Sarah Lois is Wijtze Valkema (1983), a country & folk guitarist / singer. His personal understanding of music started when he heard the Carter Family. Music ought to be played at the end of the day, sitting on a quilt blanket by the fireplace. Songs ought to sound like they come straight from the fields of Tennessee. For instance the songs A.P. Carter picked up in the villages, and later on recorded with his family. Or songs that are inspired by the icons of country music: the aforementioned Carter Family but also Woody Guthrie and Johnny Cash.

On the cover of Sarah Lois’ debut album Pleasant Travels is a picture of a hundred year-old quilt blanket. This quilt was made in Mount Juliet, Tennessee, not far from the home of Maybelle Carter in Old Hickory Lake. Small scraps of old feed sacks, stitched together by hand, form a large pattern of stars. Each piece of fabric seems to be telling a story, just like the songs on Pleasant Travels: small themes, minimally arranged, unpretentious lyrics, vocals without studio tricks. But if you combine these elements, their sum is bigger than their separate parts. The quilt of Sarah Lois.