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"With her sweet country-pop style, sunny blond tresses, and laid back stage presence, Callen evoked the specter of the lovelorn singer-songwriters who populated Los Angeles in the 1970s. Her lovely vocal lines drew on classic melodic tropes that proved none the worse for wear in her capable hands…" -CMJ Review: Corinne Callen and Gulf of Michigan, Article from MTV Iggy Blog
Corinne Callen moved from Tallahassee, Florida to New York City in the fall of 2004 to pursue her career in music. It seemed fitting to move north, regardless of her southern exposure, considering her family roots were from just outside of the city, and her own grandmother had graced many a New York City stage as a big band singer in the 1950s and '60s. Nonetheless, being born and raised in Polk County Florida (home to Gram Parsons) certainly fueled a taste for classic rock and alternative country inspired sounds, which continues to be the base of her musical influence.
Soon after her arrival in the city she found a home in the Morningside Group, a songwriter collaboration who held weekly showcases at the Underground Lounge on the UWS Manhattan near her first NYC residence. An eclectic comradery, members of the group have since gone on to pursue anything from rock n roll to folk to shoegaze. She also played often during that time at local NYC establishments such as The Sidewalk Café (Anti-Hootenanny), CBGB's Gallery, Sine Bar, Parkside Lounge, Bar 13, and Pianos.
Eventually, she began collaborating with her cousin, Marco Argiro (The Killing Floor) and his longtime friend, Kenton Langstroth, in a retro-rock, power-pop group called The Mood. Now titled, Le Mood (including Brian Karp and Rob Draghi), the group has played nationally and internationally over the course of the past five years (CMJ 2007 & 2008, SxSW 2007, the "In the City Festival" Manchester, UK 2008, etc.) gaining much success and exposure in radio play, licensing opportunities (MTV, CMT, etc.), notable showcases, and production/engineering collaborations. Corinne supports the band with vocal contributions alongside Marco, as well as playing the keyboard (mainly vintage electronic piano and organ sounds), glockenspiel, ukulele, and other percussive instruments. She has participated in co-writing on the last two releases as well as production on their “Synaesthesia” EP. Le Mood released their first full-length record "Adventures in Stereo" on Outright Rock Records in January 2011.
After a series of self-released solo EPs (“A Case Kept Closed” 2005, “New Moons” 2007) and various musical collaborations including her involvement with Le Mood, Corinne began production on what was to become ”Blow the Cover” with her engineer friend and collaborator, Richard Maheux. They began the sessions in her Brooklyn apartment in the spring of 2009 eventually moving the sessions to 66 Rivington Studios on the Lower East Side Manhattan. Fellow Le Mood members, Kenton Langstroth (guitar) and Brian Karp (bass) soon joined her efforts in the recording process in addition to Karp's longtime friend, Rob Draghi on drums. They completed nine tracks over the course of the year with Richard Maheux as engineer and contributing producer.
During CMJ week 2009, Corinne attended a production seminar at Avatar Studios. She was entered into a drawing for ten free hours of recording time at the studio. Corinne was the lucky indie-artist that took the prize, and in April of 2010 Corinne and the band went into Avatar to record three new tracks, including one written by guitar player Kenton Langstroth with engineer Justin Gerrish (Vampire Weekend). The tracks were completed and mixed by Justin at D.N.A. Studios NYC. "Blow the Cover", Corinne's first full-length release, combines these two studio projects. The album was mastered at The Lodge NYC by Joe La Porta (Beach House), and self-released in November 2010.
Over the course of her life and musical opportunities, Corinne has been finding her own unique sound, which explores rock (60s, 70s, 90s), folk, alternative, indie, retro-pop, new wave, country, and blues music. Corinne often gets a reference for a "west-coast '70s sound". The title track "Blow the Cover" was written on a vintage ukulele that her father purchased for her on a whim at a Winter Haven antique shop. She is constantly inspired to learn new instruments that take her writing perspective to new levels. The track was featured on Stylecaster’s “Model Meets Nature: Behind the Scenes” Fall Fashion Editorial. Other album tracks were featured on “Women Lead the World” and “Her Pet Peeves” games for the Iphone, as well as on NBC’s Thread’s “Ultimate Fashion Week Playlist “ for Ann Yee’s Spring 2010 collection show. On October 21, 2010, Corinne was part of a chorus/glockenspiel ensemble that accompanied Grammy winning artists Ok Go at the Guggenheim Museum during the globally streamed YouTube Plays Biennial Award show.
Corinne and the band have played shows in Manhattan and Brooklyn including The Bowery Electric, in-store performances at the Anthropologie Soho, Public Assembly, The Delancey, 11th St. Bar, Frank Hoier's NE Kingdom "Downstairs Dustup", The Cove, K&M, Royale, Bar 4, and Glasslands Gallery. Amber Fairweather has accompanied her both solo and with the band on viola, violin, and keys. Corinne and the band are currently booking performances to showcase her latest release, and she continues to write new material for her follow-up.
Corinne debuted her latest collaboration with DJ Tommy USA and Stu Richards, on July 14, 2011 at the Johnny Thunders Tribute Birthday celebration at Bowery Electric. They have plans to finish their record in Nashville in the fall of 2011. They are called American Dream.
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