Watch: Rhiannon Giddens and Francesco Turrisi Play Towne Crier Cafe
The video may be a little shaky, but the performance is not: Last month, Rhiannon Giddens and her new Italian collaborator, Francesco Turrisi, played a small show at the famed Towne Crier Café in Beacon, New York. With Turrisi rendering prismatic piano and Giddens delivering mournful fiddle and vocals, they offered a new version of “Factory Girl,” a traditional folk tune about unrequited adoration between a rich suitor and a poor orphan. But Giddens recasts it with an addition that makes it a plea for workers’ rights, inspired by international tragedies. Listen as Giddens explains its timely origins—and then stuns with her take.