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Jill Yvonne and John Hill - Photo by Mandy Valencia

Folk meets French

John Hill and Jill Yvonne merge their musical talents to create folk and French cafe music. Hill is a violin maker, songwriter and lifelong musician, and Yvonne teaches French and music at Madrone Trail Public Charter School. She taps into her knowledge on both subjects to weave poetic lyrics and soulful harmonies around Hill's slide, finger-style and rhythm guitar playing.

The duo started gigging about three months ago. Their plan is to break into Ashland's music scene by squeezing as many shows as possible into their summer, allowing their sound to evolve with practice.

Hill, who also plays violin, ukulele and electric slide guitar, and Yvonne will perform from 10 a.m. to noon, Sunday, July 31, at the Downtowne Coffee House, 200 Talent Ave., Talent.

The duo plays folk-inspired originals, as well as some jazz- and blues-style tunes. Although Hill doesn't always understand what he is singing, the pair also perform some of Yvonne's French originals and standards.

Yvonne says she draws inspiration from vocalists Prince and Frank Sinatra, and Hill is influenced by the work of Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Cat Stevens and James Taylor.

Visit www.johnhilljillyvonne.com for a schedule of performances.

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