Introducing…The Watkins Family Hour

Read about the Americana supergroup Watkins Family Hour

watkins family hour

Sara and Sean Watkins, Fiona Apple, Benmont Tench, Don Heffington, Greg Leisz and Sebastian Steinberg

to release an album, due August 7 2015.

Watkins Family Hour—an acclaimed musical collective featuring siblings Sara and Sean Watkins along with Fiona Apple, Benmont Tench (Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers), Don Heffington, Greg Leisz and Sebastian Steinberg—will release their debut, self-titled album on August 7 on Family Hour Records via Thirty Tigers.  In celebration of the release, the collective will take their “variety show of epic proportions” (Los Angeles Times) to cities across the U.S. this summer kicking off with a performance at the Newport Folk Festival on July 24.

The album was recorded live over three days in the studio of their friend and producer-engineer Sheldon Gomberg, and is an all-covers affair – tracks include Sara doing Fleetwood Mac’s “Steal Your Heart Away,” Sean essaying Roger Miller’s wistful “Not In Nottingham,” and Apple singing “Where I Ought To Be,” originally performed by Skeeter Davis.

Of the album and tour, Sara comments, “Taking the Watkins Family Hour on tour and releasing this record feels like the right next step.  The show is about a community of players and that community stretches across the country.  If we can’t get everyone to L.A. to do our show, we’ll come to them.  We are coming to towns where we have friends and we can have those moments, even if it’s not our home club.  It’s the people on stage who make that happen; it’s just a matter of getting the right group of people together.  We are being thoughtful about where we are going so we can have that sort of flexibility.  It will be a very different show in every town.”

Watkins Family Hour began in 2002 as a monthly musical residency hosted by Sara and Sean and held exclusively at Los Angeles’ Largo at the Coronet.  Of the performances, Forbes praises, “This combination of seeing a marquee talent, the element of surprise and the congeniality of an evening of friends makes for a great night out, where the artists appear to be enjoying themselves, and enjoy seeing their friends perform.  It feels like a 21st Century version of the Greenwich Village folk scene at clubs like the Bitter End in the 1960s.  Mostly, what it feels like is—well—like Largo,” while American Songwriter asserts, “Inside the Largo, a funny thing happens: along with her brother, Sean, and friends like Fiona Apple and Jackson Browne, Watkins leads an evening of folk tunes, bluegrass jams and good old-fashioned musical revelry, a joyful room that brings wailing voices and acoustic strings to an electric city…”

As part of their US tour, Watkins Family Hour are playing at Fayettevilleroots festival (Fayetteville Arkansas) in August 2015 which is where I will get to see this fascinating ensemble.


1. Feelin’ Good Again
2. Where I Ought To Be
3. Not In Nottingham
4. Steal Your Heart Away
5. Prescription for the Blues
6. Going Going Gone
7. Hop High
8. She Thinks I Still Care
9. The King of the 12 Oz. Bottles
10. Early Morning Rain
11. Brokedown Palace

Watkins Family Hour – “Steal Your Heart Away” Teaser


Read about the Americana supergroup Watkins Family Hour


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Author: Rob Dickens

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