Sara Cox. Photo by Paul Lachance

Nashville-born and Maine-based singer-songwriter Sara Cox released her latest album, “A Collection of Days,” in September. It’s her first new album since 2007’s “Crowded is the New Lonely,” and you can hear several songs from it at a show she’s co-headlining with Rod Picott at The Hill Arts on Nov. 30.

Cox will be singing and playing guitar, and her partner, Paul Lachance, will be on mandolin.

“A Collection of Days” features some songs written during the pandemic, a couple of older ones, two new versions of tracks from her previous album, and a cover of Big Thief’s”Masterpiece.” You can find it on streaming platforms, and Cox will have CDs available at live performances. It’s a well-crafted, smartly-penned and gorgeously-sung lineup of songs that remind me why I’ve been a fan for more than 20 years.

As for the long gap between albums, Cox has solid reasons. Not only did she raise three children, she’s also a nurse at the Neuroscience Institute Medical Center at Maine Med.

But about four years ago, when she met Lachance and realized he too was a musician, music crept back in because it became fun again for Cox. Then when the pandemic hit, the songwriting began.

Lila Schrock. Photo by the artist

Her youngest child is Lila Schrock, a freshman at Bard College. Schrock is also a musician who records under the name Lila Mae, and you can hear her songs on the SoundCloud platform.


Schrock also released music in September, an EP called “Moxie,” which is home to two instrumentals. including a synth-heavy track called “Know It All.” “Moxie” also has a pair of songs with vocals. “Song To Write” has acoustic and electric guitar, and “Impatience And You” is an acoustic tune. Both are tremendous showcases of Schrock’s vocals, which have a hushed boldness to them.

I’m a huge fan, as is Schrock’s mother, who was wise to have her daughter sing on a handful of the “Collection” tracks. She also plays electric guitar and piano. “She’s an incredibly prolific songwriter, and she has written I can’t even tell you how many songs on piano and guitar that would just make you weep instantly,” said Cox.

Schrock is studying psychology but still finds time to create music on campus, where there are several practice spaces.

Cox has the show at The Hill Arts and may look into booking some more gigs next year. Fingers crossed that one will coincide with when Schrock is on break, and the two can take the stage together. That sure would be something.

In the meantime, treat your ears to both of the artists’ new music, because, wow, they’re both tremendous.

Rod Picott and Sara Cox
7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30. The Hill Arts, 76 Congress St., Portland, $22 in advance, $24 at the door.

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