Caroline Reese
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Caroline Reese

Reading, Pennsylvania, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF

Reading, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Country Alternative




"Caroline Reese Featured as Daily Discovery"

"Caroline Reese is known for her beautiful Americana song crafting. She has released three recordings including her 2014 release, The Electric Year. She and her band The Drifting Fifth are currently on tour." - American Songwriter

"Listen to the New EP from Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth"

"Reading native Caroline Reese has released a new EP with her band Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth. The Electric Year is a 7-track album full of country-infused folk, but this isn’t your average, everyday folk music. Reese is a vocal powerhouse and infuses the songs with a distinctive style. There’s a country influence to some songs, but on others like “What I Did” and “On the Highway,” you’ll hear some modern rock as well. Reese’s voice gives you chills with the amount of raw emotion she puts into her lyrics and delivery." - WXPN's The Key

"Singer-songwriter Caroline Reese, Trusting in Talent"

"She recently performed a solo concert at the inaugural Victory BrewGrass Festival at the Valley Preferred Cycling Center in the Lehigh Valley.

Sure, I could pick up on the story line that Caroline once was Taylor Swift's next-door neighbor and that they used to sing together when they were very young. But name-dropping is for wannabes, and Caroline Reese is far from that.


"I had this thought the other day: that I am a better person when I'm playing guitar and singing. It's like the cynicism that I feel from life sometimes, and the anxieties I have, just go away and all there is the music and the people I'm singing to.

"A huge part of that is the sharing that loops between the musician and the audience and back again. It's not something I can explain exactly," she wrote, "but I always feel like a more driven and optimistic person and I believe in the good in the world again after I sing to people. Music just has that effect a lot of the time.

"And I love speaking with people afterwards and hearing their experiences," she continued. "Music and lyrics brings out a lot of memories in people. And, finally, I really think - like my mom always told me - that we have a responsibility to use our gifts in one way or another in our lives. That way you are following your passions and you are giving back to people at the same time."


Caroline Reese. Remember her name. I can promise you that if she continues to share her talent, she will be known by the world at large.

Dave Kline is producer and host of the weekly "Mountain Folk Radio & Web Show" on WEEU 830 AM and chief advertising and sales officer for Reading Eagle Company. Contact him at" - the Reading Eagle

"Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth with Your Gentlemen at the North Star Bar"

"It’s probably selfish to see great bands in small spaces. Not so much because there’s limited room but more because, after the concert’s over, there will always be a part of you that wants the bands to stay there forever, in that room, rather than graduate up to the sold out concert halls they deserve. It’s the reason music snobs have started to treat bands like Matthew McConaughey treats high-school girls in Dazed and Confused, recklessly running through them in droves because they know the bands they love won’t be playing bar shows forever. It’s also what made Monday’s show at the North Star in Philadelphia simultaneous feel vital and all too brief because I knew then and there it would be the last time I saw Caroline Reese and Drifting Fifth with any room to breathe." - That Music Magazine

"Caroline Reese's Music Searches for Home"

After a recent date at the North Star Bar and Restaurant in Philadelphia, Tom Noonan wrote in That Mag: "Overall, Reese's catalog is deep and uniformly strong, grasping onto themes that manage to be both specific and common, personal yet relatable. She plays the kind of music you can't ignore, whatever the opposite of white noise is called."

One who didn't ignore it was Gene Shay, sometimes called the grandfather of Philadelphia folk music, although Caroline said he almost did.

"I send my CDs everywhere: radio stations, bars, restaurants and blogs," she said. "One day Gene called me and said 'I almost didn't open your album.' But he did."

Caroline and her band the Drifting Fifth will appear on Shay's The Folk Show next Sunday at 9 p.m. on WXPN-FM.

They'll perform some new songs along with songs from her two albums.

One new song is "What I Did," which contains a bridge Caroline is proud of.

"I close my eyes/ I shut 'em tight/ I've never let a sleeping dog lie in my whole life/ No way to treat him/ I had no reason/ If it's a nightmare then I deserve to keep on sleeping ."

