“Americana princess” Anaïs Mitchell is set to hit Selkirk’s String Jam Club this November.
Anaïs recently won the Best Traditional Song category for her version of Willie o’ Winsbury at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2014, and was also nominated for Best Album Award with her CD Child Ballads – a stunning collaboration with Jefferson Hamer.
First and foremost a storyteller, Anaïs recorded for Ani Difranco’s Righteous Babe Records for several years before starting her own Wilderland label in 2012. Among her recorded work are six albums, including 2010’s sensationally-reviewed Hadestown – a folk opera based on the Orpheus myth – and 2012’s Young Man in America, which was described by the UK’s Independent as “an epic tale of American becoming”. Young Man in America made it onto many ‘Best of 2012’ lists in the national and international press, including MOJO, Uncut, The Independent, NPR and the Wall Street Journal.
Anaïs has headlined solo and band performances worldwide, as well as supporting tours for artists like Bon Iver, Ani DiFranco, and the Low Anthem (all of whom appear as guest singers on Hadestown). She supported Bon Iver – of Skinny Love fame – on their 2012 US Tour, after which they covered one of her most-loved songs, ‘Coming Down.’ Most recently she toured with friend and collaborator Jefferson Hamer, promoting their album, Child Ballads – a co-arranged collection of traditional Celtic and British Isles ballads. She has a way of tackling big themes with the same emotional intimacy most artists use to describe their inner lives.
“That’s why,” as one journalist put it, “there’s a sexual ambiguity about her work and why, even in her most intimate moments, she never sounds like a confessional songwriter.”
Her engaging, emotive, original and genre-defying style cuts through all barriers and the result is “music of rare boldness and reach – sensational” (Sunday Times).
Anaïs has brought her official support act with her, fellow Vermont songstress, Rachel Ries, pictured left.
The daughter of Mennonite missionaries, and originating from the inspiring, vast expanses of South Dakota by way of Zaire, she crafts slyly compassionate songs for the crooked hearted, pulling the listener into her world of city grit, country dirt, and her search for redemption and reason. Ghost of a Gardener is her third album and was released in February to significant media interest.