Avant-garde folk/Americana artist Nancy K. Dillon grew up in a musical family on the dusty plains of Oklahoma just 6 blocks from Route 66 and that ribbon of highway and possibility shaped her vision and musical sensibility. She masterfully weaves the textures and rhythms of American folk and country music into mythic road stories of small town claustrophobia, surreal euphoria and latter-day vagabonds traveling America’s byways threading through the sprawling American West.
In March 2010 Rose Rock Records announced the release of Dillon’s long anticipated follow-up to Just Let Me Dream. Roses Guide To Time Travel showcases Nancy’s okie-roots authenticity and soulfully intelligent take on Americana music with 11 original songs in her subtle and concise lyrical style. "The fancy term for Dillon's kind of writing is mythopoeia,” says one reviewer. Songs about trains, depot stations and a slightly crumbling industrial landscape share the spotlight with songs of gently aging rockstars and fading beauty. Add a murder ballad ghost story, a paean to Portland OR, lovers dancing among crimson stones in the desert and some old-fashioned tornado-chasing and you begin get a sense of the way Roses Guide To Time Travel connects past, present and future.
Musical contributors on both sides of the Pond include Danny Barnes (Bad Livers), Grammy award-winner Stacy Phillips on Dobro, Gavin Sutherland (Sutherland Brothers & Quiver), Steve Smith (Hard Road), Chris Parks (Any Trouble), Ian Lang & MJ Bishop. Recorded by Grammy-winning engineer Garey Shelton (The Believers/Danny O’Keefe) in Seattle along with tracks “flown in” from Scotland, England, New Mexico & Austin TX.
Nancy’s 2004 debut CD “Just Let Me Dream” was well-received and widely acclaimed by radio and press alike. Respected UK music journalist, Alan Cackett (Maverick-UK) hailed Dillon as an “original new talent” mining a musical vein akin to Lucinda Williams or Kasey Chambers. Dillon is a soulful singer and an award-winning songwriter.
Descended from an Irish Mason employed by the Missouri Pacific Railroad and Scots/English Indian Territory evangelists and circuit-riding preachers, Dillon was born on the plains of Oklahoma during the second Dust Bowl. Immediately upon acquiring a formal education, she hit the road without so much a plan as a desire to accumulate as many miles, experiences and memories as possible. Those included a 1980 circumnavigation of the globe in 80 days, impromptu a capella guerilla performance in the Taj Mahal, crisscrossing the western United States in a '66 yellow Rambler American singing along with Emmy Lou & Linda Ronstadt records and jobs as a computer operator of IBM behemoths, administrator of a University of Oklahoma Indian Housing research project, photographer’s model and keypuncher for a Seattle race-car parts company. All the while she pursued her musical dreams performing in bands and on others' recordings until she began writing and performing her own original songs at the turn of the century releasing her debut solo CD Just Let Me Dream on July 8, 2004 and it’s follow-up Roses Guide To Time Travel on March 28, 2010.
Since its release, Just Let Me Dream has received many accolades and generated a continuing buzz, international radio airplay, song contest honors and landing on several compilations and “Best of…” lists. Hailed as “accomplished, mature and soulful”, the CD has a sparkling windswept sound captured by Grammy-winning engineer Garey Shelton (The Believers/Danny O’Keefe). Nancy co-produced the album with Austin, TX-based songwriter/guitarist Michael Hill (Slobberbone/12 Lb Test). The album features virtuoso performances by Hill as well as John Reischman (Tony Rice/Jaybirds), Paul Elliott (Michelle Shocked/Alison Brown) and Grammy-winner Stacy Phillips (Dobro). Brit-folk rocker, Clive Gregson (Any Trouble/Gregson & Collister) makes a cameo appearance on backup vocals and a sparkling solo at the end of the title track. John Conquest (Third Coast Music) observes, “Hints of honky tonk, Tex-Mex and cowboy music, intertwined with bluegrass, country, gospel and traditional folk, make this a true Americana album that could easily have come out of Austin.”
