Who are the Go Janes?
l-r: Kathleen Tracy, Arni Adler, Patrice O’Neill
Photo: Ailisa Newhall @2023
The Go Janes feature ukulele, guitar, and generous doses of delicious harmony vocals on songs from the long view of life.
We have decades of experience as creative artists, community organizers, educators and inquisitive consumers of life. Arni and Patrice are members of the satirical trio Uncle Bonsai; Kathleen Tracy is an accomplished solo artist and community chorus director. Patrice has produced the Wintergrass Festival almost from its inception. Arni and Patrice are also visual artists. and Arni and Kathleen are both sought after educators and coaches working with children, adults, and the differently-abled.
Our writing ranges from tender and sweet tributes to our shared humanity, to songs exploring how weird it is that magicians used to (pretend to) saw women in half for entertainment. From monkey-infested golf courses in India, and what that teaches us about how to greet life’s challenges, to letting go of our independent children, and losing those we love in more lasting ways. Along the way we pay homage to our ancestors and to our own and each others’ most idiosyncratic selves. And there are knife-throwers, and howling dogs, and how the pandemic made us fight with each other and ourselves.
We’ve performed at the Seattle Folklore Society, Dusty Strings (with Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer), Traditions Cafe in Olympia, Black Dog Arts Cafe in Snoqualmie, Seattle Folklife Festival, the Moisture Festival, the Lavender Festival, Kenyon Hall, the Royal Room, Stage3 in Kingston (with True North), and many other venues.
In addition, we’ve painted over two hundred pounds of rocks in order to raise money for creative endeavors. This was particularly important during the pandemic, when so many concerts were canceled, or not available for booking to begin with. Plus, the best things in life are often the little things. (Even little heavy things.) After rocks, came GoFundMe, which led to the release of our first full-length recording. (Thank you GoFundMe donors!!)
We present well-crafted songs, instrumental interplay, good stories, good friends, humor — things made with our hands and minds, kindness and community. We believe that most people need to create in some form, and we love being a spark that ignites and encourages creativity in others.
Wearer of many hats Patrice O’Neill is a touring musician, festival producer, sometime audio book narrator, full-time mother/grandmother to a couple of generations and curious inhabitant of Earth. She has performed as a solo artist, releasing two projects of original music, Only Mercy Knows and Elusive. Her award-winning, multi-lingual collaborations with classical guitarist, Hilary Field, Siente and Cantelina, feature night songs from around the world. In her early years she lived in South Africa, and spent significant time in both Ecuador and Guatemala, gaining perspective and gratitude. She’s worked with genius songwriter, Andrew Ratshin in The Mel Cooley’s and currently performs with the iconic trio Uncle Bonsai. Patrice is the founder and director of the annual Wintergrass festival in Bellevue WA and was an integral part of the team producing the Mandolin Symposium working with Mike Marshall and David Grisman. An avid early-morning runner and long-distance cyclist, she has 4 amazing children and 5 exceptional grandchildren. For fun, she reads books about physics, bakes bread and makes pathways in her garden. Got wood chips?
Musician/Mom/Artivist Kathleen Tracy is a composer, arranger, singer, choral director, teacher, workshop presenter and multi-instrumentalist. She performs solo and with others, releasing five projects of original music, Speaking Stones, So Bodaciously (with Linda Severt), Calling the Dragons Home, Like the Stars That Made You, and Thursday Morning Alleleu. She also composes and arranges for theater and dance, most recently for Flying Blind, a musical for and about Seattle’s blind and low vision community. Kathleen is the founder and director of the Columbia City Community Chorus, a fifteen year old living laboratory where the metaphor of mycelium, human connection, and the power of community singing gets put into joyful practice every week. She writes songs about the beauty and mystery of the world, and wanders into the mountains on a regular basis to find inspiration and commune with deep time, bringing home waaaay too many rocks.
Arni Adler crosses arts disciplines regularly. As a long-ago graduate of Bennington College (known for its “institutionalized creativity”), Arni started out in theater and music, appeared in some experimental films, worked as a writing coach in the schools, is a creativity and writing coach and editor, and has been passionately painting for over 15 years (@arniadler instagram/FB).
As a big fan of the trio format, she is a founding and current member of the super-harmony trios Uncle Bonsai and her ninth trio, the uke-based Go Janes. Her song cycle for voice, viola, bass, and piano based on (the kinder, softer, more soul-searching) poems by Charles Bukowski premiered at Seattle’s Royal Room.
Arni exhibits her paintings and funny doodads (2″ blocks and humorous stick figures) around Seattle, and teaches visual art and writing to all ages, including art for kids with disabilities at the Children’s PlayGarden in Seattle.
Rocks from our fundraising past. These babies funded much of our first recording, finding homes with Janes’ fans far and wide.