Los Angeles-based multi-instrumentalist Robert Francis has been recording folk/Americana albums for 10 years now, and his perspective has never seemed clearer. The youngest member of a music-filled household, he absorbed a unique musical education thanks to family friend Ry Cooder, who gave Francis his first guitar at age 9. A few years later, the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ John Frusciante gave Francis some lessons. It all led to Francis’s 2007 debut, One by One, which he released at age 19. Six albums and a lot of music later, Francis is back with Indian Summer. Recorded over 10 days in the Silver Lake neighborhood of L.A., the album brims with socially charged narratives. “Joseph Campau” chronicles complex relationships between blue-collar residents and refugees in Hamtramck, Mich., the first majority-Muslim city in the United States. “Modoc County” follows a Native American couple’s ill-fated journey off a reservation in northeast California. “The Brand” is a commentary on corporations that wish to be humanized and the artists that willfully sell out to them. Indian Summer is a no-frills examination of America in 2017.
Watch Robert Francis perform LIVE at Paste Studio.