Local Artist Drops Her Latest Record; Hits Local Stores
By EMILY DREW, Amsterdam Recorder News Staff, NY, Oct. 23, 2015
Acoustic singersongwriter Cosby Gibson, a village resident, began her official music career
only eight years ago, but with a new album, she hopes to see her name among upcoming
Gibson will perform her new album, "Talking to Echos," at local F.Y.E. stores this week as part of the Johnstown store's program to support local musicians. This fourth album, a threeyear project done with the help of online supporters, concentrates on letting go of the past.
"It very lightly explores the concept of when people are, not necessarily stuck in the past, but maybe something happened to them in the past. It could be anything. And you don't realize it, but maybe 10 or 15 years go by, you're still thinking about it. My idea is that basically, you're talking to echoes, you're talking to nothing. It's not there any more," Gibson said.
She said she did not begin creating new music with this theme in mind, but once she sat down and began playing chords on her guitar, she noticed an overarching idea coming together. "I know that that whole idea sounds heavy..., but it's really not heavyhanded. It's light," said Gibson. "The [songs] are very pleasant. They're pleasant, upbeat and happy songs."
Part of the 12-track album centers on being stuck on past events, while the rest speaks to rising above it, Gibson said. The track "Jane Rides Again" features one of Gibson's recurring characters who cannot move forward in life. The album also features a second disc with four music videos featuring Gibson, as well as an artist's booklet.
Gibson will perform four concerts between Friday and Saturday at F.Y.E. store locations in Saratoga, Glens Falls, Schenectady and Johnstown. She coordinated with Heather Reppenhagen from the Johnstown store, which has a program to help local musicians expand from instore concerts to other locations.
Part of the reason, Gibson said, is because her goal is a Grammy nomination next season. If she sells 500 CDs or downloads of "Talking to Echoes," she qualifies for the Northeast Billboard Chart "Heatseekers." From there, the album could be considered for a Grammy. "I think with the theme, the packaging, and the songs, I think it's definitely worth consideration," she said.
She said part of her success thus far can be attributed to her supporters. Like many artists today, Gibson looked to the Internet for support. She has a CD Baby account to sell her music, but it's Patreon that has had the most influence on her. The web site allows people to subscribe to an artist's work, whether it is music, videos or drawings. When the artist uploads a piece, subscribers are charged $1 for access.
While Gibson said she does not like to concentrate on money, she liked the website because it is a resource for artists to live from what they enjoy doing. "In today's world, an artist really can do their work and have people support them and survive and still be true to their art. It's almost entirely because of the internet," said Gibson.
Some of the songs on "Talking to Echos" come from Gibson's Patreon account. In addition to her solo performances, Gibson also performs in a duo with Tom Staudle, who regularly performs in Fultonville. In the duo, Gibson plays either the violin or dulcimer, but it's the guitar she turns to when alone on stage the instrument she started on as a child.
"My mother was completely patient," she said. "I found out later she doesn't even like the sound of a guitar and yet I was playing it for so many years in my bedroom every day."
Gibson only began a music career eight years ago, though. After injuring her hand in high school, she looked up ways to rehabilitate herself and began playing professionally. Some of her larger performances include the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Pete Seeger's Beacon Sloop Festivals, and Macy's store benefits. Music has always been a part of her life.
"It's very funny. Even though I've only been performing for eight years, I realized all along in my life I've been doing these musical things," she said. Gibson defines her music as having a folksy feel to it. "it's interesting because folk music is changing," she said. "Where folk music used to be Woody Guthrie-type musicians, today the music concentrates on instruments and has a more pop feel to it. For a lot of artists, there's a blend. They develop their own style that might not fit specifically into one of the genres. What I've chosen, it definitely fits acoustic songwriter," she said.