Celebrating 20 Years as a Gathering Place and Music Venue......WOW...and thanks for all of you !


Concert series

GINKGO's concert series at GINKGO coffeehouse on Snelling brings musicians from across North America to the Twin Cities. Music is presented in a concert setting, without interruption from normal restaurant service and conversation. The list of artists is impressive and spans a range of musical genres: singer/songwriter, traditional, blues, jazz, celtic, bluegrass, and more! Tickets for the Thursday night concert series can be purchased in advance by calling 651-645-2647 or emailing us. Higher prices apply to tickets purchased at the door.

Music Series

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(Shows with a cover charge are a concert format. For all others, the coffee bar will be open during the show, and people are free to come and go at will.)



Moors and McCumber

Friday, April 18
8 pm
Ellis and Moors and McCumber
Tickets $15 (plus tax)

There's just something about Ellis. She is at once funny and wise, thoughtful and uninhibited, and her captivating voice is matched by her uplifting lyrics. After her recent appearance on A Prairie Home Companion, Ellis received hundreds of messages from strangers including, "you exude pure joy", "I heard you and fell in love" and "I was stopped in my tracks by your music and captivating laugh" as well as "Yours is a voice we all need to hear." Ellis' performances are transformational; she leaves her audiences better than she finds them, with softened edges & opened hearts. She is delighted to share this show and do some collaborating with Moors and McCumber!

Moors & McCumber are a songwriting duo of multi-instrumentalists. After having met around the campfires of the Rocky Mountain Folks Fest in 2005, James Moors and Kort McCumber (based in Superior, WI and Gold Hill, CO respectfully) began experimenting with co-writing and performing together. Fast forward to summer of 2013 and the duo has released their third CD, Against The Grain. They spend countless days and hours on the road touring across the U.S and Europe and their strong bond is obvious to any observer. Reaching for new instruments throughout each and every show they conjure powerful melodies and harmony vocals that have drawn them in comparison to the Everly Brothers, Simon and Garfunkel and Seals and Croft. Expect to hear some guitar, mandolin, fiddle, Irish bouzouki, harmonica, ukulele, and quite possibly a cello!

"Moors and McCumber take the vocal duet thing back to the days of Simon and Garfunkel or Crosby and Nash. Their recordings are great…"
James Killen, Houston Music Review


Saturday April 19
Sweet Rhubarb
7:00-8:45 pm

A trio of women whose music infuses elements of folk, bluegrass, country, pop, and this and that, with rich and interesting vocal harmonies


Yellow Plate Hotel



Wednesday April 23
3rd Annual Open Mic Night
7:00 pm (sign up starts at 6)

Sponsored by Shure and Hosted by Neal Dimick
"Songs, Public and Private"

Come and sign up to sing your original songs. This year, all artists who sign up and perform during National Open Mic Night event will be entered to win a pair of SE112 Sound Isolating™ Earphones—the newest addition to Shure's line of award-wining earphones.

Neal Dimick

Friday April 25
Neal Dimick

Singer-songwriter Neal Dimick, long time host of Ginkgo’s Open Stage, bring a collection of very personal work to Songs, Public and Private. Join him for his return to the concert stage and a night of songs and stories.


Saturday April 26
Joel Baxley Band
8:00-10:00 pm

Joel Baxley spent his childhood in Texas until the age of seven when he moved with his family to Wisconsin. Music was constantly surrounding his upbringing with his father who was a traveling musician for years before he started a family. That passion for music carried over into his children as they grew up in the home together. After years of developing his own voice Joel drew from artists like Gavin DeGraw. He wanted to pursue music as something more than just a pass time. This pursuit lead him to writing and finishing his first album in 2012. Shortly afterwards he got a group of musicians together to build off the album and to perform intimate live shows with just a quartet and trio. Currently they are traveling around the midwest performing in smaller venues and he is doing the thing he loves the most, performing.



Saturday May 3
Half the Nation
8:00-10:00 pm

Half the Nation is a folk, rock, and blues band founded in Minneapolis in 2008, featuring multiple voices, harmonies, clever lyrics, violin, guitars and a percussion contraption. A wide ranging thought provoking but primarily entertaining evening.



Curtis and Loretta

Thursday May 8
Curtis and Loretta
$8 advance - $10 at the door

Curtis & Loretta's music comes straight from the heart. The husband and wife duo's extraordinary harmonies and proficiency on a parade of stringed instruments create an alluring frame for their poignant original songs, and carefully chosen traditional eces from the British Isles, America, and beyond. The current menagerie includes Celtic harp, mandocello, mandolin, guitars, clawhammer banjo, and National steel ukulele, plus a bit of kazoo, harmonica, and shakers. Curtis' down-home sense of humor and Loretta's theater background engage the audience in an experience that runs the gamut of rolling with laughter to holding back tears, with plenty of side-trips in between.

Many of the duo's fans are familiar with their song, Can You Take Me Home? (on Just My Heart for You) about Loretta's mom taking care of her dad at home with Alzheimer's for 10 years. Loretta's mom just passed away recently, and Loretta will be honoring her memory by including that song in all their upcoming concerts.

