Posts Tagged ‘Meg Duffy’

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As productive as screaming into the void can be, sometimes the most effective way to air grievances is simply with a sigh. Meg Duffy, who has been the longtime lead guitarist for The Kevin Morby Band, switched her focus to Hand Habits in 2017. Duffy’s second album, “Placeholder”, leads off with the title track, a soft yet scathing lamentation of being secondary.

“If you’ve ever held someone’s seat in a theater, if you’ve been a bench warmer, if you’ve ever placed a reserved sign on top of a tablecloth, if you’ve been an ‘extra’ or a ‘stand in’ for something, you’ve experienced what being a placeholder feels like to some extent. You observe,” Duffy says.

The song wearily recounts the age-old story of being someone’s fallback, with Duffy growing more frustrated throughout the song. Additional vocals from Hannah Read (Lomelda) and wry guitar build, until the narrative is flipped — the agitator is now the proxy.

The Hand Habits project emerged after Meg moved to Los Angeles; it started as a private songwriting outlet but soon evolved into a fully-fledged band with Meg at the helm. Hand Habits’ debut album, Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void), was released by Woodsist Records in 2017. The LP was entirely self-produced and recorded in Meg’s home during spare moments when they weren’t touring. Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void) is a lush, homespun collection of folk songs that found Meg in an exploratory state as an artist moving out on their own for the first time.
Two years later, Hand Habits has returned with their sophomore album, placeholder, due out March 1st on Saddle Creek. To make this album, Meg chose to work in a studio and bring in collaborators, entrusting them with what had previously been a very personal creative process. Over the course of 12 tracks, Meg emerges with new confidence as both a bandleader and singer. This album is as tender and immediate as anything Meg’s ever written, but it’s also intensely focused and refined, the work of a meticulous musician ready to share their singular vision with the world.

Hand HabitsPlaceholder from the album Placeholder

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Hello! My album is out today. Thank you to Meg Duffy, Will Ivy, Greta Morgan and Anna St. Louis for playing on it and making it what it is, Jarvis Taveniere for engineering and playing on it, Drew Fischer for mixing it, Abby Banks for taking the photos and to Kevin and Jeremy for putting it out into the world. And thank you to my friends new and old who have been so kind about it. I believe in music and community now more than ever. Grateful to still be a part of it all.

Night Shop is the new project from Justin Sullivan, drummer for Kevin Morby, The Babies and Flat Worms. and The Ringers, Worriers Like most of Sullivan’s projects, the album is a family affair. His former touring and recording partner in the Kevin Morby band, Meg Duffy (Hand Habits) plays bass on several of the songs and sings backup vocals on a few as well. Flat Worms cohort Will Ivy plays lead guitar on some, while Mare labelmate and soon-to-be touring partner Anna St. Louis sings backup on two songs. The album was engineered by Jarvis Taveniere of Woods and mixed by Drew Fischer who previously worked with Sullivan on Morby’s first two records and The Babies second album Our House On The Hill“When I think about this record, a lyric from A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall, comes to mind. It’s the line where Dylan sings, ‘I’ll know my song, well before I starting singing.’ In The Break is the product of someone who has had a lot to say and has waited for the perfect moment to say it.” —Kevin Morby

In The Break is a follow-up to his self-titled EP from 2017. An uncomplicated traipse into folk rock, In the Break isn’t an album meant for picking apart; rather, it’s already cozily knit together, ready for the listener to climb inside and stay awhile. In the Break may be uncomplicated, but it’s not slack. Sullivan balances warm palpability with tight songwriting, resulting in an easy-going batch of brainy rock songs. The album’s lead-off track and first single, “The One I Love,” is a great introduction to Sullivan’s dry wit and spirited folk leanings.

Kevin Morby

Kevin Morby has carved out a niche over the course of four solo albums as a generous songwriter and lyricist, a chronicler of details from city and rural life. Morby’s latest album, “City Music”, finds him reflecting on city landscapes and experiences, as well as old friends which take the form of ghosts. “Come to Me Now,” is emblematic of Morby’s gift of imbuing songs with an air of religiosity, using space and gaps to conjure images of spectral lovers and rotted city structures.

City Music was Morby’s first album recorded with his talented live band, which consists of amazing Meg Duffy (guitar), Justin Sullivan (drums), and Cyrus Gengras (bass). Recorded near Stinson Beach, California, and produced by the ubiquitous Richard Swift, the album greatly benefits from the symbiotic relationship between players and instruments. Duffy’s guitar, in particular, adds layers of texture and melody, ringing softly against Morby’s resonant voice. Though not as guitar-laden as the titular “City Music” or “Crybaby,” the guitar rings in and out of earshot acting as Morby’s past love, glistening organ and drums taking the track to its conclusion.

KEXP presents Kevin Morby performing “City Music” live at The Triple Door as part of KEXP’s VIP Club concert series. Recorded August 21, 2017.

