Back in April, I met up with Melody Walker & Jacob Groopman at the Brooklyn Folk Festival just before the duo headed south for MerleFest. It was there that they won the songwriting competition for a secular gospel song penned by Melody called “Black Grace.” Last month, that winning song and eleven others were released on the band’s first duo album, We Made It Home (Amazon MP3 & Spotify). Musically, the new album stands out as one that’s deeply rooted in traditional bluegrass, but still layers in subtle modern Americana rifts and choruses without sounding like everyone else. Walker’s voice is a force and the duo’s instrumentation is stellar.
On Saturday, the duo plays the Rock Shop in Park Slope just before our friend and fellow Brooklynite, Michaela Anne. Michaela, a two-time Telluride Troubadour finalist (#alliteration), has been working to wrap her second record – a follow up to her 2011 debut, To Know Where (Amazon MP3 & Spotify). In September, she released a phenomenal Daytrotter session with songs from the forthcoming album. Michaela’s voice carries a timeless, angelic sound that will knock you off your feet.
Opening the night is the Brooklyn trio of Tamsin, (our friend) Hannah & Megan – also known as T.H.E.M. The trio of voices is accompanied by a trio of guitars, a fiddle and a uke. Oh, and a toy piano too. These ladies caught my ear (and eyes!) with an entrancing performance at a Sofar session in Brooklyn earlier this year.
Here’s a sampling of the night – the title track off of the new Walker & Groopman album, one of my new faves from Michaela’s next album and a piece of that entrancing Sofar set with T.H.E.M.