The Tall Pines debut release was recently featured in National Public Radio’s Top Ten Best CDs of 2007. NPR contributor Meredith Ochs provides the following description of The Tall Pines unique style:
“With long straight hair falling over sky high cheekbones and a penchant for floor-length dresses Connie Petruk looks like she stepped out of late ‘60s / early ‘70s Nashville and sings like the lost sister of Bobbie Gentry or Dusty Springfield. Her honeyed alto will melt the frost off your windshield, and the band’s confident backing matches her attitude flawlessly. The Tall Pines are equal parts soul and twang, molasses and moonshine, sass and skill. The Ten songs on their debut CD, all written by Chris Dell’Olio and inspired by his Southern upbringing, evoke the heyday of the country-soul hybrid without ever sounding unoriginal, a difficult feat.”
The Tall Pines is a family collaboration of singer Connie Lynn Petruk, and songwriter Christmas Davis, organist Joanna Choy and drummer Robert Brazier. Connie Lynn was born in Edmonton Alberta, and started singing at the Calgary Stampede Rodeo when she was just a little girl. After a few seasons spent entertaining the cowboys in Calgary, she moved to New York to seek her fortune. Christmas was raised with a colorful southern family whose members often find their way into his songs. Growing up, he spent every Sunday attending a Pentecostal church, at the insistence of his mother who was addicted to two things: Jesus, and the tambourine. Joanna packed up her belongings and moved from her California home to New York City to be a political activist. But, she found her calling singing in clubs and coffee houses in Brooklyn and Manhattan’s Lower East Side. This is where she met Connie and Chris, and helped them grow The Tall Pines. Robert Brazier, a mystery to all, showed up late one night at the band’s secret hideaway. Dressed impeccably, but with his hands covered in a strange white chalk, Robert has never offered any explanation for his appearance that night or otherwise.