American songbook

THE sound of American folk music will come to Woodend tennis club this week.

Brooklynite folk-indie-twang singer-songwriter Rebecca Pronsky tours the UK this month to coincide with the release of her new album, Only Daughter.

Only Daughter signals a somewhat new direction for the songwriter. Gone is most of the countrypolitan influence that got her noticed as Brooklyn’s “witty Americana songstress” in favour of a more adventurous, atmospheric sound.

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Pronsky credits influences such as The Innocence Mission, Patti Larkin and Mark Kozelek of Sun Kil Moon (whom she covers on a lush, melancholy version of Glenn Tipton with helping her channel this new voice.

Only Daughter was produced by Rebecca’s husband and guitarist Rich Bennett, and recorded and mixed by friend and collaborator Scott Solter (Mountain Goats, Superchunk, John Vanderslice).

Together Bennett and Solter help create a record that is gritty and dark, layered and dreamy, bravely disobeying the usual conventions of the Americana genre.

However, it is still Pronsky that anchors the sound. In praise of her last record (2011’s Viewfinder), NPR said “her voice conveys the wisdom of experience” and “she addresses the struggles of a generation attempting to get by.”

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That couldn’t be more true than on Only Daughter, which delves deeper into the territories of self-judgment, forgiveness, and personal change amidst a conflicting and strange time in the life of a nation.

Pronsky is on tour this year throughout the U.S. and UK in support of Only Daughter, her third full-length record on Austin, TX label Nine Mile Records.

Rebecca tours with husband/lead guitarist Rich Bennett whose reverby guitar sound, along with Rebecca’s strong vocals and rhythm tenor and acoustic guitars, have taken them everywhere from the Paradiso (Amsterdam), Triple Door (Seattle), Birchmere (DC), The Cluny (Newcastle) and to a stand-out performance at Celtic Connections.

She said: “When I was young I pursued vocal training in New York but it wasn’t until I was 17 after many years of singing other people’s songs that I picked up the guitar and began to write my own. When I was at Brown University I recorded my first demo and it went from there”.

Doors are at 8pm on Wednesday, tickets £10. Phone 07944354459 for more info.

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