Song Premiere: The Good Graces “Porchlight”

The Good Graces, an Atlanta-based tune-making endeavor guided by singer, songwriter, guitarist and all-around multitasker Kim Ware, has been gently beguiling listeners since 2007 (or 2006 – accounts vary). Southern by the grace of God, Ware migrated to Atlanta from Wilmington, North Carolina with a knack for candid, unsweetened lyrics delivered with a winsome voice and a front porch relatability. Musically, her songs tend to be what’s called in certain circles indie-folk, although they veer in whatever detour suits them, be it countrified twang, comfort-food jangle-rock, atmospheric dream-pop or etcetera, all of which are found on Set Your Sights, the fourth full-length album from the project, which is officially being released on Friday, July 7th.

Ware has, for the most part, worked with a fluctuating community of musical collaborators within The Good Graces, noting that, “I’ve always liked to mix it up depending on what I’m doing at the moment. I’m super fortunate to have a lot of really talented friends, but many of them have their own thing going on, and it’s hard to expect the same group to be available all the time.” For Set Your Sights (and for most shows for the foreseeable future), the core group features some of Atlanta’s finest veteran musicians, including pedal steel and electric guitar player Jonny Daly (Paris Luna, Jackson County Line, Lindsay Rakers, Michelle Malone…I can’t even begin to name all the folks he’s played with), drummer Pete McDade (Uncle Green/3 lb. Thrill, Paul Melancon), bass guitarist Lee Kennedy (Sonia Tetlow), keyboardist Chad Mason (Mudcat) and guitarist John McNicholas (The Sunset District).

“Sometimes, joking around, I call this my midlife crisis record,” Ware explains in the press release for Set Your Sights. “It’s about getting older, regret, feeling bad about things I’ve done in past relationships, and just trying to figure it all out… Making this record, I learned that, sometimes, coming to terms with something means accepting you might never come to terms with it.” Like I mentioned earlier, Ware’s songs are relatable. You’ve lived through similar situations, felt the gnawing persistence of regret, pondered whether you’re following the right path. And if you’re too young to have reached any such self-reflection, just give it a few years, kid.

So anyway, we are happy to offer here a small sample from Set Your Sights, a pretty little ditty called “Porchlight” that aptly demonstrates The Good Graces’ revolving community of contributors. In addition to Ware and Daly, the track features the talents of Laura Bland (bass), Erik Ostrom (keyboards), Tim Anderson (cello), Trish Anderson (violin) and Michelle Friedman (backing vocals). Enjoy it, and remember to pick up the full album starting 7/7/17 wherever you get good albums these days. Or better yet, get a copy directly from the band at one of their upcoming shows, which in the Atlanta area includes an August 29th gig in the Atlanta Room (downstairs) at Smith’s Olde Bar.

Photo by Maigh Houlihan.