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Ben Davis Jr. – Suthernahia, a cracker of an album, Go get yourselves a copy.

 

 

Ben Davis Jr. : Suthernahia
Americana
Release Date : August 16th.

www.BenDavisJr.net
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Hear “Just Let Me In” on Glide Magazine
Hear “I Think You Should” on Southern Sounding
Hear “Line Boat Blues” on Americana Highways


“Davis shows his impressive songwriting chops as he channels troubadours like Todd Snider, David Childers, and Steve Earle. ” – Glide Magazine

“Suthernahia is solid rootsy southern rock’n roll, the kind of album that you’ll want to listen to all the way through  and then you’ll put it on repeat.”
-Melissa Clarke, Americana Highways

 “A hard charging roots rocker with accent on the rock, Davis shows his sure fire pen on a dandy original set that fires up the blood taking looks as various topics that affect the contemporary psyche. Solid modern songwriting that stays on point throughout, here’s a smoking slice of life live from the heartland to you.”
– 
Chris Spector, Midwest Record 


“a noteworthy, memorable release”
– Will Phoenix, HVY

“Ben Davis Jr’s Suthernahia will stay with you long after the record’s over.”
– HR Gertner, Americana Highways

 “one of Americana’s brightest young artists”
– Don Crow, Don and Sheryl’s Music Blog

Born of the hills, hollers, and river valleys of southern Ohio, veteran singer-songwriter Ben Davis Jr’s appropriately-named new album Suthernahia is a dazzling cornucopia of roots based musical styles and heartfelt emotions. Anchored by Davis impeccable song craft and compelling vocals, the collection speaks to the primacy of personal responsibility (“I Think You Should”), enduring relationships (“Just Let Me In”), and honest work (“Line Boat Blues”).


Produced by Eddie Ashworth at The Oxide Shed outside Athens, OH, Suthernahia boasts versatile and full bodied backing by The Revelry (Erik Miller on drums, Levi Westfall on bass, Ben Ervin on guitar, and Ashworth on mandolin and keyboards) and various guest artists, including legendary North Carolina singer-songwriter David Childers (one of Davis’ major musical influences) who contributes vocals and harmonica. Stylistically, one hears elements of alt-country, punk rock, psychedelia, folk, and even 60’s sunshine pop reverberating in the carefully crafted tracks. Suthernahia is an album that rewards repeated listens with layers of meaning and sound uncommon in today’s musical landscape.

1. I Think You Should (4:12)
It starts like a runaway freight train of churning guitars and electric mandolin, with lyrics that call out to those who are going down in a suicide plane to right their course before it’s too late. Unexpectedly, it morphs into a spacey psychedelic jam complete with swirling theremin, mellotron, intertwining guitars, and phased background vocals. Then, at the last minute, the rock roars back for a final chorus to thrillingly close the song.
2. Can’t Get Enough (3:07)
 Davis celebrates his affinity for outlaw country and Bakersfield twang with this cautionary tale of obsessive love gone wrong, then somehow right. Incendiary guitar work and funky Wurlitzer lines complement Davis’ burly, effervescent vocals.
3. If You Ever Will (3:59)
A sweet folky bluegrass tune with high lonesome harmonies, clucking mandolin, and bouncy train beat. Captures that bittersweet tang of yearning for someone and wondering if that feeling is shared.
4. Porchlight (3:44)
Davis excels at capturing the sadness and sorrow of failed romance without becoming maudlin, and there is no better example of his skills than this song. By turns hushed, dramatic, and finally cathartic, the song’s lyrics perfectly capture the forlorn universality of unrequited love.
5. Just Let Me In (5:38)
Using the sound of a gentle rain (captured during one of the album recording sessions) as a segue, this song’s lyrics are traditional in the best possible sense. The line I’ve got a love/like they had way back when resonate over a bed of tape-echoed guitar, stately Wurlitzer, and interlocked bass and drums to create an instant classic ballad.
6. Sunday Morning (2:48)
Davis gets soulfully funky on this uptempo track that evokes the sounds of Motown and Stax records. Boasting a rip snorting baritone sax solo and galloping groove, the song celebrates absent friends and appropriate retribution.
7. Ramblin’ Bones (2:35)
Another folk infused track, with an old-timey feel complemented by fiddle and dobro. 
8. (I’m Doing) Fine Girl (3:03) 
Davis’ fearless songwriting range is on full display with this homage to the sunshine pop and soul of the 60’s. Combining a lighter than air verse melody with period instrumentation (Beatle-esque clavichord, bouncy finger plucked electric guitar, and once again theremin), this track provides a perfect balance to the more intense and introspective songs the album.
9. Line Boat Blues (featuring David Childers) (3:21)
 Davis has always lived on, or very near, the Ohio River, and his familiarity with its vagaries and the people who derive a living from it is evident on this track. Celebrating the folks who work long and hard to navigate the river’s line boats, the song features legendary North Carolina singer-songwriter David Childers on vocals and harmonica.
10. Carly (3:47)
The album closes on a melancholy note with this ode to a lost love whose life ended too soon. The track features Davis on acoustic guitar and voice (in contrast to the rest of the album’s finely wrought arrangements) and is all the more devastating because of it.

