Aoife O'Donovan

Aoife O'Donovan

The thing about fossils is that they take a very long time in the making, and it's not an entirely intentional
process. The making of Aoife O'Donovan's debut album Fossils has hardly been a glacial affair, but it has
spent rather more than a decade forming about in her creative subconscious. It was time well spent, for she's
crafted a beautiful, timeless record, the natural evolution of an accomplished singer and songwriter.
The album's roots stretch back to Aoife's time at the New England Conservatory, where she dreamed of one
day recording an album with celebrated producer Tucker Martine (My Morning Jacket, Tift Merritt). Upon
graduation, Aoife (pronounced "ee-fuh") hit the road as the lead singer and principal songwriter/song-finder
of Crooked Still, which grew into one of the world's most acclaimed progressive string groups over the
ensuing decade. The stunning versatility and appeal of her voice brought her to the attention of some of the
most eminent names in music and led to collaborations across a wide variety of genres with everyone from
Alison Krauss to Dave Douglas, along with a role as vocalist on the Grammy-winning Goat Rodeo Sessions
alongside Chris Thile, Yo-Yo Ma, Edgar Meyer and Stuart Duncan.
O'Donovan never forgot the call of that solo record, though, and last year she headed to Portland, OR, to
fulfill her dream and record with Martine. Rich in songs and unexpected textures, the resulting album bears
the remarkable fruits of their creative partnership. Both joyously open and profoundly private, the album is at
all times an opportunity to enjoy O'Donovan's thoroughly modern and deeply rooted vocals.
The album opens with “Lay My Burden Down,” perhaps O'Donovan's best-known song simply because
Alison Krauss recorded it on Paper Airplane. O'Donovan acknowledges the risk in this choice, and the
reward. “One of my uncles loves to say that nobody owns songs, and I think that's true. My version is so
different from hers, and it really sets a nice tone for the record,” she says.
O'Donovan and Martine have carefully placed her songs in a variety of musical settings, from the chorus of
horns which opens “Thursday's Child” to the country-rock of “Fire Engine,” from Charlie Rose's pedal steel,
running throughout Fossils, to the sometimes squalling electric guitar on “Beekeeper." It is a rooted album, to
be sure, but not precisely a roots album.
O'Donovan chuckles a little. “I guess it just feels totally natural,” she says. “It's how a lot of these songs have
just come to life over the years."
Most of O'Donovan's songs are character-driven, and many of them resemble portions of the folk traditions
in which she was raised. The second track, “Briar Rose,” for example, is based on an Anne Sexton poem, a
recontextualized fairytale. Though she will concede that a couple tracks are somewhat more personal.
And that she is quite properly proud of Fossils. “This solo album seems like it was a long time coming to
me,” she says, the sounds of an airport in the background. “I've been thinking about it since I was 18 years
Time well-spent. Fossils, after all, are among nature's most durable, lasting creations.
Aoife (pronounced EEE-fah) grew up in a musical family in Newton, Massachusetts – her father hosts "A Celtic Sojourn" on WBGH in Boston – graduated from the New England Conservatory, and hit the road as lead singer and principal songwriter for the cutting-edge string band Crooked Still. After ten years and six scintillating albums, the band went on hiatus, and Aoife turned her attention to recording Fossils, as well as touring with the Punch Brothers and the Milk Carton Kids, and participating as featured vocalist in the Grammy-winning Goat Rodeo Sessions with Yo-Yo Ma, Chris Thile, Edgar Meyer, and Stuart Duncan. She's a prodigious talent. Her show should be a treat!

Kristin Andreassen

Kristin Andreassen is an award-winning songwriter and composer of music for both children & adults. Watch for new albums in both genres in the summer of 2013.

Kristin's songwriting is influenced by her love of American traditional music, including the old time stringband tunes that inspired her in the early days of her music career – as a dancer with the Maryland-based clogging troupe Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble.

She says American a capella singing traditions like those of the Georgia Sea Islands were a big inspiration for "Crayola Doesn't Make a Color For Your Eyes," – a pattycake singalong that won the John Lennon Song Contest Grand Prize for Children's music and has been covered by choirs and marching bands, and remains a favorite on kids' radio. "Crayola" was released on Kristin's debut solo album Kiss Me Hello. Recorded in her kitchen in a Maryland farmhouse, the music is playful and accessible for all ages.

Kristin has toured throughout North America, Australia & Europe, mostly with her stringband Uncle Earl (with Abigail Washburn, Rayna Gellert & KC Groves). Uncle Earl's two albums on the Rounder Records label were produced by Dirk Powell (Cold Mountain, Joan Baez) and John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin), who said of his time with the band "I cannot say when I've had so much fun in the serious process of recording and producing music."

For the more delicate side of Kristin's songs, seek out her "folk noir" trio Sometymes Why (with Aoife O'Donovan and Ruth Merenda) – "the Crosby, Stills & Nash of the accoustic 'n harmonies renaissance,"says a 4-star MOJO review. Darol Anger says a Sometymes Why concert is like "watching a Victorian magic show in a luxury hotel orbiting Ganymede."

Currently, Kristin is especially excited about her work on an album of songs and skits for kids that address tough emotional issues in a good-humored way (sadness, bullying, divorce, moving to a new town, making mistakes, and the power of believing in yourself). Child psychiatrist Kari Groff brings her experience to the project, which will include resources to help parents and educators have more meaningful conversations with their kids about emotions. Please sign up for Kristin's email newsletter for more info.

Kristin is Co-Founder and Director of the Miles of Music, an all-ages music camp with weekend and week-long programs in Brooklyn and on a private island camp in New Hampshire.

Originally from Portland, Oregon, Kristin now lives in Brooklyn, New York – where she makes time to keep up with Brooklyn's thriving traditional music scene by hosting the Monday night old time session at the Lowlands Bar, teaching a Wednesday clogging class at the Jalopy Theatre & School of Music, and calling square dances for weddings, kids' birthday parties and other special occasions.

She also keeps an eye on the brilliant career of her pal Jeffrey Lewis, the original anti-folk superhero who she joined on fiddle and keyboards for tours throughout 2012 (and maybe again in the future!).

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