If you made it to legendary blues and folk singer/songwriter Chris Smither’s most recent Philadelphia appearance, at World Café Live this November, there’s a good chance that you got a chance to catch the organically-enchanting-to-the-nth-degree Caitlin Canty, who served as the evening’s opener. Canty is a singer/songwriter of the Americana persuasion, but who has most recently has found herself gliding somewhere between dusty folk and ‘90s alt. country, morose, but in a very empowering fashion. January 20th will see the release of Reckless Skyline, her latest LP and follow-up to Golden Hour, which was released earlier this year. The album was produced by Jeffrey Foucault and boasts a band comprised of a cast of all-stars, known for their work with the likes of Morphine, Ray Lamontange, and The Pretenders. She’s already released two of Reckless Skyline’s tracks, “True” and “Get Up,” and is about to set off on a string of US dates, beginning on January 21st at NYC’s Rockwood Music Hall and including a January 22nd stop at Burlap and Bean, in our suburb of Newtown Square. I recently got a chance to talk to Caitlin about her latest album, which she tells me was something new for her.
“There’s a lot of difference with this album, compared to Golden Hour and the EPs, which were really collaborative, but I put my name on it. This is like the second thing with my name and face on it [Golden Hour being the first to don Caitlin’s face]. It was a more gently produced album with quieter sounds and lots of sorrow. And this was my first time working with a producer, Jeffrey Foucault. I went into a beautiful studio and played every song live. Everything was a live take and it felt so energetic for that reason.”
Caitlin tells me that the recording of Reckless Skyline was quite significant and that she originally had 19 songs, which were pared down based on which 12 songs seemed to best fit as a finished product. Although her sounds may vary to a significant degree, she tells me that she is happy to wear her influences on her sleeve.
“Musically, it would seem to be obvious. Jeffrey’s Horse Latitudes album was a big inspiration. He recorded that in three days live. And Neil Young was obviously a big one, with my cover of ‘Unknown Legend’ on the album.”
I ask Caitlin if she has any particular track on the record that she’s most fond of, telling her that “Southern Man,” her ode to classic American masculinity, displaced in both an alien region and period, is especially striking to me. She agrees that the song, which is the perfectly delicate blend of both folk and pop balladry, is one of her favorite pieces found on the album: “That one was a blast to play in the studio. That was the last thing that we recorded, but it’s interesting because some things sing better in the studio and some things sing better live and live I’ve really liked doing ‘Get Up,’ which always seems to produce a huge response.”
In terms of what 2015 holds for Caitlin Canty, the singer/songwriter is quite excited about moving to Nashville in February. However, she’s also excited about this handful of musically large dates on the road in the North Atlantic this January and February, especially her local stop in Newtown Square: “I’m bringing the whole record band, along with Billy Conway, on the road and I’m especially excited for Burlap and Bean – it’s a full band and an ‘evening with’ and it’s also my birthday. That’ll be the most fun I’ll ever have onstage.”