"There is a stirring intimacy to these performances that holds you in their grasp."
Stomp and Stammer
Genre: Pop Folk | Americana
Hometown: Atlanta, GA
Based In: East Nashville, TN
2020 International Songwriting Competition Finalist Winner
Kristen Englenz paints musical stories of heartache and yearning with a soulful sensibility both intimately aching and defiant with hope. A multi-instrumentalist classically trained in piano with a voice virtuosic and vulnerable, her music is fragrant with folksy roots infused with an indie vibe.
Roots music journal No Depression called Englenz’s music “stream of consciousness Beat poetry imbued with good-down-home Southern sensibility.” And Stomp and Stammer said, "There is a stirring intimacy to these performances that holds you in their grasp."
Englenz attributes her melodies to be partially inspired by the natural world. Her interest in environmental activism is shared in her popular web series “Caterwauling with Kristen” where she mimics birdcalls and teaches about avian species. “I don't know why a certain chord progression makes us want to cry or to laugh,” says Englenz. “If we figured that out, we would probably understand birds and nature much better!”
Englenz's newest release is a cover of the Rolling Stones' classic "Wild Horses” on its 50th anniversary, recorded at historic FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. The original single dropped on June 12, 1971 and was also recorded in Muscle Shoals at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio. The track appeared on Sticky Fingers, the Stones' first album on their own label and the first use of their iconic tongue and lips logo.
A self-described superfan of the Stones, Englenz recalls that “Wild Horses” was the first song she learned to play on guitar and was the first she played in front of a live audience. Englenz was at FAME Studios to track her 2020 International Songwriting Finalist song, “Pray for Rain” with the three-time Grammy Award winning gospel group Blind Boys of Alabama, which appears on her debut album, "ingenue." It occurred to Englenz to cover the song. Producer Ken Coomer (Uncle Tupelo, Wilco) was on-board, and Englenz made the live one-take recording in the town in which it was born.
Englenz spoke of her experience saying, “There’s a button on the board at FAME Studios that says 'fairy dust,' which seems appropriate, because the best word I can use to describe my entire experience at FAME is magical. Having the honor to work with the legends Blind Boys of Alabama on my song and then recording the Stones' “Wild Horses” is the stuff that dreams are made of."
Englenz went a step further in her homage to this piece of The Rolling Stones’ history by creating her version’s cover graphic in a style reminiscent of Sticky Fingers album designer, Andy Warhol.
The track includes Nashville musicians Irakli Gabriel on guitar and Ken Coomer on drums and bass. It is available for streaming on June 12, 2021 on all platforms.
Saturn 5 Records
SCENES media, October 2020
Dust of Daylight, June 2020
Sound Bites, June 2020
NOLA County, April 2020
Creative Loafing, Mar 2020
Stomp and Stammer, Mar 2020
Americana Highways, Dec 2019
Paste, Nov 2019
Sound Bites, Nov 2019
Dust of Daylight, Oct 2019
Dust of Daylight, Oct 2019
Immersive Atlanta, Oct 2019
Someday Matinee WFMU, Oct 2019