All Tracks FCC Clean
Focus Tracks: 1, 5, 9, 10

All songs written by Ben Davis Jr
Produced, recorded, and mixed by Eddie Ashworth
at the Oxide Shed, Coolville Ridge, Athens, OH

Additional recording by Chris Garges
at Old House Studio, Charlotte, NC

Mastered by Jeff Lipton and Maria Rice
at Peerless Mastering, Boston, MA


Photo Credit: Olen Queen

Winter Wilson off to Canada and prepare for new live album to be released in August,

Some opportunities in life are just too good to miss. When UK-based ​Winter Wilson were invited to appear as special guests on Fairport Convention’s Winter Tour 2018, the couple immediately recorded Far Off on the Horizon, which soon became their best-selling album to date. Welcomed into the heart of the Fairport family, both by the band and their die-hard fans, the tour was a huge success for Winter Wilson, culminating in their playing with Fairport on the stage at Cropredy Convention, in a tribute to the late Sandy Denny.

But what really sets this pair apart (and convinces so many venues to book them time and time again) is their live performance. “We’re very aware that we’re in the business of entertainment,” says Kip. “When people pay their hard-earned money for a concert, they want to hear good music, obviously, but it’s more than that. Some of our songs can be pretty hard hitting, so it’s important that the bits in between lift people up again.”
Dave adds, “It has been suggested that we go into stand-up comedy. I’m not sure whether the chap thought we were really funny, or he just didn’t like the songs. Either way, it’s just what we do. We both like a laugh, often at each other’s expense, and it tends to come out on stage. It’s not rehearsed; it just happens.”
With all this in mind, a live album seemed a no brainer, especially when that live album could feature the talents of ​Fairport Convention​.

Myself a Lover​ featuring the unmistakable fiddle of ​Ric Sanders). Unusually for Winter Wilson, there’s also a cover but then, if you were invited to sing Sandy Denny’s​It’ll Take a Long Time in front of almost 20,000 people, you’d probably want to shout about it too. The album will officially be launched at Fairport’s Cropredy Convention in August 2019.​Winter Wilson​ continue to tour throughout the year, including their first trip to Canada in September. As gap years go, there’s been worse.

BENJAMIN DAKOTA ROGERS – BETTER BY NOW REVIEW!

Well our permanent reviewer has been working hard again, was a bad day when he found out about “copy/paste”.

Or maybe a good day when you read some of his reviews.

 

Good job there are plenty of music blogs that write great reviews.

 

So here is a video that I inserted for your enjoyment.

 

 

Now you have watched that you can read what was “copy/pasted” from the wonderful PR Company

 

We cover a lot of acoustic singer-songwriters around here, so when we do feature one it has to be good. Rogers is talented. The way he cranks up the intensity of the vocal on the “really oughta know better by now” on the chorus reveals something deep and satisfying. It’s disturbingly personal….it’ll rip your damn soul out.” EAR TO THE GROUND MUSIC

Benjamin Dakota Rogers made his highly anticipated return to the folk world with his brand new single, digitally released January 25. Better by Now, strips the genre down to its core and emotionally charges it with raw human experience, immediately earning a top 40 single spot on the Airplay Direct Folk chart. With the release of his new single, this award-winning singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist folk-phenom proves he’s at the top of his game in every way imaginable.

