Jenee Halstead arrives with an alto voice that sways gently back and forth between the realms of frailty and strength - part Emmylou Harris, part June Carter, part Patty Griffin. Halstead grew up in the Inland Empire mining country of the West, a singing tomboy with a restless heart. Escaping a collapsed love affair, she left the high desert quiet for the fertile folk environs of Cambridge, Massachusetts quickly taking root at Harvard Square’s Legendary Club Passim. Backed by her nuanced, small-bodied guitar, Halstead draws from the haunting melodies of the Depression Era, patiently distilling folk, bluegrass, and americana to create music that Matt Smith, Club Passim’s longtime manager, describes as “fresh and new, yet familiar and timeless".
With "The River Grace", Jenee Halstead puts forth a collection of songs effortlessly suited to her voice, mixing dobro, mandolin, and upright bass with vintage Casio keyboards and subtle electronic beats. From the joyous declarations of “Before I Go” to the tragic balladry of “Darkest Day,” The River Grace’s sound is rooted in the past yet beckons the progression of Americana. Recorded in a small cottage studio, and produced by Evan Brubaker, Halstead is joined by keyboard wizard Steve Moore (Bright Eyes, Laura Veirs, Mount Analog), dobroist Mike Grigoni (Anais Mitchell), mandolinist Zak Borden (Willy Mason), and bassist Matthew Weiner (Asylum Street Spankers). The River Grace also features background vocals by a host of her most esteemed peers including Rose Polenzani, Holly O’Reilly, and Monique Lanier.
Thanks to Peter Holmstedt at Hemifran