How to enjoy ‘New Light’ by Little Sue:

  1. Download Little Sue’s album, ‘New Light’ here.
  2. Make your contribution to The Jeremy Wilson Foundation here.

  3. Read the article about Sue’s album release on OregonLive.

IF EVER YOU QUESTIONED THE CHARACTER of musicians, I’d like to direct your attention to Portland’s very own Little Sue, established songwriter, mother, outspoken Portland activist and flourishing educator. When I show up to work in the morning thinking about running a foundation for musicians’ wellness, she is the musician I envision helping. This is the bold, spirited, hard-working, and ultimately sacrificial being for which Jeremy and I wake up to serve every day.

Little Sue & Jeremy Wilson

To me, musicians set an incredible example of what it means to give more than you’ve got. In a time where music is free for the taking, many musicians have started to “accept” rampant music theft and start thinking of other ways to fund their own career. Sad, but true. However, I must admit that there is something about this shifting of gears that feels a bit more honest. It’s an eye-opening time for musicians, and we are all having to humbly ask for what we need on a grassroots level. There seems to be a nakedness that has spawned from this, an ultimate surrender beyond surrenders. “Here, have my music for free. I’ve got nothing left to lose.”

Such is the case of Little Sue, who came close to giving up the songwriting craft altogether. Thank goodness she didn’t—pun intended. Because, believe it or not, Little Sue’s album is wrapped up neatly in cellophane waiting for you at Music Millenium for a “pay what you can” donation to a local charity. She wants you to give back and, dare I say, experience what it is like to be an independent musician these days. So if bit torrents were part of your evening plans, maybe instead you can ride your bike up East Burnside to grab a copy and exercise your right to give to The Jeremy Wilson Foundation, which provides a much needed safety net for the musicians you love.

I should mention that ‘New Light’ also happens to be a precious gem of local genius. The entire album is endearingly presented with colorful, light-hearted harmonies, but wrought with sincere, dark moments. If you think you might like acoustic, late-night rollicking saloon sing-alongs, I highly recommend ‘Back Forty.’ The one that might stick out the most to me, however (I’m so full of puns today–forgive me), is ‘Elephant in the Room,’ a stripped down, humorous bee sting of a tune. If you happen to like soft-knuckled ukulele shrouded in bright, tinkly piano and clarinet soliloquies, this record is a must-listen.

Written by Renée Muzquiz.