Nancy sings about escaping her native red dirt Oklahoma on the opening track of Just Let Me Dream. She may have left town but she is still the girl who grew up in Oklahoma City six blocks from Route 66. “You can leave Oklahoma” she says, “but Oklahoma never leaves you. I go there as often as I can. The land and the people deeply inspire me. My hope is to infuse my songs and sound with a feeling of that red dirt, spaciousness and the simplicity and drama of the elements." A subtle sweetness inhabits Nancy's voice that makes it instantly appealing. You can hear the wind in her voice. Sometimes you can taste the dust, too, and feel the hot summer sun. "I grew up in an extraordinary musical environment,” Dillon says. “My dad was a composer of modern classical music who played big band jazz on weekends. In between all of that he was a Professor of Music at the University of Central Oklahoma and directed the church choir. My mom sang her favorite hymns around the house and taught vocal music in Arkansas before I was born. I moved to Norman OK to go to college where I was exposed to The Band-inflected sounds of home-town favorites, Red Dirt and the harmony-drenched good-time blues-folk-rock of The Medicine Park All-Boy Derelict Band. Last but not least, country-folk-rockers Blue Rose Cafe (led by Pat Long & Kevin Welch) completed my Oklahoma honky-tonk education. I was truly blessed to stand at the feet of some unbelievably good songwriters and become steeped in a song-writing lineage best known as 'red dirt music'....earthy & authentic".
Dillon currently tours the US and is based in the Pacific NW. A former folk radio programmer at KBCS/Seattle, Nancy was also a founding member of renowned “cowchick” band Ranch Romance and performed in a duo with Rounder recording artist, John Miller. It’s the Oklahoma 'Red Dirt' sound though that evokes Dillon’s muse most powerfully — then her warm soulful voice polishes that raw earthiness until it gleams and sparkles like fire in fine jewelry. Listen to her music and see if you don't agree.
Among the honors and recognition accorded Nancy’s songs and CDs are:
o Billboard Honorable Mention ~ 3 Songs: "O Susanna" ~ "Last Town on the Line" ~ "Glory Days" (co-written with Ian Lang) ~ July 2010
o "Roses Guide To Time Travel" CD ~
# 15 Roots Music Report Folk Chart
# 20 Top Album Folk Radio Chart
# 22 Freeform American Roots (FAR) Chart
# 5 Roots Music Report Washington State Chart (21 weeks & counting)
o "Last Town On The Line" ~ Featured on Victory Music Compilation CD ~ March 2009
o "O Susanna" ~ Featured on City of Seattle's On-Hold Podcast ~ January 2009
o "O Susanna" ~ Top 40 Songs ~ Acoustic Pie Radio ~ October 2008
o "Last Town On The Line" (Alternate) ~ 2008 Tumbleweed Song Contest
o 2nd Place Winner ~ 2007 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "Time Travelers Lament"
o "O Susanna" ~ received a 9.9 rating (out of 10) by listeners to Fiddles & Frets
o "Just Let Me Dream" ~ Top 50 on Roots Music Report Folk Chart ~ April 2007
o "O Susanna" ~ Top 20 on Acoustic Pie Radio ~ July & December 2006/April 2007 (6!)
o "Almost To Idaho" ~ Richard Gillmann's Favorite Folk Tracks ~ November 2006
o Finalist, 2006 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "Good Old Friends"
o Finalist, 2005 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "Almost To Idaho"
o Finalist, 2004 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "The Ballad of Mabel Dodge"
o "Best NW Artists/Folk CD" ~ July 2004 ~ KBCS 91.3FM Seattle
o Top 10 ~ American ROOTS Radio ~ Boston, MA ~ July 2004
o "2004 Top Albums & Songs ~ Folk Music Radio Airplay Chart
