Random Concerts: Marian McLaughlin & Jesse Sparhawk

Friday December 11th 7-10pm

All Ages, $5-$7 donation for artists

Experimental folk musician Marian McLaughlin recently self-released her second album Spirit House, which is a continuation of her musical partnership with double bassist and arranger Ethan Foote. The album’s daring combination of McLaughlin’s unabashedly idiosyncratic musical poetry and Foote’s soaring arrangements have garnered it widespread respect and acclaim, attested to by coverage from NPR’s All Songs Considered, Folk Radio UK, and Vinyl District, among other sources. Enabled by producer/engineer Michael Okusami’s brilliance in the studio, on Spirit House McLaughlin and Foote go beyond the basic chamber-folk orientation of their live performances and employ a huge stylistic range of acoustic and electric elements, incorporating everything from orchestral thunder to psychedelia to bits of Afro-pop and Motown. Their work together represents an adventurous and original endeavor in the meeting of unconventional folk-rock, chamber music, and lyrical vision.





‘Digging Deeper is a Plant Medicine Workshop Series located in The Random Tea Room and Curiosity Shop in the Northern Liberties neighborhood of Philadelphia.

Plants of the Underworld: Root Medicine 10/25 – 11am – 2pm. – $25
Fall is the season when the earth’s energy descends back down into the shadowy world beneath the surface. Below the topsoil and rabbit holes, lies many roots that are powerful medicinals. This workshop will unearth the plant lore, practical applications, harvest methods, and delicious preparations to be made from plants such as ashwagandha, burdock, black cohosh, yellow dock, echinacea, and many more!
Better Bitters: Herbs for Healthy Digestion 11/15 – 11am-2pm – $25
Bloating, cramping, overindulgence, loss of appetite – we’ve got you covered with herbs to support healthy digestion! Learn why gut health and digestion are so very important to our overall happiness and wellbeing and how to harness the power of herbs to support varied stomach sagas, In this workshop, we’ll also be crafting a take-home bitters blend to help beat stomach bloat. We’ve saved a seat at the table just for you!

Sip and Savor: Cordials and Infused Alcohols 12/13 – 11am-2pm – $25

Take your spirits to the next level! In this workshop, we’ll be covering the basics of preparing cordials, infused elixirs, and simple, herb-infused syrups. Learn how to craft a balanced and dynamic blend with various infusions of fruits, herbs, spices, leaves, and roots. Perfect timing for the holiday season happenings!
Happy (re)new year to you! If you’re ready to wipe the metaphorical slate clean and set your intentions toward ringing in a healthful year that affirms your connection to your body, spirit, mind, and the plants – this workshop is for you! We’ll be covering tonic, blood cleansing, and detoxifying herbs that help to support the body’s eliminative function and nourish you deep down! We’ll be learning about making nourishing infusions, healing smoothies, and simple dishes.

BIO: Alyssa Schimmel is an intuitive community herbalist and beginning astrologer working in Philadelphia, who believes in creating healing partnerships between people and plants. She is a two-time graduate of the Grassroots Medicine program at Centro Ashe in Bryans Road, Md., a graduate of The Sky House Yoga Herbal Medicine apprentice program in Silver Spring, Md., where she worked in a by-donation community clinic formulating tinctures, teas, and plant spirit remedies, and a former apprentice at Mountain Gardens, a botanical garden specializing in the largest collection of native Appalachian and Chinese medicinal plants, in Burnsville, NC. She currently works on Sundays at The Random Tea Room and swears by the Sol Glo, and works as an education and outreach intern with The Philadelphia Orchard Project. She enjoys making custom herbal preparations under the brand name Velvet Earth and takes on new clients continually for herbal consultations. She can be reached by email at