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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Charlie Parr - Stumpjumper

Charlie Parr
New album "Stumpjumper" premiering now at NPR Folk Alley
Release date April 28 on Red House Records
Available for pre-order here
 "The raw metallic resonator guitar sound of Charlie Parr registers as a magnet of sorts – in the same way we’re drawn to the curious sounds of Tom Waits and even the indie folk of The Mountain Goats." - Glide Magazine
APRIL 21, 2015:  While a legend in some circles, Northwoods songwriter/guitarist Charlie Parr may be a new name to some music fans. Long a part of the vibrant Duluth, MN, music scene (Alan Sparhawk and Low, Trampled by Turtles), Charlie will release Stumpjumper, his first album with Grammy-winning Minnesota indie label Red House, on April 28. He's announced additional tour dates  through fall (scroll down for complete dates). NPR Folk Alley is streaming the album in its entirety this week, preview it here.  As well as being the first album Charlie has recorded outside of his native Minnesota, Stumpjumper is his first to feature a full band and was recorded in rural North Carolina with producer Phil Cook (Megafaun, Hiss Golden Messenger).

Percussive and raw, the 11 songs on Stumpjumper, 10 originals and his version of the venerable murder ballad, “Delia,” could be lost field recordings from another era. Charlie's blistering picking -- he switches between acoustic guitar (he plays National resonator guitars), dobro and banjo -- and keening, cut-through-the-crowd vocals resonate with a conviction that runs deep and true. Parr’s inspiration is drawn from the alternately fertile and frozen soil of Minnesota; his songs exude a Midwestern sensibility and humility. He grew up in the Hormel meatpacking city of Austin, MN (population 25,000) where most of the world's favorite tinned meat, Spam, is still manufactured. (He won't eat hot dogs to this day.) The combination of growing up with both of his parents working proud union jobs in an industrial meat factory and his largely rural environment had a broad impact on his songwriting.

Growing up around hard physical work and being close to the land are what comes through in Charlie's songs. Most of his recordings to date have eschewed typical studio settings; he’s recorded in warehouses, garages, basements and storefronts, usually on vintage equipment, which gives his work the historic feel of field recordings. It's not because he wants to sound like he was discovered 75 years ago by Alan Lomax, it’s because most modern recording studios make the reticent and self-effacing Parr feel uncomfortable.
His heartfelt and plaintive original folk blues and traditional spirituals don't strive for authenticity: they are authentic.

"Parr's songs ring out with a working-class ethos and a welcome-home energy." - The Bluegrass Situation

"The native Minnesotan’s style can best be described as new music from an older time – sometimes dark and desolate, sometimes raucous and danceable." - Dan Forte (Vintage Guitar)
"He draws from the well of human suffering, but does so with humor and just a dash of folk tale mystery."
- American Standard Time
“Parr may have been born during the Nixon era, but you can taste the grit of the Dust Bowl in his music.” - Dusted

“Among the contenders in the every burgeoning indie folk, or new folk, genre, there are a lot of pretenders and acts trying desperately to “look and play the part”, but five seconds in front of Charlie Parr and you know you’re dealing with the real thing.”- Jim Beckman (KEXP)

“John Fahey described the music he collected on American Primitive Vol. 1 as ‘made under the influence of enthusiasm.’ The enthusiasm he spoke of was a kind of possession, whether Christian or diabolical he couldn’t be sure; a mode of ecstatic communication that intervened in the delivery of sacred and secular messages alike. Charlie Parr’s recordings, which make splendid companions to Fahey’s anthology, are similarly enthusiastic.- Popmatters

Tour Dates:
TU 4/21 Duluth, MN - Tycoons Alehouse and Eatry
WE 4/22 Duluth, MN - The Red Herring Lounge
TH 4/23 Winona, MN - Midwest Music Festival (Broken World Records)
FR 4/24 Stoughton, WI - Stoughton Opera House
SA 4/25 Zumbrota, MN - Crossings At Carnegie
TU 4/28 Duluth, MN - Duluth Homegrown Music Festival
TH 4/30 Duluth, MN - Duluth Homegrown Music Festival
FR 5/1 Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theater
SA 5/2 Fargo, ND - Aquarium
FR 6/5 Ft. Collins, CO - Moe’s Original BBQ - Choice City Stomp
TH 6/11 Eau Claire, WI - Blue Ox Music Festival Country Jam
FR 6/12 Duluth, MN - Red Herring Lounge
FR 6/19 Bayport, MN - Bayport BBQ
SA 6/20 Hancock, MI - The Orpheum Theater
WE 6/24 Asheville, NC - Grey Eagle
TH 6/25 Charlotte, NC - US National Whitewater Center
FR 6/26 Wilmington, DE - World Cafe Live
SA 6/27 Windham, VT - The Frendly Gathering
TU 6/30 Ann Arbor, MI - The Ark
WE 7/1 Nashville, IN - BigWoods Brewing
TH 7/2 Cincinnati, OH - Washington Park
FR 7/3 Berwyn, IL - Fitzgerald's-Berwin
SA 7/4 Stoughton, WI - Stoughton Opera House
WE 7/8 Buffalo, NY - Sportsman's Tavern
TH 7/9 Cambridge, MA - Atwoods Tavern
SA 7/11 Greenfield, MA - Green River Music Fest
SU 7/12 Saratoga Springs, NY - Caffe Lena
FR 7/17 Remer, MN - Double Barrel Blues Fest
SA 7/18 Stillwater, MN - Stillwater Log Jam
SA 7/18 Minneapolis, MN - Patrick’s Cabaret
FR 7/31 Red Wind, MN - Falconer Vineyard
SA 8/1 Somerset, WI - Somerset Amphitheater
FR 8/21 Durango, CO - Durango Blues Train
SA 8/22 Durango, CO - Durango Blues Train
TH 8/27 St, Paul, MN - Minnesota State Fair
FR 8/28 St, Paul, MN - Minnesota State Fair
SA 8/29 Friendship, IN - Whispering Beard Folk Festival
WE 9/2 Minneapolis, MN - Midwest Music Showcase @ Target Field
SA 9/5 Duluth, MN - Red Herring Lounge
SA 9/12 Ames, IA - DG's Taphouse
SU 9/27 Johnsville, CA - Lost Sierra Hoedown
WE 10/14 St Could, MN - Pioneer Place on Fifth Theatre
SA 10/24 Austin, MN - Paramount Theatre
SA 12/19 Lake City, MN - Oak Center General Store

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