High Five

Marissa Nadler’s works of literature

With renditions of Poe and Neruda poems, a song about Virginia’s Woolf’s death, and tracks full of poignant and often dark lyrics, it’s no stretch to say that Marissa Nadler’s albums are works of literature in their own right.

The local songstress released her sixth full-length studio album, “July,” in February, and she’ll bring her mix of dream-pop and folk to Cambridge this Thursday. In anticipation of the Redstar Union event, which will include a conversation between Nadler and host Jed Gottlieb, Nadler shared five recent inspirations.

1. Catherine Ribeiro and the Alpes “Some people refer to Catherine as the French Nico. I’ve been listening to her a lot lately during some of the long drives on recent tours. . . . A psychedelic Edith Piaf, only in that they both express sorrow and joy in the most intense ways possible.”


2. Jamaica Pond. “I’ve been on tour a lot lately, but I’m counting the days till the weather warms up and I can start walking around the pond again. It’s probably my favorite place in Boston.”

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3. The Dirty Three. “This Australian trio has provided instrumentation to Nick Cave and Cat Power, but alone they are equally amazing. Jim White’s one of the best drummers I’ve seen and this music is incredibly beautiful and soothing.”

4. Guitars. “ When I run out of inspiration, I like to try out a new tuning — some that Bostonian guitar wizard Glenn Jones has taught me — and start completely blind. Right now, I’m just about to get a new electric guitar as the next record will be even heavier!”

5. Sammi Smith. “She’s probably my favorite singer, in the same vein of Tammy Wynette but sadder. I go weak in the knees for the old country crooners.”

Eryn Carlson


Nadler plays Thursday at Redstar Union, 1 Kendall Square, Cambridge. RSVP available for Redstar Union members. Event reservation is free, but does not guarantee admission; guests are admitted on first-come, first-served basis. For details, visit