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    St. Ann's Church


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    The Archway



Review on

Jolie Holland, late of Be Good Tanyas, has been described by London’s Time Out as an Appalachian Billie Holliday. Without meaning any disrespect to Lady Day, this is wide of the mark. Billie was about love and loss; as the name of Jolie’s latest album The Living and the Dead, suggests, Jolie is about more serious stuff. Melodic and rhythmic, she enraptured an audience whom it was obvious, already adored her.

She played a selection of songs from her extensive repertoire, but one song stood out above all the others. I Want No Country written about 9-11 by Jan Bell, a Yorkshire born, Brooklyn resident. It contained the lines 'I Want No Country, Though I'm a Country Girl, Just Like Virginia Said, My Country is the Whole Wide World'. It was a song which tears your soul in pieces but leaves you with a feeling of hope.

If you took away the production whistles and bells and the candy-floss lyrics, from the bulk of popular music, little would remain. When this sort of music is presented stripped-bare it becomes something which is hauntingly and searingly, beautiful.

- Richard Pearson