Pilar French, a self-described 'twisted blues and funk' veteran of the Portland-area bar and festival scene, will be sharing her songs at a free show at the Little Red Shed, McMenamins Edgefield, 2126 S.W. Halsey St., Troutdale, at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 30.
French grew up in Indianapolis and says MTV inspired her to play guitar. She was 5 when she first began playing piano and violin, and then switched to flute.
'Then I fell in love with the guitar,' she says, crediting Eddie Van Halen for making her pick up the prototypical rock instrument. 'It's just a really intuitive instrument for me, unlike the others, which were difficult for me to stay focused on. With the guitar I just played it for hours and hours.'
She also lists such artists as Dave Matthews and Buddy Guy among her icons of the ax, and Koko Taylor among her vocal inspirations.
She started out locally playing bass in a number of area bands, and has logged time with the funky Soul Patrol Mission and blues band Swerve. An eclectic songwriter and performer who can be bluesy and funky one moment, intimate and ethereal the next, French is set to release a new album called 'Deliver' sometime this fall.
'It's a lighthearted CD,' she says, noting it's a folk rock album that echoes Radiohead and Coldplay as well as rootsier artists like Amy Mann. 'It's got an upbeat flavor to it. It focuses on relationships and the importance of family, friends and love.'
For more information, call 503-669-8610 or visit pilarfrench.com.