In 2008, songwriter Kimya Dawson’s caustic naiveté perfectly captured the precocious character Juno from the popular film of the same name.
Dawson got her start alongside Adam Green in New York “anti-folk” duo Moldy Peaches. Together they made acoustic music that winked at folk and psychedelic idioms alongside sometimes surreal and sometimes hyper-real lyrics.
Throughout her work — both solo and collaborative — Dawson conveys a brainy, understated sense of fun and mischief that some describe as childlike. In fact, one of Dawson’s most well-known records is a children’s album called Alphabutt.
So how does Dawson keep in touch with the delicate worldview of a child? “A magician never reveals his secrets,” Dawson jokes with EW, adding, “really though, it’s not intentional.”
Now living in the Northwest, Dawson has focused mainly on collaborations and raising a family. “Mostly been focused on being a parent and hanging out with my parents,” Dawson explains, but adds that when she returns to Eugene she’ll have some new material.
“There’s a sea shanty,” Dawson says, adding that not all her subjects reach beyond young love, roller coasters and vampires. One of her latest tunes is topical, initially inspired by the controversial New York police procedure referred to as “stop-and-frisk.”
“The way things are going in this world I could probably keep writing it forever,” Dawson says, “so I had to just say alright and tie it all together.”
This time through Eugene, another cult-favorite songwriter will also join Dawson: Hamell on Trial. “He is one of the greatest songwriters of all time,” Dawson says, “so be sure to get there early!”
Acoustic-punk singer-songwriter Hamell on Trial joins Kimya Dawson 8 pm Wednesday, Aug. 26, at WOW Hall; $12 adv., $15 door. All ages.