A Minute With: Singer/songwriter Eileen Rose on Nashville's revival

Mon Apr 7, 2014 4:15am EDT
 
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By Claire Milhench

LONDON (Reuters) - Boston-born Eileen Rose has a string of Americana albums under her belt, but her new record "Be Many Gone" has a more classic country feel, inspired by years of honing her craft in Nashville's honky-tonks with her side-project band, The Silver Threads.

"Nashville is just screaming hot right now," Rose said, speaking to Reuters on the phone from country music's spiritual home. "Everything's booming - it's on all the top 10 lists of the hottest cities in the U.S."

Nashville's profile has been raised by the TV show of the same name and country music is enjoying a revival, but Rose is careful to draw a distinction between the poppier country getting mainstream radio play and classic country music.

"What they are calling country now has given traditional country a bad name. I have nothing against it, but I wish they'd call it something else, because when I say I play country, people think I mean songs about pick-up trucks and being down by the creek. But that's not what I'm singing about."

Rose's new record recreates a warm vintage country sound with pedal steel licks from co-producer "The Legendary" Rich Gilbert, fiddle from Buddy Spicher, who has played with Bob Dylan and Emmylou Harris, and "slap" upright bass from rockabilly bassist Slick Joe Fick. Frank Black of The Pixies also delivers an atypical vocal on "Each Passing Hour".

Rose moved to Nashville in 2008, partly at the request of her publishing company, which wanted her to write with young country singers, but Rose found it difficult. Despite this, she felt at home in Nashville when she saw that "songwriter" was listed as an occupation on her bank account forms. "It was like a choir of angel voices came around," she said, laughing.

She now plays four-hour shifts with The Silver Threads five times a week on Nashville's historic Lower Broadway, covering classic country tracks by the likes of Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash. "My voice is bullet proof," she said.

Here are other comments she made:   Continued...

 
Boston-born singer-songwriter Eileen Rose is seen in this undated photo provided by Sam Donato. Rose has a string of Americana albums under her belt but her new record "Be Many Gone" has a more classic country feel, inspired by years of honing her craft in Nashville's honky-tonks with side-project The Silver Threads. REUTERS/Sam Donato/Handout via Reuters