Huck Notari generally refers to his music as original country folk. It is steeped in the authenticity of times gone by, drawing his listeners into old values and timelessness. Huck grew up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire which had a tremendous impact on him and his appreciation for simpler times, the country, and down to earth people. His childhood home graces the cover of his newest album, Huck Notari and the River, and his song titled, Home, serves as the anthem for the album. The mountain life shaped the foundation of the man on stage, and though he has traveled many adventurous mile since leaving those mountains, his roots and values are quickly apparent in his genuine smile and heart breaking melodies.
Huck felt drawn to the Pacific Northwest and big changes; he jumped a Greyhound bus, wrote some songs and found himself hanging out with musicians and playing open mics in Oregon. It wasn’t long before he was on the road again, landing as a Charlie Chaplin mime on Royal Street in New Orleans. Huck heightened his dedication to his craft, joining up with a country blues and ragtime jug band, the Kitchen Syncopators; he played alongside Gill Landry, currently with Old Crow Medicine Show, Woody Pines, and Felix Hatfield of Oz St. Fossils and Cardboard Songsters.
Again called to Oregon, Huck headed on to a new adventure, where he found himself in a drafty old farm house on Highland Road out in the country; the country magic took him in and nurtured what would soon be the birth of Huck in his own voice. After some time, he moved into the city, Portland, and spent days painting and writing songs on guitar and piano with absolute dedication. He released his first album, Highland in 2007 and followed it with Very Long Dream in 2009. He was often joined by Karin Nystrom, also with the Portland Symphonic Choir, who sings and plays snare drum, and Joel Shimmin who performs on a variety of guitars. Karin and Joel came to be the core of the River, also joining Huck on his new album released in the fall of 2013, titled as such.
On his recent collection of songs, Huck Notari and the River, Huck comments, “I wanted a beautiful, flowing sound all the way through… I feel I was able to capture the warmth I was looking for.” The close listener of Huck’s lyrics and finger-picked melodies will find themselves drifting into nostalgia, the beauty of a broken heart, and meaningful stories we all treasure in our own minds.
Grand Lake Islands, the musical undertaking of Connecticut-born, Oregon songwriter, Erik Emanuelson and his humble compatriots. They crafts songs that can erupt in twangy free-for-alls, but at times stand bare-boned on a thin guitar line and a shaky voice. Grand Lake Island’s debut album “Wake of Waking” is a testament to questions, declarations, and deliberations that coincide with Emanuelson’s decision to leave his teaching job and the eastern seaboard, sell his possessions, and head west with a single acoustic guitar and a gifted antique mandolin.