Seattle, Washington: Northwest Folklife Festival ~ Paramount Theater ~ Bumbershoot Music Festival ~ Tractor Tavern ~ Wintergrass Bluegrass Festival ~ Crossroads Songwriter Series ~ Seattle Folklore Society Concert Series ~ Puget Sounds Concert Series ~ Laughing Ladies Women's Festival ~ FODFest 08 Seattle ~ Pinehurst Festival ~ Northgate August Festival ~ University District Street Fair ~ Fremont Fair ~ Dusty Strings Annual Christmas Concert ~ Lippe's House Concert Series ~ Olalla House Concerts ~ Egan's Ballard Jam House ~ Cafe Racer ~ Nectar ~ High Dive ~ ToST ~ Q Cafe ~ Songsalive Showcase ~ Second Saturday Songs @ LAB ~ Room For Roots Americana Music Series ~ Jewel Box Theatre ~ Columbia City Theatre ~ Richard Hugo House ~ Sunset Tavern ~ Conor Byrne Pub ~ Cafe Bella ~ East West Bookshop ~ Fiddler’s Inn ~ Hopvine Songwriter Showcase ~ Flying Lion Café ~ Silver Platters In-Store ~ Columbia City Beatwalk ~ Tutta Bella ~ Latona ~ Lock & Keel ~ The Olde Peculiar ~ Molly McGuire’s ~ Mulleady’s Pub ~ The Dubliner ~ Owl & Thistle ~ Allegro Upstairs ~ Little Red Hen ~ Third Place Books ~ Ravenna Third Place ~ Nana’s Soup House ~ Hotwire ~ C & P ~ El Diablo ~ Mr. Spot’s ~ Patti Summers Lounge ~ Madison’s Café ~ World Cup ~ Caffe Bella
Other Washington Venues: Tumbleweed Music Festival (Richland) ~ Yakima Folk Festival (Yakima) ~ North Coast Folk Festival (Ocean Shores) ~ Boundary Bay Brewery (Bellingham) ~ Althea’s (Mt. Vernon) ~ Pegasus (Bainbridge Island) ~ Seabold 2nd Saturday Featured Performer (Seabold) ~ The Barn (Bainbridge Island) ~ Bread & Roses (Pt Townsend) ~ Mandolin Café (Tacoma) ~ Bon Vinos (Sunnyside) ~ Roslyn Sunday Market ~ Olalla House Concert Series ~ Ed & Lucia's House Concert Series (Everett) ~ Red Bicycle (Vashon Island) ~ Crystal Mountain House Concert ~ Gathering Grove (Everett) ~ First Friday Concert Series (Snohomish)
Portland, Oregon: Green Room ~ Trask Brewery ~ Mississippi Pizza ~ Alberta Street Pub ~ Linda's House Concert Series
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma: The Blue Door
San Diego, California: 16th Annual International Folk Alliance Conference
San Francisco, California: Amnesia Pub
Austin, Texas: 18th Annual International Folk Alliance Conference
Nashville, TN: Norms River Roadhouse ~ Bluebird Cafe ~ Slowcooker Songwriter Showcase
Tribute Shows: Steve Goodman Tribute w/Clay Eals ~ Willie Nelson Tribute Concert ~ Woody Guthrie Tributes @ Conor Byrne (Seattle)
Nancy has shared stage with or opened for:
Gretchen Peters ~ Clive Gregson ~ Kevin Welch ~ Diana Jones ~ John Byrd ~ Fred Koller ~ Bryan Bowers ~ David Rea ~ Hamilton Kelsh & Ferris ~ Sarah Sample ~ SONIA of disappear fear ~ Michael McGarrah ~ Country Joe MacDonald ~ Del Rey ~ Ray Wylie Hubbard ~ Stacy Phillips (Grammy Award-winning Dobroist) ~ Barbara Lamb ~ Red Dirt Rangers ~ Terry (Buffalo) Ware (Jimmy LaFave) ~ Bob Childers ~ Rachel Harrington ~ Eva Tree ~ Michael Hill (12 Lb Test/Slobberbone) ~ John M Miller (Rounder recording artist) ~ Guy Clark (w/Ranch Romance) ~ Everly Brothers (w/Duffy Bishop)
Nancy K Dillon ~ Vocals/Guitar
With accompaniment by one or more of the following:
Paul Elliott ~ Fiddle
Bob Knetzger ~ Pedal Steel/Banjo/Mandolin
Stacy Phillips ~ Dobro/Fiddle
Michael Hill ~ Guitars
Jay Weaver ~ Drums
Band members & format will vary depending upon venue & location
~ Roses Guide To Time Travel: Released March 28 2010
~ Portland EP ~ 2007
~ Just Let Me Dream: 2004 Debut Solo Album
~ Nancy K Dillon "Live": 2003
~ Colorado Moon: 2001 EP
~ The Air Streams: The Air Streams
Nancy's backing vocal contributions to others' recordings:
~ Ian Lang: The Whisper
~ Gavin Sutherland: The Well
~ MJ Bishop: Pull of the Moon
~ Tamara Lewis: Living Down River
~ John Nelson: Tengo Ranchito
~ Suze Spencer Marshall: Tall Boots: Rare Gems of America’s Western Music Pioneers
~ Michael Hill: Vanishing Season
~ Michael Hill: The New World
~ Michael Hill: Yours Truly
~ Marsha Reeves: Sing My Way Home
~ Kim Townsend: Wayworn Traveler
~ Phil Sampson: Little Pieces of His Heart
~ Junior Cadillac: Jr Cadillac 20th Birthday Party Live
~ Steve Bailey & the Blue Flames: Hop On Board
~ Nora Michaels & Paul Whistler: Leopardskin Revue
~ Duffy Bishop & the Rhythm Dogs: On A Journey
Last Town On The Line
Turn The Lights Down Low
Turn The Lights Down Low
Turn The Lights Down Low
Billboard Awards Honorable Mention for 3 Songs
[+ Show ]
Billboard has awarded Honorable Mention status to 3 of Nancy's songs: "O Susanna", "Last Town on the...Billboard has awarded Honorable Mention status to 3 of Nancy's songs: "O Susanna", "Last Town on the Line" and "Glory Days" (NKD/Ian Lang) !
