2015 was an amazing year for ilyAIMY and its members. There was the Japanese taiko drum collaboration, and the reawakening of our murder ballad program at the North Carolina Museum of History. Rowan Corbett, our percussionist, was on David Letterman backing Rhiannon Giddens and touring with The Carolina Chocolate Drops. ilyAIMY toured throughout the country, and appeared again on the main stage at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival and won a WAMMIE (Washington Area Music Award) for Best Contemporary Folk Group. Heather Lloyd started work on her solo studio CD, "A Message in the Mess," with Reno band, The Novelists. Rob's huge 40th birthday show had the whole band in town and on stage together. In 2016, expect big shows, new music and the 15-year anniversary of the band.
A decade+ as ilyAIMY (i love you And I Miss You), Rob Hinkal and Heather Aubrey Lloyd have played everything from bait shops to biker weeks to clothing-optional resorts all over the country. Their energetic brand of new folk is a hit at the Kerrville Folk Festival, National Association for Campus Activities, the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance and the 2012 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, where they were voted Most-Wanted Artists. They engage audiences with humor and award-winning narrative songs that use guitar and djembe to highlight an unforgettably soulful and powerful female vocalist, and guitar work that challenges the idea of "acoustic." The alternative edges are softened with cello and lush harmony, making ilyAIMY "a welcome jolt" and "an acoustically roiling, combustible attack on the usual singer/songwriter fare," say reviewers.
The last couple years have been ilyAIMY's most exciting. Heather returned from backing Dar Williams' Promised Land Tour, and the band just released the two-disc set, Another Life/Another Live, a combination live retrospective and new studio work celebrating their decade of touring. Among fans, Pat Wictor of folk supergroup Brother Sun, and Northeast Regional Folk Alliance President, Cheryl Prashker.
"IlyAIMY ain't your grandpa's folk music - and thank goodness," says Wictor. "They are fearless writers and performers. Heather Lloyd's voice is enough for me. Voices this rich and emotionally hard-hitting - equal parts velvet darkness, barely contained heartbreak, and hard-won, unstoppable joy - don't come around often. Sing me the phone book, Heather Lloyd - I'll ask for an encore."
"Being partial to their amazing and unstoppable rhythm as well as their sheer originality, I see ilyAIMY being a force in our community for a very long time!" says Prashker.