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The Hello Recordings

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Laura Cantrell walks the line between Americana porch songs and contemporary singer/songwriter musings, but in 1996 she leaned harder on the former. The Hello Recordings were tracked in an apartment through a vintage mixing console accompanied by acoustic guitar, mandolin, lap steel, autoharp, and cello. The result is a rootsy EP that plays with the timelessness of old Carter Family recordings but with crisper production. The bouncy “Cellar Door” opens like an old-timey string band jamming on a barn stage. At just less than two minutes, the tune recalls the classic authenticity of a public-domain traditional. “Roll Truck Roll” is a peppy, bluegrass-tinged number with prominent mandolin picking and playful vocal harmonies mixed tastefully behind Cantrell’s pristine performance. She sings a more impressive take on the slower “No Place for Me,” where wistful and melancholy melodies are bolstered by a moody cello and a weepy slide guitar under slow, waltzing rhythms. She ends with a live cover of “Lee Harvey Was a Friend of Mine” recorded at a backyard barbeque.


Born: Nashville, TN

Genre: Country

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Possessing a bright clear voice that combines the vulnerability of a young girl with the intelligence and resilience of a grown woman, Laura Cantrell burst onto the international music scene in 2000 with a debut album that showcased her affecting vocals, literate songwriting, and superb taste in musicians and fellow songwriters. Cantrell, however, had followed a rather unusual path to become one of the new favorites of Americana: she moved from her home in Tennessee to New York City, studied law...
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The Hello Recordings, Laura Cantrell
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