13 Songs, 49 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

At once rootsy, elegant and a little mystical, the Wailin’ Jennys advance their art further on Bright Morning Stars. Members Ruth Moody, Nicky Mehta, and Heather Masse pool their talents as singer/songwriters to create a luminous harmony-centered sound fusing contemporary folk, traditional hymnody and vocal-jazz styles in varying measure. The trio moves easily from hip-swinging rhythmic tracks like “Mona Louise” and “Cherry Blossom Love” to Appalachian-accented folk ballads like “Bird Song” and otherworldly a cappella pieces like the title tune. Lyrically, a spirit of resolve through hard times resonates within these songs, heard in the billowy opening tune “Swing Low Sail High,” the stirring, Indigo Girls-like “You Are Here” and the waltzing closer “Last Goodbye.” The Jennys wail most righteously on “Storm Comin,’” a defiant tune with the earthiness of a Southern spiritual. Mark Howard and David Travers-Smith’s production keeps the trio’s voices front and center, surrounding them with tasty acoustic textures along with electric guitar, brass, and understated percussion.

EDITORS’ NOTES

At once rootsy, elegant and a little mystical, the Wailin’ Jennys advance their art further on Bright Morning Stars. Members Ruth Moody, Nicky Mehta, and Heather Masse pool their talents as singer/songwriters to create a luminous harmony-centered sound fusing contemporary folk, traditional hymnody and vocal-jazz styles in varying measure. The trio moves easily from hip-swinging rhythmic tracks like “Mona Louise” and “Cherry Blossom Love” to Appalachian-accented folk ballads like “Bird Song” and otherworldly a cappella pieces like the title tune. Lyrically, a spirit of resolve through hard times resonates within these songs, heard in the billowy opening tune “Swing Low Sail High,” the stirring, Indigo Girls-like “You Are Here” and the waltzing closer “Last Goodbye.” The Jennys wail most righteously on “Storm Comin,’” a defiant tune with the earthiness of a Southern spiritual. Mark Howard and David Travers-Smith’s production keeps the trio’s voices front and center, surrounding them with tasty acoustic textures along with electric guitar, brass, and understated percussion.

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About The Wailin' Jennys

Canadian folk trio the Wailin' Jennys began as a one-off grouping of three singer/songwriters, but musical chemistry and audience response turned them into an ongoing band. Alto Cara Luft, the daughter of professional folksingers, had played with the Lilith Fair tour in Calgary and released her own album; mezzo-soprano Nicky Mehta also had her own disc, Weather Vane; and soprano Ruth Moody, lead singer for the roots band Scruj MacDuhk, had issued Blue Muse. But when they played together at a guitar shop in Winnipeg in January 2002, the results led to more bookings. Later that year, they released an EP, Wailin' Jennys. American independent folk label Red House Records licensed their full-length debut CD, 40 Days, and issued it in the U.S. in August 2004. That same year, Luft left the band to pursue her solo career, but the Jennys soon found her replacement in Montreal-based Annabelle Chvostek, who added her own alto to the group's sophomore album, Firecracker. Alto Heather Masse joined the band in 2007, replacing Chvostek. Live at the Mauch Chunk Opera House arrived in 2009, followed by the trio's third studio album, Bright Morning Stars, in 2011. In 2017, the Wailin' Jennys celebrated the 15th anniversary of their first gig, and to mark the occasion they released a studio album, fittingly named Fifteen. ~ William Ruhlmann

ORIGIN
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
FORMED
2002

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