Rhiannon Giddens

Submitted by shashank.kumar on Thu, 07/31/2014 - 14:07
Sort Name
Giddens Rhiannon
Artist Position
3.00
Affiliated Artists
Carolina Chocolate Drops
Biography (Excerpt)

Rhiannon Giddens' album They’re Calling Me Home was recorded with Italian multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi during the COVID-19 lockdown in Ireland. The two expats found themselves drawn to and comforted by the music of their native and adoptive countries of America, Italy, and Ireland, which they recorded at a spare studio on a working farm outside of Dublin. The result is a twelve-song album that speaks to the longing for the comfort of home as well as the metaphorical call "home" of death.

Weight
10
Active Artist
No
Facebook URL
https://www.facebook.com/RhiannonGiddensMusic
Twitter URL
https://twitter.com/rhiannongiddens
Instagram URL
http://instagram.com/rhiannongiddens
Youtube URL
https://www.youtube.com/user/rhiannongiddens

Rhiannon Giddens’ new album, They're Calling Me Home, recorded with Italian multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi, was released April 9 on Nonesuch Records; vinyl is due June 11. Giddens and Turrisi, who both live in Ireland when they aren’t on tour, have been there since March 2020 due to the pandemic. The two expats found themselves drawn to the music of their native and adoptive countries of America, Italy, and Ireland during lockdown. Exploring the emotions brought up by the moment, Giddens and Turrisi decamped to Hellfire, a small studio on a working farm outside of Dublin, to record these songs over six days. The result is They're Calling Me Home, a twelve-track album that speaks of the longing for the comfort of home as well as the metaphorical "call home" of death, which has been a tragic reality for so many during the COVID-19 crisis.

They're Calling Me Home features several traditional songs that Giddens hasn't played for years, including some of the first old-time pieces she ever learned: "I Shall Not Be Moved," "Black As Crow (Dearest Dear)" and "Waterbound." The album also includes a new song Giddens wrote, “Avalon,” as well as an Italian lullaby, “Nenna Nenna," that Turrisi used to sing to his infant daughter that took on new resonance during the lockdown.

Giddens says of Alice Gerrard, the folk music pioneer, who wrote "Calling Me Home," the video which for can be seen above: "Some people just know how to tap into a tradition and an emotion so deep that it sounds like a song that has always been around—Alice Gerrard is one of those rarities; 'Calling Me Home' struck me forcefully and deeply the first time I heard it, and every time since. This song just wanted to be sung and so I listened."

They’re Calling Me Home also includes two well known songs about death: "Amazing Grace" and "O Death."

The minstrel banjo, accordion and frame drums that have become characteristic of the pair’s sound are well represented on the album, but it’s the viola and cello banjo combination that captures unexpected emotion and intensity. Joining them at key moments are Congolese guitarist Niwel Tsumbu and Irish traditional musician Emer Mayock on flute, whistle, and pipes. Engineer Ben Rawlins was key to the shape and sound of the record while Giddens and Turrisi produced and Kim Rosen mastered.

They’re Calling Me Home is the follow-up to Giddens' 2019 album with Turrisi, there is no Other, of which Pitchfork said, "There are few artists so fearless and so ravenous in their exploration." Giddens earned a Grammy Award nomination (her sixth) for the album, which is at once a condemnation of "othering" and a celebration of the spread of ideas, connectivity, and shared experience.

In the past two years alone Rhiannon Giddens has been profiled in the New Yorker, featured on multiple magazine covers, and appeared in Ken Burns' Country Music on PBS and Samuel L. Jackson's Epix series Enslaved, among other appearances. She received the inaugural Legacy of Americana Award at the Americana Awards & Honors, composed her first opera (with a forthcoming debut at Spoleto Festival USA), shared remote performances for the Late Show with Stephen Colbert and NPR's Tiny Desk (Home) Concert, and was named Artistic Director of the Silk Road Ensemble.

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Latest Release

  • October 11, 2022

    Rhiannon Giddens wrote “Build a House” for the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth in 2020; she performs it here with renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma and multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi. The song, which then inspired Giddens’ children’s book of the same name (out on Candlewick Press), tells of African Americans who were forcibly enslaved and brought to the US to build houses they were not allowed to live in, tend to families who were not their own, and sow the seeds that fed a nation—while being left with only scraps themselves. It depicts a family’s resilience in the face of violence and sorrow.

News

  • December 7, 2022

    Rhiannon Giddens will tour the UK this spring, joined by multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi. The tour starts in Aberdeen on April 27, with shows in Edinburgh, Gateshead, Perth, London, Norwich, Birmingham, and Essex. They follow the last two concerts of Giddens' Perspectives series at Carnegie Hall and bookend the Boston Lyric Opera run of Omar, her opera with Michael Abels, in May. They precede the 2023 Ojai Festival, of which she is Music Director, in June, and a trip to Italy for festival sets in Spoleto and Umbria in July.

