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Songs from the intimate setting of the DeBarra’s Sitting Room. W/ host Gavin Moore and special guests Megan Burtt (US) and Ayo Awosika (US).

Megan Burtt (US)
“What distinguishes Megan Burtt as a folk/pop songstress,” says James Kenly of Horizons Management, “is her pursuit of honesty. Both in her performance and her writing, it is evident that she is digging well past the surface to understand the ebbs and flows of the most basic human emotions.”

Though her writing and music are universally accessible, there is nothing ordinary about Burtt’s history, process or vision. As Ansel Adams captured our physical landscape in photography, Megan has set out to capture our emotional experience in song.

Music has coursed through her veins since experimenting with melodies and rhythms on her grandmother’s piano at age 6. Her first compositions were gifts for family members—musical messages and observations infused with the innocent optimism of childhood. Over the next ten years, while her peers were making mix-tapes of grunge-rock songs, Megan was at the piano processing her experiences through song. At 15 she found her father’s old guitar in the attic and was immediately inspired to her life’s calling. She began writing songs and only a year later won the Colgate Colorado Songwriting Competition.

Inspired by masters of the craft like Joni Mitchell (lyrics), Bonnie Raitt (guitar), Sarah McLachlan (voice) and Shawn Colvin (performance), Megan pursued perfection—listening and practicing with every available moment and attending Berklee College of Music in Boston to fully immerse herself in the techniques.

She graduated an accomplished guitarist and vocalist and took off in search of stories to tell. Megan explored South America, Africa and Asia soaking in the cultures and listening to the stories of people the world over. She wanted to learn the blues so she moved to Mississippi to let her soul experience its roots. She was chasing the dream, seeking inspiration and honing her craft.

Life, however, had its own plan for Megan. Her time in the South was derailed by life-threatening illness and her recovery inspired existential discovery and brought her home to Colorado. With a clean bill of health and an energizing gratitude for the journey, Megan Burtt put pen to paper for her debut record. Capturing over two decades of listening, learning, traveling and playing yielded an astonishing amount of songs—she had to choose how to make her first recorded impression. She partnered with Producer/Engineer Eddie Jackson (James Taylor, Vienna Teng, Guster) in a vintage studio in upstate New York with her band, The Cure For Love which features Louis Cato, Adam Tressler, and James Williams (Louis Cato, Adam Tressler, James Williams). The goal for the debut was to reach as many listeners as possible. They wanted to push the boundaries of Megan’s melodic musicianship and powerful vocals, so they focused the record around a topic that everyone can relate to: love (or the lack thereof). The result was 2010’s “It Ain’t Love”—and it accomplished the mission exactly: “This record is poppy enough to be easily accessible, yet contains some incredible originality.” (The Ruckus)

Ayo Awosika (US)
Often described as a “songstress”, Ayo Awosika is much more than just a woman who sings and writes songs. With diverse training that spans from the classical to the jazz realm, she has happily lived in both of these worlds and now covers all of the landscape in between.

Born to a Nigerian father and American mother, she was fortunate to grow up in a colorful household always filled with music, from the likes of Fela Kuti and Michael Jackson to Billie Holiday and Madonna. This breadth of influence continues to be important in Ayo’s musical evolution, as she weaves all of the sounds that she loves into her own artistry; and you see and hear those threads in her highly addictive, soul-infused sound.

Ayo moved to New York City in 2013 after living out west for several years, a time spent reflecting on and writing about the experience of transitioning into what she calls “true adulthood”. The result of that is her first full length album, produced by Grammy winner, Scott Jacoby, and featuring members of Snarky Puppy and the David Grisman Quintet. It is slated to be released in the spring of 2015.

Megan Burtt:

Ayo Awosika:

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