If you’ve been a BAMS fan for a while, then you will know of my love for cellist Ben Sollee. He originally wowed me at a free River to River summer show when he was just in the backing band for Abigail Washburn in May 2008. Later that year he released a solo album (Learning to Bend) and I got to see him play a solo set at the Bell House, which was beautiful. Now, he has combined forces with Daniel Moore and Yim Yames (of My Morning Jacket and Monsters of Folk) to create a stunning album called Dear Companion, which is out now on Sub Pop. The music is all written and played by Sollee and Moore, with Yames producing.
The three musicians are all from Kentucky and the album “explores their ties to the place they love and aims to draw attention to the problem of mountaintop removal coal mining and its impact on the people and heritage of central Appalachia.” The songs are beautiful, honest folk numbers, and it was all recorded in Kentucky. A portion of the album’s proceeds will go to Appalachian Voices, an organization devoted to ending mountaintop removal and finding a better way forward.
The boys will be at Joe’s Pub on March 5 and 6. Tickets are on sale.
Images: via Sub Pop, by Guy Mendes