John Calvin Abney is a songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist sideman who's spent nearly 10 years in the studio and on the road in instrumental service to the songs of other writers, including John Moreland, Samantha Crain, and, recently, Lee Bains III and the Glory Fires, along with a veritable swath of writers and musicians that quickly become friends. Recently, he has also spent time scoring short films and documentaries between session and show.
His fifth studio album Familiar Ground, the first he’s written since his father’s passing, percolates like an old coffee pot. Abney mulls over just what it means to pass the time and fully experience our fleeting lives on earth. Pulled by pangs of steel pedal guitar and buoyed by his gentle vocals, his latest record takes us on a meandering journey through cities of the mind. Though Abney’s influences are far-reaching, from the Bohemian-Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke to contemporary peers like Laura Marling and Christian Lee Hutson to the surreal writing of Haruki Murakami, his art has the intimacy of a conversation with an old friend.