Interview With Larkin Poe – Bringing The Blues Back

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 - by Patrick O'Hagan
Larkin Poe
Larkin Poe

Musical trends on the pop stations ebb and flow; but the foundations of blues and rock have been left untouched throughout time. While there may not be a great number of current bands and artists holding true that framework, there are a handful that are steadfast in preserving and furthering the presence of American Roots and Blues music. Larkin Poe is one of those modern day torchbearers.

Born in Knoxville and raised in Georgia, Megan and Rebecca Lovell are a couple of southern belles with a tendency to rock out. The self-proclaimed Georgia peaches have a strong foundation rooted in southern music and culture that is evident throughout their work.

The sisters share a strong bond and love of music that has manifested itself into a blues-rock outfit named Larkin Poe. The band’s name is actually in homage to their family lineage. When the two were deciding on a band name, Rebecca recounts, “picking a band name is hugely difficult... the fact that we are sisters is huge to us, and a huge part of our story and our message. To be able to have a family name was important to us… and picking our great-great-great-great grandfather’s name felt like the right thing to do.”

The icing on the cake was that, “he is a cousin of Edgar Allen Poe, so we thought that was a cool backstory,” said Megan.

Neither Megan nor Rebecca is new to music making or the stage. Both girls started playing classical violin and piano at around three and four years old. Rebecca recalls that it was that early-age training and regimen, thanks to their mother, that “instilled the language of music in us.” Their father helped with the southern rock influence, but that didn’t show itself in full force until relatively recently.

Before Larkin Poe, they performed in a bluegrass group with another sister, under the title The Lovell Sisters. Coincidently, The Lovell Sisters’ first public appearance was in Chattanooga at the Signal Mountain Opry. From there Megan says they toured extensively for “probably five or six years,” playing 200 dates a year and even being featured on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion. 

With the departure of their sister, Megan and Rebecca continued to develop their sound and branding, and Larkin Poe was born. For the last two years they’ve called Nashville home, moving to the Music City while also still maintaining claim to their Georgia roots as well. Larkin Poe’s most recent release, the appropriately named Peach pays homage to the music and the rearing that has propelled them to their current state of musicianship and artistry.

The entirely self-produced album has been met with warm critical acclaim. Rebecca’s strong lead vocals and guitar work pair perfectly with Megan’s mean lap steel guitar riffs on the record, which features a mix of originals and classic covers. 

While discussing the making of the album, Megan admitted, “I don’t really know if we decided ahead of time if that was going to happen, but I think once we got in there we just said ‘wait, we’re going to just do everything.’”

The creative partnership flowed naturally between the sisters as it has for years. “It was really freeing to just be the two of us, because we do really share a mind when it comes to music.,” said Rebecca. “That’s one great strength of being siblings in a band… I’m really proud of this record and it’s my favorite that we ever made.”

The group closed out 2017 with two “hometown” shows, one in Atlanta and one in Nashville.  “It was a great wrap-up to 2017,” said Megan, who said the shows were a highlight of their year. ““We sold the most tickets as a headliner we ever have” at the Atlanta show. And that feat comes as Larkin Poe just recently got off the road with a stint of opening gigs with classic rock icon Bob Seger.

“The last twelve months have brought a great clarity to Larkin Poe,“ said Rebecca.

The two agree to continue along that path and “make music that makes people happy.”

The vinyl release of Peach will be later this month, and the group is excited to have a busy upcoming year on the road. They say we can expect to see a lot of touring this year and several festival stops. Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival just announced their billing this week, which will include the rocking sisters known as Larkin Poe.  Be on the lookout for more big things to come.

The Rough And Tumble Play At Charles And Myrtle's Saturday

The Rough and Tumble will play at Charles and Myrtle's Coffeehouse on Saturday at 8 p.m.  The coffeehouse is inside Christ Unity Church at 105 McBrien Road.  There is a suggested donation of $10 at the door.  Review for the Rough and Tumble: The Rough and Tumble used to say that they “used to say they were from Nashville, Tennessee.” But nearing the end of ... (click for more)

Ringgold Playhouse Hosts Final Weekend Of "True West"

The Ringgold Playhouse will hold the final four performances of Sam Shepard's "True West" Thursday through Saturday. After a big opening weekend, the show garnered praise from the local theatre community for its crisply executed tale of a feud between two brothers, said officials. "Our audiences have really appreciated how realistic the show is with all its twists and turns," ... (click for more)

WACKER-Charleston Taking Initial Steps To Restart Polysilicon Production After Explosion Shut Facility Last September

WACKER-Charleston announced Thursday it has resumed operations for the production of polysilicon. Using a phase-in approach, WACKER has begun the initial start-up of the site, beginning with distillation. The initial production of polysilicon is targeted to begin in the next few weeks. WACKER anticipates the Charleston site will reach full capacity in the fourth quarter ... (click for more)

Governor, Lt. Governor Praise Work Of 110th General Assembly

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and Lt. Governor Randy McNally praised the work of the 110 th  General Assembly .   Governor Haslam said the legislators acted to "keep Tennessee on pace to lead the nation in jobs, education and efficient and effective government."   He said, “The investments in this budget and our legislative priorities this session ... (click for more)

Keep The Gifted Program In The Hamilton County Schools - And Response (2)

I currently have a daughter in fourth grade at Lookout Valley Elementary and a daughter in the eighth grade at Lookout Valley Middle High School. Both of my daughters are very good students, as well as being very good people. I am writing today with a concern. I was made aware that the Hamilton County Department of Education is considering cutting the gifted program ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A True Tennessean

“Last week I told some Republican friends who have held high office, traditional and true Republicans, who like you are both conservative and compassionate, Christians in their personal faith and public service,” the email began. “These are Tennessee Republicans that I have known for decades, and whom I'd trust with my life and my wife … I told them that my views and values make ... (click for more)