Ken Leighton 6 p.m., Oct. 18
Sound description: California folk by way of Sweden.
RIYL: Emmylou Harris, Carole King
Influences: Joni Mitchell, Emmylou Harris, Buffy Saint-Marie
Based in Leucadia, acoustic/Americana singer/songwriter Cleopatra Degher was raised in Sweden by her Swedish mom and American dad, attending a music-centered high school.
Her father Darius Degher fronted the 1980s San Diego band Darius and the Magnets, before embarking on a solo career and releasing several solo CDs, as well as playing and recording with Warren Zevon (Bad Karma, etc).
After moving back to the U.S. in her late teens, Cleopatra Degher was 20 when she released her debut EP Restrung in summer 2012.
Produced by her father Darius, mixed and mastered by Denis Degher (Donovan, Dusty Springfield, Brian Setzer), the EP features the drums of Phil Leavitt (7Horse and Dada) as well as the fiddle, mandolin, and lap steel of Don Teschner (late of Rod Stewart’s touring bands). After its release, she earned airplay on the KPRI Homegrown Hour.
"My best local gig has to have been when I played at the historic La Paloma Theater in Encinitas. Me and my sister Cordelia played a few songs as entertainment during the biannual Full Moon Poetry Slam. The sound was just fantastic and it was pretty cool performing on the same stage that Charlie Chaplin had been on. The host of the event, Danny Salzhandler, showed us the old dressing room underneath the stage, which was really cool too."
She followed up with a full-length called Pacific, released in September 2014. Mixed by Jeff Berkley in San Diego and mastered by Gavin Lurssen, who has mastered records for T-Bone Burnett, Jackson Browne and others, the album features a cast of L.A. and San Diego musicians who, individually, boast recording and touring credits with Leonard Cohen, Peter Case, Michelle Shocked, Lucinda Williams, Warren Zevon, and more.
In late summer 2014, her music was showcased on NPR's World Cafe Next series, which has profiled other local up-and-comers like Tom Griesgraber, and she released a music video for “California Forest Fire,” directed by James L. Reid.
The following summer tour found her playing three sold out nights at the Birchmere, outside Washington DC, opening for the Bacon Brothers, where Kevin Bacon asked her to join him in singing "Footloose."