Abigail Washburn - Song Of The Traveling Daughter
I believe this reviewer has just been introduced to a wider musical reality. Now I've never considered myself a fan or even an interested party of Americana or Roots music, finding much of it to be too similar or lacking context. I'm glad to say Abigail Washburn has sparked a real interest in those styles. On Song Of The Traveling Daughter, she and a band of experienced and talented old-timey musicians weave intricate tales of the pioneering days of America, ancient Chinese culturisms and somehow manage to create a bridge between here and there and everywhere else for that matter. The depth and beauty of these songs goes so deep as to leave with it the residue of another time and place in our nation's history.
"Sometimes" is quite a fiery opener for such a mellow album, a real barnburner as it were. "Rockabye Dixie" is where I was totally sold, one of the most enigmatic and depressing ballads I've ever heard. Abbie's voice is as graceful as her clawhammer banjo playing, and her storytelling is also superb. "Red & Blazing" is another highlight, an emotional peak of sorts for the album's first half. On and on through Song Of The Traveling Daughter, there's barely a slow or unsatisfying moment to be found. Of note are the two traditional Chinese numbers, the title track and "The Lost Lamb", both of which show a totally opposite side to Abigail's Americana and the influence visits to that land have had on her.
I'm ready to dive into a new realm of music after spending time with Song Of The Traveling Daughter, and I think I'll start with Abigail Washburn's other projects, Uncle Earl amongst them. This girl may never become a superstar, but if you're asking me she's one of the more enjoyable and talented female songwriters on the scene today. And I'm saying all that after one album.
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