New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Valerie June

Posted by Amoebite, September 10, 2018 06:36pm | Post a Comment

Valerie June - What's In My Bag? Amoeba Music

We were delighted to have singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Valerie June visit Amoeba San Francisco for a What's In My Bag? episode. A native Tennessean, June found some classic records by artists from her home state, including Big Star. "They say sometimes that music coming out of Memphis can only make it so far," she told us, "and that story kind of became a thing with them. To me they're (as) big as The Beatles." Not only does she feel connected to the music, but she also has recorded at Ardent Studios, where Big Star recorded some of their most beloved tracks. June had much to say about all of her eclectic choices, making for an insightful and sincere video. 

Valerie June began her music career at the age of nineteen. Based in Memphis, she first attracted attention through her solo work, which draws on elements of gospel, Americana, blues, folk, soul, Valerie June - The Order Of Timecountry, and bluegrass. In 2010, she recorded the Valerie June and the Tennessee Express EP with the help of Old Crow Medicine Show. She launched a Kickstarter to fund the album that would become her breakthrough, 2013's Pushin' Against a Stone. The LP was recorded with assistance from The Black KeysDan Auerbach and record producer Kevin Augunas.  

That same year, Valerie June was invited to tour alongside Jake Bugg and played two acclaimed performances at SXSW. In 2014, Pushin' Against a Stone received a nomination for a Blues Music Award in the category of "Best New Artist Debut." She appeared on Austin City Limits in 2017. Valerie June's most recent LP, 2017's The Order of Time was named #24 on Rolling Stones' "50 Best Albums of 2017" list and #3 on their "40 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2017."

Continuing with the Tennessee theme, June grabbed a copy of Patsy Cline's Greatest Hits. "The story of her life is fascinating to me," she said of the incredibly influential country singer, naming "Leaving On your Mind" as the track she listens to the most. Another Memphian in her bag was Otis Clay, who she said she didn't really appreciate until she moved to New York. "My father would listen to Otis," she told us of her childhood, "but I don't know why my father didn't just sit me down one day and say, 'did you really hear it, did you really listen to it?'"

It wasn't all artists from Tennessee, though, as June found some records by Billie Holiday, Lou Reed, and Alice Coltrane, whose music she described as "something for the heart, something for the soul." June also explained a deeper connection to Coltrane. "Her whole life was dedicated to a spiritual path and I really can relate to her in that way."

But which band's performace at the Eaux Claires Festival blew her mind? You'll have to watch the video to find out:

Valerie June - What's In My Bag?
Watch and comment on YouTube

Relevant Tags

Valerie June (7), Amoeba San Francisco (106), What's In My Bag (375), Big Star (13), The Beatles (50), Ardent Studios (1), Old Crow Medicine Show (3), Dan Auerbach (4), The Order Of Time (1), Patsy Cline (3), Otis Clay (1), Tennessee (2), Memphis (3), Billie Holiday (18), Lou Reed (17), Alice Coltrane (3), Eaux Claires Festival (1)