I first crossed paths with Annabeth McNamara through House Studios in Washington, D.C. Since then, she’s been on a true vagabonding journey through her travels led by music and storytelling — which brings us here. Reader, please meet Larkspur.
Larkspur is a Charlottesville-based trio whose mesmerizing, ethereal harmonies dance over dream-like folk. Built primarily around soaring cello lines, spiraling soprano voices and a catalog of string instruments, Larkspur’s sound is other-wordly, soulful and enchanting. The band itself is the brain child of Annabeth, Laurel, and Renee. I got to ask Annabeth a bit more about their Kickstarter — wherein they asked their supporters to operate as their label financially. Oh yeah, they kicked ass by the way, and raised $7,618 (their goal was $5,000) to create their EP.
About their new EP & the lead single “Canyon”
When I asked about the writing process behind their recent release, Annabeth says, “lyrically, I’ve been aiming to be like Feist and write songs that folks can project their own meaning onto, so it feels counter-intuitive to reveal the meaning behind the words of this song. That said, it’s funny how a song can come from disparate elements and combine to something cohesive.” Hear the first single, Canyon, below:
Production help from Jake Hull
Annabeth remarked that in addition to her bandmates, producer Jake Hull was influential to the recording process of the 5-song EP they are working on now. “He does a lot of film scoring, so we were attracted to the swelling synths and strings and bells and chimes he could bring to really manifest our musical vision. I find cinema music is designed to add to the film’s drama and intensify the emotion of the scene. I think what this translates into this EP recording project is that our songs have a stronger emotional impact than they would if we hadn’t worked with Jake. He has enhanced our songs a ton without really changing their structure. It’s all been done in extremely tasteful ways. This album is going to be 100% better because we handed the songs over to his artistry.”
The three will spend the rest of 2017 fulfilling Kickstarter rewards, finishing album art for the EP with Charlottesville artist Sam Gray, playing a string of house shows. House shows are growing increasingly popular in towns like Nashville, Chicago, and DC. Annabeth likes the direct connection, and said, “We’ve found a direct fan relationship works well for us at this point, as evidenced by our successful crowd-funding. It feels like we’re cultivating a veritable garden of beautiful flower children (at heart) who love to sway to our songs. Many of them are friends and relatives and yogis and dancers and herbalists and farmers and that’s all well and good!”
Their Kickstarter certainly has proven that Larkspur has struck a chord with many.
ANNABETH’S GIRL GANG MUSIC SUGGESTIONS:
“Because she’s so cutting-edge. As an acoustic folk princess, I revel in her completely synthetic sound. Also her super-high notes hidden throughout her albums kill me (in a good way). I’m currently working toward achieving this vocal feat one day — I’ve got the pipes, just still learning how to do that particular stunt.”
“She encourages me to follow my inner turtle dove in the hopes that one day I’ll be a huge hit after garnering a cult following over a multiple-decade musical hiatus…”