FolkWorld #62 03/2017
Letters to the Editors
Dear friends – thank you for all your support these past few years as I have worked to bring a big vision to life. As chaos fills our front pages, #Aleppo falls, my own family in #Mosul are trapped under siege, and Appalachia where I grew up suffers increasing poverty – all because of inequality - I am asking for your help as I take off across the world to create a new global narrative so beautiful that it is unstoppable.
In early 2017, I will be releasing the just-finished pilot for #borderless, a new docu-series that is following me as I meet people at the front lines of change across the planet - people doing amazing things to make a more equal world by addressing the biggest issues of our times - conflict, climate change, the migrant crisis, racism, extremism, poverty and more. You can check out borderless work in
refugee camps in Greece,
at our website, thisisborderless.com,
and follow us on Facebook
We are planning screenings and events from now into the spring, and then aiming to take off to film an entire season of episodes across the world beginning in April. In the first season, we are planning to go to South Africa, Mali, Turkey, China, Mexico, Iraq, Brazil, and the U.S. (West Virginia). Each episode will feature the voices covering the biggest issues facing their communities to tell a story that brings our world together, with a border-breaking soundtrack made with local artists in the streets and symphony halls everywhere I go.
We will also go to 3 additional, diverse hotspots in the global migrant crisis - Turkey, Honduras, and Ethiopia -working with UNHCR, Human Rights Watch, Refugees International and more, and local partners, to finish our special episode on refugees from the pilot episode begun in Greece this summer. While doing so, we will globalize the groundbreaking music video
“No More Lines,”
that we filmed live in camps with 1000s of refugees from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Yemen, Libya, and more this year.
You can help by making key introductions, by helping organize a screening or fundraiser, assisting or connecting us with distribution and implementation partners, or by bringing me to your venue, organization or school for a concert or workshop that educates and inspires your audience to deepen the impact and change mindsets. You can also help us by making a tax-deductible donation to borderless here,
The world we want is ours to make, and I am not waiting.
Love and courage,
New Celeste: A Perfect Sky
That's excellent. I corrected 1970 to 1975 in this copy, but otherwise the review was perfect.
I don't want people to think we're older than we are! :-)
All the best ............ Iain Fergus
Hearth PR: Best of 2016 Americana
Hey folks, it's been a rough time over here but we continue to push forward. I won't pontificate right now (email me if you want that) but we do strive to bring some of the best and most diverse voices in Americana to the fore here at Hearth and we will continue to hold on to our core value: to amplify voices that need to be heard. Thank you all for joining us in this mission and I hope you enjoy this round-up of our Americana artists from 2016.
- Dori Freeman's Teddy Thompson produced breakout debut album showcasing her "pure, languid and dreamy" voice saw praise from the New York Times, NPR and Rolling Stone.
- Courtney Marie Andrews' also had a breakout album with her Joni Mitchell/Linda Ronstadt vibe winning over NPR, Rolling Stone, and Paste.
- Kaia Kater came onto the scene with protest in her voice and a passion for Appalachian culture impressing The Guardian, NPR and The Wall Street Journal.
- Pony Hunt "crafts exquisitely dreamy country tunes that crackle with loping R&B texture" (Stephen Deusner for Uncut) on her debut, which traverses the varied influences between her time in Chicago, Oakland and New Orleans and attracted The Fader and American Songwriter.
- Hackensaw Boys released their first album in a decade, full of the beautifully furious string band music they've come to be known for from their 17 years on the road. Relix, NPR's Weekend Edition and AllMusic had good things to say.
- Caleb Klauder & Reeb Willms put together a timeless country album that recalls legendary duos of the genre, mixing originals and well placed covers. They attracted stellar reviews from NPR, Saving Country Music and No Depression.
- Courtney Granger's first solo album since '99 is full of deep-cut country covers, reinvigorated with his Cajun high-lonesome vocals. The album coverage from OffBeat Magazine, Vinyl Me, Please and Rolling Stone.
- Ana Egge brought on Danish indie rockers The Sentimentals to bring a hard edge to her storied songwriting on Say That Now, which saw reviews on NPR and No Depression.
