|Beverly Stokes — All These Dotted Lines (May 10, 2016)|
Beverly Stokes — All These Dotted Lines (May 10, 2016)
♠ Indie–Singer–Songwriter’s songs that embody “an extraordinary mixture of poetry and observation, a gentle lyricism that seems to arise simply, organically from [her] experience and observation.”
Location: Ithaca, New York, U.S.
Album release: May 10, 2016
Record Label: Western Dream Records
Genre: Folk, Singer–Songwriter
1. In the Morning 5:02
2. July 4:12
3. Sault Ste Marie 5:21
4. A Train 4:27
5. Bite Back 5:21
6. Paper Lanterns 3:57
7. Rodeo 3:46
8. Electrified 5:22
9. Small Towns 4:49
℗ 2016 Beverly Stokes
♠ All songs written by Beverly Stokes, BMI Music
♠ Beverly Stokes — vocals, acoustic guitars
♠ Brooks Miner — piano, electric piano, organ
♠ Jeremy Chatzky — electric and upright bass
♠ Michael Hunter — drums and percussion
♠ Hank Roberts — cello on 1, 3, 5, and 6
♠ Joe Novelli — astral slide guitar on 4 and 7
♠ Anna Coogan — backing vocals on tracks 2, 7, 8, and 9
♠ Mary Lorson — backing vocals on tracks 2 and 8
♠ JD Foster — backing vocals on track 1
♠ Produced by Anna Coogan
♠ Engineered and mixed by Rich Bennett at Acme Hall Studios in Brooklyn, NY
♠ Additional Engineering by: Matthew Saccuccimorano at Marshall St Studios in Ithaca, NY
♠ Brian Dozoretz at Ithaca College School of Music in Ithaca, NY
♠ Additional mixing by Matthew Saccuccimorano at Scaramanga Industries in Ithaca, NY
♠ Mastered by Matthew Saccuccimorano at Scaramanga Industries
♠ Production and Packaging by Pat Burke
♠ Artwork and Graphic Design by Mickie Quinn
♠ Astronomy Plate image from the 1728 Cyclopaedia © Photo by Molly Bargar
°» The story of Beverly Stokes’ emergence as a powerful new voice in the American singer–songwriter tradition is marked first by a series of transformations. A Virginia native transplanted to Ithaca, NY. A classically trained trumpet player turned self–taught guitarist. A childhood musical diet of Mozart and Sondheim traded for the lyric–driven songwriting of Josh Ritter, Patty Griffin, and Gregory Alan Isakov. After this quick succession of changes, Stokes became known for her ability to transform noisy bars into listening rooms with songs that embody “an extraordinary mixture of poetry and observation, a gentle lyricism that seems to arise simply, organically from [her] experience and observation.”
°» Her authentic approach quickly gained attention, including a 2014 songwriting residency with the Brush Creek Foundation of the Arts in Saratoga, Wyoming. But after several years of performing, Stokes still had no recorded music to show for her efforts. Songwriting had always been a solitary effort, and it was unclear whether recording should be any different. “For whatever reason,” Stokes writes, “I thought recording was something I was supposed to do by myself, at least the first time. It was something that was always on my list of things to do, but it wasn’t getting done. It was overwhelming and I didn’t know how to ask for help.”
°» Fortunately, help swooped in anyway, in the form of musician and mentor Anna Coogan and pianist Brooks Miner. “Anna encouraged me to start playing with Brooks, and once we started rehearsing and performing together, I began to see my whole musical process in new ways.” After several months of rehearsals and shows, the project turned toward recording. “Anna forced the issue. She basically said that I needed to make a record, and if I couldn’t do it alone, we would do it together.” With Anna Coogan signed on as producer and the solid bones of an album arranged as a duo, the three traveled to Brooklyn to record at Acme Hall Studios. They recruited the help of drummer Mike Hunter, bass man Jeremy Chatzky (Bruce Springsteen, Steve Earle, Ronnie Spector), slide guitarist Joe Novelli (Orkestra Mendoza, Nive Nielsen), and cellist Hank Roberts (Bill Frisell, Tim Berne, Marc Ribot) to flesh out the arrangements.
°» The result, All These Dotted Lines, sounds seasoned and assured. The term “debut” belies the years of writing and performing that preceded this effort. Sonically, the record shifts seamlessly between soulful roots and dark indie folk. While the full band arrangements add warmth and depth to songs like “In the Morning” and “Sault Ste Marie”, Stokes’ voice and evocative lyrics stand out against this backdrop as rare and powerful. In this latest transformation from an unknown troubadour toiling in obscurity to an established musician with a collection of beautifully orchestrated songs in hand, Stokes has carved out a new place for herself among emerging artists to watch.
JIM CATALANO, CORRESPONDENT 7:59 a.m. EDT May 4, 2016
♠ Beverly Stokes has been writing songs for only a few years, but her debut album “All These Dotted Lines” is evidence of her natural talent. She’ll be playing a release show for the new record Saturday night at Casita del Polaris, the venue next to Northstar Pub in the Fall Creek neighborhood.
♠ Originally from Fairfax, Va., Stokes went to Ithaca College to study music. “I was a trumpet player, then halfway through my time there, I started teaching myself to play guitar,” she said in a recent interview. “I had more fun playing the guitar than the trumpet, so I started procrastinating from practicing my main instrument. Then I started writing songs a little after that.”
♠ Stokes grew up listening mainly to classical music and show tunes, which meant she wasn’t familiar with Joni Mitchell, Ani DiFranco and other influential singer–songwriters.
♠ “My dad is a band director and my brother is a classical trombone player and teacher,” she said. “Everyone in my family comes from that classical music tradition, so I didn’t know any singer–songwriters until I was in college.”
♠ She started writing songs about three years ago, and had Brooks Miner join her on keyboards a year and a half ago.
♠ “That more than anything really pushed me to make this record,” she said. “I didn’t understand how just playing with someone else would lead you in that direction, but it did. Bringing your songs to someone else and involving them — you see them more objectively. When you just play them by yourself, there’s this weird possessiveness and you can’t really see them in a detached way, which you have to do in order to record them. Playing with Brooks really helped with that and gave me momentum — plus, we booked more gigs.”
♠ Last spring, Stokes and Miner played a New York City show with Anna Coogan and Brian Wilson along with Eszter Balint. “The people from Acme Hall Studios were there and asked us to record,” Stokes said. “Then we played Ithaca Festival right after that and then Anna said, ‘You’ve gotta make a record, and I’m going to help you figure it out.’ And by the end of that night, we had a plan.”
♠ Coogan offered to produce the record, and they went to Acme Hall Studios in Brooklyn in August for a few days.
♠ “When we were in the studio, it was so intense — it was really hot and we were just trying to get the tracks done,” Stokes said. “If that hadn’t been the case, we might’ve been doing more listening and trying weird things. But it worked out really well, because we were so intensely focused on getting good takes and pushing through.” ♠ http://www.ithacajournal.com/
|Beverly Stokes — All These Dotted Lines (May 10, 2016)|