OA: Singer Ani DiFranco has a lot of new things in her life

A new tour, new album, her own venue and record label, a baby ... what’s left?

“A new outlook on life,” said singer/songwriter/guitarist Ani DiFranco.

After having all she has accomplished repeated to her, DiFranco’s response was, “Geez, yeah. A lot of newness.”

Her attitude and lyrics are decidedly more cheerful and optimistic on “Red Letter Year,” her latest CD set for release on Sept. 30 on her label Righteous Babe Records.

“When I listen to my new record, I hear a very relaxed me, which I think has been absent in a lot of my recorded canon,” DiFranco wrote in a news release for her record label. “Now, I feel like I’m in a really good place. My partner Mike Napolitano co-produced this record — my guitar and voice have never sounded better, and that’s because of him. I’ve got this great band and crew. And my baby, she teaches me how to just be in my skin, to do less and be more.”

DiFranco performs with her live band at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26, at Mesa Theater and Club. The show is for all ages. Tickets cost $35.

“Red Letter Year” is one of more than 20 albums DiFranco has released in the past 18 years.

DiFranco’s Red Letter Year Tour started Sept. 16 in Arkansas. Three days later and she was already tired, her baby had a cold and the crew was trying to rig a baby gate around the stage so DiFranco’s daughter wouldn’t crawl off the edge. And sound check was in 20 minutes.

What’s really on DiFranco’s mind though is voting.

“That’s one thing I’m thinking a lot about,” she said.

Encouraging her fans to register to vote isn’t unique to this election year. DiFranco’s been doing it for years now, she said, mentioning her Vote Dammit Tour. At some of her upcoming concert dates, representatives are signing people up to vote. 

DiFranco said her fans expect her to be political and outspoken, she is a performer with an incredibly loyal fan base.

“It’s bigger than me,” she said. “Not only have my fans stuck with me, but they’ve stuck with each other.”

Read more about DiFranco at http://www.righteousbabe.com.


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