Neal Carpenter

Neal Carpenter

BandFolkAmericana

Biography

Some artists perform at you, while others some seem to invite hearers in, both to share their stories and to be a part of new ones. Whether you chalk it up to southern hospitality or his "know no stranger" personality, Neal Carpenter clearly falls into the latter group. Neal's music brings variation in arrangement and melody while retaining the heartfelt simplicities of soul and folk music. All the while, a creative depth and commitment to connectedness and full living runs throughout.

This shouldn't come as a huge surprise- Carpenter grew up in South Carolina where exposure to both country and soul music is a given. With the sounds of Kenny Rogers, Merle Haggard, and The Judds combined with Sam Cooke and Aretha Franklin shaping his experience, it's no wonder Neal chooses to include story and heart in his lyrics. Carpenter names Patty Griffin as a major influence to his music as he seeks to glean the craft of packing complex emotion into the nuances of the way a song is sung, while also seeing her as a guide for character descriptions. Bill Withers, Tracy Chapman, David Wilcox, and Ryan Adams are also among the top Carpenter's list of influences for style and melodic arrangement.

Carpenter's ability to create a reaction rather than commanding one most likely stems from a shift in his own life from a self-centered love of music to songwriting, which as he puts it, “involves learning that writing music is about you and everyone else.” Writing songs is fueled by his desire to give others the sensation of connectedness that comes from hearing a song and feeling like it must have been written for or about you. And in the end, the hope is that you walk away feeling challenged to see life differently.

Neal started as many of us do, picking up a guitar with high school friends to play other people's songs. As his ability grew, so did his desire to continue to express himself musically. Throughout college, Neal considered the possibility of pursuing music as a career and after a few more years of nagging, that desire has finally won out. As he puts it “There is something incredibly exhilarating about singing the stream of your consciousness at the top of your lungs.” The result is heartfelt and relatable; an artist whose shows feel less like performances, and more like conversations.

Discography

The End of Measure-2005
Track Listing:
1. Come Along
2. Home to Carolina
3. Love Story
4. Measure Up
5. Running
6. Sun Will Rise

Rock U Compilation Album
Track Listing:
1. The Big Tease- Know What You Know
2. Perfect Orange- 1,000 Piece Puzzle
3. Wildcat Writings- Shoebox Sagas
4. Michael Lawrence- I Know Something
5. Half Strung- No Goodbye
6. Daniel Broadrick- Weremule
7. Matgo Primo- Holes in the Walls
8. artvandalay- Point II Website
9. Turnstile- Goldfish Memories
10. Neal Carpenter- Come Along

2007 Demos
Helen
Earthquake
Fairbanks
Dead Man Walking

Set List

Primarily original material with covers interspersed.