Laura Boswell
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Laura Boswell

Asheville, NC | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | SELF

Asheville, NC | SELF
Established on Jan, 2008
Solo Folk Singer/Songwriter




"State College Singer-Songwriter Releases Sophomore Album"

The first time I heard Laura Boswell sing and play the guitar it was fall 2014, and I was recording a music video with the Feats of Strength at a barn in Pine Grove Mills. Boswell was there recording too, and she blew me away.

I was captivated by her intricate finger-picking, which was just loud enough to resonate throughout the barn, but was wonderfully delicate and woven with seemingly effortless technicality. It was tough for me to get a handle on her rhythm, but when she started singing it all came together with a shimmering and wistful quality, and then I understood.

What I understood is that Boswell is a musical gem. Thankfully, she recently released a new album, “Fall Away,” and she is planning a national tour that will lead her back to the east coast, just in time for the holidays.

“I’m in the beginning stages of organizing shows around the country for this coming summer,” Boswell said. “I’ve wanted to go on a tour and I think now is a good time, having two albums under my belt.”

Boswell’s previous release is “Counting Eyes,” and both of her albums are available on iTunes, Spotify and Bandcamp, and both feature Boswell’s original songs.

“My songwriting style has evolved and changed since I recorded my first album, along with my voice,” Boswell said. “The songs on this latest album were almost all 3-5 years old when I recorded them. It’s important to me to capture their essence before I grow beyond them both stylistically and experientially. My songs represent and express my experience as a person, which changes over time.”

Boswell is a singer-songwriter for sure, but she’s also a classically trained guitarist, and it would be hard to find someone who can pick a guitar more beautifully than her. “Fall Away” has Boswell’s signature sound, which for this album includes contributions from local accordion player Denise Strayer, drummer Josh Troupe and stylist Eric Ian Farmer.

“Most of the songs were written on the guitar, with two banjo tunes on the album,” Boswell said. “I’m primarily finger-picking. You’ll hear a lot of accordion, drum kit and upright bass.”

When I listened to “Fall Away” I was immediately taken by the guitar playing. I don’t know what it is, but Boswell manages to pick in patterns I haven’t heard before, and they frequently combine with dancing drum beats, upright bass and even sometimes a full band sound with Strayer, Troupe and Farmer in the mix.

The title track stands out in particular, as it’s a crossover sound between Boswell’s innovative finger-picking and some old time tones. When she sings, she sings about love, encounters and missing people and attachments that emanate throughout the songs, and it’s all spun together right here in State College..

“I recorded it with Bob Klotz at both his home and the Penn State music studio,” Boswell said. “I feel grateful to have worked with Bob.”

Touring, recording, promoting and all business side, music is ultimately an endeavor of the heart for Boswell, which is why she’s so gifted and prolific. It’s not just that she has talent. She reveals her heart space through her music, and that’s what her music is about — a journey through her lovely, ancient heart.

“When I play music, especially when I perform, I’m able to access a true presence of body and mind. A stillness,” Boswell said. “I definitely experience an emotional release when I write, play and perform. I’m able to go to a place deep within myself, and to be able to intimately share that with others takes the experience to an entirely different level. It is magical.” - Centre Daily Times

"Lahaina-based Musician Laura Boswell Has An Impressive New Album Out..."

Lahaina-based musician Laura Boswell has an impressive new album out, “Fall Away,” that highlights her talent as an exceptional guitarist who fuses classical and folk influences.

Accompanied by accordion, percussion and upright bass on most tracks, “Fall Away” is distinguished by her intricate fingerpicking style that reflects a traditional folk approach with complex classical harmonies.

“The music reflects me getting immersed in classical music,” Boswell explains. “I wanted to bring more complexity to traditional folk harmonies.”

Composing in a style that has been compared to Iron & Wine (Sam Beam) and the late British singer Nick Drake, her songs range from the bewitching “Easily,” where she plays banjo and the stirring, flamenco-inspired “Shots”; to the dreamy, double guitar-tracked “Weather” and the yearning, heartfelt “New Year’s Eve.”

“My music comes from a deep personal place,” she says. “When I write, I genuinely express my emotions and myself.”

She has released two YouTube videos shot on Maui. The latest depicts her song, “Weather.”

“I like to showcase the natural world and tie it into my music,” she says.

Playing guitar since the age of 10, she became a classic rocker as a teenager.

“I really liked Jimi Hendrix and Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin and got into electric guitar,” she recalls. “That’s how I honed my technical skills.”

Shifting to mellower musicians like Jack Johnson and Iron & Wine, she later began developing her fingerpicking technique on acoustic guitar.

At college in North Carolina, she earned a degree in Classical Guitar Performance, and also studied classical piano.

“I really love playing Bach and the South American composers and Spanish arrangements,” she says.

Her studies continued last summer when she attended Verdery’s annual master guitar workshop on Maui.

“I had been on a hiatus from my classical studies, so it was great to take classes with Ben,” she notes.

Boswell can be heard performing at Lahaina’s Alchemy Maui kombucha bar on Fridays from noon to 2 p.m., and at the Martin Lawrence Gallery on Front Street every other Friday from 7 to 9 p.m.

“I was playing classical before, but my classical guitar was damaged so it’s out for repairs,” she says. “So I’ve just been playing and singing my originals and covers.”

Covers she plays range from Norah Jones and Iron & Wine, to Neil Young and the Beatles.

“I play a lot of Beatles — ‘Julia,’ ‘Something,’ ‘Blackbird’ and ‘Norwegian Wood.’ “

Her latest album as well as her debut, “Counting Eyes,” are available on iTunes, Spotify and Bandcamp at - Maui News


Still working on that hot first release.



Laura exhibits a poetic and technical depth that has garnered comparisons to Regina Spektor, Nick Drake, Joni Mitchell, and Ani Difranco. Her songs are honest and intimate, evoking the vulnerability that comes with loving, struggling, and simply existing. Along with being a singer-songwriter, Laura has a degree in classical guitar performance and studied classical piano from a young age. She draws upon her training, technique and many classical composers when crafting her own unique, intricate style of folk music. Laura has produced and self-released two albums, Counting Eyes (April 2014) and Fall Away (November 2017).

“The first time I heard Laura play and sing, I was stunned. It was like listening to an Elf sing. Not one of the cute Keebler elves. I’m talking a Tolkeinesque Elf. Ten thousand years old, with magic powers in every bone. The trees like children, spellbound, listening, and bending low to catch a glimpse of the singer. The wind itself holding its breath and going silent so as not to drown out that voice. That kind of Elf.” – Bill Eichman

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