#15 Album on Roots Music Report Folk Chart ~ 20 Weeks in Washington State Top 20
[+ Show ]
"Roses Guide To Time Travel" debuted at #28 on the internationally respected Roots Music Report Char..."Roses Guide To Time Travel" debuted at #28 on the internationally respected Roots Music Report Chart and reached #15. The album spent 20 weeks on the Washington State Top 20 Chart
"Roses Guide To Time Travel" ~ #20 Top Album on Folk DJ Chart
"Roses Guide To Time Travel" is #20 Top Album on Folk DJ Chart for April
Debuted at #22 on the Freeform American Roots (FAR) Chart !
Debuted at #22 on the Freeform American Roots (FAR) Chart !
Rich's Pick for Midnight Special 98.7 WFMT CHICAGO ~ March 2010
Rich's Pick for March 27 2010's Midnight Special on 98.7 WFMT CHICAGO !!
KBCS' Richard Gillmann's Outskirts "Pick of the Week" ~ March 2010
[+ Show ]
"Roses Guide To Time Travel" is KBCS dj Richard Gillmann's Outskirts album pick of the week :-) ! In..."Roses Guide To Time Travel" is KBCS dj Richard Gillmann's Outskirts album pick of the week :-) ! Interview on the Outskirts on Thurs. March 25th at 1pm w/ Iaan Hughes. CD Release Party at the Tractor Tavern on Sun. March 28th w/ Eva Tree opening at 7pm
"A consistent delight, Roses Guide to Time Travel carries a whole lot more substance than your standard rootless singer-songwriter fare."
[+ Show ]
Nancy K. Dillon, Roses Guide to Time Travel (Rose Rock, 2010) Nora Jane Struthers, Nora Jane S...Nancy K. Dillon,
Roses Guide to Time Travel
(Rose Rock, 2010)
Nora Jane Struthers,
Nora Jane Struthers
(Blue Pig, 2010)
Here are two CDs by singer-songwriters you probably haven't heard of. Of course, I could say that about two of a whole lot of singer-songwriters. The difference: chances are, you'll fall in love with both of them by your second listening, and probably sooner. As I have had occasion to express in this space before, I'm as cynical about singer-songwriters as they come. I also tend to assume the good ones are the ones I already know. Believe me, it is good to be surprised once in a while.
Nancy K. Dillon and Nora Jane Struthers reside on opposite sides of the country (Portland, Ore., and Nashville, Tenn., respectively), and more than a few years separate their ages (Struthers looks barely in her 20s). But aside from a common, richly realized talent, they share a deep affection for America's traditional folk music. From it, they have fashioned something that is in one sense old-fashioned and in another modern, in the best sense. The music speaks movingly to the continuity of past and present, where the place you were takes you to the place you are and will be.
The landscapes, though, aren't identical. Struthers' is Appalachian country, and not just in the sounds of fiddles and banjos and in the occasional bluegrass touches. (One hopes, by the way, that bluegrass bands take notice of her and start covering her material. Even the songs she does in non-bluegrass -- if always acoustic -- arrangements are easily adaptable to the genre.) Dillon's, on the other hand, is the Pacific Northwest, and her generational experience acquaints her with Woody Guthrie, Fred Neil and Townes Van Zandt, among the most audible (though hardly defining) influences. Guthrie is even a character in Dillon's terrific family chronicle "Last Town on the Line," which follows the opening cut, "All the Pretty America," a melancholy lament for a lost nation, a sort of counter-"This Land is Your Land."
If a communicator of life wisdom, Dillon never preaches but always feels like splendid conversation, a shrewd and compassionate storyteller with an ear for melodies that are quick to please the ear and slow to leave the memory. The production melds her acoustic guitar with the sound of a small, semi-electric band periodically incorporating banjo, fiddle, cello and more, none ever taking up unwanted space. A consistent delight, Roses Guide to Time Travel carries a whole lot more substance than your standard rootless singer-songwriter fare.
