Justin Townes Earle Biography
On a rainy Nashville Thursday last October, Justin Townes Earle leapt onstage at the famed Ryman Auditorium to accept the 2011 Americana Music Award for Song of the Year. The triumphant evening capped a turbulent twelve months for the gifted young musician categorized by significant hardship as well as notable achievement including debut performances at New York’s Carnegie Hall and on The Late Show with David Letterman.Just one week later, Earle retreated to the western mountains of North Carolina to record his next album, Nothing’s Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now – an intriguing title given the importance of change in Earle’s approach to art. “I think it’s the job of the artist to be in transition and constantly learning more,” he says. “The new record is completely different than my last one, Harlem River Blues. This time I’ve gone in a Memphis-soul direction.” “Great songs are great songs,” Earle says. “If you listen to a lot of soul music, especially the Stax Records stuff, the chord progressions are just like country music. And just like country music, soul music began in the church, so it has its roots in the same place.”Perhaps then it’s also not surprising Earle chose a converted church in Asheville, NC to record Nothing’s Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now. Recorded completely live (no overdubs) over a four-day period with Harlem River Blues co-producer Skylar Wilson, the album sheds the rockabilly bravado of previous records in favor of a confident, raw, and vulnerable sound. Says Earle, “the whole idea was to record everything live, making everything as real as it could be, and putting something out there that will hopefully stand the test of time and space.”
Trixie Whitley Biography
Trixie Whitley was born in 1987 in Ghent, Belgium, into a family deeply immersed in the worlds of art and music. A nomad at heart, her early years were split between Ghent and New York City, when she wasn’t touring the world with her parents. Trixie began playing the drums when she was 10. At 11, she was touring Europe with several theater companies, and, at the age of 14, with the renowned dance company, “Les Ballets C de la B,” as an actor, singer, dancer, and musician. During this same period, Trixie also became known as the youngest resident DJ in Europe, embraced by Belgium’s Museum of Modern Art and spinning at raves, festivals, and parties in Brussels, Paris, New York City, and Amsterdam. At the age of 17, Trixie returned to New York City and began working odd jobs while starting to perform her own music in clubs throughout the city. She recorded her first EP, Strong Blood, in the spring of 2008, produced with Me’shell Ndegeocello and Dougie Bowne. That summer, she was invited to present two shows at the Montreal International Jazz Festival. She has continued to be embraced by and to collaborate with some of the world’s finest musicians and producers, working with Marc Ribot, Robert Plant, Stephen Barber, Marianne Faithfull, Joe Henry, Craig Street, and Malcolm Burn, among many others.
Legendary producer Daniel Lanois (U2, Bob Dylan, Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel, Neil Young) contacted Trixie and invited her to the Berklee School of Music, where he was in residence. Their stunning collaboration of Trixie’s song “I’d Rather Go Blind” – with drummer Brian Blade (Joni Mitchell, Wayne Shorter, Joshua Redman) – was filmed and started to create an immediate buzz in music circles. Soon, with the addition of bassist Daryl Johnson (The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, the Neville Brothers), a super group – Daniel Lanois’ Black Dub – was born.
Trixie Whitley’s magnetic presence and stunning voice captivated audiences worldwide in 2010 and 2011 as she toured the world performing with Black Dub. During the Black Dub recording sessions, she also recorded her second EP, The Engine, featuring her own music, and began preparing to record her debut as a leader. In late 2011, she released Live at the Rockwood Music Hall, a 5 song EP of her solo performance recorded at Rockwood in New York City. She is currently finishing her first full-length record with musician/producer Thomas Bartlett (Antony & the Johnsons, Rufus & Martha Wainwright, the National, Grizzly Bear…) and engineer Pat Dilett (David Byrne, Lou Reed, Mary J. Blige…).