Looking to expand and enhance her chamber folk style, Chicago-based singer/ songwriter Jenny Gillespie traveled to New York City's Lower East Side last year to record some new tracks with multi-instrumentalist/producer Shahzad Ismaily (Jolie Holland, Bonnie Prince Billy), an invitation that came about after Ismaily discovered a Gillespie's cover of a Sam Amidon track on youtube. The starkly-rendered result is Belita (April 10), a remarkable five-track EP that combines the atmospheric open-tuning guitar style (and eclectic melodic structures) of Joni Mitchell coupled with a rhythmic picking style Gillespie picked up studying African folk guitar. "Wooden Bench" exemplifies Belita's adventurous and elegant spirit while Amidon adds some rough-hewn vocal harmonies to the twisting, turning "Creature of Our Make". Stream the full EP (and find a free download of her 2010 album Kindred) here.
Jenny Gillespie - "Sunshine Blood" (from the Belita EP)