Runaway Dorothy

Runaway Dorothy

Shiloh Hill, Anna Rose Beck

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm


Off Sale

Runaway Dorothy
Runaway Dorothy
Americana quartet Runaway Dorothy counts Roseanne Cash, Adam Duritz, Rob Thomas, and Ryan Adams as fans. The band has also been fortunate to have an engaged fan base to support its latest album, The Wait. Runaway Dorothy's sensibility is both rustic and refined, mining folk, country, and alt-country with a songs-first restraint as to leave ample space for the group's captivating storyteller lyrics, mesmerizingly melancholy vocals, and achingly beautiful harmonies. The band has performed at SXSW (Runaway Dorothy played 11 shows in the 5 days they were in Austin), The Outlaw Roadshow during the CMJ music festival, and headlined the Red Room in Boston. They've been featured on Fox News, the popular video blog The Rock Office, and garnered accolades from PGH Music Mag.

The Brooklyn-based four-piece's origins date back to when band founder Dave Parnell was plucked from singer-songwriter obscurity to be the guitarist of a promising rock band playing big shows and showcasing for major labels. "I was hesitant at first, I wanted to do my own music, but this opportunity allowed me to just focus on being a musician," he explains. As industry pressures sapped the South Carolina band's morale, Dave kept on writing for himself. However, when the band was summoned to New York City for label a showcase, Dave had a career-shifting moment.

"I ran into Ryan Adams randomly on the street," Dave recalls. "We hung out all day, and I got the chance to play him some tunes. I played him the band's music and my own solo stuff. When he heard my tunes, he said: 'This is the stuff you should be pursuing.'" And when the band finally splintered, that's exactly what he did: Dave moved to Brooklyn with a handful of songs; recorded the Runaway Dorothy debut, The Arc, in Springfield, Missouri; and then assembled a band.

The Wait marks the debut of the firm lineup of Dave Parnell (vocals, guitar, harmonica), Dave's younger brother Brett "Bert" Parnell (electric guitar), Warren "Jiffy" Robbins (bass), and Evan Mitchell (drums). The band plays with dynamic sensitivity: the players patiently let each song's meticulous arrangement unfold in the center spotlight, and then contribute motifs to enhance the mood. The band developed its sympathetic chemistry through grinding it out playing live on NYC subway platforms. "It was like boot camp for becoming a cohesive group," Dave explains. "Can we sound good as a unit when it's so loud down there?"

The new album is a staggering achievement for Runaway Dorothy, and particularly Dave as a masterful songwriter. Lyrically, The Wait is both personal and mythical. "Half the album is a story I made up, the other half is about a relationship that just wasn't going to work," Dave confides. Hauntingly gorgeous tracks like "Ballad Of A Dead Man" and "Blue Kentucky Rain" are snapshots of gritty Americana, both weaving together a narrative of a man driven to murder to provide for his family.

The gracefully sparse track "Hurry" is a standout relationship song with curious origins. "The song began as a Japanese bubblegum pop song," Dave says laughing. "I sent it to my brother and said 'Do whatever you want with it.'" Brett "Bert" Parnell picked up the banjo and re-imagined the track. It's a collaboration that speaks to the mutual respect and deep creative connections the brothers share.

Runaway Dorothy self-produced The Wait and recorded it at Threshing Floor Studios in North Carolina. The band went for a lean approach with the production treatment, delicately adding only essential flourishes. "The songs have to stand on their own with just voice and guitar," Dave says of his production philosophy.

Currently, the band is further exploring its creative synchronicity by sharing in songwriting for Runaway Dorothy. Dave is eager to record the third album with this expanded pool of songwriting talent. Reminiscing back on the time leading up to The Wait he says: "You know, I started off singing Counting Crows cover songs at open mic nights. It was so special when Adam Duritz mentioned our band in an interview. It's just amazing to me all of this that has happened."
Shiloh Hill
Shiloh Hill
In an age of music where folk and “indie” is taking the world by storm it is not often that you find a band that not only understands their roots but also understands how to create a sound that’s continuously evolving and fully unique. Many artists have the ability of portraying exactly what’s expected from a genre but few recognize the importance and have the knowledge to be more and create a sound that moves outside of that prototypical genre. This is where Shiloh Hill comes in.

A project that focuses on a joint contribution of artists showcasing not only excellent songwriting and lyricism, but a simple yet effective ensemble of harmonizing vocals, guitars, banjo, and percussion. With just the right mix of folk, pop, and fireside feeling, each song has way of pulling you in and eventually taking you away. At certain moments you might find yourself with a desire to compare but that comes from what’s only seen on the surface. By the end of your first experience with Shiloh Hill, only visions of their music will be dancing in your head.
Anna Rose Beck
Anna Rose Beck
Set to delicate fingerpicking on an acoustic guitar, Anna Rose Beck’s enchantingly melodic creations take listeners on a journey of emotionally-charged reminiscences, otherworldly imaginings, and philosophical musings. Replete with metaphorical wordplay, Beck's songwriting and her uniquely rich yet effortless vocal delivery take front and center on her 2011 debut EP, The Weathermaker. Weaving together images from nature, folklore, fantasy, and her own experiences. Beck builds entire worlds within her songs, which serve as the dreamy backdrop to personal yet universal stories of self discovery, joy, sadness, fear, and hope.

It’s been a whirlwind past several years for the Austin, TX native, who picked up the guitar on a lark one summer four years ago while in the course of completing a biomedical engineering degree from Duke. "It was just this thing that I immediately became addicted to," she remembers. "I had never had anything like that before. This was the first thing that I sort of fell into and was like, 'Oh my God, I want to spend all my time doing this.'" Over the course of the next year, Beck, who had never been very musical while growing up, taught herself to sing and play guitar.

Inspired by legendary lyricists Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Townes Van Zandt, and their contemporaries, she began penning her own songs and performing at local dives shortly thereafter. In 2010, Beck collaborated with Asheville, NC-based producer Andrew Schatzberg ( ) to create her first EP The Weathermaker: a concise seven-song set that puts Beck's talents out front. Her dreamy picking and resonant vocals are buoyed by conservative yet rewarding full-band arrangements. Seeming at once both bold and understated, she manages piercing reverberations without having to reach. The result is moving and hypnotic, brimming with passion but never overpowering.
Venue Information:
Local 506
506 W. Franklin St
Chapel Hill, NC, 27516