When singer-songwriter Eilen Jewell was pregnant with her first child, she and her husband, musician Jason Beek, knew they'd need to stop touring for a while. They still wanted to do something music-related, though. So when two of their favorite acts were each planning a tour, the couple decided to help set up a show for them in Boise.
"A couple tries didn't work out, so then we thought, 'Well, maybe we could be the promoters,'" Beek said.
That thought led Jewell and Beek to start their own promotion company, Mess Around Music, which has booked its first show at the Cinder Winery in Garden City on Tuesday, Aug. 12. The concert will feature Austin, Tex.-based country musician Zoe Muth, whose new album World of Strangers (2014) was praised by Americana UK as "the proper arrival of a new, powerful and vital voice"; and Brooklyn, New York-based Americana musician Miss Tess, whom No Depression called "a songwriter's songwriter."
As Beek and Jewell see it, Mess Around Music will give them a chance to keep music as a part of their lives and strengthen their connection to the local scene.
"When we are touring, we're touring; we're gone so much," Jewell said. "So it's a way to kind of establish a presence in Boise."
While they don't have much experience as promoters, they hope that Mess Around Music will become an ongoing enterprise.
"Part of the deal was to do this first show just to see if we like it," Beek said. "We've obviously been on the other side of it for a long time now. We know when we walk into a show if it's been well-promoted [and] the presenter's doing their job, but we've never actually done it [or] been on this side of it. So far, so good."
Meanwhile, Jewell's fans may get to hear some more of her own music soon enough. The couple hopes to release a live album in mid-August or September and get a new studio album out by February or March 2015. Jewell and Beek would also like to start touring again next year, but that decision depends largely on their infant daughter Mavis.
"So far, she likes going places," Jewell said. "She likes the white noise of a crowd, when a crowd's talking."