While quarantining, as everyone was across the country, singer/songwriter Chelsea Williams decided to use that time to be creative. Why not re-record three of the songs from her newly released Beautiful and Strange album, acoustically, mimicking the way she had been performing them during her Tuesday quarantine sessions. The result is The Palomino Sound Sessions, with first single, “Beautiful and Strange”, available today. Two additional tracks, “Wasted” and “Red Flag” will be digitally released on November 13.
Whether Chelsea is dissecting relationship dynamics or examining the very notion of destiny, her charming, confident songwriting and airy, nuanced vocals maintain an underlying current of optimism. Produced by longtime collaborator Ross Garren (Ben Folds, Bon Iver), the three stripped down, acoustic versions of songs from her most recent album, make up the Palomino Sound Sessions. Palomino is a studio with a vintage atmosphere in a modern world, which pretty much sums up the kind of music made by Chelsea. The tracks were recorded live with Chelsea on acoustic guitar and vocals, Ross on keys and harmonica, and friends John Schroeder on guitar, Erik Miron on banjo, and Julie Pusch on fiddle. Taking these songs down to their very essence serves to highlight Chelsea’s innate ability to craft timeless melodies which speak to contemporary tales of lost love, and ruminations on the current state of the world.
Performing five hours a day, four days a week, Chelsea Williams honed her skills busking at Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade, where she captured the attention of passersby including Ron Howard and Sheryl Crow. The Palomino Sound Sessions follows the studio release of Williams’ sophomore album Beautiful & Strange earlier this year, which was heralded by NPR as one of the top albums to come out on May 8, and received featured placement on Apple Music’s coveted New Music Daily and NPR’s All Songs Considered. Williams’ has also been named one of Rolling Stone’s “Top 10 New Artists You Need to Know.”