Logger's Daughter: 'Logger's Daughter' [Album Review]

Vortex Music Magazine

Inventive, hearty lyrics pair with thoughtful instrumentation on the band’s recent self-titled release.

Before you jump to conclusions about the name Logger’s Daughter, know this: singer Betsy Lance is the female offspring of an actual logger. Her bandmate Pat Dooney (bass and harmonica, among other instruments) explains, “If your family has been [in the Pacific Northwest] for more than a few generations, it is highly likely that at least one member has been involved in the industry.” Sure enough, both Dooney and Mike Spicer (guitar, mandolin) have relatives who worked at sawmills and logging camps. Their name is 100 percent authentic.

Lance—and her voice—gained notice by Dooney and Spicer at a local open mic event. They immediately recognized the appropriateness of her sound for their music, which the band now calls “porch music”—a little blues, a lot of folk and soulful vocals. Logger’s Daughter's sound easily conjures images of close family and friends sitting on the porch, making music together. Released April 10, the band’s self-titled CD is packed with warm emotional exploration and historical fiction. Lance, who in addition to singing plays guitar and “a mean tambourine,” explains that she spent some time on a farm, reflecting on life and love and how important it is to regularly communicate that love to family and friends. The song “Lovin’ Ain’t So Easy” speaks to this reflective period especially well, with bluesy guitar and a walking bassline to reinforce a thoughtful tone.

Lance during filming of the video for "Loose Stone"Lance during filming of the video for "Loose Stone"Dooney and Spicer describe the imaginative story behind “Old Blind Luther,” which they wrote together. With a background in creative writing and literature, Dooney tells the story of a man’s love for a woman who works in a brothel. Though he has never seen her, Luther is completely infatuated with the woman for what he can sense about her.

The song “Adeline,” which is about Lance’s niece, is an example of their thoughtful choices with instrumentation. Often utilizing fuller sounds, the band opted for the simplicity of pure vocals and acoustic guitar to maintain the sweet innocence of a lullaby. “Loose Stone,” on the other hand, incorporates a fuller sound, with drummer Bob Macon adding all kinds of interesting percussive devices to showcase the band’s impressive range.

You can check out the band’s unique—yet familiar and approachable—sound at their upcoming shows, including an album release party on Friday, May 13 and a pair of shows at Mock Crest Tavern on Saturday, May 21 and June 25.

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