By the end of his freshman year of high school, Travis Ehrenstrom had enough songs to record an album, he says. But it wasn’t until last July — after he’d graduated from Sisters High and with financial support from his dad and brother — that he took a band down to Ridgetop Sound studio near Santa Cruz, Calif., to record the songs that would become Ehrenstrom’s new album, “Somewhere In Between.”
He chose Ridgetop on the recommendation of Sisters-based artist Dennis McGregor, and the seven-day recording session was a who’s-who of Sisters musicians. Sisters High grads Benji Nagel and Justin Veloso played guitar and drums, respectively. Current student Seth Rodriguez played sax. Patrick Pearsall played bass, and Brent Alan produced the album.
The result is a warm, rootsy set of songs that recalls both old-school pop songwriters like Browne as well as current alt-country star Ryan Adams. (To hear some songs, check out https://www.tradebit.com or https://www.tradebit.com
“Benji and I came up with the term ‘eclectic folk-rock,’” Ehrenstrom said. “I think I draw on so many influences that … I wouldn’t be able to give it a label other than that.”
These days, Ehrenstrom is living in Portland and majoring in history at Portland State University. He likes the same thing about history as he does about writing songs.
“I think the reason I have a passion for history is it’s just stories,” he says. “I just love stories and history seems to have the best stories.”
And though the Americana Project is in his rear-view mirror, he still sets aside time for music daily.
“I try and write a song every day,” he said. “Not necessarily a song that I’m going to perform or keep around, but just to keep things going mentally. To stay solid in that mental state.”
His influences include; Ryan Adams, Dave Matthews Band, Counting Crows, Bob Dylan, Patty Griffin, Jackson Browne, Neil Young and countless others.
Travis has shared the stage with:
The Blind Boys of Alabama, Greg Barnhill, Leslie Satcher, John Gorka, Willy Porter and many others.
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