Led by multi-instrumentalists Howdy and Marilyn Darrell, A Town Called Home showcases close heartfelt harmonies and original tunes steeped in a wide-range of traditional musical influences yielding a cut of Americana all their own. Merging deep Texas roots with a West coast vibe, their songs run from pensive and introspective to defiant and hard-driving. Originally from Austin, they are currently calling Portland, Oregon home.
Echoing the influences of her early years, Marilyn – raised on the prairie in rural Nebraska as well as the redwoods and mountains of Northern California – brings a laid-back, warm, West coast vibe. She sings and plays rhythm guitar, diatonic accordion, upright bass, and mandolin. Her own songs reveal a bit of a slightly subversive old-timey heart with a brush of a rock and roll soul - think Stone Poney’’s meets Hazel Dickens. In addition to her love for music, she has a Masters of Fine Arts and has been working with words, painting, photography, and video since 2012.
As a sought after Austin upright bass player, Howdy started playing bass at the age of 17, touring hard, recording and sharing the stage with artists including Wayne Hancock, Leo Rondeau, Brennen Leigh, and Noel McKay. Howdy’s songs conjure an old-soul feel that reflects the diverse South Texas culture where he was raised. Now trading off between acoustic and electric guitars and a mandolin (he built by hand in his woodworking shop), his Texas music roots run deep. Before creating A Town Called Home with Marilyn, he co-fronted Austin, Texas’ Palomino Shakedown.
With the addition of Portland-based multi-instrumentalist Nick Skalberg on bass, guitar, and vocals, together their take on country music is unpretentious and timeless. It is rooted firmly in their love for a good melody and thoughtful lyrics creating a song authentic in its story and in its execution. They have been playing and touring nationally for the last several years, including showcases at the Northwest Folklife Festival and the Brooklyn Americana Music Festival. During their shows, their songs run the gamut from originals to solid selections pulling from their deep appreciation for songwriters and pickers that have come before them in country, folk, and bluegrass, as well as regional influences from having grown up in very divergent areas of rural America. In their performances they bring a warmth and realness that makes everyone feel — well, at home.
“South Texas roots, West Coast vibe”