SHELLEY SHORT BIO

Shelley Short is a folk singer and songwriter who grew up in Portland, Oregon. Her parents, having unique artistic sensibilities, filled their old house with a slew of books, piles of records, reels of complex movie plots, not to mention the seemingly endless parade of musicians and artists who used the house as some kind of unofficial cultural headquarters. All of this stimulus fed into Shelley’s own very overactive imagination. In high school she picked up the electric bass, learning such covers as Mo Tucker’s After Hours and Hank William’s I'm So Lonesome I could Cry and performing them at house parties and coffee shops. But it was her love affair with the songs of Jimmie Rodgers, Bob Dylan, Otis Redding, and Lucinda Williams that spurred her to learn to play the guitar and to write her own.

Portland was a different city then and at the time of Shelley’s graduation the folk scene was still pretty much underground. She gravitated towards people with similar appreciations, and in a share house on Alberta Ave became fast friends with roommate Adam Selzer, a talented musician/engineer in his own right. Selzer had himself only just moved to the Rose City from San Louis Obispo and set up a studio in an old warehouse down by the rail yards, christening it Type Foundry. It was here that Shelley was provoked into recording the small collection of original tunes she had amassed. In 2001 Oh Say Little Dogies, Why? was picked up by a small label out of Arizona called Keep Recordings.

The process of writing, recording and performing songs came natural to her and all the decisions she was making were based on what felt right. When word of an empty room came available through an old school friend in Chicago she spontaneously boarded the Empire Builder with all her worldly possessions, including her 4 foot tall koto. She quickly found local musical collaborators to help hone new material, showcasing it in the little suburban music joints like the Hide Out, which attracted a small enthusiastic following. The album that came out of this fruitful time Captain Wildhorse Rides The Heart of Tomorrow was accepted kindly by the city of broad shoulders, garnishing praises by the likes of No Depression magazine: "Combining touches of artiness with a back-porch approach, Captain Wild Horse comes off as a bigger album than perhaps even its maker intended."

From there a short restless stint in LA saw her return to her home in Portland, completing a 4-year triangle. With renewed focus, a series of albums quickly followed: Water For the Day (2008), A Cave, A Canoe (2009), And Then Came the After (2011).

Throughout this time Shelley also grew to be a natural collaborator. With such a lyrical voice she was often recruited as a harmony singer for the likes of Tom Brosseau, M Ward, The Decemberists, Thao and The Get Down Stay Down, Darren Hanlon, Dragging an Ox through water, to name a few. She was also invited to perform outside the US, touring several times in Australia, America and Europe with Darren Hanlon, Laura Jean, Mick Thomas, Tom Brosseau, M Ward and Marlon Williams.

In 2012 her old friend Adam Selzer had a notion to produce and record live a covers album that would be built around Shelley’s beguiling voice. He hand-picked the backup band from local acts, the Decemberists, Black Prairie, Pure Bathing Culture and The Dandy Warhols. Shelley’s father and another good friend Eric Isaacson, owner of label and shop Mississippi Records, helped select the track list.

It was this resulting album Wake the Dreamers that caught the ear of musician/ producer Peter Broderick who was thus inspired to contact Shelley and offer his services in the way of future recording. A new batch of songs grew from this partnership, through many weekend drives out to his studio on the dramatic Oregon coastline. Whether or not the end result was inspired by this wild environment or Shelley’s own inward feelings towards the subjects of freedom, death and longing, it stands as a testament to a great lyrical, musical and sonic leap in her journey as an artist.

These songs will now be released as the new Shelley Short album entitled Pacific City on August 1st 2017 on Mississippi Records (USA) and Flippin Yeah Records (AUS).

 

                                                                  SHELLEY ALBUM BIO

 

Her newest project was forged in a little town on the Oregon coast, where the house and studio of musical polymath Peter Broderick sits on the lee side of great sand dunes that slope down to meet the raging grey unpredictable Pacific Ocean. Broderick, being a fan and getting especially hooked by her last covers record, made contact and invited her out there to record. It gave Shelley new writing purpose.

 The songs on this album were inspired by the songs of Connie Converse, Jake Thackray and The Space Lady, as well as the universal feelings of real longing, death, freedom, feminism and acceptance of change. The landscape from the city to the coast was inspiring for some songs too. “Death was written in the car one rainy night. I got so used to driving along the Old Coast Road on my way to The Sparkle. But one night, as I drove along a little cliff, with only a small brick wall dividing me from a fall way down into the choppy waves, I thought: what would happen if I sneezed right now and veered off a few feet to the right? Would the waves take me to a place only death will allow you? Who else would be there?”

 The album was recorded over a number of weeks at The Sparkle recording studio. Here is what Peter Broderick had to say about the experience: "Working with Shelley never really felt like work, and was always interspersed with games of cards and visits to the ocean. By the time winter came around, we had the bulk of what seemed to be a new album. And when I accidentally erased several of our recording sessions, Shelley didn’t even lose her cool. In fact, she seemed more upset if she lost a game of cards!Shelley’s world is one that I adapted to very easily. In an age when tradition isoften foregone, Shelley seems to be able to look back and find meaningful guidance in the ways of the past. I think this is where that nourishing feeling came from as I listened to her vinyl in the Spring. There’s an intangible wisdom in the folk traditions, and what a joy it is to spend time with someone who carries some ofthat . . . in person and on record."

