Newport Folk PresentsJoan Shelley
Joan Shelley, a singer-songwriter who lives near Louisville, Kentucky, features work that wrestles with the possibility of reconciling, if only for a moment, the perceived “natural” world with its reflection. Her fifth album, Like the River Loves the Sea, is expected to be released on August 30.
Although Shelley draws inspiration from traditional (and traditionally minded) performers from her native Kentucky, as well as those from Ireland, Scotland, and England, she isn’t a folk singer. Her disposition aligns more closely with those of Roger Miller, Dolly Parton, and fellow Kentuckian Tom T. Hal.
Since the 2015 release of her album Over and Even, Shelley has crossed the country and toured Europe several times as a headlining artist, sharing shows with artists such as Jake Xerxes Fussell, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, Doug Paisley, Daniel Martin Moore, and Michael Hurley. She has opened for Wilco, Chris Smither, Andrew Bird, and Richard Thompson.