Renaissance woman and singer/songwriter, Amanda Pascali was born in Queens, New York and is based in Houston, Texas. Amanda’s Immigrant American Folk Music showcases her traditional influences, but she is no copy of anyone. As the daughter of an Eastern European refugee with Sicilian heritage, Amanda writes with a sincerity which shows us that home is truly where the heart is. Amanda’s music tells the story of a girl, transplanted from the Corona and Forrest Hills neighborhoods of New York City to the center of Houston, Texas. With a father who was thrown out of his home country for rebelling against the government, Amanda was driven from a young age to be a messenger of her family’s stories and diaspora. Her words tell of her experiences growing up in the light of her family’s compelling memoirs and the grave semblance to the plight of refugees today. In 2016, Amanda recorded a solo, self-titled EP which she released before forming her trio- Amanda Pascali and The Family. The Family consists of seasoned accordion player “Uncle” Felix Lyons, who turned seventy years old on the night of their first show together, and violinist Addison Freeman who is classically trained and experientially tempered to the folk tradition. The group formed after all three musicians joined the Houston Balalaika Orchestra, playing traditional Eastern European music in a living room on the south side of town. The trio’s debut, full-length album is to be released in the winter of 2018.
Accompanied by her family, blood related or not, Amanda Pascali has released music and performed internationally, including packed houses in Italy and Romania. Her art is inspired by the love story of her parents as working-class immigrants in the 1980s as well as the stories of first-generation Americans throughout the United States. Her music is consistently carried by the one thing that joins both love and revolution: great passion. In addition to speaking at scientific conferences and conducting field work in the mountains of west Texas as an aspiring geologist, she travels the eastern hemisphere piecing together the stories of her family and documenting them in song. Amanda’s music, now coined Immigrant American Folk, delivers a powerful narrative on being “too foreign for here, too foreign for home, and never enough for both.” The Houston Press describes Amanda and The Family as “Houston’s newest artist for you to adore” and “a welcomed addition to the Houston music scene […] with songs that will be stuck with you for days”. “The first time I saw Amanda Pascali, I was enthused by her ability to carry an entire, brimming hall with her voice and her impressive ability to rock a harmonica. Watching from behind, you might have confused her with a young, female and Italian Bob Dylan.” – Hunter M. Lewis, Free Press Houston Magazine