Curtis & Loretta received an Arts Tour Minnesota Grant in 2010 - 11 from the Minnesota State Arts Board. In 2002, Minneapolis entertainment paper City Pages named them Best Acoustic Performer of the Twin Cities. They are also on the South Dakota Arts Council Touring Artists roster.

"They are in many ways the quintessential folk duo: finely honed vocal harmonies of multidimensional intrigue, abundant talent on an array of stringed instruments, deep traditional roots, great originals, and equally strong strains of gravity and playful irreverence." .............. City Pages newspaper, Minneapolis


Saturday May 10
Neptune's Keep

Neptune's Keep is a very fishy band. Two humans, two goldfish, and a dance troupe of seahorses perform together in a truly astonishing musical partnership. Lilting vocal harmonies drift through sea chanteys, ballads, and original songs about water and the creatures that swim in it, fly over it, or sail upon it. Currents of hammered dulcimer, piano, guitar, and concertina gracefully flow.


Carrie Newcomer

Friday May 16
Carrie Newcomer CD Release Concert,
Sundin Music Hall at Hamline University
1531 Hewitt Ave, St. Paul
8:00 pm
$20 - Students $12 with ID

For tickets: e-mail the box office: sundinmusichall@hamline.edu or call 651-523-2459, or pick up tickets at GINKGO coffeehouse. This show is co-sponsored with Hamline University. Parking information and directions can be found at http://www.hamline.edu/sundin/

Singer-songwriter Carrie Newcomer will release her twelfth studio recording this spring. A Permeable Life, produced by Paul Mahern, will be out on April 1, 2014, from Available Light Records, distributed by MRI/Sony RED Music. Newcomer will also release a companion book, A Permeable Life: Poems and Essays.

Newcomer has attracted a devoted following with her warm voice, exquisite melodies, and an irreverent yet spiritual view of the world. As in the work of poets Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry, Newcomer's songs are based in the ordinary, and infused with images from the natural world.

"A Permeable Life is about what presses out from the heart, what comes in at a slant and what shimmers below the surface of things," Newcomer says. "To live permeably is to be openhearted and audacious, to risk showing up as our truest self, and embracing a willingness to be astonished."

On this album, Newcomer's signature deep voice—which the Austin American-Statesman called "as rich as Godiva chocolate"—takes on a quiet conversational tone, close and intimate. Open and elegant arrangements showcase lyrics that balance introspection and interior monologue with love and fascination for the shared human story.

A Permeable Life - Album Cover
Recording artist Carrie Newcomer's work cuts across secular and spiritual boundaries. She has had many artistic collaborations with notable authors such as Parker J. Palmer, Barbara Kingsolver, Jill BolteTaylor, Philip Gulley, Scott Russell Sanders and Rabbi Sandy Sasso. She has toured throughout the U.S. and Europe.


Saturday May 17
David Booth
7:00-8:45 pm


David Smith

Saturday May 31
David Smith - One House
8:00 pm

Real life stories drive David G Smith's songs. The album opens with the title cut, “One House” a call to action for anyone who lives on planet earth. Smith’s storytelling shines in “Jesus Is In Prison” a surprising story of death row redemption, and “Angels Flew” celebrating the spontaneous armada that rescued people in Lower Manhattan on 9/11. In each, the stories unfold effortlessly over strong rhythms and unforgettable melodies.

Singer-Songwriter David G Smith is a major find.
--Robert K. Oermann - Music Row/Nashville

[Smith] comes across with the same sort of weathered resolve that best exemplifies fellow travelers like Kris Kristofferson and Townes Van Zandt.
--Lee Zimmerman/No Depression

David has made a fantastic new record, showcasing his many talents which include the ability to dig one hell of a groove, sing, write songs and make his guitar look like a natural extension of his body.....wonderful music....
--Mary Gauthier/Artist

David G Smith is a man and artist that always delivers...his live performances command your attention, his songs are heartfelt and honest...
--Kate Benson/Director Of Entertainment/Redstone Room


Claudia Schmidt

Dean Magraw

Thursday June 5
Claudia Schmidt and Dean Magraw
7:30 pm
$20 (plus sales tax)

Celebrate Claudia Schmidt's Birthday
Yes - there will be cake !

More than 4 decades as a touring professional have found Michigan native Claudia Schmidt traversing North America as well as Europe in venues ranging from intimate clubs to 4,000 seat theatres, and festival stages in front of 25,000 rapt listeners. She has recorded nineteen albums of mostly original songs, exploring folk, blues, and jazz idioms featuring her acclaimed 12-string guitar and mountain dulcimer playing.

Composer/Guitarist Dean Magraw's musical passion transcends all boundaries, yet the vital essence of his distinctive style remains, while performing and recording solo, with numerous regional ensembles, and on projects with international notables as diverse as Japanese shamisen prodigy Nitta Masahiro, classical violinist Nigel Kennedy, South Indian virtuoso Nirmala Rajasheker, epic songstress Ruth MacKenzie, Irish supergroup Altan, radio personality Garrison Keillor, jazz bassist Anthony Cox, and many others.

