Playlist

October 17, 2017

Listen

St. Paul & The Broken Bones
Mac McAnally
The Wild Reeds
Chastity Brown
Sarah Siskind

Playlist

Hour

​Artist

Song

1

Sarah Siskind

In the Mountains

 

 

Price of Love

 

 

Hold on to Love

 

 

Reasons to Love

 

The Wild Reeds

Capable

 

 

Let No Grief

 

 

Only Songs

 

Chastity Brown

Drive Slow

 

 

Whisper

 

 

Baltimore

2

Mac McAnally

Meanwhile

 

 

Defying Gravity

 

 

Junk Cars

 

 

On Account of You

 

 

It’s My Job

 

St. Paul and the Broken Bones

Flow with It

 

 

Like a Mighty River

 

 

I’ll Be Your Woman

 

 

Tears in the Diamond

 

 

Eventually

 

 

Is It Me

 

Larry Groce & Co.

Sometimes We Cry

Originally Broadcast October 6th, 2017

Press Release

St. Paul and the Broken Bones - Birmingham, Alabama-based octet St. Paul and the Broken Bones have announced plans for their second full-length album, titled Sea of Noise. The new collection, including tracks like “Crumbling Light Posts, Pt. 1,” will be available on September 9th. Sea of Noise will be the band’s first release on Records, a new label launched in conjunction with independent publishing company Songs. That company’s growing catalog boasts tunes written by Diplo, the Weeknd and Desiigner, among many others. Led by singer Paul Janeway, St. Paul’s breakthrough 2013 album Half the City was a fine showcase for the band’s mixture of rock and soul grooves. With an explosive, brass-heavy live show, the band and Half the City found a home among supporters of Americana and roots music, catapulting them to national acclaim and drawing attention to the fertile music scene in Birmingham. They were handpicked to open two stadium shows for the Rolling Stones and made the late night television rounds, in addition to earning a nomination at the Americana Honors and Awards. St. Paul and the Broken Bones currently have shows scheduled on June 4th and 5th in Arkansas and Mississippi, respectively, before heading overseas for an extended European tour. In mid-July, they’ll be among the performers at the famed Newport Folk Festival.

Mac McAnally - You can look far and wide throughout the music world, but you'll never find anyone more deserving of respect and acclaim than Mac McAnally. You'll also never find anyone who feels more awkward about accepting kudos from his many admirers. It's not like he's a stranger to the spotlight. He's been releasing albums since he was 20 years old – this being his 13th so far. He's experienced the heady thrill of topping the singles charts, in a duet recording of his composition "Down the Road" with longtime pal Kenny Chesney. He's also written several No. 1 hits, beginning with Alabama's "Old Flame." His star shines even brighter among music business insiders. For years a first-call musician in both Nashville and Muscle Shoals, he has amassed vast session credits with George Strait, Martina McBride, Dolly Parton, Keith Whitley, George Jones, Brad Paisley, Toby Keith, Billy Joel, Trisha Yearwood, Reba … really, it's probably easier to list who Mac hasn't played with since he started doing studio dates in the late '70s. His peers have voted him CMA Musician of the Year for an unprecedented eight years in a row. He's a member of the Nashville Songwriters' Hall of Fame and the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame. It's gotten to the point where he can't even drive down Second Street in his old hometown of Belmont without seeing his name on a marker, honoring him along with Jimmie Rodgers, Marty Stuart and a few other legends along the Mississippi Country Music Trail.


