Nancy K. Dillon | Just Let Me Dream

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Just Let Me Dream

by Nancy K. Dillon

Dillon's Oklahoma roots show on a varied set of folk-twang and country tunes evoking empty windswept plains, Saturday night dance floors of SW honky-tonks, Sunday morning gospel and dreamy echoes of desire and transformation.
Genre: Country: Country Folk
Release Date: 

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1. Crossing 66
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3:48 $0.99
2. Just Let Me Dream
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4:31 $0.99
3. Almost To Idaho
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2:52 $0.99
4. Nothing In Texas
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4:43 $0.99
5. Play 1-4 Susie
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4:03 $0.99
6. O Susanna
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5:47 $0.99
7. Ballad of Mabel Dodge
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2:43 $0.99
8. Fire & Soul
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3:55 $0.99
9. Tired Heart
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3:49 $0.99
10. Antioch/Sacred Harp #277
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0:39 $0.99
11. Revelation
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2:48 $0.99
12. Till The Music Dies
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2:55 $0.99
13. Give Your Sweet Love To Me
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5:24 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
"Long ago I left my home in a yellow Rambler American
Following the footsteps of Woody and Jack Keroauc."

- From "No Goodbyes" - © 2006 Nancy K. Dillon


Nancy K. Dillon is an emerging Roots/Americana artist who is making a name for herself. Hailed by respected UK country music journalist, Alan Cackett (Maverick-UK) as an “original new talent” mining a musical vein akin to Lucinda Williams or Kasey Chambers, Nancy is a gifted singer, award-winning songwriter and recording artist. She masterfully weaves the textures and rhythms of American folk and country music into mythic road stories of the “small town claustrophobia and surreal euphoria” of traveling America’s byways. Her songs evoke the vistas and horizons of the sprawling American West.

Descended from an Irish Mason employed by the Missouri Pacific Railroad, Indian Territory evangelists and circuit-riding preachers, Dillon was born on the plains of Oklahoma during the second Dust Bowl less than a half-century after Oklahoma became the 46th State of the Union. Immediately upon acquiring a formal education, she hit the road without so much a plan as a desire to accumulate as many varied experiences and memories as possible. These included a 1980 circumnavigation of the globe, crisscrossing the western United States in a 1966 yellow Rambler American and jobs as a computer operator of IBM dinosaurs, a University of Oklahoma Indian Housing research project administrator, a photographer’s model and a keypuncher for a Seattle race-car parts company. All the while she pursued her musical dreams quietly performing in bands and on others' recordings until at last, having overcome persistent stage fright and a lengthy illness (CFIDS) she began writing and performing her own original songs releasing her debut solo CD Just Let Me Dream on June 8, 2004.

Since its release, Just Let Me Dream has generated a continuing buzz receiving international radio airplay, song contest honors and landing on several “Best of…” lists. Hailed as “accomplished, mature and soulful”, the CD has a sparkling windswept sound captured by Grammy-winning engineer Garey Shelton (The Believers/Danny Barnes/Rachel Harrington). Nancy co-produced the album with Austin, TX-based Michael Hill (Slobberbone/12 Lb Test). The album features virtuoso performances by Hill as well as John Reischman (Tony Rice/Jaybirds), Paul Elliott (Michelle Shocked/Alison Brown) and Grammy-winner Stacy Phillips (Dobro). Brit-folk rocker, Clive Gregson (Any Trouble/Gregson & Collister) makes a stunning cameo appearance on backup vocals and a searing solo at the end of the title track. John Conquest (Third Coast Music) observes, “Hints of honky tonk, Tex-Mex and cowboy music, intertwined with bluegrass, country, gospel and traditional folk, make this a true Americana album that could easily have come out of Austin.”

Nancy sings about escaping her native red dirt Oklahoma on the opening track of Just Let Me Dream. She may have left town but she is still the girl who grew up in Oklahoma City six blocks from Route 66. “You can leave Oklahoma” she says, “but Oklahoma never leaves you. I go there as often as I can. The land and the people deeply inspire me. My hope is to infuse my songs and sound with a feeling of that red dirt, spaciousness and the simplicity and drama of the elements." A subtle sweetness inhabits Nancy's voice that makes it instantly appealing. You can hear the wind in her voice. Sometimes you can taste the dust, too, and feel the hot summer sun. "I grew up in an extraordinary musical environment,” Dillon says. “My dad is a composer of modern classical music who played in a big band jazz orchestra on weekends. In between all of that he was a Professor of Music at the University of Central Oklahoma and directed the church choir. My mother sang her favorite hymns around the house and taught vocal music in Arkansas before I was born."

