An­gela Easter­ling back for four shows

Chattanooga Times Free Press - ChattanoogaNow - - MUSIC - BY SU­SAN PIERCE STAFF WRITER Con­tact Su­san Pierce at spierce@times­freep­ress. com or 423-757-6284.

An­gel a Easter­ling de­scribes her new sin­gle as “trag­i­cally, way too timely.”

That sin­gle, “Half­way Down,” puts into words the feel­ings of sad­ness, out­rage and hor­ror ex­pressed by the Amer­i­can pub­lic with each re­port of a mass shoot­ing. The lyrics were in­spired, in part, by Oc­to­ber’s mass shoot­ing in Las Ve­gas at the Route 91 Har­vest Mu­sic Fes­ti­val. The ti­tle refers to flags be­ing flown at half-mast.

“I wasn’t at the fes­ti­val, but I re­mem­ber so vividly wak­ing up on that beau­ti­ful fall day and hear­ing of this unimag­in­able tragedy and think­ing, ‘ Not again,’” Easter­ling says.

“I had the idea for the song for quite some time — we live down the road from a fire sta­tion, and it has got­ten to where it seems like their flag is at half- staff most of the time. This mass vi­o­lence keeps re­cur­ring at such an alarm­ing rate, but some­thing about that day shook the rest of the idea loose for me and I wrote the whole song in just a few min­utes.”

Co­in­ci­den­tally, “Half­way Down” was up­loaded to the in­ter­net the same day the Stone­man Dou­glas High School shoot­ing oc­curred in Fe­bru­ary.

Easter­ling says the song is the first from an al­bum she is cur­rently work­ing on. The Amer­i­cana/ folk/coun­try singer will per­form a lot of that new ma­te­rial when she comes to town for four per­for­mances Fri­day through Sun­day, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, at Charles & Myr­tle’s Cof- fee­house and sev­eral area markets. She per­formed a sim­i­lar round of con­certs here last Au­gust.

The singer lives in South Carolina on her grand­fa­ther’s farm with her part­ner in life and mu­sic, Brandon Turner, and their two sons. The boys are the 10th gen­er­a­tion of her fam­ily to live on the fam­ily prop­erty.

Turner will ac­com­pany her to Chat­tanooga and sing with her at her four shows.

“He adds beau­ti­ful tex­ture and so­los with his lead gui­tar and har­mony vo­cals, and sings a few of his own songs as well, which is a nice vari­a­tion,” she says.

Ear­lier this year, Easter­ling was hon­ored by the Ker­rville New Folk Fes­ti­val when she was named a Ker­rville New Folk fi­nal­ist for the fourth time.

“All con­tes­tants get to per­form their se­lected songs at the fes­ti­val. It is a great honor, and so in­spir­ing. I love go­ing to Ker­rville. All of the fi­nal­ists are so unique and so tal­ented and they and the au­di­ence feel like fam­ily. They re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate song­writ­ers.”

She says she’s hop­ing to fin­ish her cur­rent project by the end of the year, but keep­ing up with two preschool­ers, writ­ing mu­sic and book­ing more gigs than ever makes it hard to find stu­dio time.

“I don’t want to sac­ri­fice qual­ity to just get some­thing out there,” she ex­plains. “I want it to be some­thing I am proud of, so if it takes a lit­tle bit longer, so be it.”

As she’s work­ing, the al­bum’s t heme is still com­ing t ogether, s he says, “although there is a lot on there about my ex­pe­ri­ences with moth­er­hood/par­ent­hood, life in this world to­day as a woman and the cur­rent po­lit­i­cal cli­mate.”

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

An­gela Easter­ling

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