Allysen Callery is a self taught singer songwriter from Bristol , Rhode Island , USA whose delicate, mesmerizing sound has been compared to classic British folk artists like Sandy Denny and Nick Drake . Billed in Europe as “ghost folk”, her haunting vocals and intricate fingerstyle guitar work is timeless and enchanting.
Allysen has twice been invited to play the SXSW Festival, and tours regularly in Europe. Her music has been on labels Woodland Recordings (DE) , the vinyl only labels Jellyfant Records & Cosirecords Schallplatten (DE), Reverbworship (UK) & 75 or Less Records & Mystra Records (USA).
She has been called “The Tim Burton of Folk Music”, her quiet and dark style has made her a favorite of artists & critics alike,
including Marissa Nadler who listed Winter Island in her Best Albums of 2011: “Winter Island is a record that could proudly sit tall next to Sibylle Baier’s Colour Green and Leonard Cohen’s Songs From A Room. It’s impossibly delicate, gorgeously written, and emanates a timeless quality.”
In 2014 she played multiple showcases at the SXSW (South by Southwest) festival, and was ranked highly by The Washington Post and out of 1500 acts made a list of 40 by NPR ‘s Bob Boilen for “Intriguing unknown artists”.
On July 30th, 2015, Allysen sang on the Harbour Stage with the folk group Haunt The House at The Newport Folk Festival.
In March 2017 Allysen returned to SXSW to play two showcases.
Winner of The Providence Phoenix Best Music Poll Act 2012: Best Acoustic/Singer-Songwriter Act
Winner of Providence Phoenix Best Music Poll 2015: Best Acoustic/Singer-Songwriter Act
Winner of the Rhode Island Motif Music Awards 2019; Best Female Vocalist (Americana)
THE SONG THE SONGBIRD SINGS (LP * JellyFant/Cosirecords 2016 * cat# jayf 37) * file under Folk
available from Cosirecords
It's Not The Ocean / Bluest Bird /Crabapple /Sundown /Shoot Me /O Deathless & Divine /The Song The Songbird Sings /Snow Fox /Gentle Is The Angel /Aliana
“Ghost Folk” artist Allysen Callery is back with a new release that reaffirms her reputation as a leading singer-songwriter. The Song the Songbird Sings is the Bristol, Rhode Island guitarist’s first full length album since Mumblin’ Sue, her outstanding 2013 release that caught the ear of American and European audiences. The new release highlights her trademark British folk revival sound of the 60’s and 70’s which this time includes layers of sonic colour from guitar wiz Bob Kendall.
Songbird is the sixth album from Callery, who is a veteran of the Newport Folk Festival where she sang last summer with Haunt the House. In 2014, she played SXSW where she was recognized by NPR’s Bob Boilen as one of 50 “intriguing unknown artists. ”She’s an astute songwriter and a clever guitarist, creating gentle atmosphere while not overwhelming her listeners."
Her songwriting is heavily Influenced by the late Sandy Denny, but her voice is gentler, often barely rising above a whisper. Listening for the first time elicits feelings of déjà vu. These songs are new, so it’s not that you’ve heard them before; but somehow it feels like maybe you have. Her vocals are warm and calming and her lyrics airy and mystical.
THE END (7" * JellyFant 2014 * cat#7jf31) * file under Tribute
b/w Ryan Lee Crosby: Frozen Warnings
A souvenir of the joint 2014 European tour of Allysen Callery and Ryan Lee Crosby, both cover famous female German songwriters: Allysen Sibylle Baier, Ryan Nico.
MUMBLIN´ SUE (LP * JellyFant 2013 - cat# jayf 19) * file under Folk
In Your Hollow / I Had A Lover I Thought Was My Own / Spare Parts / Lilly Of The Valley / Highway Gone / My Carolina / Long Black Veil / In The Ring / Your Minnesota Sunrise / Your Skin Does Not Lie
We’ve been following the self-taught guitarist from Rhode Island and her, as she says, “quiet music for a loud world” for a while now. Unlike her earlier recordings, the cover of her fifth release Mumblin’ Sue shows neither a photograph nor a collage but an illustration. A skull with winged eyes and red roses in ink and marker. By no less than William Schaff, who has made sinister and intriguing covers with wonderfully weird characters for Okkervil River. About Mumblin’ Sue, he tweeted: “The talented and wonderful Allysen Callery has been kind enough to pick me to do the artwork.” Considering Callery’s combination of complex finger picking and tender vocals, the cover may seem surprising at first and possibly raise expectations of heavier, punk-inspired songs. However, it does suit the dark fairytale aspects of Callery’s writing, which have previously earned her praise as “the Tim Burton of Folk Music”. And Mumblin’ Sue certainly sounds like a character who would be at home in this kind of imagery. Or does the title not signify a character, does it describe someone mumbling Sue’s name? It’s a question that the album won’t answer. Instead, the songs add mysteries of their own.
WINTER ISLAND / THE SUMMER PLACE (LP * JellyFant 2012 * cat# jayf 16) * file under Folk
Winter Island: Winter Island / Snow Pony / Young Edwin / Highwire / Favourite Son / One Eyed Cat / Muse Me
The Summer Place: Honeymoon / See The Sea / The Huntsman / Sakonnet / Little Bird That Is Your Name / Lyonesse / Mockingbird & Whippoorwill
Lily of the Valley (from Mumblin´ Sue)
I Had A Lover (from Mumblin´ Sue)