For the love of NZ

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Shenandoah Davis is the only international artist signed to Kiwi record label Home Alone.

The United States muso is playing The Sherwood for the first time on Saturday.

Based in Seattle, Washington, this is her third trip to Middle Earth.

Back in 2012, when she first hopped off the plane to tour New Zealand, she ended up making friends with other Kiwi musos including Timothy Blackman from Home Alone Records.

She kept in touch with Blackman over the years and while recording her most recent album, Souvenirs, everything fell into place.

“I sent Blackman a couple of tracks when I was working on this new album in New York, just as friends, I was like ‘listen to this, I think it’s coming along really well’.”

Blackman was stoked with what he heard and asked her to be an honorary non-Kiwi member of their record label.

“They extended the invite to me and I was very happy to accept,” she says.
Davis is also signed to a US label, Plume Records.

Having seen a bit of the country in the past, Davis says NZ is always a fun place to be.

“I’m so happy to be back, and every time I just feel a little bit more familiar and comfortable.”

She’s a bit of a Kiwi-lover when it comes down to it.

“I just found that people here are really warm and inviting and much more articulate to people in the States.”

But her band — made up of little sister Alenni Davis on keys and friend Ian Williams on guitar and drums, complementing her vocals and piano playing — has never been before.

They’ve scheduled enough time in the country to go on some scenic road trips and swimming adventures.

When Davis is out on tour she’s still able to manage a nanny agency remotely where she pairs families with teachers and nannies throughout the US.

She reckons it’s the dream for any musician to be able to work remotely while touring.

But, every tour she’s on is already dreamy for Davis.

“I really like travelling, so when you get to travel while touring I feel like you get a better inside look into every town that you go to.

“We meet a lot more people and get a much better sense of what each town is like, and what life is like for the people that live there.”

By the time her current tour reaches Queenstown she reckons they’ll all have some pretty good stories to tell.

Davis describes her music as “classically-influenced pop”.

Although she predominantly plays her original music, she does drop a few covers into the mix.

“I have found, especially with travelling and with someone’s first exposure to the music, that it can be really helpful to add just, like, one or two familiar songs, ‘cos it just makes people a little bit easier to place what’s going on.”

Catch Shenandoah Davis at The Sherwood on Saturday, tickets available for $20 on Eventfinda

mandy.cooper@scene.co.nz