October 5, 2011

B-sides

Local folk heritage
Americana singer-songwriter Ashleigh Flynn will open for Todd Snider at the KCD Theater on Saturday. The Louisville native-turned-Pacific Northwesterner answered some of LEO’s questions.

LEO: Where did you go to high school?
Ashleigh Flynn: Actually, I left in fourth grade, after my parents split, and I moved to Virginia, but I continued to visit on a fairly regular basis. I went to Chenoweth Elementary, and then St. Matthews Elementary, which I loved because my teacher would pull out her guitar and sing folk songs to us every Friday.

LEO: What kind of musical experiences did you have here before you moved?
AF: I cut my teeth dancing to bluegrass and polka at the heritage festivals down at the Belvedere each summer. Also, my parents used to hold big old bluegrass jams in our backyard.

LEO: What inspires your writing?
AF: My writing is inspired by stories and myths I hear or live that move me — of trials and tribulations, “isms,” the American landscape around the mid-to-late 1800s, early 1900s has always been a fascination. I just finished a tune about Cattle Annie and Little Britches, two very underappreciated outlaws who could ride and shoot as well as any man, and they weren’t prone to killing folks for money — just stealing horses and trading whiskey on the black market.

LEO: If there was a Louisville version of “Portlandia,” what would you want to see on it?
AF: I think Will Oldham would need to play a lead — he was in my third grade class — and My Morning Jacket would need to be guests and take us on a tour of the Bourbon Trail or Whiskey Row by thoroughbred.

LEO: What’s so great about Portland, anyway? Isn’t it just a more expensive Louisville?
AF: I have to say the lack of humidity and bluebird skies in summer and proximity to the coast and volcanic mountains give it a little bit of a boost over my old Kentucky home — I don’t own an air conditioner. However, the Portland food cart revival has nothing on Ollie’s Trolley.

Learn more at ashleighflynn.net or kcd.org.

ear X-tacy Top Sales:
Wilco — The Whole Love
The Jayhawks — Mockingbird Time
Mastodon — The Hunter
The Tedeschi Trucks Band — Revelator
VHS or Beta — Diamonds & Death
Bonnie “Prince” Billy — Wolfroy Goes to Town
Adele — 21
Opeth — Heritage
SuperHeavy — SuperHeavy
Gillian Welch — The Harrow & the Harvest