Songs: City Music,  Crybaby , 1234,  Aboard My Train,  Destroyer,  I Have Been To The Mountain, Parade, Downtown’s Lights, Beautiful Strangers,

Hand Habits is the project of Meg Duffy, an upstate New York-raised, LA-based musician who has collaborated with the likes of Kevin Morby, Mega Bog, and Weyes Blood.

Duffy’s musical talents have made her an in-demand studio and tour musician, but after several years of working with others on their projects, she stepped out on her own in February, 2017 with the release of Hand Habits debut album, Wildly Idle (Humble Before the Void) via Woodsist Records .

The record’s layered guitars and hushed, lightly-psychedelic atmospheres quickly captured attention throughout the indie music world including that of Robb Nansel at Saddle Creek Records. This summer, he invited Hand Habits to participate in the label’s Document Series , a celebration of music communities around the country that features unreleased singles from independent artists along with a curated zine about their local music scene.

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Meg Duffy, who records as Hand Habits, is a breath of fresh air. On her gorgeously affecting debut album on Woodsist LP “Wildly Idle Humble Before The Void” , Duffy channels her Piscean ways into a collection of wonderful pop songs that float through the ambience and reward the time you spend with them. Meg Duffy hasn’t stopped moving, working, or growing since she left her quiet childhood home in upstate New York. You can find her in the back of the van reading a book, quietly warming up backstage with some guitar workouts, or waiting tables at a neighborhood pizzeria. Though Meg didn’t pick up the instrument until she was seventeen years old, her intuitive, naturalistic musicality and commitment to the craft of guitar playing have made an in demand collaborator and guitarist for countless indie acts (Kevin Morby, Mega Bog, Weyes Blood).

Meg’s LP debut Wildy Idle (Humble Before the Void) (Woodsist Records 2017) ​is many things at once. The record is a collection of songs written amidst the constant motion of touring, recording, and working part-time jobs; recorded at home in North East L.A between other commitments, around the sounds of roommates cooking breakfast, and dogs pattering though an old craftsman house. Layered with Duffy’s signature extended guitar techniques, Hand Habits is playing five SXSW shows this year:

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HAND HABITS DEMAND IT

“Wildly Idle”, the warmly enveloping new album from Meg Duffy, aka Hand Habits, is out tomorrow on Woodsist Records. Today, she shares the video for one of the record’s prettiest, most achingly wistful tracks, starring Duffy herself in a house with mysterious figures with fabric-draped faces, framed by soft-focus shots that lend the vid a gauzy, dream-like quality that suits the song nicely. Shot + directed by Christina Acevedo:

From Meg Duffy’s Hand Habits Debut LP out February 10th, 2017 on Woodsist Records.

Meg Duffy, aka Hand Habits, is a singer, songwriter and guitarist from Upstate New York. She has been putting her time in on the road and in the studio over the past two years with pacific northwest band Mega Bog, and the Kevin Morby Band, making an impression on everyone she comes across with her natural charisma and uncharted talent as a multi-instrumentalist. But let Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void) be her open invitation to the world to step inside and take a much deeper look into who Duffy actually is. Tracked in an Upstate New York living room, then finished in her current home in Los Angeles

It is appropriate that this album was recorded by Meg herself – for Meg, who has an acute ear for detail, has touched every corner, has seen every vision ’til its end. Because of this, Wildly Idle feels incredibly intimate, like a secret between her and the listener. It hits soft, like warm water, and before you know it it is all around you – a bath, and Meg’s whisper has made its way inside you. Like many bedroom debuts before it (Microphones, Jessica Pratt, Little Wings, Grouper) let this be the first of many to come, for Meg has music in her touch  and this is only the beginning. But let us not look to the future now, but instead stand alongside her, our trust in her will, both humble before the void, with her first chorus as the mission statement; ‘hold you like a flower, hold you like an hour glass’.”- Kevin Morby

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Hand Habits

Hand Habits is the project of guitarist and singer-songwriter Meg Duffy. She’s spent the last two years touring and recording with Kevin Morby and Seattle’s Mega Bog, but now she’s stepping out on her own, with her debut full-length Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void) set to arrive on Woodsist Records early next year.
Tracked in a living room in her upstate New York hometown and finished in her current home in Los Angeles, the LP’s 13 tracks exude a deep, comforting warmth, the kind of warmth that seeps right into your bones. “Wildly Idle feels incredibly intimate, like a secret between her and the listener,” as Kevin Morby writes in the press release that accompanies the album announcement. “It hits soft, like warm water, and before you know it it is all around you — a bath, and Meg’s whisper has made its way inside you.”

That’s the kind of florid description that sounds like empty hyperbole, but one listen to first single “All The While” is more than enough to prove it. A wistful reverie of meandering guitar that ebbs and flows under Duffy’s unaffected vocals, it manages the neat trick of rocking out without ever breaking a sweat,

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