Allison Russell has already made an exceptional impression in roots music — first in the duo Birds of Chicago, then as a member of Our Native Daughters. Now with her new album Outside Child, she’s putting her own story front and center. Whether she’s singing in English or French, Russell’s voice feels like satin, comfortable and cool. Yet she weaves some of the most painful memories of her formative years in Montréal into the fabric of her Fantasy Recordings debut.
Special guests on the album include the McCrary Sisters, Ruth Moody, Erin Rae, and Yola. Upon revealing the project, Russell wrote, “This is my first solo album. It is acutely personal. It was hard for me to write, harder still to sing, play, and share. Also a relief. Like sucking the poison from a snake bite. Thanks to the supreme empathy, musicality, kindness, sensitivity, and humour of each artist who brought these songs to life with me, the recording process became — by some mystical alchemy –joyous and empowering…. Eased by loving communal laughter as much as shared tears.”
We are proud to present Allison Russell as our BGS Artist of the Month for May. In the days ahead, look for a new performance video, an exclusive interview (read part one here)(read part two here), and a sleek style shoot with this singular artist, who now calls Nashville home alongside her partner JT Nero and their young daughter. Discover more of her musical journey with our BGS Essentials playlist.
Photo credit: Marc Baptiste