Alela Diane with Marissa Nadler at the Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto, Nov 16 2009
– photos by Amber Anne Dawkins
Portland-based Alela Diane on tour with Marissa Nadler.
Alela Diane Menig, as she’s known to her parents, grew up singing and performing in the school choir in Nevada City, California.
She taught herself guitar. Her first recordings were self-released in 2003 as Forest Parade. Her first solo public appearances were at the invitation of fellow Nevada City native Joanna Newsom. She also did a stint in the Nevada City band Black Bear before continuing with her solo career.
Halocene Music rereleased her 2004 album, The Pirate’s Gospel, in 2006. In 2009 she released To Be Still, a stunning record that received positive reviews.
Alela Diane has toured in the USA both solo and with Tom Brosseau. She’s opened for Iron & Wine, Akron/Family, The Decemberists and Vashti Bunyan.
Diane also contributed vocals to The Silence of Love, an album of cover versions by Headless Heroes. The band includes Josh Klinghoffer, Joey Waronker, Gus Seyffert, Leo Abrahams and Woody Jackson.
Her second album, To Be Still, was released in February 2009. In early 2009 she toured the USA opening for Blitzen Trapper. She also released an EP with singer Alina Hardin.
In an exclusive interview with The Snipe, Diane said this about making To Be Still: “There was a lot of trial and error. We re-did a lot of stuff that was recorded up in Portland. I had a version of the record after I was done in the studio up here, but I wasn’t happy with it. I just kept re-working things and re-doing parts I didn’t feel were captured correctly and just kept doing that until I was satisfied. And now the record is as you hear it.”
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