Half acoustic-indie-folk, half spoken-word-poetry, Welch & Penn is a unique creature and a “dares to deviate from the status quo” kind of duo. Acoustic driven guitar work and ambient electric fills lay content under a mixture of energetic monologue, intertwined with sung vocal melodies. This pair of performers aim to bring a fresh perspective to the modern concept of performance poetry.
During their high school years Donnie Welch and Freddie Wilson (AKA Fountain Penn) ran into each other often before officially meeting. Both performed regularly within the Charlotte, NC music scene. They were eventually introduced to one another by a mutual friend who had invited both the singer-songwriter(Penn) and performance poet(Welch) to share their talents at a charity event.
In the Summer of 2012, after playing numerous shows together in the local area, the two decided to go on a small tour called The Mountain to Sea Tour. Although they both still only performed apart, while on the road, the two realized that they shared a similar love for performing and almost identical ambitions in terms of careers.
While planning their 2013 Green Sundresses Tour the two decided to collaborate on an EP (Green Sundresses EP), bringing together Donnie’s poetry with Freddie’s guitar and vocal work. The EP was recorded and written in Freddie’s garage apartment, produced by a friend and tracked on a minimal amount of equipment. The writing and recording took only a few hours to complete. While the EP was originally conceived as only a tool to promote the tour, the reception of the EP was so positive that both Donnie and Freddie decided to make Welch & Penn an established project and a force of it’s own.
After their two week coffeehouse tour in the Summer of 2013 the duo was invited by Andrew De Torres(The Scene Aesthetic, Danger Radio) to record at his studio in Nashville on Music Row. There they recorded their second EP, “Early Bird Gangsters”, which was released that August.