Travel by Crain

Singer-songwriter Samantha Crain

Samantha Crain
Samantha CrainPhoto by Todd Roeth

Singer-songwriter Samantha Crain decided to take a different tack with the creation of her most recent album, Kid Face, which came out in early 2013.

“I wanted to do something autobiographical,” Crain explains. “Most of my songwriting has been based on my love for stories and characters, even if some of those songs were based on things that have happened in my life. When I started writing this album, the first few songs were much more personal, so I decided to take the whole album in that direction.”

One of Kid Face’s most interesting aspects is that its autobiographical tone is based largely on one theme —restlessness — rather than being a mishmash of diary entries. The life of a touring musician takes its toll after a while, but since Crain’s life revolves around traveling, wanderlust ends up guiding the tone of the album’s content. A perfect example is the acoustic track “Paint.”

“I wrote that song when I was on tour in the UK and riding on trains a lot between shows,” Crain says. “I was waiting at this dilapidated train station, and I’d been traveling by myself for a while so I was in that state where you get really introspective and you’re watching people a lot and observing, but you’re not really participating in the world around you because you’ve been by yourself and reflecting in silence for so long. I sort of began to feel detached from my family and friends back home.”

Crain caught a larger audience with Kid Face, making Indian Country’s list for Best Native Music of 2013, and became a critical darling with rave reviews from the likes of Time Out New York and SPIN, which noted: “It takes bravery to sing this openly and unadorned, and she deftly conveys the small-wonder pleasures and pains of everyday existence.”

Catch the Oklahoman’s brand of Americana, which has been compared to Joanna Newsome and Neil Young, between her European tours.

Samantha Crain plays with My Father’s Ghost and Del Barber 9 pm Saturday, Jan. 4, at Sam Bond’s; $5.