Better By Now, the lead track, “a beautifully sad folk pop ballad” (Folk Roots Radio with Jan Hall) sets the tone, proving the depth and maturity of Benjamin coming of age, as he delves into the state we find ourselves while in a relationship and come to realize we “really ought to know better by now.” Cut two is an upbeat song featuring brilliant unbound violin bidding Fare Thee Well, as we realize we love someone but we need to move on. The third track leans into the love of dark starry midnights, reminiscing about Pretty Girls, and featuring haunting harmony with Meg Conti, the song paints a vivid landscape traveling town to town away from those we are far from.

’Til I Die leaves the listener feeling an ache of loss and a yearning to continue the search in the ocean “though she’s six feet in the ground” in these poetically gorgeous, yet grief-stricken lyrics and sorrow filled melody. Benjamin gives us a glimpse of his growing career as a musician in $7, the money needed, ironically, to continue carving his musical path singing “just need seven more dollars to ride that train.” Followed up by an interlude midway in the cd as Benjamin begs the Lazy Old Moon “bring me home safe to her” after fighting another man’s war.

Life is supposed to hurt, to make you feel, and Benjamin does just that in the gripping tale of Home “because if it doesn’t hurt when everything’s said and done and over with what was the fucking point.” Leading next to a reflective time laying in a field realizing friends and family will be missed as Benjamin’s career begins to take off, with instrumentation and vocals that soar in Rockabye. Bluesy, gritty folk storytelling lends further depth to the album in the next track about a fugitive being hunted by a Mercy (less) bounty hunter, inspired by a 1911 Rangers badge in Benjamin’s antique collection.

She Was A Singer is a song about a father telling his child about his Mother “in one of those old timey rock and roll bands” but she is gone. The final track, begins as a lilting, brutally honest love song launching into an energetic almost frenetic near end chorus with well-appointed harmonies and intense instrumentation buildup about living with mental illness and addiction: Saints And Sinners “you won’t find it in that bottle full of answers, that I found on the drug store shelf.

A multi-instrumentalist, singer songwriter and composer, Benjamin Dakota Rogers pushes the boundaries of traditional folk. Combining fiddle, guitar and mandolin with his unique voice and strong lyrics he is creating music that demands attention.” Jan Hall – Folk Roots Radio with Jan Hall  Previous interview

ABOUT BENJAMIN DAKOTA ROGERS

Benjamin Dakota Rogers found a passion and purpose in folk music after inheriting his Great-Grandfather’s violin at the tender age of seven. From budding musician to awe-inspiring performer, his love of creating meaningful music has taken the reins and garnered much attention from folk artists and enthusiasts alike. “Rogers’ unique voice, thought-provoking lyrics, energetic performances and dynamic fiddle techniques leave this up-and-coming musician in a class of his own.” – InSpades Magazine 

With the release of his most ambitious project to date, Benjamin continues to redefine the genre with an infinite sound evolution that promises to deepen the path he’s already carved for himself for years to come. This is an album that can only be delivered from the honesty and grit of a farm boy’s hands. Hailing from the countryside of rural Ontario, Benjamin funnels his penchant for starry nights and nostalgia into his stylized folk sound, reaching far beyond to include influences of roots, blues and country music.

Read more HERE and find Benjamin’s Canadian tour info HERE

 

P.S.

I THINK THE ALBUM IS GREAT

YOU MAY QUOTE ME

Spotlight Album for the next 28 days will be? Oh yes, “I Walked In Them Shoes” by Adam Carroll.

Yes Spotlighting one of our favorite troubadours new album gives us great pleasure and I hope all of you listeners too.

 

Well one has to say that the poster was a poor effort but the album is far from that.

A big thank you to Adam Dawson for supplying the album for promotion.

Yes thats the Adam who tries to play music on a …

 

 

Adam Carroll’s musical biography is as winding as the stories in his songs, full of far-away places and close-to-home meditations that encompass a career built on countless shows in Texas clubs, thousands of miles on the road with his partner in life and music, Chris Carroll, accolades of all kinds, and still the burning desire to simply…write the next song.

Thank goodness for that, because Carroll’s songs tap into a vein of the human condition that make them deeply moving but often humorous. As No Depression notes, “Carroll slips easily between observed detail and poetic flight, framing everyday images as literary moments. He’s particularly adept at portraiture, whether it’s a colorful hustler, a rural taxi driver or a karaoke singer, he sees what you might feel, but couldn’t verbalize, capturing a person’s essence in the details of their physical being and actions.”

