Edenspore is a multifaceted project combining the creative passions of Robyn Mello. While permaculture design, musical performance, visual art, herbal medicine, and self-sufficiency education may seem like too broad a reach to many, Robyn sees each of these passions as mutually reinforcing and has been building each skill separately for several years. Besides, do you know anyone who’s truly one-dimensional?
Robyn is a practical dreamer who receives most of her guidance from The Earth. She began landscape design by starting a dozen community gardens and food forests on vacant land in Philadelphia with Philly Food Forests in 2010, started an off-grid organic farm in Bucks County in 2013, and has worked with non-profit Philadelphia Orchard Project designing and educating around community orchards since 2014. She began writing and performing original music in 2011 and has been lead singer of earth-worshipping world folk band, The Radicans, since 2013. She began teaching permaculture-based workshops in 2011, and has been Education and Vending Curator for South Jersey’s music, art, and self-sufficiency festival, Beardfest since 2015. Additionally, she began honing her skills as a mycologist in 2014 with Philadelphia’s only mushroom farm, Mycopolitan Mushroom Company.
Robyn’s musical performances have been very well-received because the lyrical themes and power of her voice are refreshingly unique and often described as “entrancing”. Her songs stir people with dreamy music and usher them through their days with calls to action to listen deeply to the earth and each other. Moreover, the messages inherent in her songs and workshops continue to gain relevance as sociopolitical events continue to unfold.
Due to her professional and spiritual connections to the earth, Robyn has developed a special ability to call in the essence of the place in which she performs, channeling the sacred energy of a forest or the guttural language of a city through her bare feet as she weaves story and song from multiple influences.
Robyn prefers to engage more deeply with audience members before or after performances through leading workshops. Some that she has taught in Philly and at regional festivals include: Plant and mushroom identification walks. The Safety, Spirituality, and Ethics of Foraging, Introduction to Permaculture Design Principles and Ethics, Introductory Food Forest Design, Introductory Veggie Garden Design, Mushroom Medicine: The Missing Link in Holistic Health, Gentle Yet Powerful Herbal Medicines for Beginners, and Food As Medicine: Incorporating whole foods and herbs into everyday meals.
Additionally, Robyn creates healing jewelry from stones and natural objects, makes herbal medicine from plants and mushrooms she grows and forages, and uses her skills as a permaculture designer to consult with and provide regenerative visions for the landscapes of various residential clients.
Audience members have compared Edenspore music to Jeff Buckley, Radiohead, Hiatus Kaiyote, Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell, Joanna Newsom, and more. However, far more frequently, listeners comment emphatically about the unique, refreshing, and entrancing quality of Robyn’s voice, lyrics, message, and melodies.
“…Like a true witch, Robyn gives the bolder, more magical reality her all, transporting an audience there for the duration of a set and however long her voice echoes after.
“Her songs talk of joy, darkness, growth and revolution in the sense of reconnection – with cycles of sun and soil, and the roots of the oldest trees. Her vocal range is incredible – maintaining pure power from the grittiest growl to soaringest trill, like she’s channeling wilderness itself. Several themes run through her work: celebrating the strong, creative feminine in The Descendants and Bogwitch; dreaming and communing with spirits in Aim For The Night and Stumped; opening toward healing love, both personal and world-changing, in Moon Bath and The Antidote; having something worth dying for in Hard Shell Progression.
“Over the past four years I’ve gone to all of Robyn’s shows that I can because I want to live in the vision that seems to guide her. These days, all institutions seem to be in flux, the ground under our feet crumbling, a scary time of uncertainty. Robyn sees it and lives there too, then does the artist’s alchemy to embody something simultaneously new and timeless instead. With her newest incarnation Edenspore, from music to mushroom potions and more, she continues to front-run the future and unseat the creeping dread.
“She builds a table and then puts it all out there — hope, fear, shadow, light, loss, love — and it gives me hope that no matter the travails we face, all will have a place, should we choose to partake and fight together.”