Atlanta's Michelle Malone will perform at Songbirds Guitar and Pop Culture Museum on June 29.
Review for Michelle Malone:
Michelle Malone, a mainstay of American roots music for more than 30 years, has built an award-winning career as a singer, songwriter, and road warrior. Malone’s SBS Records (Distributed by BFD Entertainment / The Orchard) released Fan Favorites, Vol. 1 Unplugged on May 12 where Malone revisits more than a dozen songs that have become staples of her nightly gigs.
The idea to record new versions of older songs arrived during the COVID-19 pandemic. She began performing stripped down songs in her living room, live-streaming them to audiences across the country. Old fans tuned in. New fans were made. Along the way, she received numerous requests for the songs that inspired her and guitarist Doug Kees to go into the studio to record stripped down versions which became Fan Favorites, Vol. 1 Unplugged.
The songs were, in essence, her greatest hits, and they sounded every bit as vital in her living room — where she strummed them alone, on acoustic guitar — as they did with a big, plugged-in band. Fan Favorites, Vol. 1 Unplugged celebrates Malone's past while shining new light on her present. It's not just a victory lap; it's a rebirth, too.
Malone's music is ingrained in the soundtrack of the American South, mixing the rebellious stomp of roadhouse rock & roll with the raw grit of blues, the holy-rolling rasp of gospel, the slow-motion sweep of country-soul, and the organic warmth of folk music. Proudly based in Atlanta, she spends much of her time on the move, regularly crisscrossing the country to play 200 shows annually. Recorded with guitarist Doug Kees, the new acoustic album trades the amplified dynamics of Malone's studio work — a catalog that has been lauded by Rolling Stone for its "soulful ballads and rowdy, riffy blasters" — for a stripped-down sound that nods to Malone's musical roots.