Susanna Rose
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Susanna Rose

Rochester, New York, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Rochester, New York, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Solo Folk Alternative




"Susanna Rose 'Siren of Loneliness' to Celebrate Album"

Susanna Rose is our new Siren of Loneliness. The Rochester singer-songwriter’s new album, Snowbound, is a collection of songs of longing. Breathtaking in a beautiful, stark, ghostly manner. When you’re snowbound in a house, you’re trapped. Left to stare out the windows. Similarly, these are songs about confronting pent-up emotions — not just love — and searching for a way to release them.

Rose celebrates Snowbound’s release with a 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 13, showcase at Record Archive, 331/3 Rockwood St., where she works ringing up on the cash register other people’s records. A lot of them aren’t nearly as good as this.

“I want to go home where the wind blows, and I’m not in an office every day,” she sings in “Working Girl,” the opening track. “I want to go home, where the struggle is, where you have to fight to survive, so at least you know you’re alive.”

While Rose had dabbled with songwriting for years, she didn’t really plunge into the deep end until a friend taught her to play guitar while she was living in London in 2009. A year later she’d recorded an album, The Wishing Well, before leaving for South Korea to teach English.

Rose wrote most of the eight songs of Snowbound during the Rochester winter of 2015, a particularly drawn-out and brutal meteorological event. And it shows. “Someday you’ll die and so will I, you can’t have light without the night,” she sings in “Lullaby.” Relationships fall away, as in “lately I’ve had some unsettling dreams, when I wake up there’s no one next to me.” In “Old Broken Heart,” news of the upcoming marriage of an old flame leaves Rose asking, “What will I wear, who will be there, though I haven’t got the invitation yet?” She confesses, “I knew this was coming but that doesn’t make it easy for me.”

The instrumentation is sparse, all of the sad stuff. Acoustic guitar, violin, cello, some percussion. Instrumentation like the bare trees in the winter photo Rose shot for the album cover. Her voice, and these themes, sound a lot like Hurray For the Riff Raff’s Alynda Lee, one of the bright new faces on the national somber songwriting scene.

The simplicity of some of the words reads like self-help advice, but the emotional impact hits. “You brought it all on yourself, you built all the walls that need to come down.” Or, “Don’t sit around and wait for someone to tell you what to do; you’re on your own.” Snowbound’s weakness is also its strength: The listener needs a break from this melancholy, but Rose doesn’t relent until “Benediction,” the eighth and final track. “Don’t forget that you are blessed, whatever happens keep saying yes.” And a final wish. “May you be at peace with yourself.”

It will be rewarding to see Rose’s songs, off to a startlingly strong start, evolve with the seasons. After the Archive show, she plays in a singer-songwriter showcase at 7 p.m. Jan. 19 at The Daily Refresher and 9 p.m. Feb. 23 at The Bug Jar.

By Jeff Spevak - Democrat and Chronicle

"Album Review: "Snowbound""

ALBUM REVIEW: "Snowbound"
By Frank De Blase

Have you ever heard something so pretty, it hurt? Well, just try Susanna Rise's new release, "Snowbound." This haunting collection of tunes was penned during last year's epic winter of suck, where instead of raging at the weather or going stir crazy, Rose found inspiration and motivation while staying warm indoors. "Snowbound" is deep in its simplicity, voluminous on its subtlety, and drenched in an understated beauty. These are lonesome lullabies that call to mind Mazzy Star without the narcotic haze, or Chris Whitley without the impending doom.

Rose as the songwriter is at the fore front of this acoustically rooted affair, but it leaves room to plug in harmonic embellishments-o-plenty from her attentive band. I mean, just dig the lonesome down strokes of guitar in the background of "Old Broken Heart" or the string drama that colors the title track. But the true atmosphere is from Susanna Rose's voice: strong and beautiful with an enduring timbre and enchanting lilt. This album comes across deeply personal but leaves room for the listener's stories to mingle. - City Newspaper

"Album of the Week: Susanna Rose - Snowbound"

Though this album was written during and inspired by last winter’s brutal reign (as detailed by Susanna Rose’s Bandcamp), there is something inherently warm and inviting about Snowbound. It takes a minimalistic look at some of life’s most tender moments — parting with a lover, suppressing a broken heart, convincing yourself of your own independence. Susanna possesses an incredible ability to be conversational through her writing. It almost feels as though a longtime friend is seated next to you, sharing her worries and shedding small wisdoms.

On “Working Girl,” the opening track to the album, she sings “Oh, I want to go home / where the wind blows / and I’m not in an office every day / I can’t live this way…It’s time to go / because I’m going crazy here in my troubled mind / I need natural light / I need loving at night / I need a passionate life”. I’m sure every 9-to-5’er can relate to these sentiments of stir craziness, especially when the harsh bite of Western New York winter settles in. Despite being kind of a claustrophobic thought, there is something reassuring in Susanna’s voice, like it is totally okay to feel trapped here because we, as songwriter and listener, are experiencing it together.

My favorite track on the album, “Ancient History,” details a memory of a car ride down South. It’s a bittersweet reminiscence and you can’t help but to think of haunting memory of a relative or a significant travel of your own.

The snow and plummeting temperatures have yet to really hit us hard, but this album is still just as accessible without the backdrop of true winter. I would highly recommend this release for a cold morning, cozy evening or long drive. - Buffablog

"Review: Susanna Rose, Snowbound"

Winters in Rochester, N.Y., tend to be long and cold, prompting folks to spend a great deal of times indoors. If you're a singer-songwriter, that's likely to turn your thoughts contemplative, as is the case with Rose (whose also has a Masters in Mental Health Counselling) whose new album was written last year during the coldest winter on record. As such, you can feel both the chill in the air in the melancholic melodies, but also the comforting warmth of the home in her softly brushed, breathy voice.

