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Tom Brosseau: Gentle Acoustic Folk With A Twist

Watch the singer-songwriter play "Cradle Your Device" and more in the Soundcheck studio.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Tom Brosseau performs in the Soundcheck studio. Tom Brosseau performs in the Soundcheck studio. (Michael Katzif / WNYC)

Tom Brosseau is a North Dakota balladeer living in Los Angeles; as such, his bright, close-miked acoustic guitar arrangements are set off by refreshingly contemporary lyrics. "Cradle Your Device," the lead single from Grass Punks -- Brosseau's first solo release in five years -- recalls Dan Bern or John Darnielle with its plainspoken lament for a lover lost in her cellphone. 

Brosseau says he prefers recording at home with a "Radio Shack mic and tape machine," yet his productions are anything but lo-fi. Recorded by Sean Watkins, multi-instrumentalist of the soon-to-reunite trio Nickel Creek, the spare two-guitar, two-harmony mixes sound rich and full. On "Tami," Brosseau conjures a first kiss with what he calls the "ideals of the songwriters of yesteryear: relatable lyrics in three minutes time or less."

Hear Brosseau perform songs from Grass Punks in the Soundcheck studio.


For more photos, visit Soundcheck's Tumblr page.

Set List:

  • "Cradle Your Device"
  • "Love High John The Conqueror Root" 
  • "We Were Meant To Be Together"


Tom Brosseau

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