Direct from Austin, Texas, Emerging Americana Duo The Mastersons to Perform at CinemaSalemCritics have hailed The Mastersons as one of the most intriguing new bands on the Americana scene. They bring their unique harmonies and incisive songwriting talents to CinemaSalem on Thursday, September 22 at 8:30 pm.
Tickets are available at www.CinemaSalem.com."The first thing people usually ask us is 'What's it like as a husband and wife playing music together?,'" says Chris Masterson. "We always say that the lows are low, but the highs are really high.”There are plenty of highs on Good Luck Charm, the second album by The Mastersons, the collaboration that Chris shares with his marital and musical partner Eleanor Whitmore. Generously filled with infectious melodies, instinctive harmonies and vividly insightful lyrics, Good Luck Charm embodies the uncanny rapport that singer-guitarist Chris and singer-violinist-guitarist Eleanor have developed in their experiences living, touring and making music together.The album, recorded with noted producer/engineer Jim Scott, whose resume includes work with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Wilco and the Dixie Chicks – raises the stakes with 11 emotionally precise new songs that are firmly rooted in sometimes-harsh reality, yet which radiate with hope and optimism."It's cautiously optimistic," Eleanor says of the twosome's new material, adding, "I think we tried to steer the songs in a direction that was a little more positive and a little more upbeat.
Our last record had a lot of broken-character songs, but I think that this one reflects the place we're in now.”CinemaSalem’s Paul Van Ness explains how the venue landed The Mastersons. “Our goal is to showcase great national artists on the rise, and we noticed they had a show in northern Maine, so we reached out to them to see if they could include Salem on this part of the tour. We were thrilled when they said yes.”
The Austin, TX-based duo's lilting songcraft and charismatic chemistry have already won over listeners around the world, thanks to the couples’ ongoing status as members of Steve Earle's band The Dukes, and the opportunity to open for Earle at hundreds of show."Playing with Steve has been great for us," Eleanor says. "For one thing, he's an amazing songwriter, so that kind of holds us to a certain standard. He's also a great storyteller, and that's taught us a lot about relating to an audience. One thing we've learned in touring with Steve is that people remember the stories that you tell as much as the songs you sing. If you make them laugh or make them cry, they take that home with them as much as they would a song.”While Chris and Eleanor have learned a lot from Steve Earle, they themselves are an integral part of his band. "Chris is the best guitar player that's ever been in this band and Eleanor's a better musician than any of us,” exclaims Earle, Chris and Eleanor wrote most of Good Luck Charm while on tour with Earle, stealing whatever time they could to work on the songs. "We spent a lot of time hiding out in dressing rooms with our guitars,” Chris notes. "On our days off, we didn't go out or do anything fun; we were just holed up in hotel rooms writing these tunes.”"We're really lucky," Eleanor concludes. "We get to get out of bed every day and write a song or go play a show together, which is pretty much all that we've ever wanted out of life.”