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Upcoming shows: Kate Davis... Penelope Isles... Rachael Dadd... Smoke Fairies... Twen... Shards... Angel Olsen... Beans on Toast... Lady Lamb... Later Youth... Robin Richards... Alice Boman... Polly Paulusma & Annie Dressner... GospelbeacH... Heather Woods Broderick... Robbie Cavanagh... Jesse Malin... Alberta Cross... Spinning Coin... Chloe Foy... Wolf Parade... Andy Shauf... Douglas Dare... Peggy Sue... Pictish Trail... 365: Aidan O’Rourke, Kit Downes and James Robertson... Gratis: Seazoo... Dana Gavanski... The Dears... The Lovely Eggs... Leif Vollebekk... Lindsay Munroe... The Handsome Family... Aoife O’Donovan... Joan Shelley... glowe... Born Ruffians...

When: 7.30pm on Saturday 23 May 2020
Where: The Kings Arms, 11 Bloom Street, Salford M3 6AN

We’re delighted to be welcome Joan Shelley back – this time, to the Kings Arms!

Joan Shelley is a songwriter and singer who lives near Louisville, Kentucky, not far from where she grew up. Like the River Loves the Sea is her fifth album. She draws inspiration from traditional and traditionally-­minded performers from her native Kentucky, as well as those from Ireland, Scotland, and England, but she’s not a folksinger. Her disposition aligns more closely with that of, say, Roger Miller, Dolly Parton, or her fellow Kentuckian Tom T. Hall, who once explained – simply, succinctly, in a song – ‘I Witness Life’.

She’s not so much a confessional songwriter, although Like the River… gets closest to such subjectively emotional impressions as perhaps any album to date, and she sings less of her life and more of her place: of landscapes and watercourses; of flora and fauna; of seasons changing and years departing and the ineluctable attempt of humans to make some small sense of all – or, at best, some – of it. Her perspective and performances both have been described, apparently positively, as ‘pure,’ but there’s no trace of the Pollyanna and there’s little of the pastoral, either: her work instead wrestles with the possibility of reconciling, if only for a moment, the perceived ‘natural’ world with its reflection – sometimes, relatively speaking, clear; other times hopelessly distorted – in the human heart, mind, and footprint.

Since the 2015 release of her album Over and Even, Shelley has crossed the US and Europe several times as a headlining artist, sharing shows with the likes of Jake Xerxes Fussell, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Doug Paisley, Daniel Martin Moore, the Other Years and Michael Hurley. She has opened for Wilco, Chris Smither, Andrew Bird and Richard Thompson. Jeff Tweedy produced her previous record at The Loft in Chicago, and her current record Like the River Loves the Sea was recorded at Greenhaus Studios in Iceland.

Buy tickets now. Tickets are available from Vinyl Exchange, WeGotTickets.comTicketline.co.uk and on 0871 220 0260.

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