Likewise Struthers' self-titled disc. Any doubts on that score are quashed instantly. The very first cut relates a grim story titled "Willie" -- yes, the same relentless psychopath who stars in any number of bloody murder ballads, only this time as seen from the point of view of his victim. "Willie" is exquisitely crafted, and it's shocking in its unflinching, unsentimental maturity. Still, as an introduction to somebody's music, it is awfully heavy going. Surely it would have been better placed in the latter half of the program. One has to wonder at the decision that led to such a sequencing decision. Why, in fact, wasn't the second chosen to be first? The cheery "Mocking Bird," one of several pure bluegrass tunes, would have opened the door with a welcoming grin, not with a knife ripping through flesh (an actual image in "Willie").
Oh, well. Struthers offers up many pleasures, both down-hearted and high-spirited. If Dillon sings and writes from the experience of a longer life, Struthers seems to do so at an angle beyond her limited years. A strikingly effective singer with a sometimes spooky alto, she convincingly inhabits the personas of a range of rural Southern characters, even as she is herself is a product of New Jersey. She came to Appalachian music through her father's passionate love for it. (When she was a little girl, we learn, she waited every day for his return from work so that she could yodel to him. Awww....) That performers who grew up far from the Southern mountains -- Gillian Welch is another -- are able to make real music in that voice surely proves that Appalachia's ballads have become as broadly American as Mississippi's blues.
"Cowgirl Yodel #3" is her tribute to Patsy Montana, fondly recalled for "I Want to Be a Cowboy's Sweetheart." It's a pity she didn't live to hear Struthers, whose song is as ridiculously entertaining as Montana's was in its time. The yodeling swoops down upon unsuspecting listeners to transport them -- on horseback, presumably -- to that rangeland in the sky. The disc closes on a graceful note with an inspired reading of the traditional "Say Darlin' Say."
"A well written and beautifully paced contemporary bluegrass/folk/acoustic rock album" ~ 7 Stars
[+ Show ]
Nancy K. Dillon “Roses Guide To Time Travel” (Rose Rock, 2010) Okie Dokie Folkie Opening with ...Nancy K. Dillon “Roses Guide To Time Travel” (Rose Rock, 2010)
Okie Dokie Folkie
Opening with the strongest track on the album, ‘All The Pretty America’, Dillon releases her second album after a six year hiatus. Whilst the PR that accompanies this release enthuses madly about the album (as is their job), it doesn’t list the opener as a “recommended track”. Strange that, as it’s the one of the best here.
There are many descriptions to cover the gamut that makes up Americana these days, but here’s a couple used to described Dillon’s work that may be new to you; avant-garde folk (WTF?), okie-roots (WTF2?) and even mythopoeia (WTF3?.. it’s the process for creating myths apparently). Not only does Americana-UK inform but, we educate you. Bit like the BBC.
Dillon provides some useful song notes that explain where these songs come from and the thoughts behind them. I always find these useful, as they rarely correspond with what I think they’re about. But that’s the beauty of well written tunes, they can be whatever you want them to be.
‘Roses Guide To Time Travel’ covers memories of childhood, trains, murder mystery ghost ballad, cowboys getting dressed up in their white shirts for a night out, Paul Kelly and Townes, affection for Portland plus driving through Texas storms.
Dillon has a quiet laid back approach, but she doesn’t have to hoot and holler loudly to get her message across. ‘Sweet Honey’ has echoes of Vika and Linda, ‘Last Down The Line’ chugs along to emphasise the train theme, ‘Desert Song’ revisits Gram and Emmylou territory and ‘No Goodbyes’ references not only Paul Kelly but also Townes van Zandt.
A well written and beautifully paced contemporary bluegrass/folk/acoustic rock album. Please don’t leave it another six years next time Nancy!
Date review added: Saturday, June 12, 2010
Reviewer: Phil Edwards
Reviewers Rating: 7 of 10 Stars
Related web link: Nancy K. Dillon website
"If I could sing like that... "
[+ Show ]
“If I could sing like that, I wouldn’t bother much with instruments!” ~ Stacy Phillips (Grammy Awa...“If I could sing like that, I wouldn’t bother much with instruments!” ~
Stacy Phillips (Grammy Award-Winning Dobroist)
"...the music brings a kind of pleasure which human nature can not do without."
[+ Show ]
Review of "Roses Guide To Time Travel" ~ Rootsville.be ~ Belgium "If I could sing like that, I w...Review of "Roses Guide To Time Travel" ~ Rootsville.be ~ Belgium
"If I could sing like that, I wouldn’t bother much with instruments!"