"Dean Magraw… so liquid, lyrical and effortless it's like listening to a dancer." -Steve Tibbetts

Claudia's new CD, New Whirled Order has just been released, and here's what she has to say about it:
New Whirled Order is a collection of things I've been writing in the last couple years, and a collection of really amazing musicians, Dean Magraw on guitar, Betsy Doriss on oboe, Chris Haynes on accordion and piano, Richard Gates on bass, Tim Griffin on drums, and my pals Sally Rogers, Howie Bursen and Jeff Davis giving me some vocal help on a very special piece for my mom, who died last year. The results is a sparkling and powerful musical adventure. I am gleeful!

To say that Schmidt is simply a performer with a talent to entertain would be a miscarriage of understatement. Schmidt takes her audiences into her world as easily as the child who discovers the endless universes that exist in a cardboard box.

Ellis Paul

Saturday, June 14,
Ellis Paul
8 pm
Tickets $12 in advance, $15 at the door

"Despite his success and sense of history, Mr. Paul remains an Artist with his eye on the future and an interest in discovering the transformative potential of his music." - New York Times

Ellis Paul's songwriting credentials are unassailable. They are as genuine as the 14 Boston Music Awards he has earned, as indelible as the tattoo of Woody Guthrie that adorns his arm, and as authentic as the musical roots he draws upon with every note he plays.

Since emerging from the Boston music scene, Ellis Paul's music has been consistently recognized and celebrated worldwide. His 16 releases and loyal, enthusiastic audiences reinforce this acclaim and have since cemented his place as one of America's most talented songwriters.

The Boston Globe heralds him as a "songwriter's songwriter;" Performing Songwriter says, "He combines the sensibilities of Bob Dylan and Bill Morrisey and delivers it with passion that sets him apart in the company of a new breed of songwriters."

Dirty Linen magazine says Paul is "one of contemporary folk music's most influential voices"


Musical events for your generous donations...some great musicians!

Musical events that are not part of the concert series take place in a more casual atmosphere. Food and beverages are served during the performance, and customers may come and go at will. If no ticket price is indicated, musicians play for your generous donations. Unless otherwise noted, all events take place at GINKGO coffeehouse on Snelling.


The open stage is run with a lottery system, meaning names are drawn to see who will perform in each slot. This means you don't have to try to get there too early to be the first to sign up. The open mic is hosted by artists

Neal Dimick, 612-827-1573 nealdimick@yahool.com

children's events

Ellis PaulSaturday, June 14, 10 am: Ellis Paul

Photo Credit: Luca Jaccodine (Age 9)
This event if FREE to the public, sponsored by GINKGO coffeehouse!)

Ellis Paul is a critically acclaimed singer, songwriter, poet, troubadour and father of two daughters, originally hailing from a potato farming family in northern Maine, whose career began in the Boston new folk scene. He is the recipient of 13 Boston Music Awards, second only to multi-platinum act Aerosmith. and the St. Paul Pioneer Press calls him "one of the best songwriters of the past decade." Ellis' 2007 family music release The Dragonfly Races, won a Parents' Choice award and sold nearly 10,000 copies. In his second children's release, The Hero in You, Ellis Paul presents host of new and original songs pointing to the bright spots of America's great heritage. It is the first CD in a planned series focusing on heroes of all kinds.

Pop WagnerPop Wagner

Pop has quite the reputation as a singer, picker, fiddler, lasso twirler, poet and downright funny guy.
He appeared quite frequently on Public Radio's A Prairie Home Companion during the show's formative years and for the last four decades he has worked his cowboy magic throughout 44 states and ten countries.

His cowboy anthems crackle with the warmth of a prairie campfire and his old time fiddle tunes set toes a-tappin' while he serves up spellbinding rope tricks and tall stories -- all with a good dose of friendly humor.

Loved by kids and adults, Pop is always engaging and entertaining!

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sign up to receive concert schedules

Email us to add your name to our email list. You'll be the first to know about GINKGO upcoming performances. If you don't have email, call the GINKGO coffeehouse on Snelling (651-645-2647) and give us your name and address. We'll send you a concert schedule in the mail.

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information about performing at GINKGO

There are several ways to perform at GINKGO.

To participate in Open Stage on the first and third Wednesdays of the month, just show up. Sign up begins at 6:30 pm, and Open Stage is from 7-10 pm. Names are drawn to determine the performers for each slot.

To participate in the old time and bluegrass jam sessions on the fourth Wednesdays of the month, just show up.

To play for donations (typically Friday or Saturday evenings), contact us via e-mail ( ginkgosaturdaymusic@yahoo.com ). It may take a few days to respond, and feel free to send a new note if you do ot hear anything.

To perform as part of the concert series, where people pay a cover charge (typically $10 or more), email Kathy at kathy@ginkgocoffee.com. This is a ticketed event. Specify that you are interested in the concert series, and include this on the subject line of your e-mail, please.

Interesting Musical Links

Check out the website for Homestead Pickin Parlor!

Homestead Pickin Parlor has a very good selection of folk music recordings, as well as many other styles, along with music lessons, sheet music and instruments.


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