BIO

MARK OLSON BIO

An artist is all about the process of creating art. The business aspects of making money from it are a very distant regard, this is where the purists always come up short in the market place. This album is yet another triumph of musical discovery for Mark that few will hear unless someone uncovers them who can put them into a cinema score or something. These songs are performed with a dedication to craft that your local record shop’s “folk” section will reveal—slowly, but surely. . Mark’s work ethic is dedicated to the process–of playing the songs before people as often as he can, so they continue to prove themselves fresh and new. These songs reflect Mark and Ingunn’s life traveling to places like South Africa and Armenia, recording with a mobile recording device that allows them to capture songs clearly and easily, using a wider variety of instrumentation than most folks. Their live shows of this material are amazing on their own, and this record stands with a maturity that each before it has aimed at a simplicity yet a depth of craft and love of craft. The songs are so strong that one didn’t even need to have heard them before the show. That’s how transparent they are…

*freereign April 9th 2015

 

Good-bye Lizelle

Glitterhouse Records 2014

“Lizelle Djan combines non-mainstream instrumentation with a modern dramatic vocal. There’s a distinct flirtation with Eastern rhythms and vocal melody lines; ‘Running Circles,’ ‘Say You Are the River’ and ‘Jesse In An Old World’ float ethereally with ambitious complexity.”

“As a complete listening experience, it’s a little like being immersed in someone else’s dream;”

“Turn off all those modern telecommunications devices, throw away your me-machines, and bask in some old-school sound.”

Popmatters.com

“A significant, bold and beautiful record”

Americana UK

“If you want things to be different, then you have to go out and do it yourself. Go plant yourself a field without genetically modified crops.”

Blurt Magazine

 

Many Colored Kite

Rykodisc 2010

“A deeply introspective set of songs, with a keenly spiritual undertow running through these meditations on love, nature, and humanity.”

Allmusic.com

“Vashti Bunyan adds pale backing vocals to ‘No Time to Live Without Her’ while ‘Beehive’s acoustic guitar/strings are Nick Drake from the prairie, battered by the wind.”

BBC

“The gorgeous ‘Beehive’ features Olson and his charmingly vulnerable voice backed only by acoustic guitar and a soaring string section. ‘Scholastica’ finds him ‘walking on the shores of goodbye,’ snarling and quivering like Young on After the Gold Rush. The reassuring arpeggios of ‘Wind and Rain,’ cruise smoothly beneath the angelic harmony vocals of Ingunn Ringvold.”

Relix

 

Salvation Blues

Hacktone 2007

“Salvation Blues is the kind of contemporary singer/songwriter record that we need more of: poetry as part and parcel of life itself, captured in a music so utterly simple and convincing, it is almost impossible to separate it from the artist who made it — except that it recalls our own experiences so closely in places we have no choice but to give thanks“

Allmusic.com

 

Mystic Theatre

Glitterhouse Records 2004

 

“Their best record since 1999’s Zola And The Tulip Tree; rural folk, western swing and bluegrass still bubble with contentment. Neither restless nor self-destructive, the ‘Dippers are uniquely postmodern US roots musicians: it’s the sound of what happens once you’re done with the Great Lost Highway”

UNCUT

 

Creekdippin for the first time

Fargo Records 2003

10/10 Americana UK

“It’s testament to Olson’s understated genius that this collection of tracks from his first three albums with the (then called) Original Harmony Ridge Creedkippers really does blow away anything’ his former band have done.”

“Everything about “Creekdippin” feels as authentic, beautiful, unconventionally dazzling and poignant a collection of songs as you’re likely to hear from any artist in recent memory – and yup, that’s a bit overwhelming a description, but in this case it’s true – it’s that good a record.”

Americana UK

 

Decembers Child:

Glitterhouse 2001 Dualtone 2001

“Whether singing about around-the-clock meth labs or newspaper roses sold by the side of the road, he creates fully realized worlds within each song on December’s Child.”

Allmusic.com

“There are five of them now, these albums credited to a California desert aggregate called the Original Harmony Ridge Creekdippers -Five records in six years is a remarkable output in the modern-day music industry, but then the Creekdippers’ aim from the start was to work outside”

No Depression

 

My Own Jo Ellen:

Glitterhouse 2000 Hightone 2000

“One of the very best albums of 2000, and one destined to be played for years to come.”

“Every cut sounds like an instant classic; and, like the songs of, say, the Band, they seem timeless, as if they’ve been around for ages.”

Allmusic.com

 

Zola And the Tulip tree:

1999 Chaparral Bottoms Studio

“Before closing out this endearing disc with a plaintive love song, ‘Big Old Sign’, Olson puts on a formidable display of his singing, phrasing, and melodic skills on ‘Into The Yard’, inducing the listener to hang on his every word — and on the Creek Dippers’ every note.”

No Depression

 

Pacific Coast Rambler:

Chaparral Bottoms Studio 1998

“Olson’s and Williams’ songs commemorate such common, everyday pleasures as a good rain and changing seasons. This is intimate music that recalls old-time traditions and manages to avoid the cloying earnestness that often afflicts folkies and unplugged rockers.”

Allmusic.com

“You’d swear in a blind listening test that these were old field recordings. Olson cites early Holy Modal Rounder recordings and Lucinda Williams’ early Folkways work as seminal influences on the Creekdippers sounds, and it really comes across.”

Popmatters.com

 

The Original Harmony Ridge Creek Dippers

Chaparral Bottoms Studio 1997

“Indeed, the effortlessness of the music is so disarming that at first it almost seems too easy — until eventually it becomes clear that the sheer innocence is forging an irresistible emotional connection.”

“It’s the kind of music that’s impossible to strive for, to fashion from careful study or conscious effort; the only way it happens like this is when it flows straight out from the soul.”

No Depression