The Art of Longevity Season 5, Episode 4: Alela Diane


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Having helped pave the way, Alela remains at the heart of a very strong current movement for female troubadours - a scene driven by the success of the likes of Sharon Van Etten, Angel Oslen, Julien Baker and even Phoebe Bridgers - but harking back to Joni Mitchell. It was Cat Power that proved an inspiration to Alela herself when she first started out making The Pirate’s Gospel, then aged 19.

It’s taken almost five years for Alela to create another record since Cusp. Between raising her two young daughters (making a lot of snacks), renovating her Portland home and like all of us - getting through the global pandemic - it has taken time, graft and discipline to craft songs to a standard she has set for herself. But once she got into the studio (not just any studio but Tucker Martine’s ‘Flora’ in Northeast Portland, Oregon) the songs were recorded quickly. The new album Looking Glass processes the themes of domesticity, love & loss and how to face these dark times. In Alela’s words the record is about:

“Feeling the lightness and the darkness of the world at large. How do you get through your day-to-day life? How do we create a sweet, peaceful world for your children when there’s a lot of chaos out there”.

No doubt the record will act as a tonic to the blurry gloom outside your window. I would highly recommend you drink it down.
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