Classically-trained singer / pianist Olivia Chaney graduated from England’s Royal Academy of Music, before teaching herself guitar and Indian harmonium, delving back to the inspiration behind the British folk revivalists. She has since developed her own voice and built a loyal and growing following as a songwriter and interpreter, both in the UK and internationally, through her acclaimed and eclectic live performances and much lauded recorded works.
In 2013, Olivia self-released an eponymous EP, that was followed by her critically-acclaimed 2015 Nonesuch debut, The Longest River. The latter, which The Guardian hailed as ‘an enchanting and stately creation’, was noted in a number of ‘Best Of 2015’ lists, (Uncut, Mojo, PopMatters, Chicago Reader and more); whilst The Independent featured it in their Top 5 Albums of the Year, calling it ‘A landmark release’.
Last year Olivia featured on two collaborative albums: the first – Folk Songs – with fellow Nonesuch artists; Natalie Merchant, Rhiannon Giddens, Sam Amidon and Kronos Quartet; and the second – The Queen of Hearts – by Offa Rex, an album by a new band formed between Olivia and The Decemberists, which was nominated for a Grammy at the 60th Annual Grammy Awards in the ‘’Best Folk Album’ category.
On June 15, 2018, Nonesuch released Olivia’s second solo album – Shelter – which was produced by Thomas Bartlett (David Byrne, Sufjan Stevens, St.Vincent, The National, Florence Welch). Already applauded as a sophomore triumph, the media are saying: ‘even the simplest arrangements seem to ooze with an inherently fluid musicality. From the deathless serenity of the opening title track to the neo-classical closer “House On The Hill”, here is transcendent refuge from the storm.’ – Uncut; ‘A finely wrought piece of work, with Chaney’s swooping delivery turning songs into dramas. An elegant, luminous album.’ – Observer; ‘A beautifully haunting meditation on the human condition.’ – Sun; ‘The ravishing follow-up to the Chaney’s acclaimed debut is an exercise in bejewelled simplicity. Chaney’s clear resonating voice is a superlative means to convey this eagle-eyed observer’s tender intimations like Dragonfly and A Tree Grows In Brooklyn. A triumph.’ – Daily Mirror.
Over the past few years, Olivia has collaborated and shared the stage with a diverse range of artists including Robert Plant, Eliza and Martin Carthy, Bruce Hornsby, Shirley Collins, The Decemberists,Alasdair Roberts, Kronos Quartet, Zero 7 and the Labèque Sisters.
‘Forget the labels, she is a major artist, and completely her own person.’ – The Telegraph ★★★★★
‘An elegant, luminous album.’ – Observer
‘A beautifully haunting meditation on the human condition.’ – The Sun ★★★★★
‘A triumph.’ – Daily Mirror
‘Rare beauty.’ – The Sunday Times