Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Thursday 21 June 2018

Rhythm of the Rain: Amelia White Uses Grief As A Palate To Colour New Songs To Be Showcased In Brighton

While touring the UK in November 2016, American songwriter Amelia White viewed the bitterly divisive election season back home via the BBC, and from a promoter's attic began to complete the songs on her album, Rhythm Of The Rain. 

The album was initially released as a nine-song album late in 2017 in the UK as an offering of gratitude to that country for loving her songs and providing a kind of shelter from the tumult back home. 

That ocean of separation and her loneliness gave her the necessary distance to
paint her picture of the shake-up. White uses observations, images and melody to tell her stories.

"Don't think too much, people" is the spoken word snippet that begins the title track.

It's a flippant warning, a half-joke, a sideways call-to-arms that announces a casual subversion threading through these nine songs from the opening explosion of summer sunshine, through the heat of lust and addiction, landing with a glance at politics and fate while the window is still wide open, warm breeze blowing in the late afternoon. 

Amelia White asks us to not take it all so seriously and, at the same time, shows us how critical it all is: love, fate, death, grief, politics, which isn't surprising considering White made this record in the four days between her Mother's funeral and her own wedding. 

Rhythm of the Rain digs deep. Her well worn smokey pipes deliver a rawness you"d expect from mining that liminal space between grief and joy. 

What separates Amelia White from most other songwriters in the Americana genre is her details. 

Like a short story writer steeped in the gothic humidity of the backroads, White illuminates the ordinary: "…dyed black hair and ear ring feathers/she"s gotta put three kids through school - she's sipping on the sly to keep her cool" (Little Cloud Over Little Rock). 


"Boy sat on a bus in the only open seat, mittens in one hand and a backpack at his feet" (Said It Like a King).  

There's a catchy melodic laziness to her rock and roll, an afternoon drive in the country, the top down, bare legs up on the dash, singing along to your favorite song: 

"When you feel like a sinking sun, you're not the only one", she sings, on Sinking Sun and you can almost taste the freedom of summer adolescence.  

The light threads through these songs.  "Sunshine coming through my window/I found something that I wanted…you" she sings to a lover in "Supernova," and later the love turns dark in Sugar Baby

As the album winds to a close, White leaves us with the one-two political punch of True or Not? 

"There's talk in the street that the deal is changing, everybody's on edge, look around" and then gently releases us with the hopeful coda, Let The Wind Blow, written with UK darlings, Worry Dolls. 

It's a wistful dream: "Miles and miles I thought I"d found a place to call home and a hand to hold/I put good money on this one, I don"t like to be wrong, I don"t like to be wrong." 
 
Lifers. It's how we define musicians called to the stage, living life in hotels, and friend's spare rooms, playing small and large clubs with sticky-floor stages, and microphones that taste of cigarettes. 

White has had TV and film placements (most notably Justified), record deals, cuts by some of the finest artists in the Americana world, but for her the success is in the doing, and there is no choice in the matter. 

She is a rock and roll soothsayer, an East Nashville Cassandra with an Americana gospel shout thicker than the paper-thin illusion of fame and money.  

Rhythm of the Rain is a late afternoon storm, a sky on the verge of cracking as wide open as Amelia White's heart. 

Amelia White plays The Greys, Brighton, on Monday 9th July 2018. CLICK HERE for more info.

by: Mike Cobley



Related links

The Greys Amelia White

Share    


Etta James' frantic recording and touring schedule coincided with her ever growing addiction problems and over time she not only sang the blues, she lived the blues. 

This month the 'sophisticated and stylish popsters' All Saints will play an intimate gig in Brighton, on behalf of Nordoff Robbins, the UK's largest independent music therapy charity.

Make way for protest singer, LGBTQ+ activist, folk singer, socialist and social commentator Grace Petrie.

Sat in the TV room at The Courtlands Hotel, in Hove, on the evening of 1st December 1973, with just one other guest. That was a twelve year-old me (ed) and a sockless and scowling Brian Clough. On the screen were 'the highlights' of Brighton & Hove Albion getting hammered 2-8 by Bristol Rovers. Clough was the co-manager of the Albion!

Northern psychedelic punks The Lovely Eggs have unleased their new album 'This Is Eggland', ahead of a date in Brighton.

A full twenty-five years after the release of Baka Beyond's debut album, Spirit of the Forest, the band celebrate their beginnings with a date in Sussex, re-joined after a long absence by Paddy Le Mercier, a member of the original line-up.

A follow up to Sue MacLaine's award winning work Can I Start Again Please, Vessel takes inspiration from the remarkable history of Anchoritism to ask if voluntary solitude could ever be defined as a political act. 

In the year that has seen knife crime in the UK soar to an unprecedented level, writer and actress Ambreen Razia, presents POT, which goes inside the corrupt and violent world of inner city gang culture. 
Photo by Delaney Brooks

Sussex-based music charity, AudioActive, has taken a big step towards their vision to establish the UK's first centre for excellence for the talent development of marginalised and under-represented artists in Worthing, thanks to £92,618 National Lottery funding through Arts Council England.
Barbara Windsor Memory Walkers

Sussex resident Arianne McGarrigle recently joined a tide of people to unite against dementia at Brighton and Hove Memory Walk


Ian Hislop and Nick Newman have taken inspiration from real life events for their new play Trial by Laughter, based on their critically acclaimed original BBC Radio 4 drama of the same name.

Multi-award winning songwriter and musician, theatre maker and published writer Kartine Polwart's seventh release, Laws of Motion, is the follow-up to last year's A Pocket of Wind Resistance, which was an innovative blend of folk music, spoken word & sound design. 

Benefit Cosmetics joined forces with Alice Skinner and a team of street artists to create two inspiring murals. The artworks celebrate the collaborative efforts of women, who support each other's 'brow-raising' actions and accomplishments.  

Ahead of a one-off date at Brighton's Hope & Ruin, Bristol based multi-instrumentalist producer and visual artist She Makes War has released her new single Devastate Me, taken from her upcoming album Brace For Impact. 

Archive search

Search our archives for what's on and gone for the best of this city's theatre music comedy news and much more...







Organising a conference or event in Brighton?
See our Brighton Conference section.
Brighton web design by ...ntd