JPR Live Sessions

Text here.

The music of Kacy and Clayton exists outside of time, and burgeons with beautiful contradictions. It’s psychedelic and traditional, contemporary and vintage, melancholic and joyous. All at once, it showcases a slightly psych-folk sound of Linda Perhacs, Fleet Foxes, and First Aid Kit; rare country blues records and English folk tunes; and 1920s disaster songs and murder ballads. Their songs often are sugar-coated pills, tales of murderous jealousy, dilapidated graveyards, and infanticide, all delivered with Kacy Anderson’s sweet, lithe voice, and Clayton Linthicum’s hypnotic fingerpicking.

Chapel Hill’s indie Americana quartet Mipso are influenced by the contradiction of their progressive home and the surrounding rural southern landscapes. Currently celebrating the release of their new album Coming Down The Mountain, Mipso ventures further than ever from their string-band pedigree to discover a broader Americana where classic folk-rock and modern alt-country sounds mingle easily with Appalachian tradition. Adding drums and electric instruments to their intimate four-part harmonies and powerful acoustic meld, Mipso’s music is lush and forward moving, with words that sear and salve in turn.

Bedouine is a gallicized riff on bedouin, the nomad, the wanderer. Anyone can assume such a name, but Azniv Korkejian has an experience of what it means, the type of ground it covers. “Moving around so much caused me at some point to feel displaced, to not really belong anywhere and I thought that was a good title.” Her development was shaped by political landscapes and family opportunities, her adult life patterned by paths of her own.

Anna Tivel has spent some quality hours in a Dodge Caravan repeating lyrical lines over and over until the words fall in time with the windshield wipers. A nationally touring artist with a deep love of quiet stories, Anna is beginning to carve a place for herself in the songwriting world. She was recently chosen a winner of both the Telluride Troubadour Contest and the Kerrville New Folk Contest, placed second at the Rocky Mountain songwriting contest, and has shared the stage with heroes and friends alike.

For nearly two decades, Willie Watson has made modern folk music rooted in older traditions. He’s a folksinger in the classic sense: a singer, storyteller, and traveler, with a catalog of songs that bridge the gap between the past and present. On Folksinger Vol. 2, he acts as a modern interpreter of older songs, passing along his own version of the music that came long before him.

The world of American roots music is no stranger to Seattle songwriter Sera Cahoone. Even though her last three albums were on Sub Pop Records and she spent years at the top of the indie charts, she’s always had a streak of Americana that ran through her music, a love of the humble folk song that bolstered her art. She’s returned now to these earliest influences with her new album, From Where I Started.

Lillie Mae has been singing and playing on stages across the country since she could stand on her own two feet. Forever and Then Some, her much anticipated Third Man Records debut, sees the Nashville-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist weaving her own extraordinary experiences with the myriad strains of Americana to create a breathtaking song cycle of romance and struggle, solitude and adventure.

Bhi Bhiman's musical style has drawn a diverse range of comparisons from Rodriguez and Woody Guthrie to Nina Simone and Bill Withers. An accomplished guitarist and clever lyricist, it is Bhiman’s unique voice that truly sets him apart.

If John Prine and Mitch Hedberg had a baby, the resulting product would resemble something very close to Portland, OR singer-songwriter John Craigie. Musically comparable to Prine, with the humor and wit of Hedberg, the humble, gracious, and hilarious Craigie is one of the best storytellers of our time. It’s no wonder that Chuck Norris sends him fan mail, and Todd Snider brings him gifts on stage.

Eddie Berman grew up in Southern California and taught himself guitar and piano. He fell in love with the troubadour styles of Bob Dylan and Dave Van Ronk as a teenager and learned to fingerpick on his father’s 1950s Martin guitar, first writing his own songs as a college student at Berkeley. He made waves in the acoustic music world half a decade ago when his bedroom demos were given significant airplay on influential LA radio station KCRW.

Three years ago, Super Doppler* bought a used van, booked over 150 shows in nine months, and embarked on their first-ever national tour. There were no labels or booking agents or tour managers at the time, just a bunch of twenty-somethings with an independent streak and a shared love of making music. It wasn't glamorous — it still isn't — but they all agreed it beat the hell out of working a day job. The band pushed that van to its limits and beyond with their relentless tour schedule, developing a rapport with the tow truck drivers of the greater Norfolk, VA area as they burned through three different engines and blossomed from local favorites into one of the most promising young rock bands working today.

