The members of Virginia band Chamomile and Whiskey love bluegrass as much as they do traditional Irish rhythms, so instead of just sticking to one or the other, they have put their love of both styles together. This has given them a truly one of a kind show and has also fueled their energetic live performances. After releasing a four-song debut EP titled The Barn Sessions in 2012 and focusing heavily on touring, the band released their first full-length album, Wandering Boots, the following year. Since then they have added more talent and toured nationally, playing notable festivals like Floyd Fest and the Festy Experience.
On October 27th Chamomile and Whiskey will translate their energetic live sound to the studio with the release of their new album Sweet Afton. The album has plenty of rollicking banjo, lively fiddle and high-energy percussion as well as flute, cello and even a tin whistle. The album’s title is derived from a few inspirations – Nelson County’s well-known Afton Mountain acted as the backdrop for many songs on the album and served as fiddle player Marie Borgman’s previous home. Sweet Aftons were also the cheap, unfiltered cigarettes of choice for banjoist Ryan Lavin in his native Galway, Ireland.
Today Glide is excited to premiere the song “Good As It Could Be”, a fan-favorite party anthem during the band’s live shows and a personification of how the band sees themselves. The song fuses in the group’s love of Irish music and bluegrass with a country-tinged Americana sound to create a feel-good sitting around the campfire mood. Above all, it establishes the kind of family-like chemistry possessed by the band and makes clear the magic they can conjure in the live setting.
Banjo player and vocalist Ryan Lavin reflects on the song:
“I wrote ‘Good As It Could Be’ about three or four years ago. I always liked in-jokes in songs – like the Band’s ‘The Weight.’ I tried fitting in a lot of stuff that would have specific meaning to the people around me whilst also being accessible to strangers. I was also listening to a lot of Van Morrison at the time and tried to channel his energy to some degree by way of ‘Jackie Wilson Said’ and ‘Flamingos Fly’ (A Period Of Transition version).”
Chamomile and Whiskey will release Sweet Afton on October 27. For more music and info chamomileandwhiskey.com.
Photo credit: Aaron Farrington