When Anna Burch moved to Detroit, she didn’t set out to make a record.
Now, she’s out with her debut solo album, Quit the Curse.
A West Michigan native, Burch got her start singing in the folk-rock band Frontier Ruckus, and more recently co-fronting in the group Failed Flowers.
"2 Cool 2 Care" is the single that launched the new record, which explores the complexities of moving to a new town and navigating new relationships.
On her music path
“It definitely wasn’t the most intuitive path for me. I kind of took it for granted that it was part of my life growing up. I had a very musical mom. She was a piano accompanist and children's choir director. So I was always involved in musical stuff in church."
About 12 years ago, Burch joined the band Frontier Ruckus. She was just 18. And, like all good rock bands, they toured, a lot. Then, a few years later she thought, “Maybe this isn’t for me. And I didn’t really feel like I had a lot of creative agency in that band, which was find because they had plenty of it on their own."
Burch finished grad school in Chicago, then in 2014, she came back to Michigan to make music again with Frontier Ruckus. During that time she began writing her own songs.
On writing the album
"I wrote this record pretty much right after I moved to Detroit. I guess it’s sort of a snapshot of nine months to a year living in the city, being new and trying to navigate the smaller social scene.... I think being in the smaller dating pool, things felt a little more magnified I guess. It took a minute to realize that just being new and excited got away from me and maybe I just wasn't looking out for myself like I should have been."
Her songs caught the attention of the Illinois-based indie-record label Polyvinyl.
Burch says she didn’t set out to make a concept album.
“I kind of just wanted to write really direct lyrics and use the immediate feelings. And so most of the time I’d sit down and when I’d write, I wouldn’t write I’d just record with my phone I’d make demos.... The process of making the record helped me ground myself and helped me find that self-confidence and kept me from wallowing in self-pity and insecurity and all of that."
Anna Burch has an album release show at El Club in Detroit on Feb. 9.
She’ll go on tour with the indie-rock act Ezra Furman. Then, in March off to SXSW. In May, the tour continues in the UK and Europe.
Support for arts and culture coverage comes in part from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.