The Wild Reeds - The Wild Reeds' sound is highlighted by the interweaving vocal harmonies of three phenomenally talented front-women - Kinsey Lee, Sharon Silva and Mackenzie Howe - who swap lead vocal duties and shuffle between an array of acoustic and electric instruments throughout the set. They are backed by a rhythm section of Nick Jones (drums) and Nick Phakpiseth (bass). Each with their own style, The Wild Reeds' three songwriters make music that is dynamic and unpredictable. They write lyrics and melodies with the thoughtfulness of seasoned folk artists, and perform with the reckless enthusiasm of a young punk band in a garage. Warm acoustic songs and harmonium pump organ seamlessly give way to fuzzed-out shredding and guitar distortion. With the upcoming release of 'The World We Built' on April 7, the Los Angeles-based quintet continues a national breakthrough that has been rapidly growing since the release of their EP 'Best Wishes' this summer. NPR Music critic Bob Boilen championed the band, saying "great singers aren't easy to come by, so finding three in one band is something special." The New York Times praised their live show, saying "the communal experience was amazing," while KCRW (Los Angeles) called them "top-notch vocalists." The first single from the new album, "Only Songs," is catching the attention of radio programmers around the country, like John Richards of KEXP (Seattle), who after listening to the track declared, "we just decided this is the best song ever." "Only Songs" was written by Howe, and highlights her rock-centric approach, inspired by the '60s and '70s rock songs her mother raised her on. "It's about the feeling that music gives you," she told NPR in an interview. "There's a freedom in music found nowhere else and it doesn't discriminate, it's in the garage and the cathedral." Lee penned the second song on the album, "Fall To Sleep," a lament to her own mental health under the strains of both a nine-to-five job and the extremes of a touring musician's life. True to her roots in folk music, it begins on a soft note, as a dreamy acoustic ballad, before taking a slightly darker turn, breaking into distorted guitar parts and a Pixies-esque chorus. Silva's contemplative, complex lyrical approach is best represented on the anthemic standout track "Capable." When asked to describe her songwriting style, she explains, "lately, my songs have been like stories with high highs and low lows - sort of like yelling at someone and then whispering an apology." Despite their distinct viewpoints, each songwriter complements the next, with each song building on the anticipation created by the last. "What brings us together is the three part vocal harmony," says Howe. "When we're all singing together, it really becomes one unique voice." The band takes a humble approach to their recent success. "I think that when you write earnestly and honestly, people will relate," says Silva. "But there are lots of bands who do that and don't receive any attention, so I think any success we've had must just be pure luck." When watching them perform live, it quickly becomes obvious that luck has nothing to do with it. Each of The Wild Reeds is more than talented enough to front their own band, but when all three are singing at once in harmony, their music reaches its emotional apex. "I don't think that we have figured out how to detach from our emotions yet. We take it all on stage. The voice is such a personal and vulnerable instrument," says Lee. "We aren't as concerned with sounding 'pretty' as we are with sounding real. Everything we do is very raw and I think that's why people tend to find comradery in our lyrics." Recreating that feeling in a studio environment is an ambitious task. Recorded by producer Peter Katis (The National, Interpol, Local Natives) at Tarquin Studios in Connecticut, 'The World We Built' captures it perfectly, and elevates their sound to a whole new level. "Our sound has evolved as we have evolved as people. We've grown to love a lot of records on the road, sharing music with each other during the hours we spend in the van, which has broadened and united our taste," says Howe. "We've also grown as musicians and it's allowed us to explore new instruments and sounds. This new record is a much more accurate depiction of what we sound like live. It's got more punch and depth." Along with musical growth, the content of their songwriting has changed with the band's life experiences since they started out. "The songs on the album were written over the last three years, and it's apparent that we are more empowered now as women," says Howe. "The title 'The World We Built' refers to the social constructs we've had to face during the last three years touring as a female fronted band. A lot of these songs illustrate our disillusionment with the myths we've been taught in a patriarchal society, and how we've experienced them in different aspects of our lives - love, success, self esteem, etc." "As we got older and started to witness the world from a different perspective, we started to write about human issues in a different light," explains Lee. "It's so easy to write about love when you're young because that's the only thing you have to worry about. Now we have a lot of other things in life to occupy our thoughts and songwriting, like experiencing the struggle and exhaustion from following your dream, coming of age, and doubt." "Releasing music and touring the country have been amazing and eye-opening experiences," says Silva. "I'm still majorly pumped and grateful that I get to play music for people every day." That optimism resonates with audiences. When they perform live, their passion is infectious. They look like artists living out their dream on stage - the kind of band you idolized as a kid, and as an adult, the kind of band that reminds you why you loved music in the first place. "Our live show has been how we've gained most of our fans. We've learned that people are just looking for authenticity. If we're vulnerable, people feel it," says Howe. "We always want to put on a show that has energy and leaves peoples feeling more hopeful than when they arrived." 'The World We Built' will be released April 7 via Dualtone Records, an Entertainment One company.

