When one artist turns me on to another, chances are high that it will be someone whose music becomes important, even essential, to me. That seems to be what's happening with the music of Amy Correia. She's been the first thing I turn on when I get home all week. On a certain musical level, she moved in.
I was at a Thai restaurant the other night with Bill DeMain and the visiting diva Rebecca Martin, lamenting the Martha Wainwright interview that got away. Rebecca threw out Amy's name without missing a beat, said I should talk to her. But you never really know at a moment like that if it will be just another record, or another world that you will return to with a clandestine frequency.
The artist's second CD is called Lakeville, after the Massachusetts town of her beginning. Mark Howard's production is sensually celestial. It was the second occasion of collaboration for the artist and producer, although the fruit of the first meeting did not suit the marketing agenda of the label of the moment. There have been a number of labels involved, even though only two CDs have so far appeared. Capitol put the first one out in 2000, Carnival of Love. Though it was widely acclaimed critically, it was a less than dream debut for the artist, and involved multiple producers, a long list of musicians, too many labels and too much time. But it definitely put her on the map as an artist of great depth and emotional range.
But Lakeville was a completely different story. When the deal with Capitol ended, a limbo began that went on a few years. Amy went back to NYC from L.A. eventually, gigged and woodshedded, wrote. On a trip to L.A. to visit friends, she ran into Mark Howard at a diner. He invited her up to the Paramour estate, where he'd just finished recording an album with Lucinda Williams. In May of 2003 they banged out a half dozen tunes with some friends who were in town. There was no dough to start or continue the project, but with her producer's help, she went back in the fall and with a new batch of players finished the record. The results were nothing short of magical in this writer's opinion, as earthy as they are ethereal. Spooky, but visceral.
run into somebody this good, you wonder how you could have missed them
for so long, or have done without them. Maybe it was because we had some
friends in common, but we got on well after circling each other in the
first round. She's no one to trifle with, and has quickly become one of
our new favorites. We urge you to pick up Lakeville, and know you'll
enjoy this conversation with Amy Correia in New York, Nashville calling.