Freddy & Francine Live from The Rye Room [Video Premiere]

Vortex Music Magazine

The latest Rye Room Session features Los Angeles-based duo Freddy & Francine performing “Ain’t No Way” during a tour stop in Portland.

It's inevitable. For artists looking to make music a full-time career, there will always be a choice. An option to walk away at the expense of your art. For Bianca Caruso and Lee Ferris, the duo behind Freddy & Francine, that reckoning came when they watched a friend leave music to pursue a career in computer programming.

What was their gut reaction? The pair writes, "[his decision felt] unacceptable… given his talent." It was suddenly clear: For them, there was no turning back.

“[The song ‘Ain’t No Way’] became an anthem for us in the artistic path in life we have chosen,” Caruso reflects. "This song has become a message of hope for us and a daily reminder that we are past the point of no return in regards to the momentum we have created in our career. We dedicate it to anyone who has the courage to follow an artistic path in life. Though there may be doubts, moving forward is the only option."

Move forward they have. With a full, soul-driven sound and electric harmonies, the Los Angeles-based couple will easily win over fans of Jonnyswim, The Lone Bellow or The Civil Wars. "We call our style Americana soul," they write. "We don't think of this term in the genre sense of the word as much as an emotion we try to tap into when we perform. It can mean the expression of deep pain or exhilarating joy. No matter the emotion, we are doing our best to earnestly connect to ourselves and sing from our entire bodies. We take pride in our ability to create a very large sound for just two people. We use lead, unison, and harmony singing in our songs in an attempt to give the impression that there is more happening vocally than what two people can create."

At this juncture, it seems the gamble on music is paying off. They are currently embarking on a Midwestern tour and planning the release of their latest album, Gung Ho. The album, set to be released this year, was recorded in Nashville with producer Dan Knobler (Rodney Crowell, Rosanne Cash, Lake Street Dive). While the duo says the record is reminiscent of the “rootsy pop” of their past releases, expect a deeply personal album indicative of newfound lyrical maturity.

Simply put, this is their time.

Watch Freddy & Francine perform “Ain’t No Way” live from The Rye Room below. Then don’t miss the second video from this Rye Room Session next week on the studio’s YouTube channel.

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