Chastity BrownBased in Minnesota, but with roots in Tennessee, Chastity grew up surrounded by country and soul music. In the full gospel church of her childhood, she played saxophone and drums and found her singing voice and a passion for music. Her first show was in Knoxville, TN, and then it was on to Minneapolis. Since then, she’s been featured on NPR’s “Favorite Sessions,” CMT, American Songwriter, the London Times, Paste Magazine and others. Chastity has toured the U.S. and abroad, appearing on the U.K.’s Later…with Jools Holland. For much of 2016, she toured alongside folk icon/activist Ani Difranco. “What I’ve realized is that the personal is political,” Brown said in a recent interview. “Just by me being a bi-racial, half-black, half-white woman living in America right now is political. Just being a person of color, a queer woman of color, for that matter, is freaking political. My focus, as far as this record, I guess it’s really been psychological. I’m really intrigued by the perseverance of the human spirit and the complexities and contradictions that we embody as human beings." "Silhouette of Sirens is comprised of snapshots of memory, both lived and imagined. Not all of these tunes derive from this, which is why I say, ‘both lived and imagined.' Some are love/sex/relationship-inspired, which in my opinion make the pain one might experience more bearable. In James Baldwin’s essay, ‘The Artist Struggle for Integrity,' he says, 'I tell you my pain so that I might relieve you of yours.'" Light is a central character on Silhouette of Sirens. Even the title speaks to this push and pull between danger and safety, shadows and shiny lights, and the things we can reach out and touch as opposed to the things we only hear in the distance. “What is even happening? One can only guess,” Brown sings in the opening track “Drive Slow,” embracing an uncertainty and sense of wonder from the beginning of the record. By the third track, she’s carrying us along with her on a journey inward. Like many masterful songwriters, she has the ability to make her stories feel intensely personal yet open-ended; even in “Carried Away,” it’s hard to tell whether she’s singing about a romantic rift, an abusive friendship, or the havoc that anxiety and depression can wreak on an unguarded mind. " “Don’t leave me here all alone / For so long you’ve been my light in the dark,” Brown sings on the album’s centerpiece, “My Stone,” while the sexy, Prince-channeling acoustic funk jam “Whisper” beckons the listener to come closer, to dance with her in the dark, to “whisper in my ear all that you need." “I think it’s about different types of heartbreak, and how one deals with it,” Brown says of the album. “And not the heartbreak of a coupled relationship; just living life, and the experiences that break your heart. There are these moments on the album where it’s like, ‘this is intense.' And then hopefully, there are moments where it’s alleviated — as I feel like life is. Life is hard. Every tree, every plant, everything you see in the natural world, just through a growth process, you see how hard it is to grow and bend towards the light."

Sarah Siskind Sarah Siskind continues to be one of today’s most respected and covered songwriters as well as a stand-out independent artist, who Spin Magazine calls “an artist you must hear now”.  Armed with a striking vocal style and solid guitar and piano work, Sarah is a regular NPR performer with features on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts, World Cafe with David Dye, All Songs Considered, Song Of The Day and most recently NPR’s Mountain Stage.  She has toured with Bonnie Raitt, Paul Brady, Grammy winner Bon Iver (who also famously covered her “Lovin’s For Fools”) and The Swell Season and had songs recorded by Alison Krauss (the GRAMMY nominated “Simple Love”), Randy Travis, Madi Diaz and many more. Born and raised in North Carolina, Sarah built her musical career in Nashville, TN.  Her 2009 release “Say it Louder” was crowned ‘Americana Album of the Year’ at the Nashville Music Awards.  In 2011, Sarah’s album “Novel” highlighted her as the sole musician, producer and engineer.  Bonnie Raitt had this to say about it: “With Novel, Sarah has created another extraordinary collection of some of the most beautiful and unique songs you’re likely to hear. She continues to be one of my favorite singers and songwriters. She absolutely knocks me out.” Sarah returned East in 2012 and now resides in her home state of North Carolina.  The return to mountains and nature inspired her to write the boutique EP “In the Mountains”, whose title track was quickly picked up and covered by Nicki Bluhm and The Gramblers.  Performing at SXSW in Austin, TX later that year, Time Magazine called Sarah “one of our favorite 5 voices” at SXSW. In July 2013, Justin Vernon’s Chigliak Records re-released Sarah’s debut full-length album “Covered” which she recorded at age 22 but could not properly release due to illness.  The album is now available worldwide and highlights the guitar work of Bill Frisell. Siskind’s songs are heavily featured on ABC’s hit TV show Nashville and she recently made her primetime television debut in the music special “Nashville: On the Record”, performing her song “A Life That’s Good” with the show’s cast.  Other television shows that have featured Sarah’s songs are MTV’s Teen Mom 2, MTV’s Awkward, ABC’s Pretty Little Liars, Lifetime’s Army Wives and HBO’s The Wire.