  • November 5, 2022

    Rhiannon Giddens is on the latest episode of BBC World Service’s Music Life with fellow musicians Alela Diane, Mariee Siou, and Uwade. They discuss the spark that goes off when songwriting goes well, how moments of personal growth and transition affect their music, thinking of taxes while performing, and more. You can hear their conversation here.

Tour

Thu, Jan 12
New York, NY
The Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium, Metropolitan Museum of Art
Thu, Jan 12
New York, NY
The Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium, Metropolitan Museum of Art
Sun, Jan 15
Philadelphia, PA
Perelman Theater, Kimmel Cultural Campus
Sun, Jan 15
Philadelphia, PA
Perelman Theater, Kimmel Cultural Campus
Wed, Jan 18
Cincinnati, OH
Memorial Hall
Wed, Jan 18
Cincinnati, OH
Memorial Hall
Thu, Jan 19
Columbus, OH
Southern Theatre
Thu, Jan 19
Columbus, OH
Southern Theatre
Tue, Jan 24
New York, NY
Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
Tue, Jan 24
New York, NY
Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
Sat, Feb 18
St. Augustine, FL
Fort Mose Historic State Park
Sat, Feb 18
St. Augustine, FL
Fort Mose Historic State Park
Fri, Mar 10
New York, NY
Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
Fri, Mar 10
New York, NY
Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall
Thu, Apr 27
Aberdeen,
Music Hall
Thu, Apr 27
Aberdeen,
Music Hall
Fri, Apr 28
Edinburgh,
Assembly Room
Fri, Apr 28
Edinburgh,
Assembly Room
Sat, Apr 29
Gateshead,
Sage
Sat, Apr 29
Gateshead,
Sage

Photos

About Rhiannon Giddens

  • Rhiannon Giddens’ new album, They're Calling Me Home, recorded with Italian multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi, was released April 9 on Nonesuch Records; vinyl is due June 11. Giddens and Turrisi, who both live in Ireland when they aren’t on tour, have been there since March 2020 due to the pandemic. The two expats found themselves drawn to the music of their native and adoptive countries of America, Italy, and Ireland during lockdown. Exploring the emotions brought up by the moment, Giddens and Turrisi decamped to Hellfire, a small studio on a working farm outside of Dublin, to record these songs over six days. The result is They're Calling Me Home, a twelve-track album that speaks of the longing for the comfort of home as well as the metaphorical "call home" of death, which has been a tragic reality for so many during the COVID-19 crisis.

    They're Calling Me Home features several traditional songs that Giddens hasn't played for years, including some of the first old-time pieces she ever learned: "I Shall Not Be Moved," "Black As Crow (Dearest Dear)" and "Waterbound." The album also includes a new song Giddens wrote, “Avalon,” as well as an Italian lullaby, “Nenna Nenna," that Turrisi used to sing to his infant daughter that took on new resonance during the lockdown.

    Giddens says of Alice Gerrard, the folk music pioneer, who wrote "Calling Me Home," the video which for can be seen above: "Some people just know how to tap into a tradition and an emotion so deep that it sounds like a song that has always been around—Alice Gerrard is one of those rarities; 'Calling Me Home' struck me forcefully and deeply the first time I heard it, and every time since. This song just wanted to be sung and so I listened."

    They’re Calling Me Home also includes two well known songs about death: "Amazing Grace" and "O Death."

    The minstrel banjo, accordion and frame drums that have become characteristic of the pair’s sound are well represented on the album, but it’s the viola and cello banjo combination that captures unexpected emotion and intensity. Joining them at key moments are Congolese guitarist Niwel Tsumbu and Irish traditional musician Emer Mayock on flute, whistle, and pipes. Engineer Ben Rawlins was key to the shape and sound of the record while Giddens and Turrisi produced and Kim Rosen mastered.

    They’re Calling Me Home is the follow-up to Giddens' 2019 album with Turrisi, there is no Other, of which Pitchfork said, "There are few artists so fearless and so ravenous in their exploration." Giddens earned a Grammy Award nomination (her sixth) for the album, which is at once a condemnation of "othering" and a celebration of the spread of ideas, connectivity, and shared experience.

    In the past two years alone Rhiannon Giddens has been profiled in the New Yorker, featured on multiple magazine covers, and appeared in Ken Burns' Country Music on PBS and Samuel L. Jackson's Epix series Enslaved, among other appearances. She received the inaugural Legacy of Americana Award at the Americana Awards & Honors, composed her first opera (with a forthcoming debut at Spoleto Festival USA), shared remote performances for the Late Show with Stephen Colbert and NPR's Tiny Desk (Home) Concert, and was named Artistic Director of the Silk Road Ensemble.