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Folk Alley Sessions at 30A: The Mastersons

When they’re not on the road as part of Steve Earle and the Dukes and Duchesses, The Mastersons (Eleanor Whitmore and Chris Masterson) are on the road performing as…The Mastersons. These two are rarely in the place they call home and that sense of transience is one they explore in their most recent album, 2017’s Transient Lullaby. With songs written in hotel rooms, in green rooms, on tour buses, and everywhere and anywhere in between, The Mastersons ponder ideas of love and home from an...


Folk Alley Sessions at 30A: Gretchen Peters

For Gretchen Peters, good music is all about creating compelling characters and telling a good story. That’s how she approaches her music and that’s how, she says, she was finally able to take on some of her chaotic and confusing feelings from the past couple of years and translate them into new songs. By focusing on creating and then giving voices to compelling characters, mostly women, Peters is able to tackle challenging and often heartbreaking subjects and ideas – political...


Folk Alley Sessions at 30A: Chastity Brown

If you've ever moved from one climate to another, you know just how dramatic that shift feels. Chastity Brown, for example, is a native of Tennessee. A little more than a decade ago, she moved, on a "wild whim," she says, to Minneapolis, Minnesota. That shift in culture and geography " not to mention climate " immediately started to help her shift her sonic palette. Brown, who started out in music by singing in church and playing saxophone in marching band, picked up the guitar at 15....


Folk Alley Sessions at 30A: Sera Cahoone

Breakups, love affairs, family dramas, loss and mourning " all of it is represented on the album Sera Cahoone says is her most personal to date. Cahoone, a musician from the Pacific Northwest, shared that revelation about her 2017 album 'From Where I Started' during her exclusive in studio session at this year's 30A Songwriter's Festival in Florida. During that session, which was recorded and produced with our friends from Beehive Productions Studios, Cahoone also shared a secret: she says...


Folk Alley Sessions at 30A: Kim Richey

Some people love working on their own. And some people love working with others. Kim Richey falls firmly into the latter category. "There's nothing better than a sharing a song with someone else," she says. During a recent session at the 30A SW Festival in Florida, Richey shared some thoughts about her new recording, 'Edgeland,' a recording she made with her friends, and a recording she's really, really excited about. "I love it because it's inspiring to write with someone else," she says....


2018 30A Songwriters Festival: Paul Thorn

People say you're supposed to write what you know. It seems kind of clichéd, maybe, but it actually isn't bad advice and it's advice that Paul Thorn uses very effectively. This guy knows a LOT about...a LOT. The Mississippi born and bred musician has done a little bit of everything in his life; notable highlights include a respectable career as a professional boxer, not to mention service in the National Guard. Perhaps his biggest influence, though, is the fact that he grew up with...


2018 30A Songwriters Festival: Emily Saliers

Imagine being part of a duo for decades. Things are working well: you're successful, you're creative, you're enjoying yourself and the music you make and feel that something is missing. What do you do? Emily Saliers, best known as one of the two Indigo Girls, went out on her own last year for the first time ever. And while she was scared and uncertain about making such a dramatic change, it was something she knew she had to do in order to grow and develop as an artist. Saliers...


2018 30A Songwriters Festival: David Robert King

After spending time living and working in a few different places, among them Boston and Atlanta, David Robert King decided he was ready to go back home " musically, anyway. His new recording, 'Idaho', was inspired by his childhood and young adulthood in Idaho. It took awhile, King says, to realize just how much his writing was and is inspired by memories of his past. Idaho is "about growing up," King says. "About the one who got away, the one who's with me now, the kid who punched me, the...


David Myles

Canadian singer songwriter David Myles grew up admiring the crooners so popular in the 1950s and 1960s " you know the ones: Roy Orbison, Elvis Presley, Chet Baker. And he channels those musicians admirably in his new recording, 'Real Love.' It's a fun record, one filled with songs that'll make you want to dance " and that, Myles says, is exactly what he wanted to create. Myles came to Beehive Productions Studios in Saranac Lake, New York with some of his longtime bandmates to share some...


2018 30A Songwriters Festival: Mary Gauthier

You know, songwriters, the really good ones, have this ability to twist a phrase or choose a word that somehow is exactly right. It's a real gift. But the truth is " everyone, songwriter or not, has a story to share. Not all of us, however, know how to share it. The desire to discover the stories we don't normally get to hear is what inspired Mary Gauthier to start working alongside the SongwritingWith:Soldiers organization a few years back. "We listen to their stories," she says, "And we...


