[PREMIERE] Sianna Plavin: Go On Now
As a former member of folk band Backyard Betties and chamber-folk ensemble Soft Cat, Providence’s Sianna Plavin lends her talents to many avenues; the art of music being one of them. Plavin's former years saw her as a farmer where she turned her spare time into a creative outlet for recording music. Her debut solo album, Go On Now is a product of that. The recordings took place in a series of locations, fusing nature with nurture. The album was a collaborative effort, coming to life through several locations and complimentary housing offerings along the way; Proving Go On Now truly is a labor of love.
We're honored to be premiering Sianna Plavin's second single, and title track, "Go On Now." Listen below and pre-order here.
We spoke to Sianna to get to know her a bit more.
Your writing process for Go On Now took place in an eclectic variety of locations. Was this your intention, or did it take shape as you began writing?
I wrote this record in the quiet spaces I could find between everything else I was doing, which really just happened to be all over the place. I think writing a lot of these songs in borrowed rooms ended up informing the songs in an interesting way I hadn’t set out to achieve.
What were your inspirations behind this body of work?
My songwriting usually starts with one line that bubbles up from somewhere in my brain and builds from there. It often means I end up writing songs about things I hadn’t set out to write about. A few years ago, a friend read Ernest Thompson Seton’s short story “Lobo King of the Currumpaw” to me on a sailboat, and that winter I wrote a collection of songs with that story in the back of my mind. “Cruel” was one of them. I was mourning a lot of things while writing this record. I dug into myths and stories, and waded through the ideas swimming around in my head to turn that grief into something that felt accurate and satisfying.
Part of your recording took place in your home; a trailer in the woods. What was daily life like out there?
I lived and worked on a small farm in Massachusetts, near Providence, RI. There was a big main house with lots of people and animals and projects, and the trailer was my personal spot away from it all. We were working really hard growing vegetables, and raising hens and meat chickens and pigs, and helping with the family business of breeding dairy goats, and taking care of a wild crew of animals and interns, and eating delicious food, and playing music, and going for swims, and dealing with death and birth and weird tragedies and extreme beauty. It was insane and the best all rolled into one.
Your music sends me to a place abundant in nature. Would you say it plays a role in your life and/or music?
Absolutely to both. I grew up exploring in the woods of western Massachusetts and on a small island in Maine but fell in love with cities when I moved to Baltimore for college. I think the tension of wanting to be in the woods and wanting to sit on a stoop in the city making art with people is reflected a lot of these songs.
We’re extremely excited to be premiering your title track, “Go On Now.” Could you tell us a bit about the meaning behind the song?
“Go On Now” is all about getting in your own damn way. All those sly bits of yourself that keep you from making and doing. The song is a hopeful exorcism, I guess.
What can we expect from you following your release?
I will be going on tour in September and October so look out for those dates!
Five artists who you’d like to personally recommend to us.
I’ve got a lot of ladies on my mind: Devon Sproule, Mirah, tUnE-yArDs, Wye Oak, Jessica Pratt.
Last, but certainly not least, you held a former life as a farmer. Could you please offer up some tips for the novice “farmer-in-training” living in an urban city?
Yeah! Do it! Go hang out with some farmers and see what they’re up to. Like most things in life, don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Don’t skimp on compost and be very very curious.
Go On Now will be out July 31st.