On his heralded new album Field Songs, exhilarating young troubadour William Elliott Whitmore lends a voice of absolute conviction and compassion to the struggles and perseverance of the American farmer. Still based on the small family farm in Iowa on which he was raised, Whitmore is an artist uniquely suited to capture this profoundly important and seemingly vanishing landscape.
It was this powerful connection between artist and subject which resonated so noticeably throughout Whitmore's recent interview and performance on the popular NPR radio show Talk of the Nation. As he spoke and played songs from his new album, calls came flooding into the station from farmers in the field, one even sitting on a tractor as he spoke. Listening to the show they were inspired to speak of their lives, the time honored rituals which they embrace and of the music which sustains them.
William Elliott Whitmore's appearance on NPR's Talk of the Nation, which has since become a favorite amongst listeners, can be heard by going href="http://www.npr.org/2011/07/25/138678810/whitmores-field-songs-pay-tribute-to-farmers">here>.
Whitmore is now taking to the road for some North American performance dates, bringing his unique and impassioned voice to a turbulent nation. He will be sharing a series of dates with celebrated folk rockers Low Anthem and then with young Irish singer-songwriter James Vincent McMorrow on the West Coast.
A review of Whitmore's Field Songs at Pitchfork.com offered, "His deep, gnarled vocals suggest a particularly well-trod life... There's a dignity to his work, which is unfussy and ambivalent to trends... his voice is very much the focus. Weary and full of crags... it's impressively wide and strong, imbuing his compositions with a kind of welcome toughness. Folk music has a reputation for limpness, but Whitmore's vocals are energizing-- they give these tracks backbone."
Additional Acclaim For Field Songs:
"Field Songs" is a touching effort from an uncommon songwriter - a tender, fond reflection on rural America. "- Washington Post
"Through a unified blend of graceful melodies and powerful vocals, William Elliott Whitmore generates a sincere message - to reap a sweet harvest of happiness, listeners must work through the fields of pain." - Paste
"Field Songs is Whitmore's masterpiece thus far: unflinching, stubborn, demonstrative, and inspiring." - AllMusic
"Ground down to little more than banjo, unadorned acoustic guitar and foot stomps, his music is profoundly redolent of America's agricultural heartland, while his voice summons up the ghost of some atavistic gospel shouter." - Uncut Magazine
William Elliott Whitmore Tour Dates:
Aug. 19 - Keokuk, IA - Rollin on the River Music Fest Sept. 10 - Columbia, MO - Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Fest Sept. 10 - Columbia, MO - Mojo's w/ Murder By Death Sept. 14 - Philadelphia, PA - World CafÃ© Live w/ Low Anthem Sept. 15 - Washington, D.C. - 9:30 Club w/ Low Anthem Sept. 16 - Marlinton, WV - Pocahontas County Opera House w/ Low Anthem Sept. 17 - Richmond, VA - The Camel Sept. 18 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506 w/ Low Anthem Sept. 19 - Charlotte, NC - Visulite Theatre w/ Low Anthem Sept. 20 - Asheville, NC - Grey Eagle Tavern w/ Low Anthem Sept. 23 - San Francisco, CA - Slim's w/ James Vincent McMorrow Sept. 24 - Los Angeles, CA - Bootleg Theatre w/ James Vincent McMorrow Sept. 25 - Los Angeles, CA - Bootleg Theatre w/ James Vincent McMorrow Oct. 08 - Stoughton, WI - Stoughton Opera House Oct. 21 - Seattle, WA - City Arts Festival @ Neumo's Nov. 16 - London, England - Roundhouse w/ Low Anthem