The new record, entitled "Pacific City" will be released on August 1st 2017 on Mississippi Records (USA) and Flippin Yeah Records (AUS)

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                                                  Contact:    shelley.short@gmail.com 

 

                      

        Shelley Short is a folk singer and songwriter who grew up in Portland, Oregon. Her parents, having unique artistic sensibilities, filled their old house with a slew of books, piles of records, reels of complex movie plots, not to mention the seemingly endless parade of musicians and artists who used the house as some kind of unofficial cultural headquarters. All of this stimulus fed into Shelley’s own very overactive imagination. In high school she picked up the electric bass, learning such covers as Mo Tucker’s After Hours and Hank William’s I'm So Lonesome I could Cry and performing them at house parties and coffee shops. But it was her love affair with the songs of Jimmie Rodgers, Bob Dylan, Otis Redding, and Lucinda Williams that spurred her to learn to play the guitar and to write her own.

Portland was a different city then and at the time of Shelley’s graduation the folk scene was still pretty much underground. She gravitated towards people with similar appreciations, and in a share house on Alberta Ave became fast friends with roommate Adam Selzer, a talented musician/engineer in his own right. Selzer had himself only just moved to the Rose City from San Louis Obispo and set up a studio in an old warehouse down by the rail yards, christening it Type Foundry. It was here that Shelley was provoked into recording the small collection of original tunes she had amassed. In 2001 Oh Say Little Dogies, Why? was picked up by a small label out of Arizona called Keep Recordings.

        The process of writing, recording and performing songs came natural to her and all the decisions she was making were based on what felt right. When word of an empty room came available through an old school friend in Chicago she spontaneously boarded the Empire Builder with all her worldly possessions, including her 4 foot tall koto. She quickly found local musical collaborators to help hone new material, showcasing it in the little suburban music joints like the Hide Out, which attracted a small enthusiastic following. The album that came out of this fruitful time Captain Wildhorse Rides The Heart of Tomorrow was accepted kindly by the city of broad shoulders, garnishing praises by the likes of No Depression magazine: "Combining touches of artiness with a back-porch approach, Captain Wild Horse comes off as a bigger album than perhaps even its maker intended."

From there a short restless stint in LA saw her return to her home in Portland, completing a 4-year triangle. With renewed focus, a series of albums quickly followed: Water For the Day (2008), A Cave, A Canoe (2009), And Then Came the After (2011).

        Throughout this time Shelley also grew to be a natural collaborator. With such a lyrical voice she was often recruited as a harmony singer for the likes of Tom Brosseau, M Ward, The Decemberists, Thao and The Get Down Stay Down, Darren Hanlon, Dragging an Ox through water, to name a few. She was also invited to perform outside the US, touring several times in Australia, America and Europe with Darren Hanlon, Laura Jean, Mick Thomas, Tom Brosseau, M Ward and Marlon Williams.

        In 2012 her old friend Adam Selzer had a notion to produce and record live a covers album that would be built around Shelley’s beguiling voice. He hand-picked the backup band from local acts, the Decemberists, Black Prairie, Pure Bathing Culture and The Dandy Warhols. Shelley’s father and another good friend Eric Isaacson, owner of label and shop Mississippi Records, helped select the track list.

        It was this resulting album Wake the Dreamers that caught the ear of musician/ producer Peter Broderick who was thus inspired to contact Shelley and offer his services in the way of future recording. A new batch of songs grew from this partnership, through many weekend drives out to his studio on the dramatic Oregon coastline. Whether or not the end result was inspired by this wild environment or Shelley’s own inward feelings towards the subjects of freedom, death and longing, it stands as a testament to a great lyrical, musical and sonic leap in her journey as an artist.

       These songs will now be released as the new Shelley Short album entitled Pacific City on August 1st 2017 on Mississippi Records (USA) and Flippin Yeah Records (AUS).

Shelley Short’s newest project was forged in a little town on the Oregon coast, where the house and studio of musical polymath Peter Broderick sits on the lee side of great sand dunes that slope down to meet the raging grey unpredictable Pacific Ocean. Broderick, after hooked by her last covers record, made contact and invited her out there to see if they might work on something. “In an age when tradition is>  often foregone, Shelley seems to be able to look back and find meaningful guidance in the ways of the past,” he says, “I think this is where that nourishing feeling came from as I listened to her vinyl in the spring. There’s an intangible wisdom in the folk traditions, and what a joy it is to spend time with someone who carries some of>  that. In person and on record.”

The prospect of recording at the coast gave Shelley a new sense of purpose. Songs started forming organically around the universal feelings of longing, death, freedom, inequality and acceptance of change. Just like the ones of the musical heroes that were coming out of her car stereo around that time: Connie Converse, Jake Thackray and The Space Lady. The impressive landscape on the drive from the city to the coast seemed to embody these ideals as well. The plaintive folk song Death was written whilst journeying out there one rainy night. She remembers, “as I drove along a little cliff, with only a small brick wall dividing me from a fall way down into the choppy waves, I wondered what would happen if I sneezed right now and veered off a few feet to the right? Would the waves take me to a place only death will allow you? Who else would be there?”

The two worked easy and well together. Broderick is known for his lush and inventive orchestrations but the production became a collaborative effort. They both improvised with the studio’s vast instrument collection using drums, miscellaneous percussion, violin, synthesizers, bass, lap steel, and musical saw. Stand out track Book Under a Tree is a good example of this, a simple enough lyric but with Short’s keyboard and drum machine arrangement and Broderick’s production it flowered into a nostalgic pulse of melancholic wonder.

What stands now is Short’s most vivid and assured song collection to date. What first strikes the listener with any of her albums is her evocative voice but Pacific City is further testament to her growth as a songwriter. Poetry that’s deceptively simple, recalling old scratchy folk traditions, equal parts fairytale and modern world reverie.