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Artist Spotlight: Anais Mitchell

I’m going to start writing a little more in depth about artists I think you should know about.

Anais Mitchell – Shanandoah

Spotlight: Anais Mitchell
Some voices just hold you at their mercy. When those same voices happen to utter lyrics that cut straight to your bones with every carefully penned word, then you have an incredibly special artist.

Anais Mitchell‘s songs somehow manage to feel understated, yet give you this all-encompassing sense, like everything from life and death and love and the earth are all are quietly buried in the inflections of her voice, if not in the lines themselves.

Having spent the last several years living on a farm in Vermont probably has something to do with the strong earthy connections I feel in a lot of her music, but we New Yorkers are in luck because she’s just relocated to Brooklyn!

Here’s a video were frequent collaborator and fellow Brooklynite Jefferson Hammer. They recently recorded an album of English Ballads that hasn’t yet been released (this isn’t one of them).

I first heard Anais Mitchell when she performed her Folk Opera Hadestown in NYC in January. The long form work takes the timeless story of Orpheus and Euridice and adapts it to modern rural America. The grand scale of such a transcendent story suits Mitchell’s songwriting perfectly and the cast of her friends on both the album and live shows have been absolutely stellar. It was one of the first shows I saw in 2011 and still ranks as one of the most powerful. Here’s the opening tune which features Justin Vernon (Bon Iver).

Anais Mitchell – Wedding Song

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