Bitter Mystics grew from a partnership in 2007 to produce a single song, “60 Million Girls.” That seed has sprouted over 35 original tunes that this talented ensemble has shared at venues in San Francisco and throughout the Bay Area.
While living in Thailand, pianist and composer Lisa Safran picked up the guitar and her music took on a whole new energy. Returning to San Francisco, Safran joined up with guitarist Chris Faust and they began playing coffee shops and other venues around the Bay Area. Lisa and Chris formed the band D'Tension and then, with the addition of several more talented musicians, Bitter Mystics was formed. Bitter Mystics, fronted by Lisa, highlight her original songs written for guitar, with additional compositions by her sister Misha.
The band's energy, strong compositions and unique arrangements culminated in the 15-track album, Dreams That Matter, recorded by Leo Frappier at Baysounds in San Francisco and released at a standing-room-only event at the Union Room on April 17, 2010.
Band member bios:
Anthony Carpentieri - Guitarist and songwriter. Anthony has been performing in various bands and musical productions since his teenage years. He loves acoustic and folk rock, and especially the blues. Most recently, he played guitar and sang with The characters, an Oakland-based rock band.
Chris Faust - One of the founding members of Bitter Mystics and happy to have the band back together. He is thrilled to be working with the talented new lineup. A versatile acoustic guitar player and composer, Chris has performed throughout the Bay Area. His projects include solo compositions and contributions to a pair of original song CDs and an original full-length musical.
Conrad Anthony - Singer/songwriter with a soulful singing voice and an infectious groove. Being an accomplished guitarist as well, he has toured the United States and Europe, thrilling audiences with his high-energy performing style, which includes funk, rock and reggae influences. Conrad also produced a CD of all original music entitled, Message from the Motherland.
Lisa Safran - Singer/songwriter, actress, improvisor. Lisa has been composing music since a wee tot, climbing onto the bench of her father's piano and making up stories using sound. She went on to compose many songs and instrumental pieces on the piano. As a young adult, Lisa began performing and lending her vocal, keyboard and compositional talents to local music projects. In 2004 and 2005, Safran collaborated with poet Naomi Lowinsky and created songs from several of her poems.
Misha Safran - Singing since before the first grade, Misha also played roles in musical theatre performances such as The Fantastics, Grease, The Me Nobody Knows, and West Side Story. In 2017, Misha was accepted into the OIGC (Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir). OIGC and the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (SFGMC) went on the nine-day “life-changing” Lavender Pen Tour together, singing for love in five Southern states. In 2018, Misha joined a songwriters’ workshop and decided it was time to get the Bitter Mystics back on stage and spearheaded our revival! Being trilingual (French, Spanish and English), Misha loves to incorporate these languages into her songwriting.
Rob Kelman - Percussionist, recorder player, composer, and writer. Rob specializes in playing percussion and recorders over an eclectic range of styles and genres, including Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Jazz, Brazilian, Latin, Folk, and Classic Rock. Rob has played with numerous groups over the years, including the Boston Camerata, The Orpheus World Music Ensemble and Grupo Samba Rio.
Sunny Tallakson - Having had a few violin lessons as a child and not playing for a couple of decades, Sunny was inspired to pick up the violin again. Recently, she taught herself to play by attending jam sessions with groups of guitar players. She has developed her own style, in the absence of formal training, and is a wonderful contributing member to the unique sound of the Bitter Mystics. Besides adding her violin magic, Sunny also has a stunning singing voice.
Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the door. Advance tickets are available at the link below, or you may purchase your tickets at the door the night of the show. Doors open one half hour before show time. We accept cash only at the door (ATMs are nearby).
The Back Room is an all-ages, BYOB (for those 21+) space, dedicated to (mostly) acoustic music of all kinds. You are welcome to bring your own adult beverage with no additional corkage fee. If you need more information or have any questions, please call us: #510-654-3808. Thank you for your support!