WA Songwriter Enters FAI Charts

It’s not every day a songwriter from regional Western Australia discovers their album is charting in the highly competitive Folk Alliance International charts.

Albany musician Simone Keane released her fifth album Graced by Leaves late last year, not knowing what to expect from her independently produced musical endeavour.

She is stunned to learn, after first charting in the ARIA top 10 Australian albums at number 6, that her latest album now ranks at number 24 in the TOP 50 FAI Top Album Chart for March 2024. She also made it into FAI’s Top 30 Top Artists Chart.

“Most of the artists are from the USA, where the charts are collated,” says Keane. “This is surreal for me. Many who do well in these charts are with record labels and are from the USA. I can’t believe my music is charting with Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell and Nanci Griffith”

Keane feels like she is being embraced by another family, regularly receiving emails from Folk DJs in the USA, Australia and Canada. Some have invited her to be a feature artist on their programmes.

“I’ve been Zooming lots late at night. Most of the DJs are 12 to 16 hours behind WA. Lucky I’m a night owl. It’s a good feeling knowing these DJs who are experts in the folk country blues music scene, want to get to know me more and learn what inspires my music.”

Graced by Leaves was first launched in Albany Western Australia at Six Degrees. A second launch was held in south west Victoria where Keane grew up. The album was recorded and produced in Perth by Lee Buddle at Crank Recording Studio. Some of the album was recorded in Albany by Kim Lofts.

“Lee and Kim made it as easy as possible to see this project through. I put a lot of pressure on myself. I almost gave up. Now I know what the term ‘Red Light Fever’ means. As soon as that recording button was pressed, my heart started pounding. Luckily I had a dedicated, professional team including outstanding musicians who honoured my vision. I’m so glad I kept going with it. It took three years to make which included a false start during the Covid outbreak.”

“I never imagined I would see my music being played on radio stations in New York, New Jersey, Kansas, Texas, New Mexico, plus a few stations in Canada – let alone enter the FAI charts.”

Graced by Leaves is available on Bandcamp.