This morning my thoughts are turning to folksy women – Tracy Chapman and The Indigo Girls. The artists were significant to me when I was a young adult, and I still very much enjoy their voices and their style of music. It occurs to me that I know nothing about what they’ve been up to in the past 10 years or so. Hey – I’ve never been a mega-fan (of anyone, really).
The Indigo Girls’ most recent album is Beauty Queen Sister, released in 2011. When you head to the duo’s website, you’ll be greeted with a peppy tune that sounds a little more like the Monkees than the Indigo Girls I remember. The release notes for the album cite many guest artists, so perhaps their more folksy, yet somehow edgy sound that I adored 20 years ago – and still put on my running playlist now and again – has not disappeared. Not sure. The pair also maintains a blog over on Tumblr, where I snatched the pic above – who wears short shorts? Emily Saliers blushes, in retrostpect, not about the shorts but about some of the imagery in the lyrics on the album Strange Fire, “But, hey, I was 24, and you are where you are.” Keep it real, Girls.
Tracy Chapman has always been a bit more cerebral, in my estimation, and I love her unique voice and complex themes. As I checked out her website, I’m thrilled with the sound of her latest album, Our Bright Future, apparently released in 2009. It brings together Chapman’s broad folk/rockabilly/jazz influences while maintaining her own signature sound. To my ears, she’s still cranking out great folk tunes from the heart of an activist.
Thanks for reading.