Monthly coffeehouse mixes music, stories, and comedy

verdugohuut LA CRESCENTA, Calif.—In the tradition of Bob Dylan at the Gaslight, Suzanne Vega at Passim, and Mort Sahl at the Hungry i, the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Verdugo Hills (4451 Dunsmore, La Crescenta) has opened its acoustically-outstanding 100-seat sanctuary to L.A. folk, alt-country, and acoustic musicians as well as authors, poets, and comedians for the monthly Verdugo HUUT.

“This is an intimate setting where music just sounds better,” says emcee Marty Barrett, who approached the 25-year-old church with the idea of resurrecting the hootenanny, a 60’s staple of Greenwich Village coffeehouses as seen in movies like “Inside Llewyn Davis,” for a theme-based night of songs, stories, and comedy on the third Friday of every month. “And we throw in the ‘UU’ because it is well-known that the Unitarians make the best coffee.”

Past guests have included Varsity Drag, a husband/wife duo featuring Lisa Deily and her husband Ben, co-founder of 90s pop sensation The Lemonheads, “Legumes” author Gabriela Knutson, L.A. alt-country stalwart Alias Means, and Anita Squeeze, the new project by Warrant co-founder Josh Lewis. Performers have tackled important subjects like “Your Valentine Is Wrong,” “My Favorite Mistake,” and “50 Shades of Hay: Who Knew There Were So Many Songs About Horses?”

The theme for March 16 is “Whiskey In A Jar And Other Vices,” and the April 20 Verdugo HUUT is “This Is Not A Protest Song (Oh Yes It Is).” Tickets are $5 for this teens-and-up show.

“The Verdugo HUUT has become a place for all ages to meet friends, go on a date night, see excellent live music, hear funny people, and drink coffee for about a tenth of what it would run you in Hollywood,” Barrett says. “There is nothing like it up here.”

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KEYWORDS: Verdugohuut, folk, acoustic, la bands, la events, la crescenta, hootennanny, comedy, poetry, authors, books, coffeehouse

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