Nancy Sferra is a multi-instrumentalist living in midcoast Maine. She got her musical start teaching herself to play guitar on a nylon string Harmony (purchased with S & H Green Stamps, no less) in her bedroom, which is pretty much where her playing remained for the next 20 years. Searching for more creative outlets, she discovered a love of songwriting and the community around music and songwriting, particularly strong in Maine.
With the new millennium, Nancy began performing her folk-blues compositions locally and decided it was time to record some of her musical ideas. At the same time, she ventured into learning new instruments such as lap steel, banjo, ukulele, banjo-ukulele, and washboard. Accordion, for better or worse, is on the horizon.
Nancy’s inspiration for song lyrics comes from found poems – snatches of overhead conversation, notes from a discarded journal, objects, lines from books or other texts, and photographs. For instance, her song “A Cat is a Haunt in My Lap” originated from a diary left in an abandoned house. Around these images and ideas, she builds stories into her lyrics. In the spirit of Lucinda Williams, the specific acts and objects of daily life serve symbolically to lend her songs a poetic and philosophical context. The story inspires the mood and melody of the song and she experiments with instrumentation to complement the moods and undertones of the song’s narrative. Her songs are often focus on the working class, day to day struggles, and the simple life inspired by the rural Maine culture. While she deals with serious subject matter, many of her songs are whimsical or have a comedic element.
Nancy was a finalist in the 2012 New England Songwriting Contest with her song, “The Line”. Her song Brash placed fourth at the 2013 contest. She is a board member of the Maine Songwriters Association, which supports the art of songwriting in Maine, and recognizes the work of emerging singer-songwriters. She recorded and produced her first CD, “Smoke and Bone,” in 2013 and is at work on her second and third CDs.