Sometimes it seems like in an effort to cash in on the growing popularity of indie-folk music, artists tend to forget one important thing—soul. Folk music without soul might as well just be pop music with a banjo. Newly formed Birds of Chicago do folk music right. And after looking at the duo’s track record, you wouldn’t expect anything less.
Birds of Chicago is made up of Allison Russell from Vancouver based Po’ Girl, and Jeremy “JT Nero” Lindsay of Chicago’s JT & the Clouds. Having released their debut album last fall, the pair has been touring across the country, playing both as a duo and utilizing their tight-knit family of musicians for the “full band” vibe.
Nero and Russell have so seamlessly blended their styles of mountain gospel, roots country, and classic soul, that each song sounds simultaneously nostalgic and refreshing. The duo will be playing in town on Thursday while touring around the Midwest before preparing for a jaunt to the UK in the Spring.
The show starts this Thursday, 2/14, at 7:30 PM in the Gary and Laura Maurer Concert Hall at the Old Town School of Folk Music – 4544 N Lincoln Ave. Birds of Chicago will be opening up for Colorado folk group, Elephant Revival. Tickets are on sale to the general public for $17 and to Old Town School Members for $15 through the school’s website.
While he’s not making up half of Birds of Chicago, JT Nero keeps himself busy fronting Chicago rock/soul group JT & the Clouds. In advance of this week’s Birds of Chicago show, we’re giving away a vinyl copy of JT & the Clouds latest release, Caledonia, to one lucky reader. Here’s what Americana UK had to say about the release:
“Caledonia is ten songs of something a little bit country, a little bit soul, a slight jazziness, a glug of Motown and it is all wrapped up with tenderness. Caledonia undoubtedly flies the flag of all JT’s influences and quite shamelessly too, there are moments of nostalgia hidden away but it still gives a modern pop hint.”
For a chance to win a vinyl copy of JT & the Clouds’ Caledonia, share with us in the comments of this post your favorite musician who has lent their talents to more than one project. I’ll start things off with Dave Grohl for his work with Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Tenacious D, Queens of the Stone Age, Them Crooked Vultures, and many more.
A winner with a North American mailing address will be chosen on the day of the upcoming Birds of Chicago show, Thursday, 2/14.