Stacy Phillips (Grammy Award-Winning Dobroist)
"Just let me dream ..... "
No doubt "Sweet Honey" Nancy K. Dillon in 2004 dreamed of a very successful career and, to be honest, with "Just Let Me Dream" and valued contributions to the albums of other artists including Michael Hill, John Nelson, Gavin Sutherland, Ian Lang and MJ Bishop, there were legitimate reasons. Moreover, the lady from Seattle at that time captured my heart with her version of Jimmy Lafave's "Give Your Sweet Love To Me" – a fine cover. So we had to wait until now before the successor 'Roses Guide to Time Travel” saw the light…but…patience is a virtue and clean as the music brings a kind of pleasure which human nature can not do without. Nancy K. Dillon clearly appreciated our repeated message to the singer/songwriters to include the lyrics on the album inlay and she was also kind enough to add a note to each original song of her authentic Okie-roots music. You can through CD Baby for the mere sum of $15 or $10 - in one ear- and eye-catching way - witness songs about time, trains, forgiveness, redemption, lovers dancing in the desert ... plus a murder ballad ghost story !
The ticket "An original new talent" again from the dust will probably get a bit exaggerated, but for those who only now hear the efforts of this avant-garde folk/Americana singer-songwriter will probably be caught with open mouth to enjoy gems such as "All the Pretty America" (I kept thinking how much prettier and more innocent America seemed when I was a girl), "Looks Like Rain" - with Steve Smith/mandolin, Paul Elliot/fiddle & Grammy award winner Stacy Philips/Resonator guitar and "The Ground She Walks On" - with Danny Barnes/National Steel guitar. There are other sometimes "Good Old Friends" of the party on this disc: co-producer Michael Hill/guitars - vocals, Gavin Sutherland (Sutherland Brothers & Quiver), Chris Parks (Any Trouble), Ian Lang & MJ Bishop make Nancy K. Dillon as comfortable as possible to return to link up with the "Glory Days" in 2004 which took a brilliant start. "No Goodbyes" .... no, you ain’t seen the last of me .... despite the fact that nature, time and patience are the three best doctors, please not that long. (SWA)
"Roses Guide to Time Travel" added to playlist for Radio Free Texas
[+ Show ]
"Roses Guide To Time Travel" added on March 31 ! Very cool site / community of music lovers in addit..."Roses Guide To Time Travel" added on March 31 ! Very cool site / community of music lovers in addition to the internet radio station. Check it out at: Radio Free Texas
"Longs for an extra spinning in the end." ~ Four Stars
[+ Show ]
Style : Americana Rate : 4 stars Having Grown Up in Oklahoma, just 6 blocks away from the Route ...Style : Americana
Rate : 4 stars
Having Grown Up in Oklahoma, just 6 blocks away from the Route 66, Nancy K Dillon comes from a musical family with roots in the dusty plains of Oklahoma. Roses Guide to Time Travel is the much anticipated and long awaited follow up for her 2004 Debut “Just Let Me Dream”.
A showcase for her authentically Okie roots and an intelligent take on Americana music are the main ingredients for this album that brings a mixture of contemporary bluegrass, traditional Americana and some folk inspired tunes. Among the better tunes on this album are tracks like “Last Town on the Line”, “Desert Song”, “Looks Like Rain” and “New Train”.
The main ingredients on this album are trains, depot stations, aging rock stars and fading beauty! Add to that a murder ballad and the picture is complete. Next to the enigmatic voice of Miss Dillon, you’ll find some very interesting musicians lending a hand as well! Amongst them you’ll find Chris Parks (Any Trouble), Gavin Sutherland (Sutherland Brothers & Quiver) and Danny Barnes (Bad Livers) to name but a few! All this creates a mature and soulful Americana sound with big influences from both bluegrass & folk that longs for an extra spinning in the end.
Roses Guide To Time Travel is a well accomplished effort with eleven self penned tunes. It was worth waiting for this follow up album, although six years is really a bit to long if you ask me! I truly hope that we won’t have to wait over another half decade for the next album, in the meantime Miss Dillon announced an extensive tour on both sides of the Ocean.
Mr. Blue Boogie.
