“Cahalen and Eli are making music that
the world needs.” -Tim O’Brien.
– No Depression Magazine
Cahalen Morrison & Eli West’s new album, Our Lady of the Tall Trees, is a stunning example of the power of great songwriting and musicianship. And we’re not the only ones saying this. They’ve been building buzz first and foremost among the top echelon of roots musicians, with Tim O’Brien, Dirk Powell, and Aoife O’Donovan actively singing their praises and spreading the gospel.
Cahalen & Eli can easily back up that kind of expert acclaim, as they show on KEXP’s Song of the Day:
“Cahalen Morrison & Eli West have become widely considered some of the best young roots musicians playing today — their musical integrity and talent have earned them universal praise from critics and listeners. Without affect but with all of the talent and touch. .. effortlessly virtuosic old-time folk for the head and the heart. .” KEXP Song of the Day
Born and raised in the high desert of northern New Mexico, Cahalen has traveled a windy road. Starting on guitar at the age of nine, his interests in bluegrass, old-time and Celtic music were peaked by his father, a carpenter by trade, and talented guitar and fiddle player. In middle school, Cahalen started playing drums in a band that did traditional Mexican and country. The band lasted 5 years, playing bars, dances and parties. He went on to study jazz percussion in college. Just as at home playing drums in a roots reggae band, steel in a country band, or playing his own songs solo with a guitar, Cahalen spent his college years wading waste deep through every kind of music you can think of. At the end of school, he traded his drumset for studio time to produce his first solo album of all original material, Subcontinent, a suite of songs composed between New Mexico and India. This turn proved to be prognostic of what was to come.
For the next three years he toured non-stop, living out of the trunk of his Toyota. In 2009 he got his father, Dave Morrison, and longtime friends to join him at the historic Western Jubilee Warehouse Theater in Colorado Springs, to record a live album, engineered by Butch Hause (longtime engineer of Norman Blake). This critically acclaimed album, Old-Timey & New-Fangled. put him on the map.
“Most of us players should be humbled by Cahalen Morrison, the 24 year-old old-timey interpreter and multi-instrumentalist (six-string fingerstyle, claw-hammer banjo, mandolin, and lap slide guitar for starters). If not humbled, we are curious; how did the former New Mexico resident attain this kind of musical maturity at twenty-four?” – Jon O’Hara
“A talented bunch, and none more so than Morrison, whose vocal dexterity and songwriting prowess matches his musicianship. The material, original as far as I’m aware, is brilliantly evocative of times past and lives up perfectly to the album’s title.” Leicester Bangs UK
Cahalen settled in Seattle, where he joined forces with Seattle guitarist Eli West, an attention-eschewing yet brilliant musician who grew up in Olympia and attended Bainbridge Island’s own Bainbridge Graduate Institute. In the summer of 2010, they recorded The Holy Coming of The Storm, consisting of ten originals from Cahalen, one co-written by Cahalen and Eli, and two traditional tunes. This new record has taken the acoustic music world by storm, garnering praise from musicians and fans from both sides of the Atlantic:
“Eli and Cahalen sing about all of it. No note is left unreflected upon. They understand that when it comes to music, we are all on the receiving side, even when we are the ones playing it.” -Dirk Powell.
“I could listen to these guys all day!” – Folkworks Top 10 for 2012
“This is quite extraordinary!” – BBC Radio 2.
“Songs carved from old wood and turned into objects of beauty.” Americana UK Best of 2012
“When Morrison and West released their debut The Holy Coming of The Storm in early 2011 it received almost universal acclaim and ended up in many a top ten album list at the end of the year. Our Lady of the Tall Trees, an album that continues in much the same vein as its predecessor which is tantamount to saying that it’s essential listening. Morrison’s songs support any claim to greatness here. He has the ability to capture and recreate old time ballads, tales as strong as an Oak with language that seems to be hewn from ancient timber. It’s reminiscent of the best of the English folk rock revival of the seventies.” – No Depression
Since the album’s debut, Cahalen and Eli have shared the stage with acts like Darrell Scott, Dirk Powell, Sarah Jarosz, Zoe Muth & The Lost High Rollers, Sam Amidon, Crooked Still, The Wilders, Della Mae, Martha Scanlan, The Deadly Gentlemen, and have played all over the world, including Europe and Scandinavia, and played festivals like Glasgow’s Celtic Connections, Washington’s Wintergrass, and Oregon’s Pickathon. Cahalen also plays alongside Kelly Joe Phelps in their new project, Solo/Duo. Here’s your chance to see them in your own front room (or as near to it) – The Treehouse Cafe!
This is a Full Circuit Sound Production. For questions please call
Eddie Williams 206 931 6021 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday March 27 8pm