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Laura K. Balke

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Location:Indianapolis, Indiana
Year(s):2007
Categorized as:Folk / Acoustic, Indie Rock
Members:Laura K. Balke, often joined by percussionist Zachary Jetter
Website:laurakbalke.com/
Total Request:1010 (767 downloads, 243 plays)
Total Request:1010 (767 downloads, 243 plays)
About:


In August 2011, Indiana native Laura K. Balke had just embarked on a series of changes that are still setting her apart from the Midwestern singer/songwriter pack over a year later. Having learned guitar at age 13 and after extensive stints in the coffee-house circuit for years shortly thereafter, Balke quit her day job as a hairstylist last summer and symbolically had her long, beach blonde hair
shaved to give a physical manifestation to being a ...  read more

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With support from: Arts Council and the City of IndianapolisIndiana Arts CommissionNational Endowment for the Arts

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250 requests

 1985,

A collection of songs that represent every release I've put out over the past 6 years, just for you and Musical Family Tree.

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    Old Friend (2012)
     
     
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    Turn The Key (2011)
     
     
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    Two Ships (2010)
     
     
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    Put My Hands To Use (2009)
     
     
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    Souvenirs (2007)
     
     

 
64 requests

 2011, Self-Released,

Rumors & Legends was recorded in spaces where Laura, producer Jon Autry, and a revolving cast of players often were not supposed to be. A traveling studio was set up and torn down in a matter of hours, usually in the middleof the night, and by the time nine-to-five America was up and about the only evidence was the room's reverberance in the recordings.

In addition to Autry, for her third full-length record Balke enlisted the help of percussionist  Zachary Jetter (Humans, th'EMPIRES, Buttonhoof) and keyboard extraordinaire Kurt Friedrich (Rodeo Ruby Love). Together a lush soundscape was created that previous recordings could not afford, orchestrated to compliment Balke's songwriting with depth and texture. In the words of Record Geeks' Jon Rogers,  "This is very pretty, dynamic music with a strong female voice as the focal point. Balke's knack for simplicity and emotional climaxes are reminiscent of some of the best Will Oldham records."

The record was released independantly in November 2011 to CD and vinyl, both encased in a hardbound book. The pages feature Balke's artwork and correspond to each song, using the lyrics to create an image that is illustrative to their content.

  •  
    Achilles
     
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    Turn The Key
     
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    Two Ships
     
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    Maybe I Was Wrong
     
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    Not For This
     
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    Sometimes
     
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    Limberlost
     
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    I Can't
     
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    As Small As We Are
     
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    Sticks and Stones
     
  •  
    Retreat
     

 
55 requests

 2009, Self-Released,

Laura's first venture in a professional studio happened at Bloomington's Russian Recording. Armed with a knapsack full of junk keyboards and auxiliary instruments, Laura created most of the layers in two days of tracking with a little help from brother Philip and studio owner Mike Bridavsky.

Souvenirs was released independently, beginning with a special edition of 100 CDs that were tucked inside of a screen-printed, handsewn, fabric envelope along with a letterpressed booklet.

  •  
    Put My Hands To Use
     
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    Crosses
     
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    Telephone Lines
     
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    Soulfood
     
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    Piano Keys
     
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    My Favorite Skyline
     
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    Souvenirs
     
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    I Sold My Soul
     
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    United
     
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    Natural Disiasters
     
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    Windsong
     

 
42 requests

 2007, Self-Released ,

Leaving Home was written in the midst of moving from the small town where Balke had spent most of her upbringing, to a bigger small town where she waited tables in order to move to another small town, even farther from home and much more desolate.

Recorded in two days in the home studio of Mike Adams (Husband&Wife, Crossroads of America Records), the sparse instrumentation and minimal production left plenty of room for Balke's songwriting to breath deeply of her sentiments surrounding small town Indiana.

CDs were packaged inside of a handsewn, screenprinted paper gatefold jacket displaying Balke's artwork. It was an edition of who-knows-how-many, usually made on the fly before a performance.

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    Souvenirs
     
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    Quit Your Job
     
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    Bricks and Mortar
     
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    Magic
     
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    Maple Street
     
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    Letters
     
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    Dinosaur Bones
     
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    Leftovers
     
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    Waiting Room
     
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    Stationary
     
 
 

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Recent Blog Posts

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