Preview: Charlie Parr at 12th & Porter on 4/11/16

Photo credit: Peter Lee
Photo credit: Peter Lee

Bluesy roots music revivalist Charlie Parr can play anything with strings like it ain’t nobody’s business, holler and howl like a Mississippi Delta blues originator, and looks like one of my family members who grew up in the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.  Interestingly enough, Parr actually hails from the Land of 10,000 Lakes (for those of you who didn’t pay attention in junior high Social Studies, that’s Minnesota, y’all).  Now, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong at all with being from Minnesota; I actually lived in Minneapolis after college for a hot minute, or more appropriately, a cold minute, and was taken aback by the amazing food, vibrant music scene, and rich cultural opportunities there.

Parr loves Minnesota, and Minnesota loves him right back—he’s one of the most beloved musicians in the area, and has built quite the rabid following.  With his latest release, the critically acclaimed Stumpjumper, via Red House Recordshe ventured to rural North Carolina, amassed some local players, and set up shop in an old outbuilding on a farm.  It was the first time that Parr had recorded outside of his home state, and his first time with a full band.  With Stumpjumper, Parr preserves and celebrates his rootsy genre, and propels it forward in a lyrically relevant way with songs that explore all aspects of the human condition—homesickness, love, loss, times that are hard, and times that are good.

On tour to support Stumpjumper, Parr travels alone, performing his acoustic music in solo form.  “Sometimes it gets lonely on the road, but I’ve formed a really great network of friends all around the country.  I get to spend time with them when I go on tour, so I’m not always alone.”  Parr also has a novel way to stretch a good meal during his travels; “A lot of times, people will make me the most amazing food or I’ll eat some fantastic meals out on the road.  It’s always more than I can eat at once, so I’ll take the leftovers with me, and when I’m ready to have a hot meal, I’ll strap the container to the engine manifold in my vehicle and it will heat the food right up.”  Genius.

If you’re in the Music City, you can see Charlie Parr in action at 12th & Porter on Monday, April 11th; purchase your tickets here:


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