A nationally touring artist with a deep love of quiet stories, Anna is beginning to carve a place for herself in the songwriting world. She was a winner at this year’s Kerrville Songwriting Contest, and has shared the stage with heroes and friends like Gregory Alan Isakov, Shook Twins, Anais Mitchell, Jefferson Hamer, Peter Mulvey, Matt the Electrician, Devon Sproule, Darlingside, Steve Poltz, Jeffrey Martin and more.
Anna was raised in the forest and farmland of rural northern Washington and currently calls Portland, OR home. Her songs reflect both the stark colors of small town life, and the hard, sharp lines of the city. Anna’s last album, Before Machines, was hailed by No Depression as “raw, yet superbly composed and executed, intelligent, personal and deeply expressive.” Her newest album, Heroes Waking UP, is produced by guitar mastermind Austin Nevins (Josh Ritter, Anais Mitchell, Kris Delmhorst).
“To be sure, these are organic songs that freely reveal the poetry of the mind, heart and soul, the sharp imagery of the world translated into sound, and both the simple and complex things represented sentimentally and at length.” – Examiner
“Anna Tivel brings a raft of beautiful songs with brine-soaked images of Pacific Northwest tidepools, oceans, and the birds that wheel above them in the gray skies.” – Devon Leger, No Depression
“Anna’s strength is that of a lyricist. Her songs are filled with lines that intrigue and haunt.” – David Steinberg
Since 2010 Jeffrey has criss-crossed the US with his songs, a few times in an old Isuzu Trooper, and once in a Toyota Camry with which he pulled a homemade wooden teardrop camper. And on all occasions he has his faithful road companion, a yellow lab named Ben. As often as he can he tours with fellow songwriter Anna Tivel who backs him on fiddle and mandolin. When asked whether he considers himself a musician or a songwriter first Martin had this to say:
“I’m a writer more than I am a musician. If I could play guitar half as well as I can write I’d be wearing nicer pants.”
His music has been likened to the styles of Josh Ritter, John Gorka, and Joe Pug. He grew up on Dylan’s Blood On the Tracks and Young’s Harvest and he remembers when his dad took him to see Leo Kottke and how he was thrown into a trance by the speed of his picking.
He remembers staying up late at night with headphones, listening and re-listening to Harry Chapin songs about lost love and lessons learned, and feeling older than he was.