Huddled around a single microphone, singing intimate duets with just mountain dulcimer, dobro and guitar Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage are a folk duo that look & sound classically timeless, yet feel refreshingly unique. Fleetingly, they may evoke a memory of Gram & Emmylou, Shirley & Davey, or Gillian & David but their warm distilling of influences from both sides of the big pond produces a refined sound that is decidedly their own.
Recorded in Toronto with award-winning Canadian producer David Travers-Smith (Ruth Moody, Wailin’ Jennys, Pharis & Jason Romero) their album ‘Before The Sun’ captures all the intimacy of the pair’s live show and delicately sets it to beautifully crafted soundscapes that rise and fall. The record features renowned guests from both sides of the pond, including Jon Thorne (Lamb, John Smith), Kevin Breit (Norah Jones, Rosanne Cash), Jim Causley and Katriona Gilmore (Gilmore & Roberts).
Both hailing from folk singing families in the flatlands of East Anglia, Hannah spent much of her formative years touring Europe with her family band in a converted school bus, singing folk songs acapella in the street to make enough money to move to the next city. However, a sea change and relocation to the US saw her soak up the influences from the American North East and take up the dulcimer. Meanwhile Ben was writing and touring with celebrated UK folk band The Willows whose albums ‘Beneath Our Humble Soil’ and ‘Amidst Fiery Skies’ were championed by the likes of the BBC’s Bob Harris and Mike Harding.