Heaven Hell Sin & Redemption
An American singer-songwriter, Marybeth D'amico came to songwriting relatively late in life. In 2002, the trained journalist lost her position as an editor at an Amsterdam-based magazine. With some time on her hands, the wife and mother of two, who had recently taken up the guitar, began penning her first songs on the living room couch. The discovery of singer-songwriter Patty Griffin gave her songwriting a jolt. 'What struck me was how emotionally riveting yet simple to play her songs were,' says Marybeth. She began hungrily studying the songwriting craft not only of Griffin, but other singer-songwriters she admired, such as Lori McKenna, Kathleen Edwards, Antje Duvekot and Deb Talan. Though drawn to dark themes, Marybeth did not want her songs to sound somber; she loved the melodic pop music she grew up listening to like the Beatles, the Eagles, CSNY, the Mamas and the Papas, the Beach Boys, James Taylor, Carole King and Carly Simon. Music also played a prominent part in her early life, whether she was harmonizing with her siblings to the Peter Paul and Mary albums in their parents' record collection, starring in her high school musical or playing flute in the band. By late 2003, Marybeth was singing at open mics in Munich and had co-founded an alt-country band, Far From Home. In 2006 she released the five-song solo EP, 'Waiting to Fly,' produced by German Americana artist Markus Rill. The EP was well-received by a number of reviewers. Belgium's Rootstime, for example, hailed her as a songwriter who would not remain unnoticed long on the Americana scene, calling her 'an exceptional talent.' Glitterhouse Germany also noted how she placed herself 'deftly and in a surprisingly mature manner within the wide songwriter field somewhere between Lucinda Williams and Shawn Colvin.' She played numerous gigs in Bavaria with her own band and in a duet formation, as well as touring Holland in October 2007. With the release of her first full-length album, 'Heaven, Hell, Sin & Redemption,' Marybeth is already demonstrating a new maturity in her songwriting and has found top-notch talent to accompany her. Produced by Buda, Texas based musician and sound engineer Bradley Kopp (who has produced other Americana notables including Jeff Talmadge and the Ginn Sisters) the album features top-notch musical talent including Lloyd Maines on pedal steel and dobro, Richard Bowden on violin, David Webb on keyboards, and Paul Pearcy on drums. The album gets it's' dark title from the characters that inhabit Marybeth's songs: from the single mom who can't seem to settle in one place to the minister involved in a sex scandal; from the young couple that decides to break away from a fundamentalist upbringing to the true-to-life story of a guy sitting on Death Row in Ohio. But no cause for depression here: most of the melodies are infectious and will have listeners humming along.