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Sam Llanas is an iconic American singer, acoustic guitarist, and songwriter. Best known
for his unique and distinctively soulful voice, Llanas burst onto the national music scene
in 1986 as part of The Bodeans. Their debut album Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams, which
was produced by T Bone Burnett, became one of the most critically acclaimed records of
that year. His voice was the cornerstone of their sound and was the heart of their tight
After 25 years of a storied career with the band, including being a part of U2’s
celebrated Joshua Tree tour, singing on Robbie Robertson’s “Somewhere Down the
Crazy River,” being voted best new band by the readers of Rolling Stone Magazine, and
sharing the stage with such luminaries as David Bowie, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, and Tom
Petty it was time for a change.
After leaving in 2011, Llanas released 4 A.M., a stripped down, quietly introspective
offering that reflected the mood of the title. Once again critics were taken with the
haunting quality of his singing and his ability to construct concise songs with lovely
melodies that manage to say a lot with a few simple basic chords and a minimum of
straightforward words.
In 2014 came The Whole Night Thru, the third installment (he released his first solo
album, A Good Day to Die in ‘97) of what Llanas calls his night music. While retaining a
mostly darker tone, “TWNT” also contained elements of his former bands most loved
songs (it was Llanas after all who wrote his former bands biggest hit “Closer To Free”).
In early 2018, Llanas released Return of the Goya – Part 1. The title refers to his beloved
guitar that was stolen in 1987. “ROTG”marks his emergence back into the light with 11
songs that harken back to his deepest roots. Most of the songs showcase his long love of
classic country music (his earliest musical memory is hearing and being mesmerized by
Hank Williams). These songs are a loving tribute to a style of music witnessing simple
songs with strong melodies and harmonies telling stories that resonate in the heart.
Longtime fans will be reminded of 2 of his most beloved songs (“Looking for me
Somewhere” from 1986 and “I’m in Trouble Again” from ‘87). “ROTG” is proof that after
more than 30 years, Llanas is at the top of his formidable game.
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February 7, 2020 @ 8:30 pm - 12:00 am

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