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From crystalline picking to angelic songcraft, singer/songwriter Christie Lenée’s forthcoming new album reminds devout listeners and recently converted fans of her spiritual and sublime songwriting, featuring inspired lyrics and, of course, sensational guitar playing.A Tampa native and North Carolina resident, Lenée took First Place at the International Fingerstyle Guitar Championship in 2017, was voted Acoustic Guitarist of the Year by England’s MusicRadar in 2019, and was named Named “Best Acoustic Guitarists in the World Right Now” by Guitar World in 2020.Coming Alive, with its iconic guitar hooks and powerhouse vocal performances, is a giant leap forward. This time out, she decided to make everything bigger, brighter, and more electric. The first line of the first song, the title track (“I’ve got a feeling deep inside”), tells you everything you need to know: Lenée’s sixth album is a chronicle of joy and hope, of self-confidence and empowerment, of renewal and light.
Already being hailed as “the next Woody Guthrie,” Crys Matthews is among the brightest stars of the new generation of social justice music-makers. A powerful lyricist whose songs of compassionate dissent reflect her lived experience as what she lightheartedly calls “the poster-child for intersectionality,” Justin Hiltner of Bluegrass Situation called Matthews’s gift “a reminder of what beauty can occur when we bridge those divides.” She is made for these times and, with the release of her new, hope-fueled, love-filled social justice album Changemakers, Matthews hopes to take her place alongside some of her heroes in the world of social-justice music like Sweet Honey in the Rock and Holly Near. “I believe in hope,” Matthews said. “As a social-justice songwriter, it is my duty to keep breathing that hope and encouragement into the people who listen to my music.” And, from the title track to the last track, Changemakers does just that all while tackling some heavy topics like immigration, the opioid crisis, Black Lives Matter, and gun safety to name a few.“ Ani DiFranco said, “People used to make records as in a record of an event,” said Matthews, “so I hope that these songs will serve as a time capsule, a record of the events of the last four years and what it was like to live through them.” Crys Matthews’s thoughtful, realistic and emotional songs speak to the voice of our generation and remind us why music indeed soothes the soul. “I believe in hope,” Matthews said. “As a social-justice songwriter, it is my duty to keep breathing that hope and encouragement into the people who listen to my music.” And, from the title track to the last track, Changemakers does just that all while tackling some heavy topics like immigration, the opioid crisis, Black Lives Matter, and gun safety to name a few.“