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Matty Charles is an American singer/songwriter and guitar player who writes classic, economical songs that channel iconic balladeers like Hank Williams, Leonard Cohen, Nick Drake, and Johnny Cash. His music is deeply rooted in traditional American folk and country styles, exploring themes of love, loss, and longing.
“Instead of songs about sadness that leave listeners feeling alone, Charles’s lyrics and smooth guitar riffs wrap their arms around his listeners and hold them tight.” (SF Reporter)
In the early 2000s, Matty Charles and his trio the Valentines were at the forefront of New York City’s Americana music renaissance. They played a very popular residency for several years at Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn, a venue The New Yorker has called “one of the most respected listening rooms on the indie-folk set.”
When asked what drew him to Charles’ music, the owner of Pete’s Candy Store, Andy Macdowell, said, “Not many singers can channel the American ballad in a mysterious and beautiful way that’s also modern. Matty does that.”
In addition to releasing several full-length albums, in 2007 Charles composed a soundtrack for Sal Interlandi’s dark and moody film Charlie, which featured Valentine’s drummer DJ Mendel in the lead role. The work Charles did for the film was the inspiration for his 2008 release Ring the Dark Atlantic, which incorporated recurring themes and instrumentals from the film as well as songs of the more traditional form.
In 2010 Matty Charles & the Valentines performed as themselves in the film Meanwhile, by award-winning director Hal Hartley (Henry Fool, Book of Life, Faye Grim).
Matty Charles has toured in the United States and Europe as a trio with the Valentines, as a duo with Zedekiah Child and Suzanne Gray, and solo. He currently resides in Portland, Oregon.
“When I write songs, “ says Charles, “ I want to say something that will resonate with any listener willing to meet me halfway. I’m not interested in being clever or special, I’m just trying to make a place in my songs were I can go for relief from what I find overwhelming in the world, and I hope they can be that for others as well.”
April 13, 2013
April 13, 2013
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