about carli naff

“(She) stopped us dead in our tracks. One of the best vocalists we’ve heard this year.”
— No Depression Journal
“Her voice comes direct from the heavens”
— Modern Mystery Blog


Carli Naff is a singer songwriter from Phoenix, Arizona. At the time she began writing her first EP, Horrible Talker, Carli had been struggling with a vocal injury. A doctor told her that the strain was not from singing, but from poor technique while speaking. Naff found this particularly ironic, as she had also been observing all of the ways that she struggled to speak for herself in the face of heartbreak, addiction, and loss.

She had moved to New York to pursue acting, but found that, while writing and performing her own music, she was finally understanding her inner voice. Amazingly, her physical voice was also healing in the process. The album was born through this healing, and her music expresses the pain one feels when muting themselves.

Carli has a flair for intimate story telling, and her voice can shift from being vulnerable and fragile to incredibly powerful. Her music has a tendency to evoke emotional responses from her listeners while still being grounded in catchy hooks that make each song memorable. Her indie folk-rock sound has been likened to Angel Olsen, Mitski, Lucy Rose and Florence + The Machine.  Musically, Naff says she is inspired by many different artists including Jeff Buckley, Big Thief, and Fleetwood Mac.


Naff performs live all over NYC with her band, Carli & The Dark. The band formed while she was in the process of recording her EP.  As Naff tells it, she was approached by local guitarist Russell Castiglione after almost making him cry at an open mic performance.  He and his long-time band-mate Austin Deyo (drums) enthusiastically became the first members of “The Dark”. They were later joined by Alex Lemonier (keys) and Andrew Root (bass). You can catch the full band next at Gramercy Theater in July, or follow them on social media to see more upcoming shows.

Vocals, Guitar | Carli Naff
Guitar, Vocals | Russell Castiglione
Keyboard, Vocals | Alex Lemonier
Bass | Kallan Campbell / Andrew Root
Drums | Austin Deyo


Carli’s music has been featured in the short film “Night’s Melody” (Random Light Prod.) and the web series “Half Honey” (Sparkle Fairy Prod.) for which she wrote the theme song. She and her band can be found playing venues in NYC and Brooklyn. See Upcoming Shows for their next performance. Naff's Debut EP, Horrible Talker, is out now on all streaming platforms.

Photos by David Hagen Media.