Shawna Russell (from the album Back Around)
Celebrating a return to the recording studio after a six-year hiatus, Shawna Russell offers Back Around, her recent release. Shawna presents the title track as inspiration in a tale of taking a chance and being prepared to fall without feeling that any mistakes are a dead end. The power in her voice lets Shawna Russell own the spotlight as storyteller in her songs on Back Around. She assures heartbreaks are universal in “The Only One”, supports the message of letting go with the power of the rhythms under “Learning to Live Again”, reaches an impasse with tough decisions in “No More Water”, and daydreams a simpler pace away from a hurried west coast lifestyle in “Slow Down in Oklahoma”.
The recording of Back Around is a family affair for Shawna Russell as she recalled the original intention for the album when she ‘decided it would be a completely organic, home-grown, record, created and produced by my family, my band, and me. We were able to just be ourselves and let the world know who the Russell family is’. Shawna Russell pulls out original tracks from her songbook as well as cuts she co-wrote with her father, Keith Russell, who joins the band (The Ranch Hands) on guitar alongside her uncle, Tim Russell, with both brothers sharing production credits with Shawna. The tales collected on Back Around are a mirror of Shawna’s life from setting out on her own to her work as a musician and record label owner with her imprint, Our Land Records, co-run with her uncle Tim and bandmate Jerry Putnam. The sound of California Country drifts over the album, becoming the focus of the instrumental “Horse Shoe Bend”, and rising up on the jangling guitars set against the dark melody clouds and story line over “Storm Birds”.