Libby Rodenbough

Chapel Hill, NC

In their own words: “I grew up in Greensboro going to Friendly Shopping Centre to hang out with my friends at the Gap and drink “smoothies” that were like thick Kool-Aid. I got sick on sugar and decided to start sneering more. When I was 19, I went to Chicago to take classes at the Old Town School of Folk Music, where Pete Seeger and John Prine had played, and lost my edge again. I went back to college in North Carolina and abruptly fell in love, swallowed point blank. I joined a folky band called Mipso. My heart broke. I got tired of going to bars and moved to the country. Then I got tired of the country and moved closer to the bars. I traveled all over the U.S. and a few other parts of the world playing songs for people, and they were the type of song people can sing along to, and it felt uncanny when they sang along. I decided voting was senseless, then I tried to get everyone I knew to vote for Bernie Sanders, then my heart broke again real bad. All the time I was putting songs into my back pocket, and eventually it started to feel heavy, so I recorded them, and by then I had a lot of magical friends around to record them with.

Half the time it feels silly to be making this stuff, and some of the time it feels like a well-greased wheel, but mostly I’ve just worn in a little path and I keep finding myself coming back to walk it and see what new bugs will catch my eye. It’s a strange time to publish something you’ve made, or that’s a strange thing to do in any time. So much of it feels like spectacle, but then what about the tree that fell in the empty forest? What about how great it is to kiss in public? What’s the point if you’re not doing a little dancing around, wearing blue leather boots, holding a tennis racket and a sprouting onion? ”