|All photos by Kristen Abigail|
The combination of bluegrass songstress Jessica Lea Mayfield and folk legend Seth Avett made for a memorable evening this past Tuesday at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. The duo released Seth Avett and Jessica Lea Mayfield Sing Elliott Smith this past week. It includes 12 cover songs that Mayfield and Avett recorded in between their busy tour schedules over the last 3 years, with Avett producing the album in between their homes and Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville.
Mayfield and Avett were also joined by Paul Defiglia from The Avett Brothers on string bass to complete the entire sound on stage. The intimate atmosphere allowed Mayfield and Avett to interact with the crowd and tell a few stories about how the record came about. The performance included a few original songs by Mayfield and Avett. Mayfield chose to sing “For Today” from her debut record With Blasphemy So Heartfelt and “Standing in the Sun from her most recent record, Make My Head Sing…. Avett performed “Rain on My Tin Roof” from his third solo record The Mourning, the Silver, the Bell. When Avett & Mayfield added their harmonies to each original tune, it resulted in a refreshing sound compared to the original mixes from their individual records. The duo also sang a Hank Williams cover and added in a beautiful adaption of Smith’s “Memory Lane” featuring Avett on the piano. Overall, Avett & Mayfield have created a beautifully unique but sweet sound that respects and keeps the memory of Elliott Smith alive.