Across the Atlantic Sea

When Xpress spoke to local singer-songwriter Darien Crossley in late 2011, she had a big goal: To finish high school and then take some time off before college in order to travel around Europe. But this is no mere backpacking trip — Crossley plans to take her guitar and tour in cities like Prague, Paris and Rome. (Read the full story here.)

The musician had just released her sophomore album, New Elements. “So much of high school, you feel like you’re halfway to being a person,” Crossley said at the time. “Now it’s like, go and do your music and be in the world. I’m so happy that I can get out and play for people.”

The thing is, Crossley did exactly what she said she was going to do. This past May, in an interview with Words V Music, she noted that she had “spent a little bit of time in Brussels, Ghent, Bruges and Amsterdam” before landing in Manchester, England. There, she reported that she was “having a lot of fun and feel blessed to have had this opportunity to spend time in a beautiful city and really focus on my music.”

“There’s this spirit to this whole city that is just so exciting to me,” Crossley said in the interview. “It’s bigger than Asheville, where I am from, but in a lot of ways the two cities are very similar. There is an openness to it, and people have been delightfully friendly and warm and inviting to me. My favorite thing about this city is just walking around looking up. Sometimes I will go for a walk and notice an old building with maybe some kind of stone angel carved into the doorway, just some stunningly gorgeous functionless beautiful thing, and it’s kind of just a testament to the beauty that we as a species are able to create just because.”

Here’s a video of her performing in Manchester:

Crossley spent four months in England, where she played 45 nights in 16 different venues in and around Manchester. She was also invited to take part in a live video shoot in Berlin, Germany to be released by Berlin Sessions.

In an email earlier this summer. Crossley said, “I am in the process of finishing up my third album at Echo Mountain, which I hope to release shortly after arriving back in the States.” This month, she started college classes (and has also been honing her drawing skills, if you follow her on Facebook). We’re looking forward to hearing more about her music and her new collection of songs.

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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