Dillon tours nationally in the US and is based in the Pacific NW. A former folk radio programmer at KBCS/Bellevue-Seattle, Nancy was also a founding member of the renowned cowgirl band Ranch Romance and performed as a duo with Rounder recording artist, John Miller. It is her Southwestern roots that continue to nurture her though—and her soulful voice polishes the music until it gleams and sparkles like fire in fine jewelry. Listen to her perform sometime and see if you don't agree.

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Just Let Me Dream CD:

Release Date: June 8, 2004

"Just Let Me Dream" was recorded & mixed between June 2003 and January 2004 at Garey Shelton Studios in Seattle, Washington. Co-produced by Michael Hill & Nancy K. Dillon, many of the songs were written between the summer of 2000 and early 2003 when Nancy turned to realizing her long-time dream of writing & performing her own original songs.

During that time, Dillon & Hill were members of twang-pop band The Nancy Boys with Mike Bristow & Jay Weaver. The Nancy Boys functioned as a fertile songwriting collective with Hill, Dillon & Bristow all contributing original material to the band. Dillon, long a fan of Mike Bristow's colorful & dense found-object folk art began making visual art after Bristow showed her a book of Peter Beard's collage journal art . A frenzy of collaboration & co-inspiration between the two led to Nancy's collages included in the booklet for "Just Let Me Dream".

The songs on "Just Let Me Dream" evoke the youthful desperation of dusty small town America (Crossing 66), the windswept emptiness of the plains (Nothing in Texas), the Saturday night dance floors of southwestern honky-tonks (Play 1-4 Susie and Till The Music Dies) and the Sunday morning gospel of the day after (Revelation and Antioch).

Featuring musical contributions by:
Clive Gregson (vocals & guitar) on "Just Let Me Dream"
Stacy Phillips (Dobro) & John Reischman (Mandolin) on
"O Susanna", "Fire & Soul", "Almost To Idaho" & "Revelation"

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Among the honors and recognition accorded Nancy’s songs and debut CD are:
o "Just Let Me Dream" ~ Top 50 on Roots Music Report Folk Chart ~ April 2007
o "O Susanna" ~ Top 20 on Acoustic Pie Radio ~ July & December 2006
o "Almost To Idaho" ~ Richard Gillmann's Favorite Folk Tracks ~ November 2006
o Finalist, 2006 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "Good Old Friends"
o Finalist, 2005 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "Almost To Idaho"
o Finalist, 2004 Tumbleweed Song Contest ~ "The Ballad of Mabel Dodge"
o "Best NW Artists/Folk CD" ~ July 2004 ~ KBCS 91.3FM Seattle
o Top 10 ~ American ROOTS Radio ~ Boston, MA ~ July 2004
o "2004 Top Albums & Songs ~ Folk Music Radio Airplay Chart

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Visit Nancy's MySpace Page @ www.myspace.com/nancykdillon!


Reviews


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Martin Deakin

Excellent Album !!
This is a great album...Crossing 66 brings a great start to the album. Nancy has a great voice, O Susanna is an excellent song.

Greg Grant, Online Folk Festival - Live 365

Well-written, tuneful and intelligent...
This is a really fine album of singer/songwriter fare with a bit of an old-timey feel in spots. I like this CD a lot. The songs are well-written, tuneful and intelligent.

Marc Bristol - Blue Suede News

Sparkling!
We've reviewed an earlier title by Nancy, and that one was a bit more Country. This one seems aimed at more of an Americana audience, although there are still Country elements and tracks. It seems no expense was spared, there are some stellar players on this including Stacy Phillips on Dobro, Paul Elliott on fiddle, John Reischman on mandolin, Chris Leighton on drums, Keith Lowe on bass, Jeff Simmons on Vox organ and several others. Not all on every cut of course. All the songs are original except Jimmy LaFave's "Give Your Sweet Love To Me", with a couple having co-writers. My favorite tracks are the Bluegrassish "Almost To Idaho", the Country Rock, "Play 1-4 Susie", and the waltz "Fire and Soul", but I like it all. The arrangements and recording are sparkling.

