17th June 2016
At The BBC: On Air Performances And Recordings 2000-2005
Side 1: 1. Wait / 2. Rain Boy / 3. Old Downtown / 4. Mountain Fern / 5. Hong Cong Blues / 6. Khaki & Corduroy / 7. All Blue / 8. Bees. Side 2: 1. Christmas Letter Home / 2. New Year's Resolution / 3. Oh So Many Years / 4. I Lost You But I Found Country Music / 5. The Whiskey Makes You Sweeter / 6. Legend In Time / 7. When The Roses Bloom Again
Over the past 15 years, Laura Cantrell has been a familiar presence on the U.K. country music scene. The Nashville-born, New York-based artist has developed a loyal audience through consistent touring, and numerous radio interviews and sessions for BBC programs hosted by Bob Harris, Andy Kershaw and the late John Peel, who famously championed her debut album, Not The Tremblin’ Kind. Her new release, Laura Cantrell At The BBC compiles the best of her on-air performances from 2000-2005, including several previously unreleased songs, and traces the arc of Cantrell’s rise as an Americana artist on the airwaves of the venerable British broadcasting system. Laura Cantrell At The BBC features performances recorded at the BBC’s famous Maida Vale recording complex, the Broadcasting House studios in London, and the more informal setting of 'Peel Acres,' John Peel’s home studio. 'Going back through all the performances, I remembered how intimidating it was walking into Maida Vale with its gorgeous rooms for orchestras and plaques of The Beatles on the wall and engineers named 'Simon' and 'Guy'– I think my first or second session at Maida Vale featured an engineer in a lab coat, like a scientist! It was humbling to realize what a novice I was, and yet, despite my relative inexperience, I kept getting invited back.' Song selections range from fan favorites of Cantrell’s catalog like 'The Whiskey Makes You Sweeter'and 'Bees' to covers like contemporary songwriter Cheri Knight’s 'All Blue,' country rarities like 'Rain Boy,' and standards such as 'Legend In My Time.' Some of Cantrell’s favorite performances in this collection come from her visits to 'Peel Acres.' Cantrell recounts, 'I had known the name ‘John Peel’ – as just a famous BBC DJ from the late 1960s and 1970s, as a symbol of freedom on the radio and having an informal, irreverent style. I saw the Peel Sessions discs in the record library at WFMU and had even tried to tune in his world service program on the short wave. But I never imagined, even as we were readying Tremblin’ Kind for release, that my music would attract his attention.' Cantrell ultimately was invited to do five Peel Sessions, two recorded at Maida Vale and three broadcast live from 'Peel Acres.' All of those sessions are represented on this collection.