"I could say you had me at the cover for this CD....a wonderful showcase of Nancy’s voice and wonderful use of harmonies"
[+ Show ]
Nancy K. Dillon: Roses Guide to Time Travel www.nancykdillon.net I could say you had me at the c...Nancy K. Dillon: Roses Guide to Time Travel
I could say you had me at the cover for this CD. ‘All the Pretty America’ is a wonderful showcase of Nancy’s voice and wonderful use of harmonies. The melody line of the key phrase, not to mention the phrase itself, is intriguing. ‘Last Town on the Line’ is train song with the best of them and a little kinder to Woody, “life was hard for a trainman…” The vocals are powerful and the lyrics are well crafted. The rhythm and the instrumentals are as good as it gets: fiddle, slide guitar, mandolin. ‘No Goodbyes’ is another gem for lyrics and a fine chorus. It’s not hard to resonate with the sentiment of ‘Good Old Friends,’ or with the steady beat behind the lyrics of ‘Portland.’ You’ll love the singing on ‘Glory Days,’ and in fact on the whole CD. Catch Nancy whenever she passes through. [J.W. McClure]
[+ Show ]
Rootstime ~ Review of Roses Guide To Time Travel ~ May 2010 "Just Let Me Dream" was the title of ...Rootstime ~ Review of Roses Guide To Time Travel ~ May 2010
"Just Let Me Dream" was the title of the debut album which Seattle resident and singer-songwriter Nancy K. Dillon released to the world in 2004. She reaped a lot of positive criticism in the professional press but the large commercial success then nevertheless stayed away.
Six years it has been before a follow-up for that first album comes on the market. Now eleven tracks appear on Roses Guide To Time Travel with songs all composed by Nancy herself. Nancy K. Dillon grew up in a very musical family and has had the opportunity to share the stage in the past years with several artists such as Jimmy LaFave, Kevin Welch, Guy Clark and The Everly Brothers. They could make a broader public warm for her own country music and bluegrass inspired folksongs and this second cd can also count on more approval than her debut album.
The songs on this cd find her singing about different subjects. Thus she looks back musing on a pure and unspoiled America from her youth in the nostalgic-sounding "All The Pretty America", her love for everything related to trains in "Last Town On The Line" and "New Train" and bleak weather phenomena such as a severe storm in the bluegrass song "Looks Like Rain".
She also sings about the unconditional love she could see between her parents** in "The Ground She Walks On", her parting feelings on the death of a close friend in the rocker "Good Old Friends" and she brings a musical tribute to the atmospheric city "Portland" in the U.S. state of Oregon. The final song played on acoustic guitar, "Sweet Honey", is due to its austere simplicity one of the best songs on this CD.
Striking on this cd is that the instrumentation on most of the songs has been kept very minimal and as a result the emphasis is moved automatically more towards the lyrics. With her music on this album Nancy K. Dillon can count on recognition of the music lover who melts away in the songs of bands like The Dixie Chicks or The Indigo Girls. We can thus recommend "Roses Guide To Time Travel" to them warmly.
** here is the actual note about "Ground" from the liner notes which accompanied the album....a little something was lost in translation I'm afraid ;-):
The Ground She Walks On - This started out to be a sweet love song about my mom and dad’s enduring love for one another and then somehow the brand new adventure of tuning my guitar to dadgad turned it all dark and wrong-headed...I ended up with a murder ballad ghost story on my hands. It is set in the town where they met and fell in love but has nothin’ more than that to do with them...writing Ground was exactly like writing down a dream
"Who doesn't like a good train song?"
[+ Show ]
The Alternate Root Artists of the Week thealternateroot.com NKD Featured Artist on The Alternate R...The Alternate Root Artists of the Week
NKD Featured Artist on The Alternate Root ~ Free download of "Last Town on the Line" - Nancy's train song about her great-granddaddy, Asa Dillon....trainman for the Missouri-Pacific line in Kansas.
"Who doesn't like a good train song? On "Roses Guide to Time Travel", Nancy K. Dillon tells tales of trains, among other stories about America, its deserts, its times and its people. Nancy grew up in Oklahoma just six blocks from Route 66. Her family tree includes an Irish Mason employed by the Missouri Pacific Railroad and Scots/English Indian Territory evangelists and circuit-riding preachers. Nancy hit the road early on and logged lots of miles both in the US and abroad, circumnavigating the globe in 1980 in 80 days. Her experiences and lessons mix with what she has seen and heard during her travels.
On "Roses Guide to Time Travel" the stories ride across Folk and Americana sound waves. Fiddles and pickin' swirls around the honesty of her voice on "Looks Like Rain" as Nancy used weather to describe a relationship. Simple folk chords and slide guitar work as hard as she chronicles her ancestors train tale in "Last Town on the Line" while on "New Train" the rhythms crawl and pound along as Nancy again uses imagery as she tells another saga of love. Completing the train trilogy is "Portland" as she climbs aboard the rails. Through all the journeys on "Roses Guide to Time Travel", her third album, benefits from the strength of Nancy's voice and the clarity of her method encapsulating her own travels through time in song."
"A true Americana album that could easily have come out of Austin"
[+ Show ]
"For all she's spent the last 20 odd years in Seattle, making a name for herself singing folk, cou...
