Tawny Ellis

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  • Tawny Ellis

    This show was on Mar 2nd, 2015 | 33 people watched
    3 Comments
    • Mar 3
    • Mar 3
      Awesome! Loved it and would love to see more! (Aunt Judy from MS)
    • Mar 4
      Enjoyed the music. My only wish was the voices were stronger than the instrmentals.
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Bio

Tawny Ellis has long used music to glimpse a sense of connection with others, and to “unlock and alleviate the many mysteries of life.” Now, with a sweetly sublime voice that’s limitless in its capturing of feeling, Ellis taps into her uncommon intuition as a vocalist to craft songs near-magical in their power to enchant and uplift her listeners. Mining influences as varied as Patsy Cline,... more

Tawny Ellis has long used music to glimpse a sense of connection with others, and to “unlock and alleviate the many mysteries of life.” Now, with a sweetly sublime voice that’s limitless in its capturing of feeling, Ellis taps into her uncommon intuition as a vocalist to craft songs near-magical in their power to enchant and uplift her listeners. Mining influences as varied as Patsy Cline, David Bowie, Joni Mitchell, and Willie Nelson, the Los Angeles-based songstress channels that dynamic into an intricately textured blend of folk, rock, and alt-country that’s intense and masterful but irresistibly intimate. On her latest EP, Ellis partnered with lap-steel guitarist Cisco DeLuna and her husband/longtime collaborator Gio Loria to create a collection of songs that set lush melodies and lyrical storytelling to stark yet ethereal arrangements. The stunning four-song offering arrives on the heels of 2011’s I To You, a full-length release deemed a “deep, texturally rich, mostly acoustic affair” by Guitar World in a review that also praised Ellis for possessing “the sort of voice one could make a meal of, in the vein of Neko Case or Ray LaMontagne.” I To You marked a graceful progression into indie-folk after Ellis’s immersing herself in alt-country on 2008’s Evolve Or Die, an album that Bedlam magazine hailed as a “a playful, soulful and rich exploration of country” (adding that “Ellis has knife-edged, crystal-clear, pitch-perfect voice that can quiver and twang, soar to delicate heights and swoop to a rich, guttural fullness”). A breakthrough album for Ellis, Evolve Or Die found the Savannah, Georgia-born singer embracing her roots and drawing inspiration from Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams, and the many other boundary-pushing country artists she grew up on. Because her father was in the Air Force, Ellis had a highly nomadic childhood that included stints in locales as disparate as Louisiana and the Philippines. After spending her teen years in Utah (where she split her time between singing in rock & roll bands and horseback-riding on her family’s farm), Ellis moved to L.A. at age 20 to launch her music career. But while Ellis ended up landing an eight-album deal with a major record company, she eventually left the label to make music more in line with her own songwriting vision, then independently released her debut album Shelter in 2006. Also an acclaimed sculptor who has shown her work throughout the world, Ellis is endlessly inspired with new ideas for harnessing her hyper-creative energy. Along with assembling a covers album entitled Songs My Friends Thought I Should Do (to be released in spring 2014) and working on tracks for her next original full-length release, she’s engaged in projects like pairing her sculptures with animation in the video for “This Great Divide,” a song for which she collaborated with Circle Jerks bassist/longtime Joe Strummer cohort Zander Schloss. But no matter which type of endeavor she undertakes, Ellis’s most essential motivation is to create art that’s gently transformative for all who experience it. “In my songs I try to tap into those emotions that are hard to talk about, heartbreak and loss and all the other things that are so hard to express and heal from,” she says. And by creating through such varied forms of media, she adds, Ellis finds herself unraveling the kind of universal understanding that can’t be conveyed with words alone. “There’s a common thread that connects us as humans,” she says. “It’s like a kick from the inside…trying to untangle mysteries not just for myself, but for others as well. It’s sophisticated and so simple at the same time, and I love the duality of that.”

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