With what PopMatters describes as "tenacious swagger," critically-acclaimed solo artist Ashleigh Flynn recently dialed up the volume and debuted an all-female rock band as a nod to the “Rosie the Riveter” archetype from WWII.
Flynn grew up in Kentucky and cut her teeth on local bluegrass music and Motown. A prolific songwriter and performer blessed with unbridled charisma, she arrived on the Americana scene in 2008 with the release of her third LP, American Dream, a poetic lament to the elusiveness of that national ethos. A Million Stars followed in 2013 – a rollicking journey celebrating the women pioneers of the American West.
Ashleigh Flynn & The Riveters’ inaugural LP hit the streets in 2018 featuring a sound that hearkens back to early Stones, ‘70s psychedelic country rock, and alternately charms like a Sunday afternoon front porch session. Produced by her longtime musical collaborator, Chris Funk of the Decemberists, the 10 original tracks feature Flynn’s soulful vocals and compelling brand of songwriting, amped-up and virtuously enveloped by the electric guitar work of Nancy Luca and Jenny Conlee on all manner of keys. Luca honed her style and skill playing with Tom Petty and Bo Diddley. Conlee hails from the Decemberists as well. The rhythm section boasts two additional highly-regarded Portland musicians: Jolie Clausen on drums and Carmen Paradise on bass.
"… Accumulates into an amazingly creative and original juxtaposition of rock, country, vigour, and sass."
Since self-releasing on Flynn’s label, Home Perm Records, the Oregon-based band has barnstormed the Western US – steadily building their audience and live sound along the way. Multi-state coastal runs and swings through mountain cities were highlighted by sellout shows with the Amy Ray Band in Missoula and Salt Lake, an intimate evening with the HawtThorns at legendary McCabe’s Guitar Shop in LA, and a set for the ages on Easter Sunday at the Grand Ol’ Echo on Sunset Blvd. Prominent festival appearances at Kate Wolf, Oregon Country Fair and Missoula River Roots saw the band road-tested, joyously ripping, and rounding out the summer of 2019 swinging for the fences.
“Ashleigh Flynn & the Riveters laid down one of the best sets of this year’s festival with tight, professional rollicking Americana that defies geography. From the soul of the City to the call from the Holler, you won’t find a better band.”
– Brian Keogh, Mainstage Coordinator, Oregon Country Fair
Despite live performances all but disappearing with the onset of Covid, 2020 was not a lost year. Music videos for the two singles off the Riveters’ debut made the rounds of the film festival circuit, screening in cities across the country and taking home multiple honors. The band received three Independent Music Awards nominations, remotely recorded and released a pandemic-inspired digital 45, advanced to the final five in Sixthman Soundcheck’s Melissa Etheridge Cruise competition and broadcast a handful of livestreams from Portland throughout the year – rocking driveways, balconies and bona-fide stages alike.
The Riveters are poised to continue honing their craft as a band of highly adept song assemblers who put on one hell of a show – holding up the reality that chicks shred just as hard as dudes. The band plans to drop a live record in May, has begun work on a sophomore studio album, and will take their unique brand of Americana back out on the road as 2021 permits.