Show Info

John Popper

First Fleet Concerts Presents:

John Popper

Katrina Woolverton

Tue, September 25, 2018

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm


Des Moines, IA


This event is 21 and over

John Popper
John Popper
One of the most phenomenal harmonica players in history, John Popper formed his band, Blues Traveler, with his high school friends Brendan Hill (drums), Chan Kinchla (guitar) and Bobby Sheehan (bass), in the late 80s, in New York City. They released their debut album in 1990 and hit the billboards with 1994's “Four." Following Blues Traveler's mainstream success, Popper was able to release a solo album, Zygote, in 1999 and toured with his own John Popper Band. Zygote was produced by Terry Manning with the background band consisting of longtime friends Dave Ares, Crugie Riccio, and Rob Clores of Cycomotogoat, and Carter Beauford, the drummer of Dave Matthews Band. The album's release came only less than three months after his heart surgery, and days after the death of Bobby Sheehan, Popper's best friend and band mate. Unfortunately, The subsequent tour was canceled midway due to poor ticket sales. Although his stage performances were becoming fewer, he made a major appearance on the big screen taking his first actual role in a movie, Just for the Time Being (2000), with supermodel Eva Herzigova. Soon after, Blues Traveler rejoined forces with two new members, and they have been touring and releasing albums ever since. This year marks the 30th anniversary of Blue Traveler as a band.

Popper has co-written songs with Trey Anastasio, Warren Haynes, Chris Barron, and Jonny Lang. He also frequently appears as a guest performer with musicians both famous and obscure, from a diverse variety of genres. He has performed with, among others, jam bands Spin Doctors, Dave Matthews Band, Phish, The Allman Brothers Band, bluesmen Eric Clapton and B.B. King; singer-songwriters Jason Mraz and John Mayer; saxophonist Karl Denson; San Francisco's Culann's Hounds; heavy metal band Metallica; rock trio ZO2 and even with the Hungarian Ambassador to the United States, András Simonyi and then-vice-presidential-candidate Tim Kaine.

