Preview: Rita Hosking at String Jam Club

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The String Jam Club audience is all set for genuine heartfelt country soul later this month, when Californian mountain roots singer Rita Hosking comes to the County Hotel in Selkirk.

Likened to Gillian Welch and Iris Dement, Rita is one of the best American roots artists currently performing worldwide. To her fans she is the real deal, a pure class act, writing and performing the “purest Americana” (Q) with a voice which “oozes class from start to finish” (No Depression).

This is a real coup for the club, as it will be the only Scottish show on Rita’s UK tour to promote her newly-released sixth album ‘Frankie and the No-Go Road’. Rave reviews for the album are flooding in already, including two 4-star pieces in both The Guardian and the Observer, who have described her latest offering as one of America’s finest concept albums.

Rita’s previous releases have garnered high praise too. She began recording and publishing in 2005 with ‘Are You Ready?’ followed by ‘Silver Stream’ in 2007. However, it was the arrival of ‘Come Sunrise’ in 2009 which put her on the map, receiving numerous plaudits and awards, including Best Country Album Vox Pop in the 2010 Independent Music Awards and the selection ballot for no less accolade than a Grammy.

This consistent quality of songwriting and recording has enabled Rita to step into that illustrious pantheon of great female country folk singers and writers. Rita is on scorching form and nowhere is this more apparent than in her live shows. There is grit to her songs and a sinewy toughness to her voice that weave their own spell.

This California artist comes by her mountain-music sensibility with true authenticity, her original songs deeply rooted in her family’s frontier experience. A descendant of Cornish miners who sang in the mines, Rita grew up with a deep regard for folk music and the power of the voice. It shows. A captivating and charming performer, Rita’s style of country-folk has been lauded for story and sense of place, and her live shows praised for engaging her audience with her story-telling and genial presence.

From NPR’s Weekend Edition to Bob Harris’s BBC show, it’s certainly no wonder that this outstanding artist has won so much acclaim in the worldwide media. ‘Frankie & the No-Go Road’ is a unique concept record, a collection of 12 songs based on the 12 steps of the hero’s journey as explained by Joseph Campbell in his book, ‘The Hero with a Thousand Faces.’ It tells the story of the “the soul’s journey through life” through simple mountain folk songs and Rita’s signature beautifully-textured and harmonious Americana sound.

In the words of Martin Chilton, Culture Editor of the Daily Telegraph: “This music will make you think, it will sadden you and it will uplift you. In a world of Wetiko, it’s good to have Hosking calling for a better life. Splendid.”

Rita is at the String Jam Club on November 20, when she will be performing in a duo with her husband Sean Feder on dobro and banjo.

Doors open 7.30pm. Tickets, costing £14, are available in advance now from the venue, or on the door. Credit/debit card bookings taken over the phone on 01750 721233.