JPR Live Sessions

JPR Live Sessions is a weekly series of live in-studio performances and conversations with musicians from a wide variety of genres. Recorded primarily at the JPR studios in Ashland on the Southern Oregon University campus or at the Cascade Theatre in Redding, California, the series is the work of JPR Program/Music Director Eric Teel, who brings over 25 years of experience in conversing about music ranging from classical to indie-rock.

This page contains the audio archive of recent JPR Live Sessions, which are also available as a podcast on iTunes.

Ryan Montbleau has been an acclaimed singer, songwriter, and bandleader for more than a decade, but with his new album I Was Just Leaving the New England-based artist has truly arrived. Contemplative and richly emotive, the album offers a glimpse into the often-lonesome life of the relentlessly traveling troubadour, a strikingly single-minded existence too often clouded by the blur of constant motion.

On Friday, May 19th at Noon, JPR will broadcast a live session with Seattle singer/songwriter Shelby Earl on Open Air.

On Tuesday, May 9th at 2pm, JPR welcomes the outstanding Boston-based gypsy jazz ensemble Rhythm Future Quartet into the studios for a live session on Open Air.

On Wednesday, May 3rd at 2pm, JPR welcomes the band Bernardus into the studios for a live session on Open Air.

Eric Teel

Caitlin Canty delivers her songs with a dusky alto and a 1930’s Recording King guitar. Her breakout record Reckless Skyline features an all-star band on twelve songs that veer nimbly between country ballads and straight-up rockers, dark blues and sparsely arranged folk. Produced by Jeffrey Foucault, Reckless Skyline garnered glowing praise from NPR, among others. The San Francisco Chronicle lauded Canty’s, “casually devastating voice and unshakable poise,” and her “easy way with folk, blues and country motifs.

Vanessa Heins

A native of Prince Edward Island, Rose Cousins lives in Halifax Nova Scotia. She deeply values being part of multiple music communities, and is constantly fueled by collaboration. Cousins’ 2012 album We Have Made A Spark celebrated her Boston community and featured a cast of musicians Cousins had known and played music with for a decade. It won a JUNO Award, 3 East Coast Music Awards, a Canadian Folk Music Award, was nominated for the Polaris Music Prize, and made picks/best of lists in USA Today, NPR Music and Oprah Magazine. Her music has found its way into several TV shows including Grey’s Anatomy.

Agnes Obel, the staggeringly talented No.1 artist across Europe, and a great live success in the UK, returns with a bigger sound, a bigger canvas and, for the first time, a concept for her third album. Citizen Of Glass follows 2013’s gorgeously intimate, piano-and-voice-led masterpiece Aventine, and 2010’s stunningly detailed, delicate debut Philharmonics, which had huge commercial success in Obel’s home country of Denmark, as well as France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

Nikki Lane’s new album, Highway Queen, sees the young Nashville singer emerge as one of country and rock’s most gifted songwriters. Co-produced by Lane and fellow singer-songwriter, Jonathan Tyler, this emotional tour-de-force blends potent lyrics, unbridled blues guitars and vintage Sixties country-pop swagger.

Had he lived one hundred and fifty years ago, Bradford Loomis may have been riding rail cars out west or sailing down the Mississippi on a paddle boat. Or maybe he would have claimed his stake in the flat lands of the Midwest. Perhaps he would have plied his hand on a ranch in Texas. Born in the Northwest in more modern times, Bradford has lived to tell a different, but no less exciting, tale.

Eric Teel

Throughout his precarious northern New Hampshire youth, Matt Pond was often photographed without trousers, stumbling along the icy mountain runoff and over snow-flecked grass, a loyal and ferocious black-and-white Rough Collie half-heartedly giving chase. The years passed. The film flickered but mostly stayed static until, in Philadelphia in ’98, he put the headphones over his ears and first listened to ELO. It was a lightening-bolt-for-one: the strings, they said everything. That’s when the electronic orchestration took hold. The songs started coming and they wouldn’t stop, reinforced by a battered Les Paul open-tuned like a dirty dulcimer.

