Arts Performing Arts

Music Feature: Sarah Siskind

Modern Appalachia

Singer/songwriter Sarah Siskind grew up in Winston-Salem with parents who were old-time/bluegrass musicians. She began playing piano at age four and, by 11, was writing her own songs with lyrics. After many years living and working in Nashville, she settled in Brevard a few years ago.

“I think I’ve finally found a genre for my music and that’s Modern Appalachia,” Siskind says. That’s also the name of her latest album. “My music is definitely greatly influenced by the southeast region. Mountains, water, spirituality, are all themes I write about a lot.” Her songs have been recorded by Alison Krauss, Wynonna, Randy Travis and others, as well as featured on television shows.

The song “Me and Now” on Modern Appalachia is representative of the album, Siskind says. “It has twists and turns in it melodically, but the topic is about exploring my core, navigating solitude and learning about my own human behaviors.” She describes her songs as drawing upon traditional music, but being more “alternative-leaning,” with honest topics.

Sarah Siskind. Photo by Brian Boskind

With social distancing keeping musicians apart these days, it’s the creative togetherness that she and others are missing, Siskind says. “Live collaboration—being in the same room to create, whether it be writing a song together or playing a live show.” Siskind was set to play Isis Music Hall one week after the album’s release on April 17.

With venues closed for the time being, she has begun a weekly show, “Mod App Live,” on Facebook and Instagram. “It’s a little bit music, a little conversation, sometimes cooking,” she says. “I try to interview a special guest each week. It has helped me stay connected with fans as well as peers in music.”

To purchase the CD and find out about upcoming online events, visit SarahSiskind.com. Check out “Mod App Live” on Sundays at 7 p.m. on Facebook and Instagram Live.

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