Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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Christy Lynn

The Christy Lynn Band, an Asheville band with a country-soul-rock ‘n roll sound fronted by the powerful vocals of its lead singer, will celebrate the release of its debut album, Sweetheart of the Radio, on Thursday at The Mothlight in West Asheville.

Led by the vocal stylines of Christy Lynn and backed by a group of talented local musicians, Sweetheart of the Radio takes listeners on a heart-wrenching lyrical and musical journey. The group includes guitarist Ryan Schilling, who also recorded and produced the record, as well as fiddler Kenan Hopkins, drummer Nate Puateri, bassist Zack Page and Jackson Dulaney on pedal steel. The album was mixed by Julian Dreyer at Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville and mastered by Dave Harris.

Christy Lynn and Ryan Schilling have been playing music together for the past nine years, crisscrossing the country to play on countless stages. The two connected in Southern California and eventually followed their musical dreams eastward. In Asheville, the two found connected with musical brethren and created the Christy Lynn Band.

Their freshman release is a 12-song record that tells the fictional story of a radio darling, the Sweetheart, a skyrocketing success who is masking a deep sadness. It’s an unsatisfying one-way relationship: the whole world loves her, and yet not one person really does because they don’t truly know her. The crux is that perhaps she doesn’t know herself.

Christy Lynn handled writing the lyrics and melodies, something that Schilling had mostly done in the past. As she provided those elements, he dug deep for guitar riffs to match the emotion of the song. The two also enlisted the help of a number of trusted musical friends, including James Dorris and Will Garrison, to help produce the record.

“We would send our songs to some friends and get feedback on what to do and where,” Christy Lynn says. “We call it ‘friends producing friends.’”

What’s more, it was all recorded on vintage sound equipment of a studio built into the back of a 1987 Ford Econoline truck. It’s called the American Sound Truck. The truck is part of the American Vinyl Co. in Asheville, which offers custom vinyl records and packaging to clients.

Check out the show on Thursday. In the meantime, here’s a music video for a cut off the new record titled “Checkin In.” It was mostly shot at the Sunset Motel in Brevard, a classic roadside motel that has held onto its vintage charm.

The Christy Lynn Band is set to release their first full-length album, Sweetheart of the Radio, on vinyl, CDs, digitally and on all streaming platforms on March 12, 2020. A show celebrating the album’s release is set for 9 p.m. on March 12 at The Mothlight in West Asheville and includes Brody Hunt & The Handfulls. Get tickets here.

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

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