“The core of what I do is songwriting; it’s the one thing I’m passionate about. It’s the most fulfilling and challenging job I can imagine.” explains Adam. In fact, the scope of Carroll’s songwriting influence was recognized in 2016 when “Highway Prayer: A Tribute to Adam Carroll” was released, featuring esteemed writers/performers like Hayes Carll, James McMurtry, Slaid Cleaves, and Terri Hendrix covering Carroll-penned tunes. It has garnered attention from publications like Texas Monthly and Rolling Stone, the latter which noted that Carroll “is talented beyond his years.”

With tours crisscrossing the USA, Canada and Europe, Carroll is currently focusing on performances as a duo with Chris Carroll, Canadian singer-songwriter and Texas transplant. Their distinct energies and personalities play off each other onstage, and the effect is a both moving and entertaining show that delights crowds from coast to coast.

Carroll’s body of work is expansive with eight independently produced albums to his name. From studio records produced by Grammy Award winner Lloyd Maines (South of Town, Lookin’ Out the Screen Door, Live at Cheatham Street, Far Away Blues) through to his latest releases (Old Town Rock N Roll, Hard Times with Michael O’Connor, Live at Flipnotics), Carroll’s song credits also include co-writes and covers by Slaid Cleaves (“Race Car Joe”, “Hard to Believe”), Hayes Carll (“Take Me Away”, featured in the film Country Strong) and Band of Heathens (“Medicine Man”, “Maple Tears”).

“Among singer-songwriters, Adam Carroll is probably Austin’s best-kept secret. His tunes are marvels of economy; …constantly inventive and decidedly offbeat…Live at Flipnotics offers a typically low-key yet inviting overview of his career. With (Producer) Scrappy Jud Newcomb on guitar, he sparkles.” Jim Caligiuri, Austin Chronicle

“Influences? Adam Carroll. I used to skip my own gigs to go watch him…by far my favorite, somebody whose writing style I emulated in some ways.” Hayes Carll, No Depression 2011

 

Jane Kramer : Valley Of The Bones

Another great artist from the Broken Jukebox Media, Adam Dawson sure knows how to pick them.

In April 2018, Kramer returned to the studio to record her third full-length album. Valley of the Bones is a triumphant collection of original songs that illustrate and explore the expression human of love in all its various forms.

Tracked mostly live (including the vocal performances,) at Sound Temple Studios in Asheville, N.C., Kramer teamed up with her frequent collaborators: Free Planet Radio musicians River Guerguerian, Chris Rosser and two-time Grammy Award winner Eliot Wadopian; as well as Billy Cardine. The album also includes performances by Nicky Sanders of The Steep Canyon Rangers on violin and Asheville Symphony Orchestra musician Franklin Keel on cello.

The collection of 10 original songs was engineered, mixed and produced by Adam Johnson of Sound Lab Studios and co-produced by Kramer and Chris Rosser. Kramer says of bringing the earliest, tentative versions of her songs to Johnson and Rosser for arrangement help and production ideas, “I have never trusted two people more with my art. In the past, I have seldom let people hear my songs until I felt that they were polished, but as my musical relationship with and respect for [Johnson] and [Rosser] have deepened, it felt important to me to to involve them from the beginning”.

“I know that the songs and the record as a whole are much stronger for it, and their gentle but firmly constructive approach has made me a better artist. I’ve been looking for such allies and mentors for a long time,” she adds.

While most of the aforementioned musicians accompanied Kramer on her acclaimed 2016 release Carnival of Hopes, listeners will hear a distinct difference in the band’s chemistry, cohesion and almost electric intuition with one another on Valley of the Bones.

“Simply put, it’s because we’ve been playing together a lot over the past three years since I’ve moved back home to Asheville,” she says. “We’ve gotten to know each other personally, had a little time on the road together, sold out some shows in theaters together and have built an incredible mutual respect. We had genuine fun in the studio. I think all of that translates and comes through on the record.”


photo credit : Rose Kaz
Valley of the Bones’ songs tackle a breadth of subject matter, ranging from marriage to miscarriage. Spirituality and self-acceptance are expressed with poetic grace, vulnerability and unapologetically honest grit. Kramer’s endearing, self-effacing humor is also on full display. This warm, easy storytelling is paired with rich, nuanced arrangements that aren’t afraid to be simple when called for, and are punctuated with the unmistakably bittersweet southern wail of Billy Cardine’s dobro.

