Lawside Roseanne Reid
- 1All I Need04:02
- 2Daisy Chain03:19
- 3Call It Love02:49
- 4Shine On03:42
- 5Made Just For You03:54
- 6What Constitutes A Sin03:17
- 7Til Kingdom Come02:58
- 8Mona Lisa04:03
- 9Couldn't Wish More For you03:17
- 10All My Days03:46
- 12Something Broken04:12
- 13Take Your Time03:12
Info for Lawside
Scottish singer-songwriter Roseanne Reid has announced the release of her second album Lawside on June 2, via Last Man Music. Named for the area of Dundee in which Roseanne and her family live, the album was recorded in Perth with producer, musician and fellow Scot David Macfarlane.
Roseanne Reid’s world has changed in some dramatic ways since she released her hugely acclaimed first album Trails, and not just because of what she calls the “weird dream” of the lockdown years. But those changes have only helped to inform its delightful follow-up, as the widely admired Scottish singer-songwriter invites us to Lawside.
Last summer, Roseanne and her wife became the proud parents of a baby boy, who has, of course, reshaped their lives in the most joyful (and exhausting) ways. Much of the new record was written before he came along, but the maturity and confidence in her song craft and delivery is there for all to hear, from the infectious, horn-laden opening single “Call It Love” to beautiful and tender pieces such as “All I Need,” Shine On” and “Made Just For You.”
“This album just sounds much more self-assured throughout,” she says. “I’ve been a bit bolder with the vocals. With Trails, they were blended a bit more, and this time they’re front and centre. I’d say Trails was perfect for where I was at the time, but with this record, I feel that bit more confident with my voice. It’s gotten stronger over time, and I thought ‘Let’s push that right up front.’”
The album is named after a residential district of Dundee, where the family lives. “Someone said to me the other day that Lawside almost sounds like a country and western title,” jokes Roseanne. “Most of the songs were written here, and it just felt right to mark that, and group them together for where they were written.”
There was another tangible change in the way she created the record. Whereas Trails was made in Brooklyn with producer Teddy Thompson in a lightning five-day burst, Lawside was closer to home in every sense. It was recorded in Perth, just south of Dundee, with producer, musician and fellow Scot David Macfarlane, and in a way that very much suited Reid’s new life.
“Dave owns the studio in Perth, so he’s the engineer there as well,” she explains. “He’s just a multi-talented guy, and a multi-instrumentalist, so he played on the album as well. It’s fantastic to have someone like that just down the road.
“We started it at the tail end of that time when people were still unsure about being in the same room together, and masks were still a thing. So, we did it in segments. I’ve been in the studio a dozen times over the past few months, just layering instruments, and vocals and guitar. All my stuff was done at the very start, to build a foundation.
“It’s been a much more prolonged process, but that’s worked well for me, especially with the wee one. It’s meant I’ve not had to be away for the whole week. I can commit to a half day here and a half day there, so it’s more manageable for family life.” She adds with a laugh: “I just think to myself every day, ‘Where did the day go?! What did I do with my time before I had a kid?’”
What she did, as we know, was build a reputation as one of the most sensitive and original young artists on the roots music scene. Born in Leith and raised in Edinburgh, Roseanne grew up in music, the eldest daughter of the Proclaimers’ Craig Reid, and was taking her own first artistic steps by the age of 12, when she learned guitar, moving on to early performances at local folk clubs and open mic nights.
“My mum taught me my first three chords, and it went from there,” she recalls. “It was a very smooth transition from the initial thinking of ‘This is cool and I enjoy doing it’ to ‘This is what I want to dedicate myself to.’”
She took inspiration variously from Bob Dylan, Martha Wainwright and Peter, Paul and Mary, pursuing a folk path that led her, in 2014, to New York’s Catskill Mountains, and Camp Copperhead, the songwriting workshop run by another of her guiding lights, Steve Earle. On open mic night, she overcame her nervousness to perform her song “Amy” in front of him, and all the aspiring writers present.
Such is the strength of Earle’s endorsement and enthusiasm for her talent that he readily agreed to duet with Roseanne on another highlight of the Trails album, “Sweet Annie.” That beguiling track has gone on to amass three quarters of a million streams on Spotify alone.
Trails arrived, after two highly promising EPs, in the spring of 2019, and was greeted with wall-to-wall praise. “Roseanne’s voice is sweet yet simple but in the most soothing and beautiful way that makes you want to listen to her over and over again,” enthused Building Our Own Nashville, while Folk Radio wrote that she “has quietly taken her place in the Scottish music scene and by no accident finds herself sitting at the top table.” RNR magazine complimented Reid on a “measured, confident and accomplished debut” in its 4/5 review and The Sunday Times made Trails one of it’s albums of the year.
Reid supported the album with festival appearances and her own concerts, and further EPs and singles, including the delicate “Hallucinate” at the top of this year, which have heightened anticipation for Lawside. It’s an album that reiterates the sparse authenticity of her songwriting style, but with new depths and layers.
“’Call It Love’ was the natural choice as the lead track,” she says, “but I’d love to put ‘Mona Lisa’ out as a single. It’s got that Celtic singalong feel to it, with the fiddle and accordion and bodhraìn drum, instead of a full drum kit. I started writing it about four years ago, and I went months without finishing it. I really liked the first verse and I said to my wife that I wanted to get it done, so we set aside a day to finish it. So, it’s co- written with my wife, which is totally unique in itself.”
