Posted by on March 16, 2021 6:20 am
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Categories: µ Newsjones

Named by Bob Dylan as a contemporary great, the versatile songwriter straddles folk, R&B, bluegrass, soul and more – and her creative freedom has been hard-fought

“I love the way you say that. Girl, I’m about to write that down,” Valerie June says in her charming Tennessee drawl, as I repeat the activist term I think summarises her worldview: radical imagining. “If we can’t imagine and if we can’t dream then how are we going to create any more beauty?” she elaborates. “Or continue the cycle of trying to create a world where we’re all living as one?”

The folk-soul singer – now two decades into her career, and name-checked by Bob Dylan as a contemporary great – is a self-professed dreamer, always searching for alternative ways of viewing life: she tells me about visiting her family garden to bless the earth, shifting her energy through dancing, and retaining the wide-eyed outlook of a child. Speaking from her current base in the countryside a few hours north of her home in New York City, she even saw wonder in the snowstorm that ravaged the state, and ran out to draw mandala shapes in the fresh powder. “The days of your life that you have snow are so few, that you got to get out there and play in it when you get it,” she says with a girlish laugh.

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