When I write about music and interview musicians, it’s important to capture the spirit of hard work, determination and attention to detail; but there is another piece of the puzzle—perhaps the most important piece—that is hard to wrap up into words, hard to pin down with meaning: the magic of it all. Music’s power is in this indescribable emotional connection, maybe between artist and muse, maybe between artist and listener, or likely a little bit of both.
Whatever that magical component is, Danielle Faller is tuned into it, and she’s perfectly happy for her music to flourish in that heart-led space. Though she had musical ambitions and dreams, she had yet to dive in fully until a spontaneous evening in Denver when the music called to her. “I had just moved into a house with my friend in Denver, and one night I heard music coming from down the block, so I walked down the street and discovered it was an open mic,” she says. “The next week I signed up and played a cover and an original, and fell in love with the thrill. Now, going to open mics by myself or with friends is my favorite thing.”
It’s what’s plugged her into the musical scene in Evergreen, as well. A Golden resident, Danielle teaches ballet in Evergreen, and decided it was worth it to find a nearby open mic. “One night after my class, I looked up open mics nearby and found the Woodcellar—I didn’t even have my guitar with me! But that is where I met Andy Potter and Mark Swaim, who host the open mics,” says Danielle. “They have been so kind, welcoming and supportive and I feel so lucky to have them as friends in my life.”
It was this local connection that carried Danielle into this year’s Evergreen’s Got Talent competition, where, even as one of the last performers, she stirred hearts with her guitar, a crystalline voice and honest lyrics in a folksong tradition. She was one of the competition’s winners and was awarded an opening slot at the EPRD Summer Concert Series. “I hadn’t been playing out much, but once I started playing at Evergreen open mics, it inspired me to start practicing more and performing again. The community has played a huge part in that, and after Evergreen’s Got Talent and the lake concert, I feel even more inspired. Evergreen has such a vibrant music scene and I feel lucky to be a part of it!”
Danielle sees the musical community as a way of coming together, often with a larger goal in mind. Recently, she put together a fundraiser for aid efforts in Ukraine. “It was an intimate performance with performances from myself and my talented friends who are also musicians: Patrick O’Hara, Lalo Hart, Becky Wandel and Jack Nedo—they were all so amazing and I couldn’t have done it without them,” she says. “I love using music as a platform to make a positive impact—and that night we raised $1400!”
For Danielle, the big magic of music comes with connection. “My favorite feeling with singing and performing is being in a room with people who actually look at you and listen to what you have to say, and knowing that you touched at least one person’s heart. I want to keep being able to express myself and positively impact the lives of others,” she says, and that comes with truth-telling. “I write about what I feel, and my main inspiration has been heartbreak. I have always been an incredibly romantic person, and songwriting is one of my main forms of expression.” Her sound is heavily influenced by artists who do the same: Adrienne Lenker/Big Thief, Phoebe Bridgers, Julia Jacklin, Gregory Alan Isakov and Ray LaMontagne.
“The first song I wrote, ‘Yellow Hat,’ was written about someone whom I loved deeply, but it didn’t work out. At the time, I wrote it to try and express that love to them. And one of my favorite songs that I have written is about a dream I had about the world ending, and in my dream, there was only one person in the whole world that I wanted to call,” explains Danielle. “Another song that is special to me is called ‘My Body is Your Body,’ which you can actually find on Spotify and Apple Music. I wrote that because I was leaving my old job, which meant cutting ties with a certain person who was extremely special to me. I think, at the time, it’s all I could do to cope with what I was feeling. Recording songs when you are in that vulnerable place is the best time to do it, because it really comes through in a song.”
Danielle hopes to release a full album soon. “I am in the process of recording songs for the first time in the hopes to put an album together and start sharing my music, but it’s very new to me so I am still discovering the sounds that I like and all of the possibilities with my songs.” In the meantime, listen to Danielle’s music on her YouTube channel, Danielle Faller, or catch her at the open mics. “If I can make someone feel less alone or give them the courage to tell someone they love them, then I will be so fulfilled. Music can be magic and I hope to bring some magic and realness to the world.”