Standout tracks include the gutsy and reflective “Hymn” (which was a “homework assignment” from Mary Gauthier, Kramer’s musical mentor) the undeniably smart and sassy “Waffle House Song”, and the profoundly poetic and transcendent title track “Valley of the Bones”. This song was dubbed a “masterpiece” by Lydia Hutchinson of Performing Songwriter Magazine. Also noteworthy are the quirky and hilarious country zinger “I’ll See Your Crazy and Raise You Mine” and the sweet, earnest “Singin’s Enough” which speaks candidly of the struggles of a touring musician.

All of the songs on Valley of the Bones show Kramer arriving confidently and comfortably at home inside as both a woman and a masterful songwriter after over twenty years of honing her craft.

‘”Waffle House Song” proves that while Kramer may be eighteen years into her journey, she is solidly serving up a sizzlin’ hot and delicious portion of nourishment for one’s soul…..kinda like that yellow signed place she sings about.”
– Tara Joan, The Daily Country

“I have watched Jane Kramer work diligently, patiently and persistently on her songwriting over many years, refining her natural ability with words to the level of songwriting mastery. She has composed a new collection of songs that beautifully serve the bold, confident intensity of her voice, and I could not be more excited about it. Bravo!”
– 
Mary Gauthier

“Jane Kramer is a folk singer, I dig that” 
– Malcolm Holcombe

“For a singer-songwriter, Kramer has presented the holy trinity of brilliant and affecting songwriting, divine vocals that crackle with emotion and high class backing and accompaniment. That the result is a beautifully produced album that is a joy to listen to perhaps shouldn’t be a surprise”
-Pete Churchill, Americana UK

“The North Carolinian’s third album, Valley Of The Bones, is packed with memorable acoustic-led tunes, an expressive and attractive voice with autobiographical stories that leave you staggered at the breadth of topics and profundity.”
– Tony Ives, Americana Music Show

“Her strong pretty voice and penchant for vivid lyrics are the deepest talents on display here, though the crack band (featuring Nicky Sanders of Steep Canyon Rangers on fiddle) is surely deserving of praise”
– Joseph Neff, The Vinyl District 

“A lovely down home voice, a sharp pen and great taste in musical pals make this organic/back porch set a high water mark for Americana that’ll just drive friends of owners of this album crazy since said owners won’t stop playing it.”
-Chris Spector, Midwest Record

“Kramer is a natural and you’ll find that in her music, as the songs take you down quiet, gravel country roads, beautiful forests of peaceful mountain retreats, and the sometimes lonely nights of motels and truck stops on the road of life.”
– Sheryl Craig, Nashville Music Guide

“these songs are kick-up your heels good. These are old timey string band tunes with a modern feel, songs that will appeal to traditionalists and Americana fans alike. Turn it up!”
-Viola Krause, Making a Scene

“She appears to be more comfortable and confident in herself and her songs than ever.”
– Billy Phoenix, Steemit

In Depth Interview with Melissa Clarke of Americana Highways 

Interview with Matt Pieken on Blue Ridge Public Radio

Interview on Making a Scene

Review on Roots time by Freddy Cellis

Recorded at Sound Temple Studios in Asheville, NC
www.soundtemplestudios.com
Engineered and Mixed by Adam Johnson of Sound Lab Studios
www.soundlabstudios.com
Produced by Adam Johnson
Co-Producers: Chris Rosser and Jane Kramer
Additional Engineering, String Arrangement for “Wedding Vows” and Mastering by Chris Rosser of Hollow Reed Arts in Asheville, NC.
www.chrisrosser.com
All Songs (Words and Music) by Jane Kramer (ASCAP, Famous Brown Boots Music.)

