Spark & Whisper
Sunday, June 22, 2014, 3:00pm - 3:45pm
Pete Seeger Room - Room #107
Spark & Whisper is the musical collaboration of Anita Sandwina & Velvy Appleton, singer-songwriters/multi-instrumentalists from the SF Bay Area.
Beautiful things can evolve from humble beginnings. Anita & Velvy first crossed paths in 2003 at a late-night campsite jam at the Strawberry Music Festival. The night was dark, there were too many guitars strumming, some drunken howling, and the song selection was spotty at best. Even so, Anita & Velvy could feel it-- the chemistry was there.
But even kismet can take time. Finally, after 5 years of jamming at summer weekend barbecues and winter dinner-parties, they decided to "get serious". . . they formed the folk/vocal trio, Three At Last.
Two critically acclaimed albums, an east coast tour, and 100+ shows later, (including The Kate Wolf Festival & The Freight & Salvage) Appleton & Sandwina created Spark & Whisper in late 2010. Joining forces with drummer Scott Johnson & bassist Paul Eastburn, (the super-groovin' rhythm section from Velvy's Brazilian dance band, Nobody From Ipanema), they released their debut album, "Spark & Whisper".
"Spark & Whisper" garnered stellar reviews*, strong radio play, and launched the band into 3 years of solid gigging. At venues big and small, festivals grand and modest, Spark & Whisper was honing their show and their material, polishing and refining to create a unique and connected approach to the music and their audience.
With a heap of new material, a solidified and road-experienced band, S&W were ready to step into creating a new album. This time, though, they wanted to take it further in the studio-to embrace more of their eclectic/electric pasts, and to honestly confront their perceptions of the evolving American cultural, political, and environmental landscape.
In their quest for something bigger, edgier, rockin'-er, more powerful-er, they teamed up with producer Monica Pasqual (Blame Sally), and released their second album, "Ghost Towns". Almost immediately upon its release, the album was embraced by the acoustic/folk radio community- within weeks, every track on the album had gotten significant radio play. So much so, that the album found its way onto 8 different Folk DJ's "Top 10 Albums of 2013", and continues to get strong radio play across the US & Canada.
In performance, Spark & Whisper are pursuing transcendence-guiding and transporting the audience out of the mundane, into moments of higher consciousness and connection, and to an acknowledgement of our common humanity, our connected spirit. It is a wonderful thing to experience.
"Spark & Whisper is now a serious force in modern folk. A full-sounding acoustic quartet with a debut album of sensitive, introspective and, at times, refreshingly hard-driving indie folk." Paul Liberatore, Marin Independent Journal, Aug 13, 2011
"Burning brightly with their debut self-titled CD, Spark & Whisper is revamped, ripened, and bulked-up. Though keeping with their folk origins, Spark & Whisper takes the band up a notch with sophistication and depth, giving groove and a bit of electric-sass to the music that was once pure acoustic simplicity." Pacific Sun, Aug 22, 2011
"Spark & Whisper have created an infective original sound based on pitch-perfect vocal harmonies and dynamic acoustic grooves that soothe and move the mind and body." The Pacific Sun, March 4, 2013 "Ghost Towns" Reviews