"For all she's spent the last 20 odd years in Seattle, making a name for herself singing folk, country, R&B, jazz and Western Swing, Nancy K's still the girl who grew up in Oklahoma City, six blocks from Route 66, and her album, which she describes very neatly as 'twang-folk', has plenty of windswept Southwest in it. Specific references are to Oklahoma (Crossing 66), Texas (Nothing In Texas, with The Nancy Boys) and New Mexico (The Ballad of Mabel Dodge), but hints of honky tonk, Tex-Mex and cowboy music, intertwined with bluegrass, country, gospel and traditional folk, make this a true Americana album that could easily have come out of Austin. With the smooth relaxed warmth of Nancy's vocals, stellar backing and production and twelve strong originals (plus a cover of Jimmy LaFave's Give Your Sweet Love To Me, of which the highlights are Almost To Idaho and Play 1-4 Susie, well, what's not to like?" - @@@@ (4 out of 5 flowers!!)
"Dillon's record is evocative of the great themes of the west: the road, lonesome struggle, deep faith tested, the vast beauty of it all."
[+ Show ]
"Nancy K. Dillon, Seattle's pillar of western swing, has a more intimate, personal sound these day...
"Nancy K. Dillon, Seattle's pillar of western swing, has a more intimate, personal sound these days - call it "folk twang" - and this solo album will be an instant favorite of fans of introspective singer/songwriter material as well as honky tonk stompers. Dillon's record is evocative of the great themes of the west: the road, lonesome struggle, deep faith tested, the vast beauty of it all. She never has to resort to clichéd descriptions or hackneyed styles to call up these spirits, though, as she draws on a wide, complex background in musical Americana to suggest themes that span the human condition. Thus the small town claustrophobia of "Crossing 66" is a dark country blues suggestive of emancipation from slavery, and the hippie-love utopia that is the title tune is actually a sophisticated jazz number. The fancy term for this kind of writing is mythopoeia, and with Dillon we come to understand why a bluegrass tune about driving through Idaho is perfectly sensible, as is the astonishing, "Nothing In Texas", the most beautiful '60s-soul slow dance ever to wear denim. Dillon is backed by various friends from across the country and across the many styles she's comfortable with, principally her collaborator of late, Michael Hill. The picking is top notch and the CD is beautifully produced and packaged. It's one to rush out and get!"
"Musical magic... "
"To Nancy ~ who knows more than a little about making musical magic!" ~ Author's book inscription
"Why I do house concerts..."
[+ Show ]
"Nancy K. Dillon and her two friends Paul Elliott and Stacy Phillips took the stage after a short br..."Nancy K. Dillon and her two friends Paul Elliott and Stacy Phillips took the stage after a short break. With Nancy's great songs and driving rhythms, Paul's great fiddle playing and Stacy's masterful playing of the Dobro, we were treated to moments of pure magic. I know I keep saying this is why I do house concerts, but this is why I do house concerts. Wow. "
Roses Guide To Time Travel ~ Featured on "The Miller Tells Her Tale" Radio Show ~ Edinburgh Scotland
[+ Show ]
The Miller Tells Her Tale Americana Radio Show - The Miller Tells Her Tale, playing the best music ...The Miller Tells Her Tale
Americana Radio Show - The Miller Tells Her Tale, playing the best music by independent americana artists from around the world.
Typical set list includes primarily Nancy's original songs from her CDs "Roses Guide To Time Travel" and "Just Let Me Dream" as well as unreleased originals and cool cover tunes:
The Ballad of Mabel Dodge
Almost To Idaho
Nothing In Texas
Fire & Soul
Last Town on the Line (Pop. 1)
Be My Guest
Good Old Friends
Wild Girl Ways
16 Buffalo Afternoon
The Flip Side of Love
If appropriate to the setting & venue, typical cover songs might include:
Early Summer Rain (Kevin Welch)
Wheels (Gram Parsons)
Calm Before The Storm (Eliza Gilkyson)
Love Grows Wild (Buddy & Julie Miller)
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow (Carole King)
Closing Time (Lyle Lovett)
Fire In The Hole (Pat Long)
Mind Your Own Business (Hank Williams)
More Than I Can Do (Steve Earle)
Antidote (Clive Gregson)
Snowing on Raton (Townes van Zandt)
Give Your Sweet Love To Me (Jimmy LaFave)
Older Angel (Kate Campbell)
Golden (Steve Key)
Wade In The Water (Trad)
Ring of Fire (June Carter)
Papa Was A Rodeo (Magnetic Fields)
There are no upcoming dates at this time.