The turning of the year's often a time for reflection, as with 'Ancient History', a memory of childhood, driving down south, John Denver on the car radio, to the old farmhouse and her great-grandma, juxtaposing recollection of sitting on the porch drinking lemonade with how "After that night I never saw her again." Although now having put down roots of her own, the "ghosts from another land" continue to haunt, the song ending with the poignant confession that "sometimes my brothers and I, we reminisce of the family if we had known, maybe we would have missed."

Lyrically, it elsewhere offers intimate observations on loneliness, the end of relationships and, themes of self-realisation and the struggle for self-assurance, as with the five minute fingerpicked 'Song To Myself' where she asks both herself and, by extension, her friend, "Girl, what are you so afraid of? Why do you keep running away from wherever you are?"

The album opens to the thrumming guitar accompaniment of 'Working Girl' which addresses how the weariness of the nine to five office drudge makes it hard to "hang onto what you truly care about". That dichotomy between what is and what could be and the seeming inevitability of disappointment inform several numbers. On 'Separate Ways', another song built around melting icicle guitar lines, she sings how parting is an unavoidable part of love and life, while, on the jangling title track, spending the night away from the cold with a traveling music man, her voice soaring up the scale, she sings "come on in and let's pretend we don't know how this ends, we don't know how this ends."

And yet, although the strummed 'Old Broken Man' deals with how the singer will feel at the wedding of the man she loved, acceptance rather than sadness is the pervading tone. On the guitar-rippling 'Lullaby' which features Gabe Schliffer on cello, she sings "Let the darkness in. Don't be afraid of it, my dear. And though you're walking slow someday you'll get where you're trying to go", while she's even more positive on the country colours of the fuller arranged 'Benediction' where, though aware that the good times won't last and that you'll sometimes get lost along the road to becoming who you are, she reminds that you still have to keep on living your life because" though you might die before you say everything that you need to say, you've got to start speaking anyway."

Conversational in tone and ultimately life-affirming, there's an almost Emily Dickinson quality to her work, offering thoughtful insights beyond the seemingly casual lines. A very special bloom, Rose needs an appreciative audience beyond her hometown borders, one that will allow her full potential to blossom. It may take time, but, to quote her own lyrics back at her, "don't forget that you are blessed. Whatever happens, keep saying yes."

Mike Davies - Fatea

""Snowbound" by Susanna Rose...'Delicacy of a Falling Snowflake'"

The infinity of album titles often bewilders. How many titles wholly reflect the content? Not too many. Well, listening to ‘Snowbound’ by Susanna Rose a singer-songwriter from Rochester, NY, it’s my contention that title and content sit in perfect harmony. No, that doesn’t mean it’s an album about snow nor is it a 'cold' album … it’s simply the influences that engendered the snowbound album covermusic and lyrics pour through the essence of ‘Snowbound’. On her website Susanna Rose states: “I wrote this album over the course of the winter of 2014-2015, the coldest winter in Rochester's recorded history. The music took form…; the snow fell constantly.” And that’s precisely the feelings that come through.

Susanna’s slightly ethereal vocals float with the delicacy of a falling snowflake weaving their way through the keenly examining, observational lyrics. Soft melodies embrace the words to fix them in your head. The contemplative themes slide through soul-searching into wider reflection and musings on life in both the minutiae and the wider perspective, illustrated by ‘Working Girl’, ‘Separate Ways’, ‘Song To Myself’ and ‘Benediction’. It’s easy to imagine the quietness and solitude that heavy snow brings and that conjured these songs, and with that thought in mind, the title track ‘Snowbound’ is riveting.

Susanna Rose (vocals, acoustic guitar, violin - Track 4) Jacob Walsh (drums, percussion) Gabe Schliffer (violin, cello -Tracks 1, 5, 6) and Dave Drago (additional instrumentation).

Website: - FolkWords


Snowbound - 2015
The Wishing Well - 2010



Susanna Rose is a singer-songwriter from Rochester, NY. Susanna has been described as "Mazzy Star without the narcotic haze" (Frank DeBlase, Rochester City Newspaper). Listeners also often compare her to other new folk artists such as Iron and Wine and Anais Mitchell. Susanna wrote and recorded her first album, The Wishing Well, in 2010, and released her second album, Snowbound, this November. She plays guitar, piano and violin.

Susanna started singing songs when she had a voice, but didn't learn guitar until 2009 while studying abroad in London. She had always looked up to singer-songwriters but never imagined she could become one. Then in London, a friend taught her a few chords, told her she could now write '1,000' songs, and gave her her first guitar. She wrote The Wishing Well the next year, back home in Rochester, NY, and released it at a house party before leaving for South Korea to teach English. 

Years later, Susanna has many more songs and stories to share. She won a singer-songwriter contest at the Firehouse Saloon in Rochester in November of 2014 and used the five free hours of studio time to record the first song she ever wrote back in London, Christmas Eve (available at She recorded her second album, Snowbound, at 1809 Studios in Macedon, NY with Dave Drago. 

Of Snowbound, one reviewer writes: "Have you ever heard something so pretty, it hurt? Well, just try Susanna Rose's new release, 'Snowbound.' This haunting collection of tunes was penned during last year's epic winter..."Snowbound" is deep in its simplicity, voluminous on its subtlety, and drenched in an understated beauty." Frank DeBlase, Rochester City Newspaper.

Since its release, Snowbound has received radio airplay on college stations across the U.S., as well as play on BBC stations in the UK. Iain Anderson of BBC Scotland called the album, "Excellent."

Susanna's NPR Tiny Desk Contest Submission video was chosen as a top regional pick of WBER Rochester and featured on their website.

Band Members