New York’s Skye Steele is quite an accomplished violinist. He’s played and recorded with many different acts including touring with Vanessa Carlton, and his own project, The Skye Steele Quintet.  On January 20th, Steele released Up From The Bitterroot, a gorgeous record that blends many different styles into a warm folk bundle.

The opening track, “The People Make The Music” is an upbeat, fun, toe-tapper of a track. It’s got a real positive energy and starts the record out on a great note.  That track is followed up by to beautiful tracks, “Hiromitsu & Yuko” and “No Matter Love”, which showcase Skye’s incredible violin prowess and songwriting. “Hiromitsu & Yuko” being about a family torn apart by the 2011 Japanese earthquake. Steele’s voice is passionate and at times gritty, especially on the track “Wild Mine” which features quite powerful vocals over an acoustic guitar.

Up From The Bitterroot makes a bit of a turn about halfway through the record. The track “New Mind/Old Mind” starts out with a funky feeling before growing into an epic mindblower of a track.  Steele then gets weird with “My Mountainside” which wanders into psychedelic territory.  The album draws to a close with some stunning, intimate tracks featuring mostly just Steele and acoustic guitar. The final track on the record, “Growing Song” is another great track that rocks out for a bit and brings Up From The Bitteroot to an absolutely perfect conclusion.

Skye Steele may be a fantastic violinist, but he’s so much more than that. On Up From The Bitterroot, Steele’s songwriting shines.  Up From The Bitterroot is a lovely collection of songs, loud and soft, rockin’ and mesmerizing. I came up with the term “beautifolk” a while back, and that term truly applies here. Buy the record here, and connect with Steele below:


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