Silver Lake 66, from Portland, Oregon, have been shaking up the Americana and Alt-Country scenes for a good many months now. The musician couple dropped their debut album, powerfully titled “Let Go or Be Dragged”, in August of last year.
Listen to Silver Lake 66’s debut album “Let Go or Be Dragged” now: (via Spotify)
Even now in the spring of 2017, the Americana duo’s debut record continues to inspire the people who’ve checked it out to make one of two choices:
“Let go”, sit back, and enjoy the ride that Silver Lake 66’s music will take you on with the lyrics.
Or you can also just “be dragged”, and get yanked to all the places Silver Lake 66’s music will show you anyway, only to thoroughly enjoy the album after all.
Silver Lake 66 is the stage name of the music couple Maria Francis and Jeff Overbo. The Americana duo love blending tight harmonies and playing their guitars sharp, into their touching yet powerful duets. They also love drawing from the deep well of their beloved genres: classic country, blues, and rock.
Silver Lake 66’s distinct and personal sound calls to mind several of the top names in the scene: Lucinda Williams, The Jayhawks, Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison, Buddy and Julie Miller, Graham Parsons, and Emmylou Harris.
While Silver Lake 66 take inspiration from the time-tested greats of their chosen classic genres, the Portland couple do their best to keep it real, crafting each and every one of their songs with a deeply creative, personal touch, and a genuine, straight-from-the-heart message.
Check out Silver Lake 66’s “Bury My Bones in Arkansas” video, too:
Silver Lake 66’s “Let Go or Be Dragged” is intense with the vocals and complete with the instrumentals. The collection of songs tells the story of Maria and Jeff’s journey in music and life, and the love and travel that made them into the artists they are today. They don’t leave out the losses and trials that have only made them stronger, either.
The album’s been well-received and praised, not just warmly and lovingly in the Americana scene of their chosen home, Portland, but also with the artists and big names who’ve made their mark to take the classic country, rock, and blues scenes up a notch to become even better than before, each in their very own way.
Silver Lake 66 dive in with the opening track, “Bury My Bones in Arkansas”, to begin sharing their story. The song has a video, too, with Maria and Jeff looking real chill as they sing the song, play the instruments, and simply get lost in the music.
All eyes and ears turn to Maria in the second track, “Magnolia”, as she puts her stunning vocals directly on the front display for the whole world to see, not holding back one bit. The slowed-down yet steady beat, drums, and guitar riffs make this number from Maria into something that’s truly amazing.
Silver Lake 66 get moody all of a sudden in “Devil’s Looking For Me”. The change in mood will take listeners aback at first. Until, then again, you remember that the couple are human too, and have their own ups and downs. An even bigger surprise is the next track, “Treat Me So Fine”, where the duo do a full 180 to vibes that are easygoing and chill.
The two hit the brakes a bit in “Do You Ever”, then return back to before, to keep things sailing smoothly in “Sherman County”. “San Francisco Angel” comes up next, a shining country folk track, that tells that part of Silver Lake 66’s journey where the couple dreamed of moving to a whole new place they’ve never set foot in before, that came true in the end.
“Don’t Have to Tell Me You’re Blue” and “Price You Pay” are a couple more songs where the couple look to be down on their luck. Next up is “End of a Day”, Jeff’s time to shine, as he takes the spotlight and makes the case for his smooth, showstopping voice.
The ride comes to an end with “Doctor”, #12 and the final track. The closing number is Silver Lake 66’s call to all the travelers out there, people who are literally traveling right now, as well as their fellow human beings who are also going on that other kind of journey, the one called “life”.
All in all, “Let Go or Be Dragged” is exciting yet reassuring, both in the musical merits and the personal tidbits. Silver Lake 66 puts you on course to relive their ventures and adventures with them. The album is chock-full of curiosity and a yearning to discover new places, and all of the thoughts and emotions that come along.
Silver Lake 66 also actually explore lots of places in the country. With that, the duo are daring, if not pleading you, to go out there and give your dreams a shot. Those are the ups, but there are also the downs, those times when you shouldn’t forget to pause a moment to take it all in, and to rest your weary bones for a good while.
- Bury My Bones in Arkansas (4:21)
- Magnolia (4:20)
- Change Your Mind (4:05)
- Devil’s Looking For Me (3:35)
- Treat Me So Fine (2:43)
- Do You Ever (4:45)
- Sherman County (4:58)
- San Francisco Angel (3:44)
- Don’t Have to Tell Me You’re Blue ( 3:51)
- Price You Pay (4:23)
- End of the Day (3:05)
- Doctor (4:40)
The couple who would eventually become Silver Lake 66 first started out playing the local scene and writing their own music in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After many years recording in local studios and touring all over the Midwestern city, Maria and Jeff moved to Southern California.
Maria and Jeff had another band while they were living it up in Los Angeles for almost 10 years. As The Ruby Trees, the two who would form Silver Lake 66 several years later played lots of events, most notably Ronnie Mack’s Barn Dance at The World Famous Palomino Club.
The musical couple eventually decided to make another big move, this time to Portland, Oregon. After overcoming a health crises, and connecting with musicians in Portland who they shared a lot in common with, after doing jam sessions and live performances together, Maria and Jeff decided to start a new outfit called Silver Lake 66.
Silver Lake 66 produced their debut album all on their own – the recording, mixing, mastering, you name it. Jeff and Maria both took the spotlight with their vocals and the guitar, with Maria also taking the percussion on her watch.
Silver Lake 66’s debut LP “Let Go or Be Dragged” has been making lots of waves lately, in the short time since it sparked a flame of soul onto the scene. The musical couple’s record hit #24 on the national Americana chart for radio airplay, the Roots Music Report. Silver Lake 66’s first ever LP’s also been getting lots of airplay on over 50 American radio stations, not only in the United States, but also in Canada and Europe.
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