Mary Lattimore | Photo courtesy of the artist
PREMIERE: “Jimmy V” by Mary Lattimore
Philadelphia harpist, Mary Lattimore is releasing her new EP At The Dam on March 4th on Ghostly International. Classically trained since she was 11, Lattimore incorporates experimental techniques and technologies into her music, and has performed and recorded with Kurt Vile, Sharon Van Etten, Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Steve Gunn, and others, and frequently collaborates with Philly producer and multi-instrumentalist Jeff Zeigler.
In 2014 Lattimore received a prestigious fellowship from the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage — a rare honor given to 12 people every year — and used the funds to take a road trip across America with a friend, writing and recording songs at each stop along the way. With her harp and laptop, Lattimore drew inspiration from each location, letting the environments in which she recorded color her work. The result is evocative, delicate and haunting music, Lattimore’s harp at times bright and skipping, other times distant and hazy, swathed in gauzy delay.
She recorded much of At the Dam in the beautiful setting of Joshua Tree. “I would wheel the harp out on to the porch of my friend Chiara’s little house and I had the whole desert around me. It felt like a residency on another planet.” Lattimore also recorded in Marfa, Texas at a friends home, as well as in the mountains of Altadena, east of LA.
The album is named for a Joan Didion essay about the Hoover Dam: “its enchanting, grandiose practicality, how it will keep operating in its own solitude, even when humans aren’t around,” she says.
Mary will have her record release party on Saturday, March 5th at Phila MOCA with Spacin’ and Bachelorette.