The Band Is:
Jane Kramer – Lead Vocals on All Songs
Chris Rosser – Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Keyboards, Harmonium, Octave Mandolin, Harmony Vocals
Eliot Wadopian – Upright Bass
River Guerguerian – Drumset and Percussion
Billy Cardine – Dobro
Allison Hall – Harmony Vocals
Nicky Sanders (of The Steep Canyon Rangers)  Fiddle
Franklin Keel – Cello

Richard Thompson – Summer 2019 festival and Irish dates

Richard Thompson – Summer 2019 festival and Irish dates

Richard Thompson – Summer 2019 festival and Irish dates

Richard Thompson - 13 RiversRichard Thompson has a busy Summer ahead of him with appearances at festivals throughout August and into September as well as a handful of dates in Ireland. Thompson will be appearing at festivals including Cambridge Folk FestivalSidmouth Folk FestivalFairport’s Cropredy ConventionGreen Man Festival and more.

Buy, listen or download Richard Thompson’s latest album 13 Rivers here

Scroll down to find all of Thompson’s upcoming UK and Irish dates.


Upcoming Tour Dates

Date City Venue Country
Friday, 2nd August 2019 Belladrum Belladrum Tartan Hearts Festival 2019 United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Sunday, 4th August 2019 Cambridge Cambridge Folk Festival United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Thursday, 8th August 2019 Sidmouth Sidmouth Folk Festival United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Friday, 9th August 2019 Cropredy Fairport’s Cropredy Convention United Kingdom
with friends Dave Mattacks, Simon Nicol, and Dave Pegg BUY TICKETS
Saturday, 10th August 2019 Dublin Vicar Street Ireland
Address: Vicar Street, Dublin, Republic of Ireland. BUY TICKETS
Sunday, 11th August 2019 Belfast Ulster Hall United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Tuesday, 13th August 2019 Galway Galway Town Hall Theatre Ireland
Venue phone: 091 569777. BUY TICKETS
Wednesday, 14th August 2019 Kilkenny Kilkenny Arts Festival Ireland
BUY TICKETS
Thursday, 15th August 2019 Cork St Luke’s Ireland
BUY TICKETS
Saturday, 17th August 2019 Crickhowell Green Man Festival United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Sunday, 18th August 2019 Suffolk FolkEast United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Monday, 26th August 2019 Rye Rye International Jazz & Blues Festival United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS
Sunday, 1st September 2019 Birmingham Moseley Folk & Arts Festival United Kingdom
BUY TICKETS

Birds, bread, medicine, and stewarding someone else’s mystery: Kelly Hunt’s “Even The Sparrow,” Coming May 17

On the walls of any local used music shop there hangs a gallery of mysteries. Picked up and handed down across the decades, each instrument contains the imprints and stories of those who have played it before, most of which remain untold. For Kansas City-based songwriter Kelly Hunt the most intriguing of these stories is the origin of her anonymous calfskin tenor banjo. “I really wasn’t looking for it,” she says, “but I opened up the case and it said ‘This banjo was played by a man named Ira Tamm in his dog and pony show from 1920 to 1935.’ I strummed it and said ‘This is unlike anything I’ve ever heard.’ People often think of the banjo as being rather brash and tinny – loud and kind of grating – but this was so warm and mellow, with an almost harp-like quality to it, very soulful” – apt words for the Memphis native’s debut album, Even The Sparrow, coming out May 17 on Rare Bird Records.

The daughter of an opera singer and a saxophonist, Kelly Hunt was raised in Memphis, TN, and grew up performing other people’s works through piano lessons, singing in choirs, and performing theater. “It was a very creative, artistic household,” says Hunt. During her teenage years, influenced by musical inspirations as diverse as Norah Jones, Rachmaninov, and John Denver, she began writing her own songs on the piano as a creative outlet. After being introduced to the banjo in college while studying French and visual arts, Hunt began to develop her own improvised style of playing, combining old-time picking styles with the percussive origins of the instrument. “I’m self-taught, I just started letting the songs dictate what needed to be there,” she says. “I heard a rhythm in a song that I wanted to execute, so I figured out how to do it on the drum head while still being able to articulate certain notes in one motion.” After college, Hunt followed a rambling path that took her through careers in acting, graphic design, traditional French breadmaking, and medicine, all the while making music as a private endeavor. “I wanted get serious about a responsible career choice, but music kept bubbling up. I was writing a lot and playing a lot and started to not be satisfied just playing to my walls of my room.”