John Conquest - Third Coast Music

12 strong originals...
For all she's spent the last 20 odd years in Seattle, making a name for herself singing folk, country, R&B, jazz and Western Swing, Nancy K's still the girl who grew up in Oklahoma City, six blocks from Route 66, and her album, which she describes very neatly as 'twang-folk', has plenty of windswept Southwest in it. Specific references are to Oklahoma (Crossing 66), Texas (Nothing In Texas, with The Nancy Boys) and New Mexico (The Ballad of Mabel Dodge), but hints of honky tonk, Tex-Mex and cowboy music, intertwined with bluegrass, country, gospel and traditional folk, make this a true Americana album that could easily have come out of Austin. With the smooth relaxed warmth of Nancy's vocals, stellar backing and production and twelve strong originals (plus a cover of Jimmy LaFave's Give Your Sweet Love To Me, of which the highlights are Almost To Idaho and Play 1-4 Susie, well, what's not to like? - @@@@ (4 out of 5 flowers)

Holly Estrella del Dia - Roots Highway

Dillon - an artist to keep an eye out for...
There’s something about small towns that goes so well with music. It might be the stories each one has that somehow resemble the rest to a unique “t”, or it might be the common aspirations of leaving them. More than likely, however, it’s a combination of both. While songs about getting away from small town America are definitely not a rarity, real people making honest music are. And this is what makes Nancy K. Dillon’s debut album of 2004, “Just Let Me Dream” so special.

A small town girl from Oklahoma, Dillon has always had big dreams of becoming an established singer-songwriter who did things the old-fashioned way on her own terms. And as soon as she graduated from college, Dillon headed out west to make her dreams come true. “Just Let Me Dream” is a testament to her determination as well as her accomplishments. A broad mix of Americana at its finest Dillon breaks down genre barriers with ease as she weaves a vast array of styles that range from sophisticated jazz to 60’s soul to bluegrass to broken-hearted country blues into a delightfully detailed quilt of emotion that isn’t quite like any other on the market. And though the album is full of all the right instrumental fixings (such as a resonator guitar, mandolin, accordion and banjo), the common denominator that ties all the songs together is Dillon’s welcoming voice of reassurance that beckons the audience to join her on her journeys through life and a vast nation of turmoil and triumph.

While the music is diverse and Dillon’s voice top notch the album would not be as successful or smooth without Dillon’s lyrics. Whether she’s singing about the surreal euphoria of the title track, small town claustrophobia (“Crossing 66”), or treks across the US (“Nothing in Texas”), Dillon stays true to her roots and soul remaining careful to stay away from clichés and close to the things she knows best. Such experience is priceless in her songs as is her unwavering spirit making “Just Let Me Dream” one of the greatest albums to hit the shelves in a long time and Dillon an artist to keep an eye out for. Grade: B+

Michael Leahy, DJ - "Cool As Folk" - KDVS Davis, CA


"Strong album from Seattle-based singer/songwriter..."

Richard Gillmann, DJ ~ "Lunch With Folks" ~ KBCS 91.3FM ~ Bellev


"A fine, fine release from a rising star on the local scene..."

Terry Wilson, DJ ~ "Steel Belted Radio" ~ CJUM Radio, 101.5 FM ~


"... great from beginning to end. We’re planning to play the title track on our show tomorrow and hope our listeners will enjoy your music as much as we did."

Tom Petersen - Victory Review - August 2004


"Nancy K. Dillon, Seattle's pillar of western swing, has a more intimate, personal sound these days - call it "folk twang" - and this solo album will be an instant favorite of fans of introspective singer/songwriter material as well as honky tonk stompers. Dillon's record is evocative of the great themes of the west: the road, lonesome struggle, deep faith tested, the vast beauty of it all. She never has to resort to clichéd descriptions or hackneyed styles to call up these spirits, though, as she draws on a wide, complex background in musical Americana to suggest themes that span the human condition. Thus the small town claustrophobia of "Crossing 66" is a dark country blues suggestive of emancipation from slavery, and the hippie-love utopia that is the title tune is actually a sophisticated jazz number. The fancy term for this kind of writing is mythopoeia, and with Dillon we come to understand why a bluegrass tune about driving through Idaho is perfectly sensible, as is the astonishing, "Nothing In Texas", the most beautiful '60s-soul slow dance ever to wear denim. Dillon is backed by various friends from across the country and across the many styles she's comfortable with, principally her collaborator of late, Michael Hill. The picking is top notch and the CD is beautifully produced and packaged. It's one to rush out and get!"

Tony Peyser - Santa Monica Mirror


Oklahoma-born Nancy K. Dillon has performed in various groups for years in Seattle. Her solo debut, Just Let Me Dream, has a lot going for it. I can’t recall the last time I singled out an album for being so well-played. Resonator guitar, clawhammer banjo and mandolin are used with particular grace. But it’s countrified folkie Dillon’s welcoming voice that pulls the album together. The accordion-driven “Play 1-4 Susie” sweetly describes the yearning folks who return to clubs regularly and occasionally find what they’re looking for.
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