Laura Cortese & The Dance Cards

Earlier this year fiddler and singer Laura Cortese released her new album, 'California Calling.' It's her first on Compass Records with her band The Dance Cards: Valerie Thompson " cello & vocals; Jenna Moynihan " fiddle & vocals; and Natalie Bohrn " bass & vocals. In November, Laura and the Dance Cards (Thompson, Moynihan, and Zoe Guigueno on bass) came to Beehive Productions studio in Saranac Lake for an in-studio performance and to share some thoughts about the excitement of making her...


Kris Delmhorst

What happens when a group of talented musicians get together for a short period of time in a small space with a gigantic wood stove? Musical magic, according to Kris Delmhorst. She talked about this an the making of her new album, 'The Wild' when she and her husband and musical partner, Jeffrey Foucault stopped by BeeHive Productions studio for an exclusive Folk Alley Session.


Twisted Pine

Boston's Twisted Pine came together at the famed Tuesday Night Bluegrass jams at the Cantab Lounge in Cambridge, Massachusettes, while in school at the Berklee College of Music. After honing their traditional bluegrass chops there for two years, they started to write original material. This opened the door to incorporating their diverse musical influences and backgrounds that range from classical to indie-songwriters to jazz and funk to Celtic. What results is a fresh progressive...


The Lonely Heartstring Band

Most people wouldn't automatically equate bluegrass with Boston. But, the city's Berklee College of Music has been a gathering place and inspirational force for talented roots musicians. The members of The Lonely Heartstring Band have that Berklee connection. The group, originally formed as a bluegrass Beatles cover band, has grown its repertoire since forming in 2012 " still mixing covers in with new songs created by Patrick M'Gonigle (fiddle, vocals), Matt Witler (mandolin, vocals),...


Amilia K Spicer

If you're going to take a break from writing your album, taking trips to Southeast Asia and expanding your instrumental vocabulary seem like worthy sidesteps – especially for Amilia K Spicer, who moved to LA to become a director and builds songs like tiny movie stories. Her CD 'Flutter & Wow' took on this theme of exploration as Amilia added guitar and banjo to her repertoire – inspiring new songs that didn't connect with her piano work. Amilia stopped by the studios at BeeHive Productions...


Red Tail Ring

Laurel Premo and Michael Beauchamp formed the duo Red Tail Ring with the idea of reinterpreting traditional folk and creating new music with a clawhammer spirit. Their sound is something of a folk-fusion formed by pulling themes from blues, old-time, mountain music and other traditions into a contemporary acoustic mix. The pair like to create their new music without modern influences " going as far as to write on a typewriter. Red Tail Ring brought their new-old sound to Saranac Lake, New...


John Craigie

L.A. born John Craigie discovered beauty in storytelling through music, diving into the folk scene in the grunge-driven '90s. For him, it's about the relationship between singer and audience (so much so that he added a group of friends to his latest studio sessions - creating a house concert vibe). He's something of a neo-hippie, in-name-only Math major who found his true self touring the country with a guitar as his calling card. John stopped by BeeHive Studios in Saranac Lake, NY, to...


2017 30A Songwriters Festival: Korby Lenker

After ten years living and recording in Nashville, Korby Lenker went home to Idaho to record his recent CD, 'Thousand Springs,' in places that were meaningful to him. The songs touch on friendship, life on the road and the fight of Native Americans for respect. Lenker sat down with Folk Alley at the 30A Songwriters Festival to perform songs from the new album and talk about his musical journey.


2017 30A Songwriters Festival: The Secret Sisters

The Secret Sisters are, first and foremost, actual sisters. They grew up in a musical family, who went to a musical church, in musical Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Laura decided to tackle stage fright at an open talent audition, which led to an almost-random duet pairing with her sister Lydia and a life-changing career as performing artists. Sometimes the universe makes up your mind for you. Laura and Lydia stopped by Folk Alley's pop-up recording studio at the 30A Songwriters Festival to tell...


2017 30A Songwriters Festival: Sarah Lee Guthrie

Sarah Lee Guthrie has been on stage almost since birth. But she has never been up there alone. She started (and still performs) with her father, Arlo, and the rest of her talented family. Sarah Lee partnered with her husband, Johnny Irion, and even though they had great success, there was a folky voice that wanted to be heard. Now, she's out solo for the first time, giving full and glorious attention to the folk music that is her birthright. She sat down with Folk Alley at the 2017 30A...


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