Unless you've lived in Seattle or Rome, chances are you've never had an Amy Denio experience. Denio (rhymes with "Ohio" or "gennaio") is a composer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist (voice, accordion, saxophone, clarinet, bass, guitar) and veteran home taper based in Seattle, WA. She started her label Spoot Music in 1986, with the release of her first cassette release, No Bones. Since then, she's recorded & released other cassettes, LPs, and 28 CDs created solo and with an array of international musicians. Amy always has 18-and-a-half projects going on at once, including scoring ballets and touring the Italian countryside. I was introduced to the world of Denio via her 2nd self-released cassette Never Too Old To Pop A Hole(1988) during a stay in Seattle with my friends Bear and Jen who had it playing on a loop the entire time. I fell in love and searched for years for a copy of that tape, but never did. A few years later I happened upon copies of her later CDs Tongues (1993) and Birthing Chair Blues (1989), both brilliant, and when her Greatest Hits compilation (1999) came out, it was Amy-mania for months. I saw her perform twice with the insane Billy Tipton Memorial Sax Quartet, and even lived down the street from her in Madrona for a while, totally enthralled as her tiny frame would shuffle past my window: "Oh my god! Look - it's Amy Denio". Needless to say, Amy is a goddess I place in the upper echelon with Bjork, Liz Fraser, and Kate Bush, and I always wondered when the world outside of Seattle would discover her. I think Amy consciously shies away from the mainstream, preferring to continue doing things her own idiosyncratic way and remain a local secret. A few years ago, I finally found a copy of Never Too Old To Pop A Hole on CDR via her own website, Spoot Music. (You can purchase nearly everything she's done directly from her and for some truly reasonable prices - $5-$10). Impressively, on all her solo recordings, Amy records nearly every note herself in the fusty old corner of her bedroom...
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