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Nashville-based Americana-Rock artist Cristina Vane releases her new single/music video, “How Ya Doin,”  from her upcoming album, "Make Myself Me Again", slated for official release May 20/22.  "How You Doin’"  describes the frustration of being in a relationship with someone who is playing games when that’s not the place you’re in or what you’re looking for. It’s describing the all-too-common sequence in the younger dating scene,  aggressive pursuit followed by a sudden disinterest. or ghosting.

"Make Myself Me Again" follows on the heels of last year’s "Nowhere Sounds Lovely", which collected vast acclaim.  Originally from Europe, Cristina’s sound blends elements of Delta Blues, Rock, Country Blues, traditional Country, and modern Country into an amazingly personalized style presented through her  haunting, evocative voice.

 

Cristina always loved music, and  was a very musical baby, singing  to herself often, and  love grew and developed over time to be the obsession it is today.   She started with piano in first grade, and of course, the recorder, driving her parents nuts. Cristina found her love for the flute in middle school, and all the while loved singing and was in school choirs.  Taking some voice and guitar lessons in middle school for about two years, she continued the flute and singing seriously while sort of playing guitar for fun. Eventually, in high school, Cristina started writing songs just for fun and realized in college that she wanted to make a serious run of it. 

Although she was born in Italy and grew up moving every 3 years or so between Italy, England, and France (where she spent most of her young life cumulatively) and was fluent in four languages by the time she moved to her fathers’ native United States for university.  Cristina moved to the U.S. for college at 18 in Jersey, then moved to Los Angeles, and finally to Nashville.  Being from several places and being half American  led her to Nashville in the end and brought her to the world of American folk music impacting her entire sound and career path.

Cristina's  sound evolved naturally (and it still is). 

Vane first encountered slide guitar while  performing her original music at a weekly gig in Camden, London during a summer home from college.  “From then on I got really into pre war era Blues”, she explains, “I do like some electric blues, but honestly my favorite years are 1890 to 1950-1960.”    After graduating from Princeton with a degree in Comparative Literature, Vane moved to Los Angeles where she worked at McCabe’s Guitar Shop, and spent every free moment working on her music, studying fingerstyle guitar with mentor Pete Steinberg. Those years pushed her into deeper exploration of Country blues picking and old folk guitar styles. Vane’s fingerstyle guitar skills are on full display on the Gospel inspired “Heaven Bound Station”, and  “Driving Song”, on which she picks out a dark melody on a grungy electric guitar to accompany her haunting voice. 


After almost four years in Los Angeles, Vane began to feel stagnant, and decided that it was time to take her music on the road.  During that time she had built up a solid following on Instagram, so she reached out to her network of fans for help in booking a tour.  An outpouring of support ensued, and she was able to book a five month cross-country tour, playing at small bars, breweries, coffeeshops,  and clubs, in peoples backyards, through these connections.  She crashed with friends, kind strangers, or slept in a tent.  She spent days off camping at National Parks.  “It was the best summer of my life”, she recalls, “Most of the songs on this record were written during that tour.  On one of the album’s standout tracks, the slow Country waltz “Dreaming of Utah”, Vane sings, “Woke up dreaming of Utah / the sweat and the dirt / how my feet led me closer / to a little self worth.”

  “My favorite part about traveling across the country was reclaiming my American heritage, which was very difficult to figure out.” she explains.  “Anywhere I went I had my anthropological hat on, watching how people talk and interact.  There were new places that  sometimes felt totally familiar and sometimes completely foreign. Each pocket of the country has its unique flavor, and discovering the musical stylings that go along with that really informed this record.  I  knew virtually nothing about country, old-time and Bluegrass music until I ventured to the American South, but seeing those different musical traditions on a local level was inspiring.” 

Exploring the various regions of America allowed Vane to feel more comfortable with her own musical and cultural voice.  “I have had thoughts about, ‘can I sing this, am I allowed to write blues songs, etc’” she explains, “which has been an interesting thing to navigate, and do with respect, but the thing is I’m not from any one place, so I don’t have a style I can call my own. American music can mean so many different things”.  On one of the album’s later tracks, “Wishing Bone Blues”, Vane’s emotive slide guitar sings unison with her voice, as she explains “I’ve seen gold up on the mountain, and drank silver from that fountain, and I’m out here, and I’m wishing, once again.”  One can almost feel Vane’s heartfelt wish to belong. 

  

Following her cross-country journey, Vane relocated to Nashville where she hoped to find a larger community of musicians.  When Cristina was just starting out writing she remembers really wishing she  identified more with her sound.    The more she has learned about different musical styles,  the more she finds that they have crept into her writing repertoire, especially on records.   When she was first falling for old Country and had just moved to Nashville, she  used pedal steel which you can hear on her first record. Since then, her  interest has expanded to  hill Country Blues and  was piqued more including wanting  some harmonica on her last record.  As Cristina advises, "I think that if you are absorbing new material and keeping curious, things will take their due course."

   

Working with Grammy-award winning drummer and producer Cactus Moser (known for his work with Wynonna Judd) on "Nowhere Sounds Lovely" was assurance enough that she’d come to the right place.  “When it came to the album, I wanted it to be a reflection of who I am, not just of the old music that I’ve come to love”, she explains, “As I’m essentially a rock kid who is obsessed with old music.”  Moser also played drums on the record, and his style “has some grit and some rock, mixed with these really awesome references to traditional roots music”, says Vane. 

 

The album was engineered by Rodney Dawson, and also features bass player Dow Tomlin, fiddle player Nate Leath, and pedal steel player Tommy Hannum. These players imbued her Blues Rock sound with tinges of Country and old time for the first time in her career, reflecting the expansion of her own musical palette that summer.

 

Cristina Vane’s perspective on American music is decidedly a  unique one, but absolutely an authentic one, and  if "Nowhere Sounds Lovely" is any indication,  music lovers are all the better for her arrival.  Treat yourself to Cristina Vane,  an authentic new star in the making,  new single/music video, “How Ya Doin,”  from her upcoming album, "Make Myself Me Again" to be officially released May 20, 2022.