One thing that sets Nashville apart from most cities is that you can take a chance of just showing up at one of the city’s staple venues on almost any night and be completely taken away by the talent on stage. I had one of those nights last week when I decided to check out The Basement in Nashville to scratch my Saturday night concert itch. Allow me to describe what it was like to hear Timothy Showalter’s Strand of Oaks perform songs from his album Pope Killdragon. From my hometown of Philadelphia, PA, Strand of Oaks performs by creating a masterful tone with his guitar and voice. The combination of pedals and reverb create a beautiful sound that allows you to really enter in to each and every song. With apocalyptic imagery and the creation of new worlds that seem somewhat familiar, the songs elaborate more than most with quality in writing. Check out this awesome song called “Bonfire:”
Strand of Oaks’ performance was pretty epic for a guy and his guitar. He enters in to each song, fully emulating the emotion that it deserves. Following each dramatic song, Timothy emits a lighthearted smile, which is rare in many singer-songwriter performances today. To the audience member, it seemed to show that this artist was privileged to be able to share his music with me, and I was certainly privileged to hear it. There was a fun side to this apocalyptic poet, like between songs when he said, “If only I could write a song about flip-flops.” I, for one, am thankful that his creativity encompasses more than just songs about popular American footwear.
There seems to be more to Strand of Oaks than meets the eye and ear. Even with what seems like a rough past, Timothy remains persistant and seemingly more inspired than ever. He is definitely one of the most gracious and humble artists I’ve had the pleasure to talk to yet. I would love to take a step inside his mind to view some of what inspires his creative genius. Margan Galen King describes his most recent album, “Pope Killdragon pulls you in magnetically, forcing your attention to its every word in desperation to comprehend both your own surroundings and the threat looming in the distance.” I encourage everyone to take a listen to this astonishing album because there is certainly nothing else like it out there.
Steve Harpine | Nashville Ambassador | @Steve_MWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC