Down on Main: Summer concert series kicks off with bluegrass

By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal

The Down on Main series continues on Aug. 8 with The Giving Tree Band and Rosco Bandana and on Sept. 12 with the Como Mamas, Afrissippi and Galactic.

BY SHEENA BARNETT
Daily Journal
TUPELO – Sarah Jarosz’s future is as open and full of potential as a blank canvas.
Jarosz has been a bluegrass artist on Sugar Hill Records since she was 16, and she just graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. Now 22, she’s ready to release her third record, “Build Me Up From Bones,” in the fall.
“I’m really excited about the (new) songs. A large part of it is based around the trio I’ve been performing with, Alex Hargreaves and Nathaniel Smith. On top of that stuff, there are several other guests on a handful of songs. I’m really excited,” she said in a phone interview from her home state of Texas.
Jarosz will bring Smith and Hargreaves with her to open up for the Travelin’ McCourys at Down on Main next week in Tupelo. The trio will perform favorites from her first two CDs, as well as a few sneak previews of tracks from “Build Me Up From Bones.”
“There’s a part of me that doesn’t want to give every new song away,” she said. “We’ll be doing a handful of new stuff; it’s really fun for us to play. And there will inevitably be some covers.”
Jarosz has covered everyone from Bob Dylan to Joanna Newsom to Tom Waits.
Her live shows show off her diverse newgrass sounds.
“I try to keep a mix of moods, because it’s fun for us to play the more upbeat stuff, but I equally enjoy it as much to do the more mellow stuff,” she said.
College helped expand her musical universe, she said, and she hopes that shows off on the new album.
“I went into college kind of already having a lot of original material, but it was a really fantastic experience. It shaped me in many ways I hoped it would, but I didn’t necessarily guess the specifics of how it would happen. I was definitely out of my comfort zone musically, learning repertoire I hadn’t done before, and the poetry and painting and living in Boston,” she said.
Now that she’s a graduate, she can focus on touring and releasing “Build Me Up From Bones.”
“The feeling of being finished with college – which has been one of my biggest goals for a very long time – is still so fresh,” Jarosz said. “I’ve never toured and not been in school at the same time, so it’ll be a learning experience in the fall.”
At her young age, she’s already performed with legends and earned Grammy nominations, but she’s excited to see where her life can go from here.
“I’m curious as to what happens next,” Jarosz said, “but I’m excited for the possibilities.”
sheena.barnett@journalinc.com

Down on Main
WHO: Sarah Jarosz Trio, Travelin’ McCourys

WHEN: 6:30 p.m. July 11

WHERE: Fairpark

COST: Free

INFO: tupelodownonmain.com