After moving to Kansas City and discovering her mysterious Depression-era tenor banjo, Hunt began recording Even The Sparrow in Kansas City alongside collaborator Stas’ Heaney and engineer Kelly Werts. “It took almost two years to record,” she says, “learning how to let the songs dictate the production.” Having finally come to light, the album displays Hunt’s penchant for masterful storytelling and intriguing arrangement, as researched and complex as they are memorable, punctuated by her articulate melodies and a well-enunciated and creative command of lyrical delivery infused with deft emotional communication. While reminiscent of modern traditionalists such as Gillian Welch–a number of her songs even borrow titles and phrasing from traditional American music (“Back to Dixie,” “Gloryland”)–Even The Sparrow reveals an ineffable quality that hovers beyond the constraints of genre, à la Anais Mitchell and Patty Griffin. In “The Men of Blue & Grey,” what begins as a Reconstruction-era ballad about the repurposing of glass photographic plates in a greenhouse roof soon becomes a meditation on the hope that growth and life may one day be able to emerge from the ruins of suffering and haunting of war. “Across The Great Divide” turns an otherwise traditional accounting of spurned love into a philosophical epic of the ethics of forgiveness and freedom, evoking the ideas of Søren Kierkegaard and Walt Whitman.

 

As for the original owner of Kelly Hunt’s mysterious tenor banjo, not much is known. “I’ve never been able to find anything about Ira Tamm,” she says. “I think he just had a humble little traveling show,” she says. What’s clear is that the itinerant performer laid down his banjo at the height of the Great Depression, almost eighty years before it would be picked up by Hunt. “That banjo has stories. I wish I knew them all,” she says, though the banjo’s most intriguing story may just be beginning with Even The Sparrow. “The marks of Ira’s hands are still in the calfskin head, so I can see where he played and left his mark,” she says. “Now my own hand marks are there too, in different places, like a kind of portrait.”

 

Even The Sparrow
Kelly Hunt

May 17, 2019 • Rare Bird Records

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hearthmusic.com

Billboard Emerging Artist And Chart-Topping Folk Singer-Songwriter Bringing “Changes” To Radio

BA ChangesBill Abernathy “Changes”

KC-based folk artist Bill Abernathy has released his new single, “Changes” to radio stations everywhere. It is the second single from “Crossing Willow Creek.”

We are constantly in flux, learning to adapt to the many changes and challenges that occur in our lives every day.”

— Bill Abernathy

KANSAS CITY, MO, USA, March 25, 2019 — In 2017, Kansas City, MO-based singer-songwriter Bill Abernathy hit the top of the Roots Music Report’s Traditional Songs chart with “Goodbye Will Never Come Again.” His album, “Find A Way” reached the Top 5 on the Traditional Albums chart, that same year. The following year, Bill released “Crossing Willow Creek,” an album of revamped versions of previously released tracks, covers and one new song. That album spawned the politically-charged radio hit, “Cry Wolf,” which reached the Americana Top 15, the iTunes Top 100, the Airplay Today Top 20, and #4 on the New Music Weekly country singles chart. The track led to Bill’s feature as an Emerging Artist in Billboard Magazine.

Now, Bill Abernathy is releasing the 2nd single from “Crossing Willow Creek,” “Changes:” “Change is the one constant in our lives we can depend on,” said Bill. “We are constantly in flux, learning to adapt to the many changes and challenges that occur in our lives every day. My tune, ‘Changes’ explores how changes have affected me personally and how embracing these changes have brought me to where I am today. ‘Change always teaches us to be everything we’re destined to be.”

ABOUT BILL ABERNATHY: Everyone loves a good story about second-chances, and that’s exactly what Bill Abernathy’s story is all about. The Kansas City, Missouri resident began writing songs in his early teens. He played all through his school years, but then he stopped…Life took over. Bill went about getting married, building a business career, and raising his children. After his kids graduated from school and started their careers, Bill picked up the guitar again and began trying to rekindle his love of music. In 2017, Bill’s album “Find A Way” reached #5 on the Roots Music Report Traditional Folk Albums chart, spending more than a year on the chart. His single, “Goodbye Will Never Come Again” reached #1 on the Traditional Folk Songs chart. His current album, “Crossing Willow Creek” features the Top 100 iTunes chart and Top 5 New Music Weekly chart single, “Cry Wolf.” Bill is a Billboard Magazine Emerging Artist. www.billabernathy.com

http://www.facebook.com/billabernathymusic
http://www.twitter.com/bill_abernathy
https://open.spotify.com/album/4ZyeucH7iBLIQ9WFqVUKzX

