Last Minute Folk Presents the Honey Dew Drops on September 12, 2015

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“…songwriting that strives to honor the simplicity of it’s forebears.”- UTNE MONTHLY READER

“Their talent is such that it’s quite possible that a new band recording in the year 2020 might cite the Honey Dewdrops as a prime influence.”- BLUEGRASS UNLIMITED MAGAZINE

“The Dewdrops have something unique and oftimes mesmerizing recommending them in their plaintive
harmonies, easygoing rhythms, evocative arrangements, well-crafted original songs, and a genuine
approach…” — DAVID MCGEE, THE BLUEGRASS SPECIAL

In the summer of 2014, after a long stretch of living on the road, performing and writing across the U.S., Americana songwriters and Virginia natives Laura Wortman and Kagey Parrish, collectively known as THE HONEY DEWDROPS, decided to settle down in Baltimore, MD. “Touring is like collecting images of landscapes, sounds of voices, contents of stories, moods of places and environments,” says Wortman. “All of that can be useful. It tells you something about human nature, about how the world works, little by little.” And so the couple took their experiences on the road, and dug in to write and record their fourth album, TANGLED COUNTRY, in their new home. It’s a beautiful and engaging take on modern American roots music and the first album of theirs entirely written, arranged, and recorded in one place; a testament to the power of home.

Excellently produced, engineered, mixed, and mastered by Nicholas Sjostrom, who also joins The Honey Dewdrops on bass, piano, and Wurlitzer, the songs, all original compositions by Wortman & Parrish, tell stories that engage and resonate in a delicately creative way, blurring the line between narrative and prose. Wortman tells a story about a machine shop across the street from their house when they first moved to Baltimore. “Constant noise from power tools and what sounded like metal hammers banging out the shapes of giant steel swords, and with the regular hum of the city and traffic moving up and down the street, this took some getting used to.” But then they noticed the times, sometimes lasting only seconds, sometimes hours, “where everything came to a stop, slowed down, quieted, like everything was paused.” This became the basis for Tangled Country’s closing tune and only instrumental track, “Remington,” as they tried to capture the feeling of “playing tunes together on the porch in those hushed moments in between” when the world seemed to have come to rest.

The closeness of sound and the musical compatibility that The Honey Dewdrops possess is unmistakeable. On Tangled Country, each share vocals and guitars, augmented by Parrish’s mandolin and Wortman’s work on banjo and harmonica. “I think it comes from spending a lot of time together and knowing the inner workings of each other creatively,” say Wortman. And while comparisons to the music of Gillian Welch & David Rawlings are inevitable here, that’s because there’s something to this marriage of matrimony and music. Wortman and Parrish’s musical chemistry is so vivid here in recorded form that it’s not surprising to learn that their live performances are often described as “mesmerizing,” “evocative,” and “genuine.” The culmination of three years of writing and arranging, Tangled Country captures and communicates this as the duo weave dynamics and harmonies from one track to another, proving that The Honey Dewdrops bear the mark of musical maturity – in performance, arrangement, and songwriting.

Throughout Tangled Country, Wortman and Parrish perform as if the most honorable thing to be is honest in themselves. In the song “Guitars,” Wortman’s voice considers the long lineage of songwriters and stewards of the American roots tradition: “We are born unto our own, sapling seeds from old growth…many hands and many years gone…everyone with a song to teach, some sing pain, some sing peace.” But through this long convergence of tradition and history, the chorus makes clear the binding factor: “Sing we all true songs / We sing them right, we sing them wrong / Tuned up tightly and passed along / Like old guitars, we breathe songs.” Tangled Country bears witness to The Honey Dewdrops’ simply being themselves, stewards of the Americana tradition, having seen the world and grown a little older and now finally come home.

LAST MINUTE FOLK PRESENTS GINA FORSYTH IN CONCERT ON AUGUST 22ND, 2015 AT 7:30PM

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New Orleans-based Gina Forsyth is an award-winning singer/songwriter, who is known for her wizardry on fiddle and guitar. With an alto as unique as it is soulful, unpretentious songs that cut straight to the heart, and a wicked sense of humor, her live performances are legend. Considered one of the best Cajun fiddlers in Louisiana (no small feat), Gina is in demand from other great Louisiana musicians to play club gigs and festivals, some of the same talent that backs her up when she plays as Gina Forsyth and Friends. Rheta Grimsley Johnson of Daily Journal probably sums up Gina best, “If you’ve ever wondered what happened to the gutsy folk singers who used to roam the earth with their instrument and protest, check out Gina Forsyth. In the tradition of Guthrie, Dylan and Prine she is writing and singing, not just fiddling while America burns.”

5 Reasons Everyone Loves Gina

She’s an Entertainer As noted by Dan Willging in Offbeat Magazine, “She’s hilarious commenting on her native, beloved South (“Sweet & Sunny South”) when she sings, ‘We love our musicians and our fascist politicians,’ then questions the South’s provincial view on gay rights.”

She’s an Experienced Performer Just some of her festival and club gigs: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Folk Alliance International, Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, Kerrville Folk Festival, Tipitiana’s, The Living Room

She’s a Promoter Gina avidly promotes her gigs and music through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, SoundCloud, her website, and a newsletter.

The Press Loves Her Glowing reviews include “Promised Land is an album no folk music lover should pass up. Well-written tunes, crisp production and instrumentation framing a message of reminiscences form a performer who does it as well as it can be done.” John McClure of Victory Music

She’s an Award-winner Emerging Songwriter Winner – Napa Valley Music Festival; People’s Choice Winner Folk – Offbeat Magazine, New Orleans; Best Singer/Songwriter – Offbeat Magazine, New Orleans; New Folk Finalist – Rocky Mountain Folks Festival

On Gina’s latest CD, Promised Land (2012), the title song reached #1 on the Folk DJ list in January 2012 and the CD ended the month at #3. It also made the final voting round of 50 by the Recording Academy to determine the nominees for “Best Folk Album” for the 55th Annual Grammy Awards.

Promised Land includes traditional Cajun songs, original songs with the fiddle that sound centuries old, and more timeless songs that employ a variety of guitar tunings and techniques. As noted in a review in Victory Music, Promised Land has “well-written tunes, crisp production, and instrumentation framing a message of reminiscences from a performer who does it as well as it can be done.”

Born in Florida and raised in Alabama, Gina grew up on hymns, country songs, and old time fiddle tunes. In the mid-1980s, she moved to New Orleans to study classical and jazz violin at Loyola University and quickly developed an irrevocable passion for Cajun music.

Over the last 20 years, Gina has evolved into one of the most respected folk artists in America. In 2001, cult folk label Waterbug released her debut CD, You Are Here, which was quickly heralded as “…an eclectic, beautifully played testament to choosing the right personnel and crafting a great song.” (Daily Advertiser, Lafayette, LA). She toured the US and Canada with Texans, Lisa Markley and Beth Cahill, as The Malvinas. Together the trio released two acclaimed CDs, I’m not like this (2002) and Love, Hope + Transportation (2004). In 2006, two of her songs, “Somewhere Off the Foot of This Mountain” and “St. Anthony,” were published in the venerable folk song magazine, Sing Out!