I’ve always been a step behind Tim Blixt, host of the (now inactive) Cabin Concerts (Wayne, N.J.). In 1995, I’d discovered Canadian Lynn Miles’ “Nobody’s Angel” on Performing Songwriter Magazine’s Top 12 Independent Releases compilation CD of that year. I was entranced as she sang: In the days between stations / I’ve got time on my hands / I’m lookin’ at the fallen trees and the round golden bands / and soon I’m gonna be / anywhere but here… New York Times music critic John Pareles wrote that Miles’ music “makes forlorn feel like a state of grace.”

Fast forward, on the cusp of 1999, and I saw she’d be appearing at Oakland (N.J.)’s First Night Series. After seeing her perform, we rushed to the merch table to buy her CDs only to find they had sold out. I had to get them elsewhere.

Then, I found out she’d be appearing at Cabin Concerts in November — for the second time! I made a beeline for Wayne and got real friendly with Tim Blixt and his wife Lori. We shared a lot of musical interests, chief among them, Lynn Miles. A profile of Lynn Miles and Cabin Concerts can be found in the November 1999 issue of Acoustic Live in NYC.

So, no surprise, it was Tim who informed me recently that Lynn Miles had collaborated with her Canadian friend, singer/songwriter Lynne Hanson, and, as The LynneS, released a new CD, Heartbreak Song for the Radio. In June, I had just announced a suspension of regularly occurring cover articles for this magazine, but, now … at Tim’s request, I’d have to put my two cents in on this auspicious CD release (he didn’t have to twist my arm).

Some online investigation revealed that Lynne Hanson is a singer/songwriter in the mold of Lucinda Williams. She has a gritty sound and sensibility. As one reviewer put it, “Somewhere in the heartlands, in a town called ‘Americana USA,’ nestles a particular variety of singer/songwriter — someone who views a melodic sensibility through the bottom of a whiskey glass. Canadian songstress Lynne Hanson could run for mayor of that town.” “Amen,” I say.

After meeting in 2004, both women would get together between gigs and tours to just hang out and bounce song ideas off each other. They’re both voracious readers and share an intense interest in what makes people tick. Lynn Miles had produced two Lynne Hanson albums: 2014’s River of Sand and the 2015 Halloween release 7 Deadly Spins.

Miles had co-written three tracks on Hanson’s 2017 album, Uneven Ground, so it actually wasn’t that big a leap for Hanson to coerce Miles to co-write 10 songs with her at her house and inform Miles that she’d already booked dates for their European tour in February and March of 2018. They hadn’t actually sung as a duo before and Miles didn’t know if the blend would work. Too late. “Everything was in place, so we had to do it,” Miles said.

Hanson’s sense of their compatibility was eerily accurate. Their voices blend perfectly — Everly-like in some places. The writing went smoothly and they wound up with 14 songs, all co-writes, using 10 of them on Heartbreak Song for the Radio

After a couple of listens to the album, “Blue Tattoo” became my favorite. Its heartbeat throb and melancholy reverb is right up my alley. Reviewers have likened its sound to Fleetwood Mac. However, I continued to discover some nifty surprises on subsequent listens. Much-sought-after Canadian guitarist Kevin Breit (Cassandra Wilson, Norah Jones) is a splendid addition. On “Cold Front,” he contributes monster slide and distortion. On “Cost So Much” and “Don’t Look Down,” he provides an ethereal, atmospheric background. On the title track, all of the above. Throughout, both Miles and Hanson weave seamless harmonies. Heartbreak Song for the Radio is studded with gems. It should be in the collection of all readers of this publication.

The LynneS will be doing NYC area shows this month. They’ll perform at Charlie Backfish’s Sunday Street Concerts on Long Island on Sept. 8. They’re part of the trio of acts at On Your Radar at Rockwood Music Hall in Manhattan on Sept. 11. They’re also appearing at The Turning Point in Piermont, N.Y., on Sept. 16. Check our listings section for details on all three.

Let’s all get LYNNeD!

Website: https://www.thelynnes.com/