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Thursday October 23, 2014
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Annie & Rod Capps

 

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imagined new existence for an unhappy woman, resembling the one that unexpectedly comes to fruition in Anne Tyler's novel The Ladder of Years. Quite a few of her songs instantly place you in the protagonist's mind: "Crossed the Mississippi, said good-bye to you/Hello to the road and a new thought or two."

Capps is one of a group of Ann Arbor songwriters (sometimes known as the Yellow Room Gang) who have created a genuine local scene and often taken it on the road to metro Detroit and northwestern Ohio and the northern Lower Peninsula. One among their number, Jan Krist, coined the term "Midwest urban folk" to describe the music they make — they are all into detailed songcraft, but they grew up in Michigan amid rock and Motown and country, and there's usually a beat of one kind or another running through the music. Annie Capps works with her husband, Rod, on guitars and other strings, and her band often features the subtle percussion of Christine Schinker. They form a tight, symbiotic group that sets a mood for Capps's songs without overwhelming them.

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Top of the Lamp, Ann Arbor's locally owned lighting specialty store.