A ‘Casa’ Filled with Music

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Julia Fordham

A new singer-songwriter night, Lenny Goldsmith & Friends, starts at Casa Escobar on Wednesday, Nov. 4, and the first special guest is multimillion record selling and internationally acclaimed artist Julia Fordham. This weekly event will be hosted by Lenny Goldsmith, and his band, The New Old, will accompany many of the star guests scheduled to appear, including Vonda Shepard, Jeffrey Young, Doña Oxford and Sean Wiggins.

“I love original music and the people who make it,” Goldsmith said. “I’m creating an event at a great venue where people can come out and hear terrific music. Having a guest like Julia Fordham launch the series — who is a great songwriter as well as the best voice I’ve heard since Joni Mitchell in her prime — is such a thrill. It’s going to be a great night.”

Julia Fordham first heard the word “Malibu” when she was a teenager back in England. It was in the song “Trouble Child” by her musical heroine and the queen of singer-songwriters Joni Mitchell.

“The lines goes: ‘trouble child breaking like the waves at Malibu,’” Fordham said. “When I first heard Joni Mitchell sing it, something about the word ‘Malibu’ resonated with me. I had chills and goosebumps. I felt it was calling me and I wondered where this place was.”

Fordham began her career singing in folk clubs in England while holding down a day job at a local radio station. There she met John Watkin, who wrote jingles and hired Fordham to sing them. They wrote a song together — “Falling Forward” — which became the title track of her fourth album. Grammy Award-winner and then-husband of Joni Mitchell Larry Klein produced the album, which was recorded at the couple’s home studio in L.A. It was then that Fordham got to meet her favorite musical artist.

Watkin also moved west and became the Emmy-winning co-owner of Malibu-based Planet Grande Pictures, as well as a guitarist with Goldsmith.

“I’ll be opening my set with ‘Falling Forward,’ for obvious reasons,” Fordham shared. “Only last week I said to John how it’s the most extraordinary thing that we both ended up living here. I drive along PCH most days as the waves are breaking at Malibu to collect my daughter Marley from Webster School and drive her to Dance Star. It feels like I was meant to be here.”

And it was the premier, world-class vanguard of the singer songwriter movement, Joni Mitchell, who planted the seed in Fordham’s head that there was a place in the world called Malibu.

“I’m honored and delighted to be the first guest at Casa Escobar’s singer-songwriter night, and I’m really looking forward to sitting in with the stellar Lenny Goldsmith and his killer band,” said Fordham.

Fordham recently completed a sold-out theater tour of the U.K. celebrating the 25th anniversary of her album, “Porcelain.” Her 12th album, “The Language of Love,” has been released by JVC. 

For more information, visit juliafordham.com and lennygoldsmithsnewold.com. Lenny Goldsmith & Friends starts Wednesday, Nov. 4 from 8-10p.m. There is a cover charge and no show Thanksgiving week.