“A one-man musical outfit that recalls the intensity of The Tallest Man on Earth and labelmate Glen Hansard.” – Village Voice
“The way this man delivers his songs, it’s not hard to imagine him actually ‘tap-dancing down the edge of this here knife,’ as he sings at one point from within a small tornado of acoustic guitar…” – SPIN
There is a fearless quality to the music of Christopher Paul Stelling. A voice that sounds both old and young, an effortless yet intricate finger-picking guitar style and lyrics that are both dramatic, and intensely confessional. It’s a sound that channels the restless spirit of a young man who left home to travel the country, haunting and impassioned songs formed by endless nights alone on stage with a guitar, playing to packed houses, other times to nearly empty rooms. Stelling estimates that he’s played over four hundred shows in just the past three years. It places him within a longstanding tradition that serves to nurture ones character and art.
“It takes a lot of work to stay on the road,” he says. “You learn to rely on your songs as a sort of resting place amidst all of the unfamiliarity. You fill your head full of places, and sounds, and ideas — and it all comes spilling out. When the things around you change constantly, you change too. And the things that stay the same become who you are. It’s nurtured my songwriting, knowing that the inspiration is all around you. If you aren’t seeing it, then look harder, and if you still don’t see it, then turn the corner, and if you still don’t see it then look at things differently, because it’s right there in front of you.”
After releasing his debut album Songs of Praise and Scorn in February of 2012, CPS toured the US relentlessly. Singing his songs with a pure uninhibited delivery, Stelling has become known for the intensity and passion put into his live performances. Owing as much to the bards and troubadours of times long since past as to his contemporaries, Stelling’s ever developing commitment to his craft is obvious.
His second album False Cities was released in May 2013 on the heels of his first European tour.False Cities is a record that brings Stelling’s gothic folk mix of howling fingerpicked stomps and crooning laments to an even further realization. 2015 has been CPS’s biggest year yet – his most recent album Labor Against Waste was released in June on ANTI Records to near unanimous praise and excellent reviews. After playing nearly 40 European dates in June and July, he embarks on a mammoth 100+ date US tour (which kicked off with a performance [and marriage proposal on stage!] at Newport Folk Fest) that will take him to nearly every state in the US. Be sure to catch him when he’s in your area!
There is a vocal synergy that exists between Navid Eliot and Jen Borst, the two core members of the Washington-based folk group Planes on Paper. They each have clear, unique voices, but when combined, a special kind of musical beauty emerges. Their most recent release, The Ruins, came out in January 2015 to excellent reviews and a great deal of attention. They’ve been touring steadily behind the record, playing shows up and down the both the east and west coasts, including stops at Doe Bay Fest, Timber Fest, and the Gentlemen of the Road Stopover [Mumford & Sons, Foo Fighters, etc.].
Anna Hoone is a songsmith, singer, and revelator. Rooted in old-time gospel, country, and folk traditions, Anna's classic Americana is influenced by the staggering beauty of the landscape around her and a certain ever-present longing for home and companionship. Her stark, straightforward lyrics reflect universal truths about the hardships and trials we all face. Anna's voice is soft and lilting, with an edge that comes from having lived the words she sings. Her delivery shoots like an arrow straight to the heart.
Anna grew up in rural southern Oregon, and has called Kentucky and Montana home at one point or another. She has studied music in Senegal and Austria, and discovered that no matter where you go, the truth of the song is what matters most. Currently based out of Portland, OR, Anna lives in a tiny trailer where most of these songs are crafted. When not making music, Anna is a hermit and a homebody who loves to knit, cook, and garden.