Charlie Parr's "Little Sun" out March 22 on Smithsonian Folkways; new song "Boombox" debuts today

Article Contributed by Sacks and Company | Published on Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Little Sun, the eighteenth album from prolific Minnesota-based singer, songwriter and guitarist Charlie Parr, will be released March 22 on Smithsonian Folkways (pre-order/pre-save here).

Ahead of the release, the new song, “Boombox,” is debuting today (listen/share HERE). Of the track, Parr reflects, “In this neighborhood, music is eternal and transcendent and surrounds us at all times, whether we’re listening or not. And it affects each of us differently, and that’s a gift. Listening to music can be interactive, even if you’re alone. I want to listen intentionally.”

Notably Parr’s first ever album to not be recorded entirely live, Little Sun was produced by close friend and collaborator Tucker Martine (Sufjan Stevens, The Decemberists, My Morning Jacket) in Portland, OR during the worst snowstorm the city had seen in decades. Across these eight tracks, Parr offers a clarifying work that reflects on the world and people around him. In addition to Parr (vocals, guitar, harmonica), the album features highly acclaimed guitarist Marisa Anderson as well as background vocals from Anna Tivel along with Andrew Borger (drums, percussion), Asher Fulero (piano, Hammond, keys) and Victor Krummenacher (electric bass, upright bass, bass VI).

Reflecting on the project, Parr shares, “Up until this very album, my recordings have always been done live, with few if any overdubs and nearly always the first take—leave all the mistakes, missed lyrics, extraneous noise, and whatever else might happen there for the ages. Most records have been recorded in roughly the time that it took to play the songs. And that’s been fine, actually. Here’s a new way for me, though: here’s an album that was recorded live but in collaboration with producer Tucker Martine, who’s become a friend and trusted musical ally. You’ll hear what happened, so I don’t need to describe it to you, but I’m very grateful for the opportunity to work with this very talented group of musicians.”

Relentlessly on the road, Parr has performed across the world for the past two decades, earning his reputation as an underground DIY legend. Parr will continue to tour through this spring including shows at Milwaukee’s Vivarium, Chicago’s Old Town School of Folk, Cambridge’s Club Passim, New York’s Mercury Lounge, Washington, D.C.’s Jammin’ Java, Nashville’s Legion Post 82, Denver’s Bluebird Theater, Seattle’s The Crocodile, San Francisco’s The Chapel, Los Angeles’ Gold Diggers and Minneapolis’ First Avenue among many others. See below for complete tour itinerary. Full details can be found at

Born in Austin, MN and now based in Duluth, MN, Parr has seventeen albums since his 2002 debut including his most recent, 2021’s Last of the Better Days Ahead, of which No Depression praised, “They don’t make them like Parr anymore—the sponge-like folk troubadour that imparts all he’s absorbed, beckoning us closer to sit cross-legged at his feet and listen, and to find crumbs of our own stories within his.” Additionally, Acoustic Guitar declared, “chock full of memories and energy with a sprightly sense of adventure” and Americana Highways proclaimed, “in the realm of traditional acoustic blues and folk very few people master it. With Parr’s latest release he has done just that.” In addition to his work as a musician, Parr also released his debut novel, Last of the Better Days Ahead, in the fall of 2022.

1. Portland Avenue
2. Little Sun
3. Bear Head Lake
4. Boombox
5. Pale Fire
6. Ten Watt
7. Stray
8. Sloth

March 2—Duluth, MN—Sacred Heart Music Center
March 3—Cedar Falls, IA—Octopus College Hill
March 7—Milwaukee, WI—Vivarium
March 8—Stoughton, WI—Stoughton Opera Hall
March 9—Chicago, IL—Old Town School of Folk
March 10—Ann Arbor, MI—The Ark
March 11—Rochester, NY—The Lovin Cup
March 12—Cambridge, MA—Club Passim
March 13—Gloucester, MA—The Cut
March 14—Exeter, NH—The Word Barn
March 15—New York, NY—Mercury Lounge
March 16—Jay, VT—Jay Peak Resort
March 17—Northampton, MA—Back Porch Festival
March 19—Washington, D.C.—Jammin Java
March 20—Carrboro, NC—Cat’s Cradle
March 21—Asheville, NC—Eulogy
March 22—Nashville, TN—Legion Post 82
March 23—Lexington, KY—The Burl
April 4—Denver, CO—Bluebird Theater
April 5—Fort Collins, CO—The Armory
April 6—Salt Lake City, UT—Commonwealth
April 7—Boise, ID—Shrine Ballroom
April 9—Bozeman, MT—The Elm*
April 10—Missoula, MT—The Wilma*
April 11—Spokane, WA—District*
April 12—Seattle, WA—The Crocodile*
April 13—Portland, OR—Polaris Hall*
April 14—Arcata, CA—Humbrews*
April 16—San Francisco, CA—The Chapel*
April 17—Mariposa, CA—The Grove House*
April 18—Los Angeles, CA—Gold Diggers*
April 19—Phoenix, AZ—Valley Bar*
April 20—Flagstaff, AZ—Yucca North*
April 21—Albuquerque, NM—Fusion*
May 4—Minneapolis, MN—First Avenue^
June 22—River Falls, WI—Kinnistock
July 13—Monticello, MN—Nordic Folk Festival
*with special guest The Lowest Pair