Nell Robinson and Her All-Star Band
NELL ROBINSON was my grandmother and when I decided to sing and perform, I wanted to honor her and feel a connection to my southern roots, so I sing under her name.
I named my debut album, Nell Robinson in Loango, after a small town near my family's farm. My father had a long career in the Air Force, so we moved around a lot, and my southern kinfolk, the farm and other parts of Alabama felt more like home than anywhere else. My mother and my aunt and uncles attended school in Red Level and the farmhouse is located "on the Brooklyn Road." I have very fond memories of buying bottled Coke and boiled peanuts at the country store in Loango. My paternal grandmother was Thelma Bates and I also have a dedication to her on Loango. When I think of these women (and my grandfathers too), the love and history I have been able to enjoy with my extended family -- I knew most of a slew of great-aunts and uncles -- I feel real lucky.
In 2007, after 25 years of singing by myself in my car, I created Nell Robinson Music to try some new music and house my ideas and dreams.
Berkeley, CA Bluegrass singer-songwriter Nell Robinson proudly announces the upcoming release of her sophomore
CD, "Nell Robinson On the Brooklyn Road" on July 19, 2011. After her debut album Loango charted in
bluegrass and Americana in 2010, Nell Robinson was named one of the most "utterly charming," "freshest voices" in
roots music, and likened to early Emmylou Harris and Hazel Dickens. With "On The Brooklyn Road", titled after the
red clay dirt road that led to her family's farm in rural Alabama, Nell returns with more of her original compositions.
On her second album, Robinson musically collaborates and performs with a veritable "Who's Who" of renowned
bluegrass icons including: Jim Nunally, Laurie Lewis, John Reischman, Chad Manning, Keith Little and Rob Ickes,
among many others. "On the Brooklyn Road" includes serious tales of death, heartbreak and aectionate storytelling
of family traditions. The tunes are lled with warmth, sweetness, humor and simple elegance.
There is a timelessness and deftness to Nell Robinson's original song-writing style. She evokes a by-gone era mixed
with a modern twist to her lyrics. This is evidenced by the Cajun-avored song about temptation "Don't Light My
Fire" to her co-write with Laurie Lewis, "Wahatchee" to "I'm Brilliant" about the denial of alcoholism.
Nell's vocal skills range from haunting and melodic to soulful and spare. On the Brooklyn Road was produced by
Nell and by Jim Nunally, who also adds splendid harmonies that complement Robinson's warm clear-as-a-bell lead
vocals. Just listen to their chemistry on Richard Brandenburg's tender ballad "Mayies, " a highlight of the album.
The album's songs are interspersed with eld recordings of stories by her mother and uncles about an innocent
time long since passed. Nell sings in the name of her late grandmother and as a way to honor her Southern ancestry.
The CD closes almost like a Southern revival with "Last Old Shovel" and "Sweet Sunny South". As on Nell's rst album
Loango, there are 2 bonus tracks by The Henriettas, which is her and Cary Sheldon's tribute to the 1930's sister act,
the DeZurik Sisters. Their funny and intricate yodeling style has to be heard to be believed.
In Nell Robinson's liner notes she writes "Story-telling is a Southern pastime and some of the stories I know are best
told like they happened yesterday, even though they are 150 years old. They foster this deep connection to people
and place, so much that sometimes I miss a past that I wasn't even present for. The family recordings and songs,
mine and others, in this album are my way of breathing those memories into life today." Let Nell Robinson breathe
her nostalgic memories, stories and songs into your ear with the eloquent sounds of On the Brooklyn Road!
Arcata, CA 95521
|Kid Friendly: Yes!|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|