“It’s really one song, cut into eight parts that hopefully places the listener on the front porch with me. The story has a beginning, a middle and an end, just like a working day.”
– William Elliott Whitmore
On July 12th, one man, his banjo, and his bass drum will set free the follow up to 2009’s Animals In The Dark.
Whitmore’s track record has proven his devotion to his music. To say he is dedicated is an understatement. Whitmore is about to embark on a three month, twelve city tour; where he will play five consecutive nights in five different states.
To call it Bluegrass, Blues, or Folk just doesn’t capture the essence of William Elliott Whitmore’s new studio album. Built from the soil, Field Songs is a proclamation of a disappearing region of the country that was once its lifeblood. Raised on a farm near the Mississippi River, this Iowan transcends the thought of music as an extension of oneself. His newest album, released on Anti-Records, is truly a reflection inducing experience. It prompts you to stop for a moment and think about the world around you, one beyond your immediate sight, but still very close to home. As Dylan was to the city, Whitmore is to the heartland.
His lyrics take you out to the fields, into the world of the hardworking laborers that don’t just work, but rather live the farms from cradle to grave. Isolating his thoughts with the coming-to-term story of “Bury Your Burdens In The Ground” he holds nothing back as he lays his insightful, meaningful music at your feet. Moving into “Don’t Need It,” the album stands tall with impactful exclamation of self reliance and get-it-done attitude.
Exemplifying this mentality, “Let’s Do Something Impossible” is a fantastic anthem to those willing to take chances. Substantiating his passion to the often overlooked side of this world, “Get There From Here” lays out an enlightened perspective into America’s allure. The world created in Field Songs is so vivid and within reach, being painted by the simplistic melodic strumming and single vocals.
Stripped down to bare essentials, there is nothing glitzy or glamorous about Whitmore. His music just doesn’t need it. Armed with fundamentally basic instrumentals, and weathered, old soulful voice he craftfully taps in to a simplicity that carries it’s own imagery. Close your eyes, feel this album; you’ll instantly be lost in the Field Songs.