185 Clingman Ave. Asheville, NC 28801
– ALL AGES
– STANDING ROOM ONLY
JOHN R. MILLER
John R Miller is a true hyphenate artist: singer-songwriter-picker. Every song on his thrilling debut solo album, Depreciated, is lush with intricate wordplay and haunting imagery, as well as being backed by a band that is on fire. One of his biggest long-time fans is roots music favorite Tyler Childers, who says he’s “a well-travelled wordsmith mapping out the world he’s seen, three chords at a time.” Miller is somehow able to transport us to a shadowy honkytonk and get existential all in the same line with his tightly written compositions. Miller’s own guitar-playing is on fine display here along with vocals that evoke the white-waters of the Potomac River rumbling below the high ridges of his native Shenandoah Valley.
After the success of her critically-acclaimed 2021 release Daddy’ s Country Gold, Melissa Carper, dubbed “HillBillie Holiday” by friend and collaborator Chris Scruggs, was eager to get back in the studio. With co-producers Andrija Tokic (St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Hurray For The Riff Raff) and Dennis Crouch (The Time Jumpers) behind the boards again at Tokic’s analog paradise The Bomb Shelter in Nashville, Carper assembled that same crew of magical music makers — plus a few more — to embark on her newest effort, Ramblin’ Soul, set for release November 18th via Thirty Tigers.
Carper’s deep, old-timey music roots were firmly planted as a child, playing upright bass and singing in her family’s traveling country band in rural Nebraska. Her love of country classics was cultivated as she laid beneath the console listening to her parents’ record collection. Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Ray Charles, Elvis Presley, and more became the soundtrack of her youth. When Carper’s father gifted her a collection of Jimmie Rodgers’ recordings, she began to find her voice and calling as a songwriter.
In a time drenched in escapism, where an unceasing barrage of synthetic shine promises comfort and relief from facing the complexity of our natures, Taylor Kingman’s new album Hollow Sound is an antithetical long night in a solitary cave, with nothing but a small fire and a hard look inward to keep you company.
Between his work fronting TK & The Holy Know-Nothings and his 2017 solo debut Wannabe, Kingman is no stranger to the darkness. But here he transcends the desolate rock bottom, as Hollow Sound whispers, then howls us into that place beyond brokenness where breathing begins again. To listen deeply to these songs is to lay down naked on the wet, unforgiving earth, pushing the ground through your fingers; it is to be soothed by the wholeness of who we are, filth and all. Kingman pulls no punches with his writing, and requires us to listen with the same honesty.