Faye Webster is a singer-songwriter from Atlanta, Georgia. Her music is a lovely mix of country and 70s soft rock (think Fleetwood Mac or even the Eagles) with a dose of indie in the attitude. Faye is also a photographer and in with the rap community in Atlanta – I think she has provided guest vocals on a few songs. So not just your standard singer-songwriter. I first came across her when I went to see Julia Jacklin at Shepherd’s Bush Empire last November. She was one of two support acts. I checked a video of her singing a song called “Alone Again” and loved it. So, for once, I made sure I was there to see both the support acts. My love of her music started there.
At that time she was promoting her second album, “Faye Webster”. It was a beautiful, wistful collection of songs, in the style I described just now. I made it No7 in my 2017 albums of the year and still play it a lot. It’s an album to chill to. Lose yourself in the mellow grooves, the sweet melancholy. Highly recommended.
So when I saw she was playing a show in London I had to go. My friend Annabelle agreed to come along. She enjoyed Soccer Mommy earlier this year, and there are similarities. The Slaughtered Lamb is a bar/restaurant in Clerkenwell, and it has a music venue down below. A large lounge with a bar, basically. It had an intimate feel, and we managed to get a table right at the front. There weren’t a vast number of people there – maybe 50 or 60? – but it was enough to create a nice atmosphere. Faye had a few followers there, including her parents, so it was an enthusiastic group.
Faye was accompanied by just her pedal steel player, who she calls “Kippy” (I think). He gets some lovely sounds out of his instrument – a mellifluous addition to Faye’s fragile vocals and sparse guitar. A dreamy sound, which was enhanced by being so close to the action. Every fret position, the look in the eyes, the grimace or the smile. Intimate, and really quite moving. First song was “Alone Again” – still my favourite. It was followed soon after by a lovely version of “What’s the Point”, which did bring a tear to my eye. Most of the favourites from “Faye Webster” got an airing, plus a couple of older ones, and two new songs, which sounded great. Strangely she didn’t play “She Won’t Go Away”, which might be her best-known song; but I guess you sometimes just don’t feel like playing what everyone expects.
It was a truly wonderful hour of music. Afterwards I passed by Faye and had to tell her how much I’d enjoyed the show and the album. Annabelle had walked on, then turned back and arranged a photo! As a man in his fifties, I don’t overstay my welcome, but yeah, I got a photo! It’s below with a couple of other shots. I didn’t take too many, because we were so close. I didn’t want to distract her or Kippy. We went back upstairs and had a glass of wine. Kippy came by and we had a chat with him too. Said how the new ones had hardly been rehearsed. He has the skill to improvise on the pedal steel. A talented musician.
I do hope Faye has more success. She’s doing well, but there are a lot of good artists out there. I was hooked as soon as I heard her. I hope more and more people feel the same. Give her album a try.