"The bridge is the hardest part," she said. "It lets you examine the lyrical subject matter from a different angle."

The bridge also builds an avenue for the original material to return before the song ends. Just as poets read poetry and novelists read novels, songwriters listen to other songwriters. Caroline's artistic pedigree includes Johnny Cash, the Judds and Emmylou Harris.

"Taylor Swift actually gave me my first CD, which was Shania Twain's album 'Come On Over,' " she said.

The two were next-door neighbors in Wyomissing.

"Right now, I can't get enough of the Black Keys and the late-career American recordings by Johnny Cash," she said.

Among her many admirers is Caroline's producer, Marty Mellinger, whom area music lovers will remember as the Marty of Marty and the Mangoes.

He produced both of her CDs at his studio, Cross Keys Recording in Bern Township.

"Caroline knows what she wants," he said. "She has a vision before we do the work, which makes my life (in the studio) easy."

Mellinger saw her perform in Princeton and was impressed.

"She has an amazing way of maintaining one-on-one contact with her audience," he said. "Sinatra did that, too, made you feel he was singing to you." - the Reading Eagle

"Band Review: Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth"

The band’s newness is only really apparent in their own surprise at the reception of their group while on tour. Watter explained the surreality of encountering “real fans” at a gig in Building 24 was and recounted being taken aback by individuals who had traveled to come see them. Watter’s reaction to a fan’s exclamation that she had been following their music prior to the tour is representative of how humble the band members are.

“That’s something I say to other people. I never expect someone to say that to me,” Watter said, referring to the fan’s compliment.

Following the tour, they talk about being a more knowledgeable group with experience under their belt and playfully jest about writing up a rider. However, Reese is careful to keep herself and the group in check, constantly referring to their experience as the result of “an accumulation of little chances” and “opportunities we don’t deserve.” The group loves to joke about how “uncool” they are and how enthusiastic they were about everything on tour, like the amount of chandeliers at a venue.

“We always act like we’re not going to be excited,” Terret said, “but every single time we get so excited!”

The group was not shy about letting fans in on that excitement while on tour.

“At our first encore at a gig, I actually announced to the audience ‘That’s never happened before,’” Reese said.

But don’t let their modesty fool you; the band has talent and has played at venues that have also showcased notable groups like the White Stripes. Over break, the band was also featured on Gene Shay’s famous Philadelphia Folk Show on WXPN. Shay is known as “the grandfather of Philadelphia Folk Music” and has interviewed numerous music greats, including Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne. - Daily Princetonian


Indian River (2010) --Self released, iTunes
Slow Code (2013) --Self releasediTunes, Spotify, Pandora
The Electric Year: LIve EP (2014) --Self released Bandcamp



Caroline Reese is an alt-folk/country singer-songwriter from Reading, PA. She wrote her first album of material during a year spent working on a cattle ranch when she was 18, and self-released it when she returned home at the end of 2010. It became "Indian River." She kept writing and performing, and "Slow Code" followed in 2013 after being funded through the generosity of fans on Kickstarter, who raised over $9,000 in only a few days.

A group of musicians came together to support the release and promotion of "Slow Code," and this group became the Drifting Fifth: Mark Watter on electric guitar, Karl Germanovich on bass, and Tom Markham on percussion. 

Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth's sound created buzz in the Philly area and the group ended 2013 with performances at venues like the North Star Bar, Melodies Cafe, and Gene Shay's famous Folk Show on WXPN. 

2014 has shown to be even better; they've opened for Ben Folds, Chris Stapleton (of the Grammy nominated SteelDrivers), released their first EP as a band, "The Electric Year," and maintained a busy touring schedule. WXPN's The Key wrote that "The Electric Year is a 7-track album full of country-infused folk, but this isn't your average, everyday folk music. Reese is a vocal powerhouse and infuses the songs with a distinctive style...Reese's voice gives you chills with the amount of raw emotion she puts into her lyrics and delivery." They head into 2015 with a busy touring schedule, new material, and plans to record another full length album.

Band Members