The Interstate 5 runs through Red Bluff, the small Northern California town Margaret Glaspy hails from, and her influences are as varied and numerous as her hometown’s passersby. Before succumbing (as we all do) to pop music’s gravitational pull, Glaspy began as a Texas-Style fiddle player. After high school, her talents earned her scholarships that landed her at Berklee College of Music where she officially stayed for one semester, and then unofficially after her scholarship money dried–sneaking into workshops and masters classes at the school. Alas, after a celebrated fiddle career, and attending the most prestigious music school in the country, Glaspy has lowered herself to the baseness of the electric guitar–and its amazing.
Citing influences like Bill Withers, Elliott Smith, Weezer’s Pinkerton, and Joni Mitchell’s Blue, she’s able to incorporate all of her divergent tastes into her music while, somehow, not sounding like any of them. The crunchy-clean guitar of Elliott Smith’s electric moments, Rivers Cuomo’s songcraft skills, and occasionally, the unplaceable presence of Joni Mitchell’s beautifully weary voice all whisper behind a sound that is utterly hers. If pressed, I guess you could her music folk-rock, but genre assignment always tends to flatten an artists work into a boring landscape full of vague similarities.
Check out Margaret Glaspy’s Studio 1A session at the bottom of the page, and check out her debut LP Emotions and Math out June 17th.