Richard Thompson announces UK autumn dates

Richard Thompson has announced an extensive UK tour for October and November 2018 in advance of a new studio album which will be released later this year on Proper Records, kicking off in lovely Liverpool’s Philharmonic on 11th October. Last year, Thompson released two volumes of acoustic recordings:  ‘Acoustic Classics Vol. II’ featuring acoustic renderings of songs from the Richard Thompson catalogue, and ‘Acoustic Rarities’ featuring new recordings of some of the more obscure songs in his repertoire. He celebrated the 50th anniversary of Fairport Convention, the groundbreaking band he co-founded as a teenager in the ‘60s, with a performance at its annual Cropredy Festival last August. He also briefly did a remarkably authentic stint as Abe Simpson when he berated the state of modern music at the AMAUKs last year.

Richard Thompson UK Dates 2018

Thu 11 Oct – Liverpool Philharmonic
Sat 13 Oct – Perth Concert Hall
Mon 15 Oct – Canterbury Marlowe
Tue 16 Oct – London Barbican
Wed 17 Oct – Bath Forum
Thu 18 Oct – Nottingham Royal Concert Hall
Sat 20 Oct – Stoke on Trent Victoria Hall
Sun 21 Oct – Manchester Opera House
Mon 22 Oct – York Grand Opera House
Tue 23 Oct – Hull City Hall
Wed 24 Oct – Gateshead Sage
Fri 26 Oct – Birmingham Town Hall
Sat 27 Oct – Southend Cliffs Pavilion
Sun 28 Oct – Oxford New Theatre
Tue 30 Oct – Cambridge Corn Exchange
Wed 31 Oct – Salisbury City Hall
Thu 1 Nov – Bexhill De La Warr Pavilion
Fri 2 Nov – High Wycombe Swan
Sat 3 Nov – Woking The New Victoria

Aisha Badru – Pendulum

Aisha Badru makes an impressive label debut courtesy of Pendulum.

The LP puts its best foot forward as the opener ‘Mind on Fire’ takes hold of the ear. With an acoustic guitar clacking out a simple rhythm Badru, uses her melodic vocal tones to hum the backing track. The minimalist arrangement sets the stage for the New York artist’s confident, energized, and sweet voice.

The American sings:
“Have you seen the girl with the mind on fire? She set out to tell the world how they suppress our desires. Said she wouldn’t back down ’till the rules were amended and she didn’t give a f**k who she offended“.

It’s a strong lyrical offering that appears to tell of a protagonist looking to reignite her personal fire and make a difference to the world. It’s the LP’s most captivating track, which helps to propel the listener through the rest of what is an enjoyable auditory experience.

‘Bridges’ and ‘Navy Blues’ also impress on the album’s top half. The latter finds Badru reflecting on a toxic relationship with an antagonist who looks to tear down the partnership all the while maintaining the pretence of love.

Badru sings:
“you kicked me down I got back up now. The scars I wear are fading”.
The tracks instrumentation again plays its role well with the violin’s melody proving a gentle accompaniment to the singer’s journey out of her misery.

In promotional material for the project it was revealed that the musician found her producer by scouring the pages of Google. An unorthodox approach you might say, but certainly a prosperous one.

Chris Hutchison Brings the acoustic and the electronic together well, with the artificial complementing the acoustic rather than overshadowing it.

Whether it’s the futuristic distorted backing vocals on ‘Bridges’, the drip drip drip opening of ‘Fossil Fuels’ or, the piano drum combination on ‘Just Visiting’, the producer holds the listener’s attention, whilst maintaining a tranquil easy listening mood.
The second half of the nine-song set isn’t quite as strong as the first.

‘Fossil Fuels’ takes a good shot at being lyrically fresh but, stretches in trying to pair up “precipitation” and “reciprocation” as representatives for love and life. Meanwhile, album bookends ‘Splintered’ and ‘Dreamer’ fall into the well-trodden category of ‘life’s a bit crummy right now but the solution is within us if only we would wake up.’

The songs by no means make for a bad ending, but they don’t match up to the rest of the strong Pendulum.