Marisa Anderson is a guitarist and composer currently living in Portland, Oregon. Her music tells stories of landscape, belonging and struggle. Playing solo electric guitar, she mines the deep veins of American musical tradition, applying elements of minimalism, drone and 20th century classical music to compositions based on gospel, blues and jazz. Her music is expertly played, deeply researched and reverently felt.
Originally from Northern California, Anderson dropped out of college at age nineteen to walk across the US. Her earliest musical influences are the church songs she grew up singing. Classically trained, she began playing guitar when she was ten years old and went on after years of study to hone her skills by playing in jazz, country and circus bands. In 2009 she released her first solo guitar record on Mississippi Records, ‘The Golden Hour’, followed by ‘Mercury’(2011) and ‘Traditional and Public Domain Songs’ (2013). Midway through 2016 Billboard magazine placed her most recent record ‘Into the Light’ on their list of the best records of 2016. She is in demand as a collaborator and composer, working with artists such as Sharon Van Etten, Beth Ditto, Circuit Des Yeux, and Michael Hurley.
Anderson tours extensively throughout Europe and North America. Her work has been featured in Rolling Stone, NPR, Spin and Pitchfork. Recent festival appearances include the Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Le Guess Who?, Moogfest, Sweden’s Gagnef Festival and Fano Free Folk Festival. Mississippi Records will be reissuing Traditional and Public Domain songs in September 2017 and a record of new material will be out in Spring 2018.
“She pushes her compositions towards the heavens” SPIN
“Her playing is raw and unadorned… wrought by an overdriven, electric guitar that exposes and hides the mysteries of American music.” NPR
“Into the Light is the kind of record that requires rapt attention, best enjoyed in still solitude. But even as Anderson’s instrument simmers, it still reaches for the great beyond, and she makes you ache to reach along with it” Pitchfork
“Her sound has strength in restless variety…Anderson’s playing is heartfelt and utterly American- free from grandstanding and steeped in respect for the old tradition.” WIRE
“Her recent Into the Light is her most satisfying solo album to date, finding new timbres in pedal steel, piano and Wurlitzer, weaving a mesmerising spell with only her fingers.” ROLLING STONE
No shows booked at the moment.