Sound Advice: Margaret Glaspy with The Lumineers and Andrew Bird (Jan. 31)

Singer/songwriter Margaret Glaspy opens for The Lumineers and Andrew Bird at U.S. Bank Arena.

click to enlarge Margaret Glaspy - Photo: Ebru Yildiz
Photo: Ebru Yildiz
Margaret Glaspy
Singer/songwriter Margaret Glaspy offered the best of all possible worlds on her recent debut album, last summer’s Emotions and Math. As the title suggests, the songs on Glaspy’s first full-length are simultaneously impassioned and cerebral, from the Kurt Vile-like Pop Grunge of “You and I” to the vulnerable-yet-electric Joni Mitchell-like Folk Pop lilt of “Somebody to Anybody” to the Suzanne Vega-meets-Richard Hell melodic dissonance of “Situation.” And Emotions and Math itself stands in stark contrast to Glaspy’s stripped-down and self-released EPs, 2012’s Homeschool and 2013’s If & When, which bristle with quirky bedroom Folk awkwardness and sincerity.

A California native, Glaspy’s early musical ambitions were quite different than her destination. She began playing Texas-style fiddle in the third grade and then picked up trombone in high school, but Glaspy eventually gravitated toward the guitar. Her personal taste came from her older siblings’ love of ’90s AltRock and her father’s inclination toward Jazz and Classic Rock. But Joni Mitchell’s Blue album sealed the deal in determining Glaspy’s artistic path.

She secured a grant to attend Boston’s renowned Berklee College of Music, but the money only lasted a single semester. While working various odd jobs and honing her songwriting skills, Glaspy used her Berklee ID to attend seminars and other assorted classes to further her musical education. After three years in Boston, Glaspy relocated to New York City and put her skills to practical use as a working musician. Still moonlighting to make ends meet, Glaspy pursued every opportunity to play, opening for a variety of artists, including Lake Street Dive, Rachael Yamagata and Thunderbitch, the side project for Alabama Shakes’ Brittany Howard.

It was the Thunderbitch gig at 2015’s CMJ festival that put Glaspy in the limelight and ultimately earned her a contract with ATO Records, which allowed her to finish her iPad-recorded new album in a proper studio. As a result, Glaspy is finding Emotions and Math attracting high critical praise and invitations for some high-profile opening slots, like her current arena jaunt with The Lumineers. 

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to see an artist on the verge of exploding, this is your shot. Margaret Glaspy is ready to pull the pin. Not sure how you get close and stand back at the same time, but you’ll figure it out. 

Click here for tickets/more info.