- Western Centuries' three principle members, Ethan Lawton, Cahalen Morrison and Jim Miller, bring together their disparate songwriting perspectives, from punk to bluegrass to jam band styles, for a rough and tumble honky-tonk record that picked up steam at PopMatters, Exclaim! and No Depression
- Evening Bell came out of the Seattle Americana scene with a spacious, dark, country-tinged psychedelic debut album that sounds like the aftermath of Morricone and Bowie sitting down to watch Twin Peaks together, which piqued the interest of American Songwriter, KEXP and PopMatters.
- Jack Grelle's politically charged album, influenced in equal parts by working with Lavender Country and Pokey Lafarge, turns country tropes on their head and has been lauded by American Songwriter, St. Louis's NPR station and No Depression.
- Dietrich Strause's lush, charming album, full of well-placed flourishes that move through Indie-Americana into Northern-Soul-influenced tracks caught the ear of Elmore Magazine, Folk Alley. He's been touring the UK with Sarah Jarosz, Chaim Tannenbaum and Josienne Clark and Ben Walker.
- Dave McGraw & Mandy Fer's new roots record is full of rugged yet virtuosic playing and naturally affecting vocal interplay and gained them praise from Acoustic Guitar Magazine, Folk Radio UK and PopMatters.
- Adrian + Meredith put together a punk-infused Americana-roots record, their first as a married couple, with the help of heavyweights like Fats Kaplin and JD Wilkes that Impose, American Songwriter and The Boot all jumped on.
- Kelley McRae's album, "tender and hauntingly beautiful, echoing the best of Gillian Welch, and Emmylou Harris" (Penguin Eggs), was covered on No Depression and The Boot.
Aside from the amazing American artists we work with, Hearth also works with music that has deep international ties. From Celtic to Cajun to Roma to Nordic music, HearthPR loves representing artists with unique and underrepresented voices, who are extremely talented to boot. On that note, here are a few of the Celtic and World artists we represented in 2016.
- Solas (pronounced Suh-less) has held the torch of Irish-American roots music high for over 20 years, traveling the world as the premiere band of their generation. In 2016, Solas brought together everyone who’s been in the band over these 20 years for an all-star, one-time lineup on their new album, All These Years.
- Nordic Fiddlers Bloc is three Fiddlers from three traditions. Each fiddler has traveled the old routes that tie their cultures together, the ancient pathways once trod by Vikings and Norsemen. Across the centuries, they’ve come together now on Deliverance to bring the historic ties that bind these traditions to light.
- Katie McNally Trio released their new self-titled album as a homage to the world of music McNally grew up with in Boston. This was the world of The Canadian-American Club, the French Victory Club, the Greenville Cafe; where the old dancehalls rang with the sound of fiddle, piano, and stomping feet, racing through the instrumental dance tunes of Cape Breton with the powerful syncopation that’s made this fiddling one of Canada’s hottest roots music exports.
- Eva Salina, Lema Lema, is a tribute to Balkan Romani (Gypsy) music king, Šaban Bajramović. In the spirit of Bajramović himself, this is no traditionalist rehash of his songs. Instead, Eva draws from New York’s wildly diverse global and jazz music scenes, inviting artists from bands like Slavic Soul Party!, Kultur Shock, and The Klezmatics.
Here are twelve of HearthPR's favorite videos we worked with this year. From live to narrative-based, local to international videographers, each of these videos brought further life to the amazing music we had the pleasure of spreading around. 2017 will see more music and videos to celebrate, but for the time being we hope you'll remember us for your year-end lists!
- Courtney Marie Andrews, "How Quickly Your Heart Mends"
- Dori Freeman, "Go On Lovin'"
- Evening Bell, "Tail Light"
- Dietrich Strause, "Boy Born To Die"
- Western Centuries, "Weight of the World"
- Eli West, "Give Me Your Love & I'll Give You Mine"
- Kaia Kater, "Saint Elizabeth"
- Solas, "Lay Me Down"
- Adrian + Meredith, "More Than A Little"
- Joe K. Walsh, "Never More Will Roam"
- Kelley McRae, "Land of the Noonday Sun"
- Red Tail Ring, "I'd Rather Be The Devil"
Thanks so much for all your support throughout the year! We're looking forward to an exciting, music-filled 2017.
Daniel Cooper, Devon Leger, Alexa Peters (Hearth Music)
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