Hear the Best New Folk Music with Fresh Cuts Friday

Ready for some of the best new music we’ve heard this week? It’s a darn good list as you’ll see below — and as you’ll hear when you join me for my “Fresh Cuts” radio hour! Listen every Friday at 2 p.m. Eastern, 11 a.m. Pacific via the 24/7 stream on our website, app, or your smart speaker.

Or, just click on the Fresh Cuts stream whenever it’s convenient for you.

In the meantime, check out some of the best new music we’ve been listening to this week.

Caitlin Canty – “Wild Heart”

Caitlin Canty’s latest album, Quiet Flame, is out on June 23 and produced by  by Chris Eldridge (Punch Brothers) and featuring a stellar band: Sarah Jarosz (mandolin, banjo, vocals), Brittany Haas (fiddle), and Paul Kowert (bass). Guests include Andrew Marlin and Noam Pikelny. Co-written with Annie Lynch, “Wild Heart” sets the scene with a pair running through the darkness chasing their hunger. The lyrics tell of living a dream that fades away as the sun comes up, and the bowed bass and fiddle duetting evoke the hunger at night and become the birdsong in the morning.

Tim O’Brien – “Little Lamb, Little Lamb” 

I cannot resist a song about frolicking lambs. Coming from Tim O’Brien’s upcoming album (out June 16), the song features lyrics contrasting the joyful rebirth of spring with the narrator’s advancing age. The record, Cup of Sugar, was written in the spring of 2022 and recorded in December 2022; the track features O’Brien on  guitar and lead vocal with longtime band members Mike Bub (bass), Shad Cobb (fiddle), Jan Fabricius (mandolin and vocal), and Cory Walker (banjo).

The Mammals – “Families”

A new single from The Mammals reflects on the messy and scrambly times that family brings us, especially after weathering “lockdown” together. Written by Ruth Merenda, the new song was born at The Milk Carton Kids‘ Sad Songs Summer Camp last year. According to Ruthy: “The assignment was to pick a ‘nugget’ and then illustrate it with one metaphor. I failed at making something tidy and concise but it has a vibe I think. I wrote it on Opal’s [her daughter’s] ukulele that my Mom made from scratch.”

Peter One – “Birds Go Die Out of Sight (Don’t Go Home)” featuring Allison Russell

Peter One left his home in Côte D’Ivoire (The Ivory Coast) in 1995 amid rising political unrest in the West African country that eventually boiled over into two civil wars in the 2000s. His life in the United States began in New York and then Delaware, before landing in Nashville, where he now lives. Along the way, he found community with fellow displaced Ivorians, including a friend who inspired a song from Peter One’s first new release in more than 30 years. Come Back to Me is out on May 5.


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