Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Every Friday, we spotlight Northwest artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Loretta” by Seattle’s Cahalen Morrison & Eli West from the 2012 self-released album Our Lady of the Tall Trees.
Hometown Seattle old-time pickers Cahalen Morrison & Eli West have delivered a fantastic take on the Townes van Zandt classic “Loretta” for today’s featured song. Morrison and West have become widely considered some of the best young roots musicians playing today in the Northwest and the rest of the country — their musical integrity and talent have earned them universal praise from critics and listeners in the short time, since 2011, they’ve been around as a duo. The sound and the songs on last year’s debut, Holy Coming of the Storm, and this past September’s Our Lady of the Tall Trees, are without affect but with all of the talent and touch. They never seem to be trying too hard, in the best way, and the result is effortlessly virtuosic old-time folk for the head and the heart. West and Morrison’s roots music is loyal to the tradition while charting its own territory — in their hands, old-time folk never seemed to have left us in the first place.
Enjoy their take on Townes Van Zandt’s classic in the link above, and check out the video for “Lost Lovin’ Gal” from their in studio session with KEXP. Cahalen Morrison & Eli West are playing at Dusty Strings in Fremont this Saturday December 8th. Be sure to check in at their website for more upcoming shows.