Angelica Garcia appropriately likens her journey to “going down the rabbit hole.” Upon graduating from Los Angeles County High School For The Arts, the 17-year-old native Angeleno found herself living in a 200-year-old gothic brick home encircled by magnolia trees and under a blanket of bright stars in Accomac, Virginia. Her stepfather traded a career in the music industry for Episcopalian priesthood, and an Eastern Shore church would serve as his (and the family’s) first congregation. Behind that residence where Union General Henry Hayes Lockwood once passed through during the Civil War, Angelica began to fashion her musical world in the dusty old parish house. Nodding to her personal “holy trinity” of Willie Nelson, Neil Young, and Jack White, she tenaciously penned music.

Where some musicians lock themselves away in a studio to create an album or a concrete collection of songs, Jonathon Linaberry can’t help but write whenever inspiration strikes. The blues singer and multi-instrumentalist, who incorporates elements of old-time folk into the all-encompassing persona of The Bones of J.R. Jones, describes his songwriting as “a continuing evolution.” Nonetheless, he admits he often wishes his ever-wandering creative spirit would settle down. “I would jump at the chance to have the flexibility where I can have six months locked away in a room and focus on one solid cohesive theme for a record,” Linaberry says. “But unfortunately with my schedule I try to cram these songs into the spaces of my life where I can fit them.

Eric Teel

Looking back over the past 25 years of rootsy, string-based music, the impact of Leftover Salmon is impossible to deny. Formed in Boulder at the end of 1989, the Colorado slamgrass pioneers took their form of aggressive bluegrass to rock and roll bars at a time when it wasn’t so common, helping Salmon become a pillar of the jam band scene and unwitting architects of the jamgrass genre.

JPR Live Session: Renn

Feb 10, 2017
Eric Teel

From the start, Nashville artist Renn’s journey into music was far from the conventional tale. Time spent torn between passion and insecurity, hobby and calling eventually lead to Heartache and a Song - Renn’s debut album. Poignant lyrics blended with raw, soulful melodies give listeners a starkly personal glimpse into his journey, in a way that connects us to our own.

John Paul White’s new album, Beulah, is his first in nearly a decade - a remarkably and assuredly diverse collection spanning plaintive folk balladry, swampy southern rock, lonesome campfire songs, and dark acoustic pop. Gothic and ambitious, with a rustic, lived-in sound, it’s a meditation on love curdling into its opposite, on recrimination defining relationships, on hope finally filtering through doubt.

Eric Teel

One of the finest songwriters of his generation, Jeffrey Foucault has taken, in his own words, ‘the small roads;’ building a brick and mortar independent international touring career of ten studio albums, countless miles and critical accolades. He’s been lauded for "stark, literate songs that are as wide open as the landscape of his native Midwest" (The New Yorker) and described as "quietly brilliant" (The Irish Times), while catching the ear of everyone from Greil Marcus to Don Henley to Van Dyke Parks.

Aussie folk-rockers The Paper Kites initially formed around the duo of Sam Bentley and Christina Lacy, who had been performing and writing together since high school. Members David Powys (guitar/banjo), Sam Rasmussen (bass/synth), and Josh Bentley (drums) were recruited from other Melbourne-based bands in 2010 to complete the lineup that was responsible for their debut single "Bloom."

Soleil Rowan

Combining his favorite aspects of the country music of old alongside some serious 80’s indie-pop influences, Don DiLego has managed to carve out a sound that is at once both nostalgic in its Americana leanings and modern in its approach to creating a sonic landscape. Ripe with reverb, detuned guitars, banjo, and pedal steel, DiLego’s most recent recordings seem to fully realize what he began exploring on his first release, The Lonestar Hitchhiker, back in 2001.

Kristin Hersh is known best for her rock bands Throwing Muses and 50FootWave, but in addition to those projects, she has also released ten solo albums. Her guitar work and composition style ranges from jaggedly dissonant to traditional folk. Hersh's lyrics have a stream-of-consciousness style, reflecting her personal experiences.

Eric Teel

Nataly Dawn (also known as one half of the duo Pomplamoose, whose songs and videos have amassed nearly 115 million views on YouTube with over 450,000 subscribers to their channel) is celebrating the recent release of her sophomore solo album, Haze. The new record continues to receive critical acclaim, with KQED’s “The California Report” praising Haze for “[not shying] away from romance, [without] being sappy,” as well as for its “sense of probing and looking inside,” while Unclear Magazine notes that “Nataly Dawn is a force to be reckoned with.

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