Back to top

Ella McDonald, Dave Dersham, Sam Bayer at Somerville Armory Cafe Saturday Oct. 7

Ella McDonald

Ella McDonald, Dave Dersham, Sam Bayer at Somerville Armory Cafe Saturday Oct. 7

10/07/23 7:30 PM

191 Highland Ave, Somerville

You are here

Somerville Songwriter Sessions at the Armory Cafe presents singer/songwriters Ella McDonald, Dave Dersham and Sam Bayer on Saturday October 7. The concert will feature a solo set by each artist, followed by a round robin song swap. The evening begins at 7:30 PM with a short open mic and the features begin at 8 PM. There is a suggested donation of $15 at the door for the performance. The Armory Cafe is at 191 Highland Avenue, Somerville, just a few blocks from the new Magoun Square Green Line T station. For more information call 617-718-2191 or visit or To sign up for the open mic email [email protected].

Somerville Songwriter Sessions at the Armory Cafe presents contemporary folk singer/songwriters in concert, usually on the first Saturday of each month. The Armory Cafe features live music in an intimate setting, a menu featuring sandwiches, soups, desserts and coffees, and plenty of free parking. Our 10/7 performers:

Ella McDonald is a Cambridge-based musician and songwriter whose thoughtful, intimate lyricism glides from haunting to healing in the same breath. Their 2018 debut album February is a lyrical exploration of their growth in friendship, self love, and queerness, and musically melds folk and R&B influences into a cohesive body. In 2022, Ella suffered a brain injury that left them unable to read, write, or play music for several months. Now, as they heal, Ella is returning to music and offering us their most vulnerable and moving work yet, reminding audiences that hope is a discipline. You can find Ella on Instagram, Tiktok @ellammcd, and on Spotify and Apple Music as Ella McDonald. More at

Dave Dersham is a sly humorist, cultural critic, a melancholy optimist; a blend of uncanny rhythm and muted chords, wielding space for the open-hearted. His ambient folk music encompasses cautionary yarns of submerging archipelagos, the unfolding eco-dystopia, Samoan pigskin heroes, and the whimsy of demolition work among the Pioneer Valley lowlands, where Dave spent his formative years, meandered, and eventually returned. His 2003 CD The Burn of Summer earned abundant airtime on WUMB, WERS, and a finalist selection in Mountain Stage's "Emerging Artist" competition. His 2011 CD Gilding the Lilies featured accompaniment by Lloyd Thayer and Jared Fiske on lap steel, electric guitar, percussion, and keyboard and was distributed internationally. "Dersham taps hopeful melodies and reverses lyrical expectations at every turn...exudes a brand of humane charm that sets him apart from every other songwriter you'll see this year."-Club Passim. More at

Boston musician Sam Bayer is your literate, exuberant guide to an imaginary world where housewives win the Nobel Prize in physics, poker-playing children gamble over their bedtimes, and metaphorical elephants pirouette in the den, four and a half minutes at a time. His latest studio CD The Great Indoors brings 11 gems from his universe to yours. More at