“All I Need” opens the album with atmospheric harmonies from longtime friend and Edinburgh musician Rory Butler. Roseanne is especially proud of the lyrics of “What Constitutes A Sin,” while she was moved to write “Shine On” after the sad passing of television presenter Caroline Flack. “A lot of the songs were around before our baby was born,” she adds, “but ‘Made Just For You’ was definitely written with him in mind.”
Soon will come the challenge of combining family life with hitting the road, but she will achieve that with her usual warm-hearted serenity, and the opportunity to see her perform these new songs live will be something to seize. Lawside is a place that Roseanne Reid’s countless admirers will be visiting again and again.
When they draw the map of authentic Americana, historians may not previously have thought of using marker pins for the cities of Leith, Edinburgh and Dundee. Now they'll have to, to record the rapid rise of Roseanne Reid.
Following a couple of acclaimed EP releases, Trails — the debut album by the Scottish troubadour and eldest daughter of The Proclaimers' Craig Reid — announces the official arrival of a singular new voice in folk-roots music. It was recorded in Brooklyn with an A-team of players expertly corralled by the album's producer and an artist from fine musical stock of his own, Teddy Thompson.
Reid's songs conjure more from less, exuding a quiet confidence and sparse authenticity that recalls some of the genre's leading lights such as Gillian Welch and Lucinda Williams, but with a tone that belongs to Roseanne and no one else. No wonder, then, that Americana legend Steve Earle has not only adopted Reid as a personal cause, but makes a guest appearance on the delightful 'Sweet Annie.'
Another track on the album, 'Amy,' has already won prestigious recognition. It triumphed in the Lyrics Only category at the Nashville-based International Song Competition, chosen from 160,000 entries from 130 countries. Reid's resumé also includes a 2015 nomination at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards.
The album's lead single 'I Love Her So' is a typically clear-eyed statement, highlighting both Roseanne's charmingly low-key vocals and some elegant instrumentation, with more than a hint of southern soulfulness. Throughout Trails, there's an admirable and irresistible live feel which reflects the way the album was recorded, in just four days, with spontaneous musicality to the fore and not a gimmick in sight.
“Teddy is very sympathetic to this genre, what works and what doesn't, and he's got the experience in both areas,” says Reid of her producer. “He's got such an unbelievable ear for these things. It was amazing to watch how he works. I feel very fortunate to have him on board.”
The fact that Teddy, like Roseanne, has music running through the family blood was only another advantage. “That was possibly part of the appeal of working with Teddy,” she says. “He knows what it's like, and he's made a success of himself in his own right.”
Reid started to lay out her own artistic pathway when she learned guitar at the age of 12. “My mum taught me my first three chords, and it went from there,” she says. “It was a very smooth transition from the initial thinking of 'This is cool and I enjoy doing it' to 'This is what I want to dedicate myself to.'
“The huge plus point to my dad doing what he does is that I've learned first hand what's involved with the more business side, and the day-to-day runnings of it. It's incredible, his work ethic, so that's been a great thing to see.”
Reid's attitude to having fame in the family is perfectly well-adjusted. “To an extent, it'll always precede me, being in the same line of work, but we're very different songwriters and people,” she says decisively. “I don't make it any secret of it, because I want to be honest about every part of what I do. But hopefully I can start to step out of the shadows with this album.”
Born in Leith, Roseanne grew up in Edinburgh, her home for more than 20 years until her recent relocation to Dundee to move in with her wife. “I did a couple of high school talent shows with my little brother and one of my friends,” she says of her first steps in performance. “That gave me a taste for it and after that, I started out on the folk circuit in Edinburgh, and Leith Folk Club were really good to me. I hadn't had any real experience and they gave me a support slot. I combined that with doing regular open mic nights.”
Her tastes were shaped by early purchases on cassette and CD, although her earliest album memory is of the time her mum and dad bought her a T. Rex greatest hits collection. As she entered her teens, her attention moved to the acoustic, firstly via Bob Dylan and then to the lesser-celebrated Peter, Paul & Mary.
“I kept going to these shops and I couldn't get any of their albums, so whenever my dad was on tour in America, that's what he would bring me back. Then it was a natural progression to other acoustic acts.”
Chief among those, and an inspiration to this day, was Martha Wainwright. “My mum had a couple of tickets to see Rufus Wainwright at the Usher Hall in Edinburgh and she was supporting him. It was just like lightning, it was instantaneous. She came on and she looked incredible. She started playing and it was like nothing I had ever heard. I knew very quickly from then on in that I was interested in doing this.”
As for Steve Earle's enthusiastic support, that goes back to 2014 and Roseanne's first visit to his songwriting workshop Camp Copperhead, held in New York's Catskill Mountains. On open mic night, she overcame her nervousness to perform 'Amy' in front of him and all of the aspiring writers present. “It was terrifying, but it was a lovely reception,” she says. Earle not only had encouraging words, but invited her back in subsequent years.
With the sessions for the album due to start, she decided to go for broke with her song 'Sweet Annie,' which she'd written some four years earlier. “I only asked him when I was in the process of organising the recording with Teddy. I just thought that song would sound really nice as a duet. I emailed him and he said yes. Steve's been one of my biggest supporters, which is incredible.”
Now the stage is set, for an artist whose integrity shines through in every song. “It comes from a very personal and genuine place, that's how I’ve always done it,” she says. “Writing honestly just comes naturally to me. I don't know how to do it any other way.”
This album contains no booklet.