A simple hello can change everything.
For singer-songwriters and multi- instrumentalists Sherry-Lynn Lee and George Paolini, a chance meeting at an open mic transformed unlikely bedfellows into sympathetic artistic souls.
The duo, who perform under the moniker 23rd Hour, announces its debut album -- Perfect Strangers -- a body of work that melds eclectic and urbane musicality with pop accessibility and poetic sentiments.
Sherry and George’s artistry encompasses jazz, classical, rock, folk, and pop. They come from different backgrounds, genres and eras, but when their individual aesthetics intertwine, they hit that sweet spot of subtle adventurousness epitomized by artists such as James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, and Norah Jones.
Perfect Strangers wraps visceral stories with clever word play. Their sound is notably organic, employing acoustic instruments and, when electric, a very clean, unprocessed sound.
Songs on Perfect Strangers fluidly shift from Sherry at the center, with George on background vocals, to tunes led by George with Sherry providing support. Often their vocals blend in tight, flowing harmonies. Both are gifted instrumentalists, proficient on guitar, piano, mandolin, harmonica.
It has been a transformative two-year journey for Sherry and George. “The fact that we got together seems almost magical to me. It’s changed me for the better,” George says.
Sherry, who first approached George about collaborating, adds: “The lesson I’ve learned is it never hurts to ask.”