Twin sisters, Sophia and Jo Babb – who make up Companion – have created an alternative folk debut that is anything but typical. Second Day of Spring was born of grief, and a will to navigate their way through it, and this set of songs utilises the duo’s impossibly harmonious voices to share stories of pain, frustration, anger and hope. It is a record to be leaned on for some light as the cruel nights creep in. We chatted to the duo to get some insight into their biggest influences.
‘Though our current favorites are constantly ebbing and flowing with the passage of time and new releases, these three are interwoven with our roots in music and are our most-listened to date.’ Jo Babb
Three favourite albums:
Blind Pilot – 3 Rounds and a Sound
3 Rounds and a Sound by Blind Pilot was our first introduction to today’s singer-songwriter folk music. We first heard it when we were fifteen when a friend said she heard it on Pandora radio and thought we’d enjoy it. We queued it up on an iPod and were completely enamored. At the time, we had been listening almost exclusively to Taylor Swift and whatever artists our guitar teacher threw our way to learn from (i.e. Neil Young, Grateful Dead, Tom Petty and so on). I remember first hearing the record and not being able to discern what kind of music it was; we had simply never heard anything like it! We know every word on this record and still sing along to it with passion.
The Paper Kites – Young North
Young North by The Paper Kites will always bring back the fondest memories of our teenagerhood. There was a September day sometime around 2012 where we were driving around a historic part of Oklahoma City, the kind of neighborhood with pastel homes and nice big porches, and as this record played, I felt a true sense of connectedness with beauty for the first time. When I want to feel connected to nature or beauty I play this little record on repeat.
Adrianne Lenker – Songs
Songs by Adrianne Lenker was an instant favourite upon the first listen. The tenderness of this record still gets us dozens and dozens of listens in. The honesty of the record, both lyrically and sonically, speaks to us deeply and will forever serve as a guiding light for how we want our music to feel and speak to others.
Moonrise Kingdom – Wes Anderson
Moonrise Kingdom is everything I have ever wanted in a film –charming, beautiful, funny, earnest, nostalgic and sweet. Our older (very hip) brother had dragged our entire family to go see it at a small theater well outside of the town we lived in. I was fourteen then and hadn’t even had my first kiss, so the movie left me intrigued, mystified, deeply uncomfortable and charmed all at once. I’ve seen it dozens of times since and keep the soundtrack in my car and I still get the same feelings from it.
John Steinbeck – Grapes of Wrath/East of Eden
Grapes of Wrath/East of Eden are our Steinbeck picks. We don’t often gravitate towards the same books or authors, but Steinbeck and these two are the closest we’ve ever come to total agreement in the literary realm. Grapes of Wrath was hilarious and devastating and I’ll never forget how I felt when I finished it. I stood in absolute silence for a solid five minutes, unable to move. East of Eden captivated Sophia and I deeply and is Sophia’s all time favorite. She spent years telling me to pick it up and when I finally did, I was angry I hadn’t listened to her and enjoyed it sooner.
A song that means a lot to you:
Big Thief – Cattails
Cattails by Big Thief holds an important space within us and specifically ties us closer to our mother. I don’t often connect with my mother over music, but this song brought us together. She and I drove four hours to Dallas on a Tuesday night to see Big Thief play and the moment they played this song was one of our happiest moments together. ‘You don’t need to know why when you cry’ has become a shared mantra of sorts.
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