage and featured Weiner as a guest, twice, on his satellite radio show) in Low Cut Connie’s de facto fan club. In the midst of all this, Low Cut Connie also released 2020's acclaimed PRIVATE LIVES album. The album's title track finished the year in the top 20 nationally for non-commercial radio and was praised by NPR as "the freak anthem we need right now." PRIVATE LIVES was praised for the vivid interiority and intimate detail of its songwriting and was included on many best-of-the-year lists that year (Rolling Stone, NPR/Fresh Air, PopMatters, Glide, AllMusic, etc). For that album and ART DEALERS, Weiner sat solo in the producer's chair. Further exploring new media, Weiner co-directed (with filmmaker Roy Power) an 80 minute feature film that will premiere late this year as a companion piece to ART DEALERS. The film is a hybrid-genre documentary that combines a stellar run of NYC concerts from 2022 shot at Sony Hall and the Blue Note, as well as 15 years of performance footage and musical and personal misadventures that led up to ART DEALERS. There will be limited festival screenings of the ART DEALERS film late in 2023, in tandem with this Fall's US tour, and the film will see wider release in 2024. Ahead of the release of this new album and film, Adam Weiner aka Low Cut Connie explains what motivates him to keep pushing deeper into art life. “I'm always trying to get back to the heart and soul of things with the intention of my music and my performances,” says Adam. “I don't know what's hip. I don't know what's in fashion. I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing to be accepted by whatever's popular or trending. I have no idea - I don't care anymore. I just want to turn people on with what I do. The world is a dirty and broken place… we might as well live it the fuck up while we’re here.”

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