- RELEASE DATE /28 March 2022
- CATALOG /CRT091
- LABEL /Cheersquad Records & Tapes
- FORMAT /digital single
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A FEW WORDS
Cheersquad Records & Tapes is pleased to announce the signing of Melbourne-based folk singer/songwriter Joyce Prescher, and the premiere of the video for her new single “Sleep Now”. The atmospheric “Sleep Now” is the first single from her sophomore album ‘Out of My Mind’, which Cheersquad will release later this year.
With her carefully crafted lyrics, haunting melodies, beautiful fingerpicking, and rich velvety vocals – with subtle accenting reminiscent of artists like Ane Brun or even the Swedish duo First Aid Kit – Dutch-born Joyce Prescher has slowly but steadily been making a name for herself on the Melbourne and national Americana and folk scene. Joyce’s music takes you back to days long gone, with its gentle nods to 70s artists like Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen. Her words are delivered with honesty and melancholy; you cannot help but be roped in and left mesmerised.
“Sleep Now” was produced by Simon Moro of Ninety Nine 100 (Vance Joy, Lanie Lane, Archie Roach, Lisa Miller) and mastered by Adam Dempsey (Angie McMahon, Jordie Lane, Courtney Barnett). It features a stellar cast of musicians; Daniel Farrugia on drums, Craig Newman on double bass, Lily Thornton on cello, Luke Howard on keys and Jed Pickett on lap steel.
The video for “Sleep Now” was created by Georgie Durham and singer/songwriter Delsinki, whose songwriters-in-the-round show Sing a Song of Sixpence Joyce has been part of. After Joyce showed him her recordings on the way home from a run of Sixpence shows, Delsinki passed the song on to his partner Georgie, who is a video director. Georgie really connected with ‘Sleep Now’ and was excited to work on a video clip for the song.
The video showcases Georgie’s affection for working with nature’s treasures: shadows, leaves and water, all recurring themes in Joyce’s songs too, and synced beautifully with the song’s instrumental and vocal lines. This all results in a stunning piece of videography, really capturing both the fragility and strength present in the song.
Originally from the Netherlands, Joyce Prescher moved to Melbourne over a decade ago. She met a man during a safari in Africa, and decided to follow him back to Australia, where she fell in love with Melbourne and its thriving music and art scene. She never really left after.
Joyce started singing from a very early age – according to her mother, “before she could talk”. Music was a big part of the family; there was always music playing and constant singing on road trips with four kids in the back of a tiny hatchback. Rumour has it she was conceived on ‘The dark side of the moon’, which could explain her love of Pink Floyd.
As children, Joyce and her siblings would write silly songs, and Joyce performed in local community events before the age of ten. In the first year of high school, she heard a boy play beautifully on a grand piano, and she sat with him and offered to sing along. He was quite taken by Joyce’s vocals; they became good friends and would occasionally write and perform together, as a duo or with a band.
Around this time, her mother would play guitar after the kids had gone to bed. Joyce would lie awake listening to her mum softly strumming. Frustrated that no one ever really played the songs she wanted to sing on guitar or piano, and dreaming of being a songwriter herself, at age 15 she decided to learn to play her mother’s guitar. In university, she formed her first band and started to combine her writing skills (she used to write short stories and lots of poems) with her love of music. She also improved her singing skills by joining a choir for a few years.
It took her a while to find her feet and her scene in Melbourne, but by 2013 she formed her first band in her new home. The band was short-lived, but the spark was re-ignited, and Joyce has been writing and performing regularly since.
Joyce released her debut album Home in 2017, which was praised by PBS and listed in their top 10 albums upon release.
In 2020 Joyce joined the line-up of a show called Keep the Circle Unbroken, curated by Delsinki. With the show she has performed at the Memo Music Hall, the 2022 Port Fairy Folk Festival and as part of their regional Victoria tour in 2021. She shared the stage with many Australian favourites, including Tim Rogers, Kylie Auldist, Mick Thomas, Debra Byrne, Sarah Carroll, Kerryn Fields and XANI. Joyce also features on the Keep the Circle Unbroken album, which was recorded live in July 2020 at the Memo Music Hall in St Kilda, between the two Melbourne lockdowns.
In November 2021 Joyce performed as part of three sold out shows paying tribute to the late Justin Townes Earle at the Brunswick Ballroom.
More recently, Joyce completed a tour as part of the Sing a Song of Sixpence line up, with artists including Abby Dobson, Freya Josephine Hollick, Charm of Finches, Van Walker, Grim Fawkner and more.
“Melbourne-based songwriter Joyce Prescher has released her new single “Sleep Now” and it’s quite the transportive and immersive listen. A cello casts a haunting pallor across the track, decorated with gentle filaments of acoustic guitar notes, the sound of brushes on a snare and Prescher’s voice – poised and precisely phrased in its melancholic folk form. Amid the beautiful drift and somnambulant sway of the music, Prescher explores the question ‘How much of yourself should you lose for someone else?’ …” – Post To Wire