Amsterdam-based singer-songwriter Gayle Skidmore performs live this month at Portland’s Landmark Saloon.
The prolific, whimsical songwriter recently relocated from California to Amsterdam, and is touring to support her new album, “The Golden West.”
A gifted artist, Skidmore plays not only guitar, banjo and keyboard, but dozens of other instruments on her lush, pop-rock arrangements. Both fans and newbies will have the good fortune to hear tracks from the soon-to-be-released album when Skidmore plays Portland later this month.
We think it’s quite fitting that her new album – about letting go of past relationships, optimism and healing – has a spring release date.
About the new album
“During 2015 I toured extensively, ending my last tour of the year in Eugene, Oregon,” says Skidmore. “There I began an intense time of recording, fundraising, and gigging on the weekends.”
“James Book of Ninkasi Brewing invited me up to record in Ninkasi Studios. We had initially planned to do an E.P. but we got a little ambitious and ended up recording ten songs.”
We at PRP think you’ll love “Pale Ghosts,” a sweeping, stirring track we added to the playlist this week.
Have a listen:
A highlight for Skidmore is guest Dave Catching playing guitar on “Only Ever You.” “I’m such a fan of [Eagles of Death Metal], and I’m really grateful to Dave for bringing us out to his studio. It was a dream come true and I’m grateful to Ninkasi Brewing for making it happen.”
We had a chance to visit with Gayle this week about her illustrious career, and, the new tracks. Here’s what she had to say:
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PRP: “How’d you get your start in music?”
GS: “I started playing piano when I was four years old, I have a funny little recordings of me singing songs from the time I was three. I have always loved music and started officially writing songs when I was eight years old.”
“When I was 14, I bought a Lisa Loeb CD, and then started thinking about doing shows, and eventually booked myself a gig in a coffee shop.”
“When I was 18, I put out my first EP.”
PRP: “We’ve added “Pale Ghosts,” the opening track on ‘Golden West’, to our playlist, and we love it. What was the inspiration behind that song?”
GS: “Thank you so much! I’m so glad you like it.”
“I was on tour with my friends Back Down South and Minor Birds in Sonora, California. I was reflecting on the past few years – which had been incredibly difficult – and thinking about how I wanted to move forward with my life. I was considering moving to The Netherlands at the time, and as the sun was setting the inspiration came to me for the song– leaving everything behind me, both emotionally and physically.”
PRP: “It seems you have a fun partnership with Ninkasi Brewing going on. How did that get started?”
GS: “Ninkasi Brewing has been such an integral part of my career for the last several years. I met them out at SXSW in 2012. They were sponsoring my friends’ band and I was running their merch table and the marketing director James Book and I started chatting about music.”
“I ended up visiting the brewery a few weeks later and we recorded a song together. We’ve been working together ever since.”
PRP: “Which tracks – including from the upcoming release – are your favorites to perform live?”
GS: “My favorites to play live are “Pale Ghosts” and “Only Ever You” because the piano parts are really fun to play, and also because the songs are really important to me and are easy to connect with emotionally while I’m playing.”
Find her music and shows
Other notable standout tracks on the new release include Skidmore’s lovely “Beautiful Soul” and title track “The Golden West,” both choice arrangements.
The Golden West
You can find music by Gayle Skidmore on iTunes; the new album has an April 7 release date.
Don’t miss her live March 24 at Landmark Saloon, and visit her website to check out her music and all upcoming shows.