In addition to Popper’s musical accomplishments, he has appeared in a cameo in several films: the Farrelly Brothers' Kingpin (1996) (which included a Blues Traveler performance at the end), Howard Stern's Private Parts (1997), Blues Brothers 2000 (1998), and The Meddler (2016).
Katrina Woolverton
Katrina Woolverton
It’s the depth of her artistry and belief in unfettered creative inspiration that captures hearts on singer/songwriter Katrina Woolverton’s new EP ‘Better Now.’ The six-track offering showcase’s the star’s gift for musical nuance and her 5-and-a-half octave range. Songs on the album include the reassuring title track “Better Now,” the Billboard Top 40 charting Adult Contemporary staple “Hold Me Down,” as well as “Open Hearted,” “Known Better,” “Lonely Heart,” and “Heart Beats.”
Recorded mostly in London, with some tracks written in a sunburst of inspired L.A. sessions, the memorable title track was co-written by Grammy winning UK songwriter Amy Wadge, who co- penned Ed Sheeran’s 2016 Grammy winning smash, “Thinking Out Loud.” The EP was mixed and produced by renowned producer Mikal Blue, best known for his work with One Republic, Colbie Caillat, Jason Mraz, Five For Fighting, and others, with co-production by Jez Coad, Jules Wolfson and Katrina. Mikal also engineered the EP with Jonathan Sagis and was a co-writer on “Hold Me Down” -the season’s breakout hit. That song, a big splash at radio and video platforms, reached #38 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary Top 40 Chart, giving Katrina yet another Billboard charting single.
In addition to “Better Now” she huddled with Bristol singer/songwriter Amy Wadge on another song, the sultry “Heart Beats.” Katrina likened Wadge to a ‘musical sister,’ working on a lot of material in Amy’s backyard studio dubbed ‘The Wadge Lodge’ in Wales. “We really bonded,” she says. “I have such great respect for her as an artist, songwriter and as a person. I cherished every creative moment I had with her.”
Katrina also cites the track “Known Better,” which she wrote with Robbie Grant, as an example of a song that progressed from ‘just a voice memo’ to one of her favorites, and all because ‘the wonderful musicians I was surrounded with in England just took it and ran with it musically – they put my spirit into their total love of music.’ Katrina calls it a ‘heart of gold’ tale, pointing it out as a counter-opposite, of sorts, to the songwriting themes initiated in L.A
Katrina’s own backstory is emotionally threaded with turning point moments and inspiring tales of overcoming personal setbacks to blaze one’s truest path. Talented from the start, Katrina made her initial music “debut” on the popular TV show Star Search, the precursor to today’s singing competition series', and the platform that helped launch Beyoncé, Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Usher and Justin Timberlake, among others. The young Katrina emerged victorious in multiple consecutive weeks, (including besting the young star who would become known as Aaliyah) garnering attention (and offers) from record companies and other industry tastemakers.
Family upheaval would dictate unforeseen challenges and a switch in life-paths for the young Katrina. Dealing with the trials of an emotionally and verbally abusive father, the determined
Katrina tabled her singing aspirations for a while and pursued both a college and law degree - but never stopped nurturing her musical destiny. Continuing to perform in school choirs and other platforms where she was afforded the opportunity (and writing songs in every spare moment available), the dedicated Los Angeles native always promised herself she would fulfill the potential of her tremendous singing gift.
After receiving her Juris Doctor and Masters in Entertainment and Media Law, she made the decision to fully recalibrate her musical career and assembled a stellar team of songwriters and collaborators to create what would become her acclaimed 2012 debut venture, In The Blink Of An Eye. The inaugural album featured Billboard charting hits, “Shame On Me” and “So Eden,” among other songs (she released the stand-alone 2013 gem “Ready To Love” that also climbed the Billboard charts).
Katrina has toured across the US with legendary icon Meat Loaf (as well as hosting her own live treks in the U.S. and UK), pop singer-songwriter Jon McLaughlin and most recently with the revered rock front man John Popper of Blues Traveler. Her scheduled tour with the legendary Leon Russell was sadly cut short when the renowned musician/songwriter passed away in 2016.
In the course of her successful musical run, Katrina has also found time to embrace another passion of hers: healthy cooking. She was motivated to blog about healthy eating and easy-to- make recipes while encountering the more unimaginative ‘road food grind’ while on tour, calling it “Katrina’s Kitchen.” Her desire to make better food decisions, and her passion for preparing quick, tasty, nutritionally sound meals has resonated , along with her music, with her social media (over 1⁄2 million) followers. Katrina shares her strategies for healthy, creative recipes that can fit everyone’s on-the-go regimen on her website.
Katrina has publicly talked about her tumultuous early life. “My parent’s marriage turned into a battleground,” she says. “It was difficult and painful as a child, but I eventually learned to channel the transformative power of healing into my law career, into my music, and most importantly, as a form of engagement to lift others who may have experienced similar circumstances.” Katrina has shared her story in public forums willingly, and continues to help her mother transform her life after enduring so much pain. “It’s important for every one of us to recognize the worth in ourselves,” she says. Katrina’s success in both her law achievements and musical career are a testament to a formidable inner strength that comes across whether you’re listening to her powerful musical canon or engaging her in conversation.
“I’ve learned that life is a constant barrage of decisions, and sometimes we don’t always make the right one,” she says. “That’s part of life. But by putting your real feelings out there, your true experiences – it gives you strength. It can empower others. It’s like how love gives you strength. Whether it’s your significant other or spiritual. Music has the ability to make that kind of connection too. It’s like the title song ‘Better Now,’ that I wrote with Amy. We had certain things in common about our relationships, and we went with it. Certain people have told me they listen to that song and it’s like tapping into that warm feeling out loud; like wrapping a warm blanket around you. Sometimes only music can provide that.”
Venue Information:
504 E. Locust St,
Des Moines, IA, 50309