Amanda Shires: Keep The Home Fires Burning

IMG_6900CredJoshWool-copy Photo by Josh Wool Texas-bred and Tennessee-based, with half her life spent on the road, home has meant a lot of things to Amanda Shires. On her latest album My Piece Of Land, the singer/songwriter/violinist stakes her claim on uncharted territory. On first listen, her new songs are noticeably pared down from 2013’s Down Fell The Doves, instrumentation kept to a minimum on tracks like album opener “The Way It Dimmed” and “Harmless.” “On the Down Fell The Doves record, I kind of enforced my will on it and was more into trying different things and was more experimental,” Shires says. “By the time that I got into the studio with Dave Cobb, I had worked with him before and understood how he worked, and he likes to bring in the songs without demos so none of us know them very well. It keeps you from being married to things. If you practice the songs out and play them out, then they become kind of set. If you bring them to Dave and you work on them together, you stay more true to what the center of the song is.” Shires previously worked with the producer on her husband Jason Isbell’s albums Southeastern and Something More Than Free, as well as a pair of covers the Americana power couple released as the Sea Songs EP. On her own material, paring things back puts her evocative vocals – and words – on full display. Shires’ striking, detail-oriented writing can’t be confined to just one medium; she’s currently finishing an MFA in creative writing at Sewanee, the University of the South. The collection of poems that she’ll be submitting as her thesis will include lyrics to songs that didn’t make it onto My Piece... Sign In to Keep Reading

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