"We are the elders of our minds," sings Sean Rowe on "Gas Station Rose," the track that ushers in his fourth album, New Lore, with plaintive plucks of guitar and steady drips of piano that fall in like rain. It's a sparse and beautiful moment, anchored by Rowe's unparalleled voice - so full of gravely soul, aged and edged by years on the road, as a father and husband, as a creative force always looking for the next rhyme. And, so integral to the man that he is, one that is constantly absorbing nature.

Christopher Paul Stelling has been on the move for years now. Left home early to roam and search. Periods spend in Colorado, Boston, Seattle, New York City and North Carolina, all interspersed with further destinations to play his songs. His debut record Songs of Praise And Scorn was recorded at a functioning Kentucky funeral home. American Songwriter heard it and proclaimed, “this what a real self-contained, modern-day troubadour looks and sounds like.” Stelling’s 2015 Anti debut was called Labor Against Waste. Big Takeover called him a “punk rock Leadbelly… a dynamo” while NPR Music wrote, “He's a great finger picker, a strong songwriter, listen to his words - you'll love what you hear.

Overcoats is New York-based female duo Hana Elion and JJ Mitchell. Their sound captivates, combining electronic backdrops with soaring, harmonic intimacy — a sort of Chet Faker meets Simon & Garfunkel. Overcoats’ songs draw strength from vulnerability, finding uplifting beauty in simple, honest songwriting.

Joan Osborne famously got her start performing her own songs in New York City’s downtown rock clubs, around the time that she began to rediscover Bob Dylan’s work with Oh Mercy. “When you’re playing in the nightclub scene in Greenwich Village, his trail is everywhere, and not just because he played in the same places, but because people still perform his music every night. He's part of the American musical education you get, whether you’re learning about him in some music conservatory or by playing in bars five nights a week."

Once compared to a man who wears many suits, in thirty-five short years Justin Townes Earle has experienced more than most, both personally and professionally. Between releasing seven full-length-critically-acclaimed albums, constant touring, multiple stints in rehab, a new found sobriety, being born Steve Earle’s son, amicable and not-so-amicable break-ups with record labels, and facing the trials and tribulations of everyday life, it’s safe to say JTE has quite the story to tell. His new album serves as a perfect platform for such narrations. Entitled Kids in the Street, the album is comprised of twelve tracks that showcase exactly why Justin Townes Earle is considered a forefather of Contemporary Americana.

JPR Live Session: Edison

Jun 9, 2017

Edison (singer/guitarist Sarah Slaton, multi-instrumentalist Dustin Morris, and Grammy-nominated guitarist Maxwell Hughes) is an indie rock trio from Colorado which has quickly emerged as a musical force. Although they've only been a band since late 2014, they've already built a substantial national fan base thanks to their high-energy live shows and tireless touring efforts.

Chosen as JPR's regional favorite in the 2017 NPR Tiny Desk Contest, King Roy Wing is a quartet comprised of guitarist/singer/songwriter M. Henry, bassist and singer Jenika Smith, mandolinist Gaur Groover, and violinist and singer Hanna Winters. Their submission to the competition (shown below) featured the song "Orange Flower."

Lesley Kernochan is one you can’t predict. One minute she’s howling a country tune with the midnight coyotes, and the next minute she’s delivering a full plate of swingin’ sass. Lesley has an eclectic background as a saxophonist, contemporary composer, operatically trained coloratura, vagabond cabarista, musical saw player, and now singer/songwriter. In each uniquely crafted song Lesley offers her intimate vocal prowess and earnest, playful spirit.

When Lindi Ortega went in search of some quiet last year, the award-winning artist was pleasantly surprised to find a voice she hadn’t heard in some time – her own. Amid sparse, atmospheric production, it’s precisely this voice – a combination of Ortega’s fatalistic perspective expressed with her evocative soprano – that grips your attention on a brand new EP, Til The Goin’ Gets Gone.

Pages