I’m not going to say too much about this just yet, but Steve and I have been working on a deeply collaborative project that kind of grew out of the TIME AWAY recording sessions, and an album is getting pretty close to the finish line.
For the most part it’s been the two of us doing everything ourselves, but there have been a handful of talented guests. Can you guess who they are? If you guess right, you win an invisible, scentless prize.
Maybe this little in-studio documentary music video type thing will give you a bit of an idea of what to expect. I’d call it “dark alt-folk” if I had to call it something, but you know me. I don’t like giving things labels. Not even with my fancy label-applicator.
One thing I really like about this project is that there’s no clear leader or dominant voice. It’s both of us blurred together. Sometimes Steve sings lead. Sometimes I sing lead. Sometimes we both sing lead in the same song. Sometimes one of us sings words the other wrote. Sometimes we finish each other’s musical sentences.
In this case, Steve came up with the chord progression, we both wrote the words (quite a bit of what’s there is what he improvised when we recorded a rough demo to preserve the idea, with me adding and massaging some parts later on), he sang lead, and I sang wordless four-part vocal harmonies, because sometimes that’s just what needs to be done.
I don’t think he had any particular subject matter in mind when he was winging it, and I know I didn’t when I was transcribing the winging and writing lines to fill in some blanks, but after the fact it struck me that it reads like the story of a couple whose relationship is disintegrating in the aftermath of the death of a young child. It’s eerie how well that narrative fits once you’ve got it in your head and you really listen to the words. Songs are funny things.
We’re debuting some of this music we’ve been working on at Taloola on Friday, August 21, at 8:00 pm. Natalie’s going to be doing a few of her Teenage Geese songs too, and hopefully singing with us on some of ours. Double-debut! This is the first time I’ll be doing something other than the sideman thing and playing music I’ve actually had a hand in writing in a public place since 2011.
So, you know, if that’s the sort of thing you’re interested in, maybe come see the show and blow dandelion fuzz at me.