Once again, with the news of the world pressing in, I'd like to begin the week with music that shines a light in the dark -- and the toe-tapping, spirit-lifting music of Laura Cortese fits the bill. Cortese was born San Francisco, studied music in Boston, and now peforms solo and in a variety of musical collaborations -- my favorite of which is her all-women folk & roots band, Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards.
Above: "Stockholm," from the band's fine new abum, California Calling. The video was shot on tour in Scandinavia.
Below: "Women of the Ages," with lyrics adapted from the poetry of John Beaton. The video was made to raise funds for Rosie's Place, Boston, the oldest women's shelter in the United States.