Singer-songwriter Terre Roche, of the legendary sibling folk trio The Roches, recently announced the release of Kin Ya See That Sun. The 15- track album features a collection of previously unreleased live recordings and original songs written and performed by Roche with her late sister Maggie.
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The title track and the first song the sisters wrote together as children, “Kin Ya See That Sun,” is sweet in its simplicity with a captivating mosaic of harmonies. A beautifully intimate track in which the sisters both compliment each other and individually shine.
“I was 12 years old, and Maggie was 13,” says Roche of the track. “We were just learning to play guitar. We’d learned off a PBS special called ‘Folk Guitar with Laura Weber’ … She taught us a bunch of guitar chords, strums, and very cool folk songs we had never heard before. Maggie gave me this set of lyrics and I wrote the music for it. Though we had never traveled beyond our New Jersey home we had a longing to go out West.”
It was in their Park Ridge, New Jersey home where the Roche sisters first fell in love with folk music. Setting off to perform their own songs at college campuses around the country, the pair toured by themselves for more than two years.
After the sisters crashed his songwriting class at NYU, folk-legend Paul Simon would come to produce part of their official debut album Seductive Reasoning (1975) and enlist them to sing background harmonies on his third solo album, There Goes Rhymin’ Simon (1973).
The duo was soon joined by their youngest sister Suzzy, officially becoming The Roches, and made their debut as a trio with a self-titled album in 1979. Irreverent and original in their approach to folk songcraft accompanied by their unique three-part harmony, the group found great success that was followed by a long series of recordings, tours, and TV appearances.
When Maggie passed away in 2017, two years later, Terre Roche received live recordings of her and Maggie performing in 1975 and 2000, including many of the songs from Seductive Reasoning as they were originally arranged—just two voices and two guitars. Highlights include performances of classics like “Telephone Bill,” “Damned Old Dog” and “If You Emptied Out All Your Pockets You Could Not Make the Change,” the latter recorded during the sisters’ acclaimed run of concerts in 2000.
Restored and remastered, the recordings—along with never-before-heard songs and exclusive outtakes —now make up Kin Ya See That Sun.
“Working on this project has brought me back in touch with the deep spiritual connection Maggie and I shared at a point in our lives,” Roche says, “You can hear that connection in these songs. Hearing the music we made together amazes me after all these years. And I feel her gratitude toward me, wherever she is now, for shepherding the songs in their pure form through some tough terrain and on out into the light for everyone to hear.”
The album is scheduled for a digital release Friday, Oct. 21. Kin Ya See That Sun will also be released as a limited-edition book featuring illustrations, song lyrics, rare photographs, exclusive new interview excerpts, and additional background about the project.
1. Apostrophe to the Wind
2. Damned Old Dog
3.Down the Dream
4. If You Emptied Out All Your Pockets You Could Not Make the Change
5. Kin Ya See That Sun
8. Pretty and High
9. Telephone Bill
10. The Burden of Proof
11. The Colleges
12. The Mountain People
13. West Virginia
14. Wigglin Man
Photo: Rob DeMartin / Big Hassle