Fun folky sounds at Sherwood

3 minutes read
Posted 17 April, 2024
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Award-winning folk artist Amiria Grenell is coming to Queenstown in support of her new album, The Winter Light. The Christchurch-based artist is excited to be heading to town and to finally get to share some of the new songs that she’s been working on for a while now.

Grenell is the daughter of legendary country musician John Grenell and grew up on a farm in Whitecliffs, Canterbury. Growing up, her family would host music festivals in their back paddocks, which was one influence for her to follow in her father’s footsteps. She says this tour will be a little different to past ones, she’ll be touring with Ryan Fisherman – the sound will be simple, stripped back and organic.

“I think it’s more exciting because I’m finally sharing these new songs which I’ve had tucked away for so long,” Grenell says. “Ryan and I will be figuring it out – it’ll be a different sound because it won’t be with the drums and stuff on the album, but it’ll be a magical duo sound where he’ll be doing bits of guitar and then singing sometimes. I think it’ll be quite a unique album release tour.”

After picking up a Tui NZ Music Award for her album Three Feathers and having her album Autumn listed as a finalist for the same awards, Grenell’s latest offering has been highly anticipated. The 10-track album is an introspective work for her, offering some storytelling and a blend of folk, country and rock elements. It was produced alongside Fisherman, a collaboration that Grenell has credited to the fluidity throughout.

“I started recording the album three-and-a-half years ago, so it’s been a long time coming. I worked with Ryan Fisherman – I was really lucky to work with him, he’s just been so supportive at me taking slower steps with this album. And it did take a long time. I’m a solo mum to a 16-year-old daughter – she’s 16 now but was younger when I started.

“It’s been a big journey and a long time coming, and it kind of got to the point where I was like ‘if I don’t release this album, I’m going to keep sitting on it for ages.’ So we just started designing it last year and getting it all sorted – I’ve got vinyl for the first time, I’ve never had vinyl, it’s pretty exciting.”

The process to release the album took a little time with Grenell recording as she was able to. It was a group effort with Grenell bringing in some Christchurch musicians to play keys and guitar and two friends from Wellington that recorded strings on some tracks. The Winter Light is personal and details “my days, my heart, my family and my surroundings – and sometimes I manage to make sense of all that. But when I release songs into the world, I don’t want people to see me – my hope is that they see themselves.”

For the tour, Fisherman and Grenell will spend time on stage playing as a duo and opening act Amy Grace who will be joining them on stage as the band and doing backing vocals for a few songs. The first gig of the tour is in Lake Hawea and will be held at a friend’s house, which is something the musician tries to do once a year.

“It’s always awesome and sells out. It’s just a lovely experience playing in their lounge, they’ve got a really high wooden-beamed house and it’s just a beautiful atmosphere there. People always love it. It’s so nice to start the tour down south,” Grenell says.

Amiria Grenell will perform at the Sherwood on Friday 26 April and also has a show in Lake Hawea at a house concert on Thursday 24 April. To find out where you can listen to Grenell’s new music, learn more about the tour and grab tickets, you can head to


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