Jeffrey Silverstein – Top 5 Influences


Photo credit: Alex Kocher

Ambient folk artist Jeffrey Silverstein approached us after seeing his fellow Portland resident Haley Heynderickx in our Top 5 Albums of 2018.

Now, ahead of the release of his new EP ‘How On Earth’ (out via Driftless Recordings on 25 January), he talks us through five songs that have shaped his sound.


Jack Adkins – ‘American Sunset

This tune was yet another find via one of the best and longest standing music blogs, Aquarium Drunkard. It’s the title track to a private press psych folk LP under the same name released in 1984. When I heard it for the first time, it was almost exactly what what I had in mind when starting to record my EP – drum machine, clean guitar and minimal, almost spoken vocals. Reminded me of what I really loved about the first Daughn Gibson record, All Hell.  Apparently this LP was originally limited to 500 copies and is now available on digital thanks to Numero Group.


Peals – ‘Essential Attitudes

Peals have been one of my favorite instrumental groups since the release Walking Field, their first LP for Thrill Jockey. A duo comprised of members of Baltimore acts Future Islands and Double Dagger, I admire how quickly they can establish a mood. Very into the drum sound on this one and it’s my go to music for focusing. Just very pleasant music to have on in so many different environments, which is something I hope listeners get with my own recordings.


North Americans – ‘Going Steady

Patrick McDermott, aka North Americans, is ½ of the team behind Driftless Recordings. I’ve admired his work from a far for quite some time so it’s a big deal for me to release music with the label. This is the title track from his latest album, one of my favorites of 2018. I am drawn to the format Patrick took to create these songs – beautiful instrumental guitar music + layered soundscapes/ambient drones and then inviting members of his music community to make guest appearances. This one features Julianna Barwick and Meg Duffy (Hand Habits). Just beautiful music that I learn something from with each listen.


Chayns – ‘Live with the Moon

Found this one on another my favorite sites for music discovery – Reverberation Radio. Was immediately drawn to the guitar playing on this one and have had it on repeat ever since.


Mountain Man – ‘Baby Where You Are‘ (Ted Lucas)

Was thrilled to get a new Mountain Man record this year and my jaw was just about to the floor when I heard their cover of Ted Lucas’ ‘Baby Where You Are.’ Ted’s self-titled LP has been long out of print until a reissue from Yoga Records this year. I loved Mountain Man’s take on the tune and will always be drawn to songs that can say so much with so little (especially very few lyrics).


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