STORY WRITTEN BY CRAIG OSTROFF
For 21st Century Media
Carley Chilton and Amanda Mackintosh both grew up on farms in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. Both attended the same summer camp and took vocal lessons from the same coach.
Yet, the two never knew each other when they were children. A decade later, however, after both had moved to Nashville to pursue their musical dreams, their paths crossed at a restaurant.
“We knew that somehow we knew each other, and we put our heads together and figured it out,” Chilton said. “The first time we started singing together, our voices went together perfectly. We’ve sang together every day of our lives since that night.”
Call it fate. Call it destiny.
Call it Aberdeen Green.
Named after Chilton’s parents’ landscaping business in Virginia, Aberdeen Green combines an Appalachian-inspired Americana sound with a worldly percussion, thanks to the efforts of producer Pino Squillace. The result is a sound that been called “Fiona Appalachia” — smart, fresh, lyrically driven, with soaring harmonies and a familiar country sound that incorporates unique musical elements.
The band’s debut CD, “The Oak Tree” was released this summer and is available wherever Aberdeen Green performs. Songs from the 11-track album will be highlighted during the band’s Sept. 19 performance at Chaplin’s music café.
“As independent artists, the record is 100 percent our product,” Mackintosh said. “We worked with our producer, Pino, and we very much formed our sound in the studio throughout the recording of the project.
“All the songs on the CD have a special meaning in our own way. The title track, ‘The Oak Tree,’ I remember sitting up in Carley’s apartment and she was telling me about the farm she grew up on — it’s a farm that’s been in the family generation after generation, I have the same sort of story. It’s a story that we both share about how a family strives and grows with a tree. That song is very near and dear to us. Our families are still on the farm, and the tree is still watching over us.”
The band’s unique sound makes it difficult to pin it down into a specific genre, but makes it easy to listen to and enjoy, and it helped the duo steal the show at the 91st Annual National Christmas Tree lighting last December. This summer, the two women racked up 5,500 miles touring the East Coast, including a July stop at Chaplin’s following their performance in the Ladybug Festival in Wilmington, Del.
“We’ve gone into multiple cities this summer where we walked off the stage had no idea how we were going to be received,” Chilton said. “We are pretty much a fish out of water in (Nashville) as well. We’re not your mainstream, average country duo.”
“We’ve been very well-received on the East Coast,” Mackintosh said. “My favorite thing to hear is, ‘It’s so different but so refreshing.’”
Aberdeen Green (www.aberdeengreenmusic.com) will be joined at Chaplin’s by Alexa (Alex Saad and Squillace; www.alexamusica.com), as well as a very special guest. Opening the night will be Kaitlyn Myers, an 11-year-old local singer/songwriter who also happens to be Chilton’s cousin.
“Kaitlyn is an amazingly talented vocalist,” Chilton said. “She plays the piano and she’s starting to write music. When Amanda and I are in Pennsylvania, we’ll sit with her and write songs — she’s unbelievably talented.
“It’s going to be really special for me to be able to share this with my young cousin and hopefully help to inspire her to grow and pursue her dreams.”
It’s a dream that Mackintosh and Chilton live every time they take the stage.
“Being able to perform is definitely a special thing to us,” Mackintosh said. “When we create music and are able to take it to people who connect with it, that’s why we do it.”
“It’s an amazing feeling to be able to touch people with the music we put so much effort into,” Chilton said.
IF YOU GO
Aberdeen Green with Alexa and Kaitlyn Myers will perform at 8 p.m. Sept. 19 at Chaplin’s, 66 N. Main St., Spring City.
Tickets: $10 online, $12 at the door, $13.75 for reserved seating in the main listening room. For more information, call (610) 792-4110 or check www.chaplinslive.com.