Monday, August 30, 2010

Song a week

As we mentioned a few months back, we have parted ways with the drummer who had worked with us on all of our material to date. I think the typical band response is to try and find someone who can play the material thats been written in a similar vein, hope this person can contribute to new material in the same way the last one did, and do so as quickly as possible.

Approaching music as a conventional band, write some songs, practice them, record them, play live, hope people like it, had worn the three of us numb. A new direction was needed.

Also mentioned recently, we've been writing with the intent of putting together a full length record, and we're doing so in a rather unorthodox fashion for the times. The results so far have been encouraging, to the point that these loose plans are beginning to solidify.

Our good friend Nick Stumpf is going to play drums on our recordings, which will begin with a full instrument demo to be recorded on Sept. 29th. There will be two more of these between then and when we go to the studio in the springtime.

I've been uncomfortable with the internet for some time now, particularly with blogs as an unbiased source for information and/or a barometer for culture. It wasn't until I began writing on a daily basis, built up a catalog of creative work that no one had seen, and looked back on this material as it developed that I began seeing things that went deeper than the songs. Constant documentation, good, bad, and everything in between has a way of communicating something beyond the creators control/intention.

So with all that said, we are going to begin regularly posting material starting this week. The idea being that in the process of documenting our pursuit of perfecting song writing as opposed to perfecting the art of being in a band, something meaningful beyond the songs falls into your lap.

Give us five minutes a week, and you will see this record grow from the ground up.

We're titling this song "Leave em Behind" right now. No drums, and there won't be any on any tracks we post here until after the 29th.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Roy Orbison

Over the course of the past year or so, Roy Orbison has gradually become one of my favorite American song writers. I bought this record, "The Orbison Way," for about five bucks a couple years back, and I think when everything is taken into consideration, song writing, arrangements, quality of playing, and above all else engineering and production, it may be the best rock and roll record I have ever heard.

It doesn't include any of his hits, but there is zero filler, no wasted space. I recently picked up an album from the same era titled, "There is only one." Same business. The consistency of quality material isn't where it is on "The Orbison Way," but the engineering, production, and arranging stand out in the same way.

I watched a staged performance from 1988 titled "Black and White Night" for the first time last night. His backing band consists of Bonnie Rait, KD Lang, Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, the Boss, and James Burton. Burton being one of the more legendary blues/rockabilly guitarists in the history of rock and roll. There is a statue of him in his hometown of Shreveport,LA.

Listening to these records and watching this performance pushed me over the edge to investigate the people who played on these Orbison albums. I didn't find much, but I did find this article about the Wrecking Crew, whom Burton was briefly a part of. If you read the article, you'll learn about these other communities of musicians in Memphis, Nashville, Detroit, and New York who selflessly drove the songs we consider staples of the rock and roll cannon.

I'm always at a loss trying to describe why I feel like rock music is continually losing something significant with each new release, but these Roy Orbison records and this era of production and songwriting have helped me identify a specific point where things happened the right way.

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Austin and I have been spending the better part of these dog days writing material with the idea of the songs being part of a full length album. We're planning on spending a day recording demos in late September, tracking as much as we can live within one day, and then again in the winter and once more in early Spring.

We'll be looking to record in the springtime, and if it all goes according to plan, the recording process alone will be remarkable for the times. Its a waste getting ahead of ourselves now, but stay tuned here as we'll be posting all kinds of things album related, song demos, artwork, etc.

And elsewhere, I've been watching a ton of music documentaries recently, the best of which may be this one. Been looking for something good on Roy Orbison for a while now, if you have any suggestions, please don't be shy.

Stay cool out there and we'll be in touch.