Behind the Record: The Beginning
It all happened so fast. Brooks Miner and I had been rehearsing since February. In April, we made our first appearance as a duo at the Cosmic Joke Collective show, where we played four songs. At the end of May, we traveled to Brooklyn to open a show for Anna Coogan and Eszter Balint. That same weekend we played a Sunday set at the Ithaca Festival. These were our first real gigs as a duo-- two great shows back to back. It was hard not to feel a sense of momentum that had been missing in my solo endeavors. After the Ithaca Festival show, Anna came over to where we were packing up our cases and said something to the effect of "Let's pack up the stuff and take it home, and then we're going to go have a drink and talk about how you're going to make this record happen."
This wasn't the first time Anna Coogan bossed me into something for my own good. Anna was the one who originally suggested (gently, but also again and again) that I should start playing music with Brooks. Interested as I was in adding another player to the mix, I wasn't sure it should be first on my to-do list. Shouldn't I be focusing on making a record instead? But it turns out Anna knew a few things I didn't. She knew that playing live with other musicians was a natural precursor to recording. This kind of informal collaboration forces some of the necessary steps that are so easy not to take when you are out there on your own. These steps include:
So while I didn't realize it at the time, the first seeds of this record were sown when Brooks and I began practicing together in February. The rest were planted in that Brooklyn/Ithaca Festival weekend a little less than a year ago. All the gear packed up, we walked downtown and Anna began spelling out to me the imperative of making an album. Rich Bennett and Rebecca Pronsky, the proprietors of Acme Hall Studios, had come to the show in Brooklyn that Friday and mentioned casually that Brooks and I should come record sometime. By the end of the evening Sunday, those plans were no longer casual. Anna talked me through the process while Brooks blocked out potential dates at the studio. I sipped my beer and nodded my head, mostly. Two months later we were headed to the studio with an album's worth of songs to lay down. I couldn't have asked for a better band-member in Brooks, or a better Producer/Musical Sherpa in Anna. Without the generosity of these two people, this record simply wouldn't have happened.
Now the record is finished: mixed, mastered, pressed, shrink-wrapped, and in boxes in my living room. The release date is 5/10, less than a week now, but you can get your paws on it before that in one of two ways:
1) Pre-order the CD here. Or you can pre-order CDs and/or digital versions here (this is the only option for International Shipping).
2) Come to the ALBUM RELEASE SHOW in Ithaca, this Saturday, May 7th at Casita Del Polaris. Doors are at 7, music at 8. The $10 cover will get you a digital download of the album, plus there will be CDs available at a special one-night-only price :) And you'll get to hear Brooks and I play every song on the record and then some.
As always, I have unending gratitude to you for reading, listening, showing up, and otherwise supporting this work.
See you out there.