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Idle Mind


LP version. Includes digital download. Idle Mind is the debut album of Anna-Mieke Bishop, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Wicklow, Ireland. Rooted in folk, the ten tracks on the record philosophize through abstract lyrics about place, age, belonging, and various societal misalignments. Musical landscapes are weaved into song on Greek bouzouki, guitar, and piano (and cello, in recordings). As a solo performer and collaborative artist, she has joined forces with a diverse mix of other artists, most notably Brían Mac Gloinn (of folk duo Ye Vagabonds), who, as well as playing on all of the above, adds drones on Indian harmonium and fiddle accompaniment. Another, more recent, collaborator is Matthew Jacobson (of contemporary jazz ensemble Insufficient Funs) adding a flare on percussion. Themes and inspiration for Anna-Mieke's songs stem from a colorful background of experience: learning Maori songs at school in New Zealand and sean-nós songs off the coast of Ireland; hitch-hiking through Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria, picking up traditional songs along the way; cycling from her home in Wicklow to the southern tip of Spain; living in Granada for a while, and then, in Cork, performing cello in the experimental improv group, HEX. Anna-Mieke has shared the stage with many established artists, supporting the likes of Lisa Hannigan, Martin Hayes, This Is The Kit, Rozi Plain, Lankum, Gyda Valtysdottir (mum), Rachel Sermanni, Sarah Neufeld (Arcade Fire), and Ye Vagabonds, while sharing the stage with David Kitt, Landless, and Rosie Carney. From performing in larger venues such as the National Concert Hall and to opening the inaugural RTE Radio Folk Awards in Vicar Street, to underground caves, to manor house ballrooms, to tiny cafés and bookshops, to the precarious ruins of a church, to forest hideaways in the hills of France, Anna-Mieke has shared her songs in a curious combination of spaces.

"Right now, as our lives become a little more virtual, augmented and artificial, Anna Mieke's songs with their infinity of interlaced traditions and her voice with its alluring melody of intimacy is a wonderful and very welcome gift." --Other Voices