A Tale Of Two, comprised of duo Stephanie Adlington and Aaron Lessard will bring their unique sound that they have labeled Jazzicana to the Born & Bred Concert Series at The Robinson Grand Performing Arts Center on November 11th with Taylor Made, Chris Haddox and host Aristotle Jones. Stephanie and Aaron sat down to answer some questions about their West Virginia roots and the bands upcoming performance at the Concert Series. You can get your tickets to the concert series by clicking here: The Robinson Grand
Where in West Virginia do you come from and where does the band hail from?
A Tale Of Two is an Americana duo residing in Nashville, TN. Stephanie Adlington (one-half of the duo) is a Grafton, WV native. Aaron Lessard is originally from Westport, Massachusetts, and has been living in Nashville since 2017.
Who are some influences on your music and writing style?
Though we consider ourselves to be in the Americana space, we have a wide range of influence when it comes to our songwriting. Anything from Tom Waits and Ray LaMontage, to Billie Holiday and Sting. We just love GOOD music… no matter where it comes from.
How has being from West Virginia influenced your music?
Stephanie Adlington: I have always connected with the darker side of West Virginia history. It has a rich telling of folklore, Civil War tales, and haunted hallowed ground. I love to tell stories, and the history of this state has helped to define my creative voice, and it continues to inspire my writing today.
What can people expect from your set?
We do our best to take listeners on a journey. Our music has hills and valleys. Quiet, intimate moments mixed with powerful dynamics and energy that’ll make one question if there really is only two people on stage. We welcome the opportunity of live performances to showcase a different kind of storytelling, flavored with a slide guitar and drum suitcase!
Who are some West Virginia artists you’re listening to?
Sierra Ferrell is becoming a household name in Nashville, and we love to see that connection with West Virginia. She is definitely keeping a vintage flair going in a modern way, with such an excellent sound. Of course, who could forget about Bill Withers?
What else are you listening to currently?
We love to listen to a lot of old Jazz. Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald … Patsy Cline is always playing in the car. Ray LaMontagne is a great reference for getting in the writing mood. The 80’s playlist seems to always find its way when unwinding, getting ready for a gig, or cooking some dinner!
What inspired you or took you down the path of music?
Stephanie Adlington: I’ve always wanted to sing for as long as I can remember. It’s the only thing I have been interested in long enough to make a career of. Solid Gold Countdown or MTV were always on in the house… Casey Kasem Countdown on the radio… I have always felt that connection with music. I would sing along to Linda Rondstadt, Debby Boone, Donna Summer and Patsy Cline. I always knew I would be a performer… ever since those days at the VFW in downtown Grafton with my Grandaddy. I would be sitting on a barstool with root beer in an ice-cold mug, singing along to “ The Silver Tongued Devil and I” by Kris Kristofferson.
Aaron Lessard: Music was always on in my house. My dad was a big class rock fan. We’d always have old live concerts on the TV… Queen live at Wembley in ‘86, Van Halen, Zeppelin… those guys had a major influence on my guitar playing. I eventually found a new lane in Jazz before going to music school. I wanted to expand my vocabulary as a player, and learn concepts I never knew existed. When I got out of music school, I wasn’t quite mentally prepared for a return to “normal”. I had to rediscover what inspired me to play music in the first place, and that’s when I fell back in love with songwriting. I finally had the maturity to realize that my instrument needs to compliment the most important aspect of music, and that of course is the song.
One song you want people to listen to from your catalog if they were to say, “Hey what do you sound like?”
“The Letter”. This song captures many different aspects of our writing. It’s dramatic while having intimate moments. It is a song that carries harmonies throughout its entirety… with an attempt for both voices to be blended as one. It is probably the song we are most proud of to date.
Read our previous artist feature on Stephanie Adlington.