Folk Alliance International is a non-profit organization that sponsors an industry conference for the folk music industry every year, attended by artists, record companies, manufacturers, music publishers, music support services, presenters, managers and agents. This year marks the second year that the conference takes place in Kansas City, Missouri. With a membership of over 2,000 people Folk Alliance is among the top five largest conferences in North America. Thursday, February 19th, was the second day of the conference and one of the best acts that night was a band called Laney Jones and The Lively Spirits.
Laney Jones and The Lively Spirits were a band that I stumbled upon completely accidentally. And am I sure glad that I did. Though Jones and her band—Matthew Tonner, Curtis Seligson, and Alex Shames—are from Florida, they are not without local ties. Jones landed at Berklee College of Music in 2013 where she studied until, in typical Berklee fashion, she left to tour with her own band. Since then she has been busy touring up and down the East Coast. Recently she made her debut on national TV as part of Great Performances on PBS. She performed her track “Broken Hearts” as part of a masterclass with Alison Krauss. Her style is an even blend of the old and the new, Pop meets Americana, some Brandi Carlile and some Patty Griffin with a little bit of Sara Bareilles thrown in for good measure. She performed a selection of songs from her self-produced 2014 debut Golden Road, as well as from her upcoming new record, due out in 2015.
Laney Jones and The Lively Spirits will even be making a pit stop in Cambridge at The Lizard Lounge on March 5th.