Samantha Crain returns with two new tracks from her latest album, You Had Me at Goodbye.
Oklahoma-based, Choctaw singer-songwriter Samantha Crain has been releasing a consistently incredible—and highly underrated—blend of alt-folk, art-punk, and indie pop since her debut EP in 2007.
She’s come a long way in her songwriting and performance since then, and her latest album, You Had Me at Goodbye, is sure to put her even further on the radar of music fans who’ve slept on her sound for too long already.
She recently debuted two tracks from the new album: “Antiseptic Greeting”, a breezy bit of melancholic pop, and the upbeat string-infused, “Oh Dear Louie”. Both songs show Crain taking her sound in a decidedly more pop direction, one that builds on her confident melodic sensibility and excellent studio production by indie darling John Vanderslice.
But, even as Crain gains increasing recognition from her non-Indigenous fanbase, she remains connected to her Choctaw heritage. In a recent interview with Rookie Magazine, she was asked about the influence of her Indigenous identity on her music. Crain replied that her work is about creating new traditions, in response to all that’s been lost through colonization:
“You know, I get asked that question a lot, and I think my answer changes a lot. It’s hard to know how specific influences end up affecting you. I will say that the basis behind all of the traditional songs in the Choctaw language that I know. Anytime that I’ve seen or heard one of our tribal singers at a pow-wow or at a gathering, there is this connection with something that is old and beyond what I can really comprehend as a modern person, that I think I’ve always admired and really sought after, but I’ve also heard the same thing in like Billie Holiday’s voice. It’s this sort of abandon in somebody’s voice to reach something beyond themselves, and I don’t mean that in a religious way because I don’t really consider myself religious, but just in an existence way, I think. That’s the only thing I can really pinpoint. My main sort of relationship with where I am with my heritage and my tribe is to try to create new traditions just because so much has been lost through the years due to colonization. That’s my headspace now. Different people who I’ve grown up with in the tribe have pointed out different things, like rhythms that I do in certain songs, that might be similar to rhythms in traditional songs, or specific ways that my voice might move that is similar to maybe a traditional singers voice. It’s hard to pinpoint those yourself, but it’s neat when someone points it out.”
You Had Me At Goodbye is out March 24th on Ramseur Records.
1. Antiseptic Greeting
2. Oh Dear Louis
3. Loneliest Handsome Man
4. Wise One
5. Red Sky, Blue Mountain
6. Smile When
7. Betty’s Eulogy
8. Windmill Crusader
9. When the Roses Bloom Again