Stumbling from out of the shadows.
Rubs eyes, squints.
Blinding light overwhelms him at the cave door.
A million memes, hashtags, even platforms have lived and died.
All the while, he composed.
He emerges. Grey beard.
He speculates blogs may be a thing of the past.
Okay, that’s bullshit, but it has been a while since I’ve told anyone what I was up to. So here it is.
I don’t recall ever being quite so excited about an album I’m making. I’ll let you decide if that’s a good thing or not. It’s just that we don’t often get to make a record that we’ve never heard before. I LOVE my band on this record - NYC’s almost classical sextet, yMusic. Love 'em musically and personally. They are pushing me. Collectively and individually they’ve been on a quite a few great recordings (Sufjan Stevens, Bjork, Dirty Projectors, Bon Iver, Blake Mills and lots of other stuff) since most of the group graduated Julliard nearly a decade ago. Then there’s their new cellist, Gabe who just got out of Curtis, which is a maximum security music conservatory - hardcore shit. He’ll cut a bitch over a parallel 5th.
We tracked this album in 12 days total, with a lot of time spent, me, Rob Moose and CJ Camarieri, sometimes in New York, LA or Nashville, arranging. The playing, the recording, happened quickly.
On this record, yMusic are the rock band, straight up - not ornamentation. We call the ornamentation, “and strings” which is beautiful of course, just not what we are doing. The odd instrumentation is yielding something that I can’t wait to release. It’s a pop record, if that’s what you call what I write. But the instrumentation is:
Flute, Piccolo, Alto Flute
Trumpet, French Horn
Clarinet, Bass Clarinet
And… minimal booms and beats from drums from time to time. The odd marching snare, or concert bass drum. More often than not, no drums but still pop songs. Also, no bass ever. This limitation is FUN when you get it right. When we began, it wasn’t yet great. I love that kind of process. Anyway, the record is something I mean, and without getting too damn braggy about it, I’m proud of it.
Looks like the album will be up to10 of these songs, along with full orchestra recording of Concerto For Piano and Orchestra that I’ve been previewing snippets of with orchestras over the past year.
We can easily get this record out by September. On vinyl it will be a double album I suppose with the concerto being side 4. That’s my thinking at the moment.
Touring beginning April with vague plans to do some last minute announced gigs where the whole show is improvised. Maybe a ‘bring your poetry’ and we’ll rock this bitch kind of thing. We’ve been discussing that one.
But we’ll be hanging around each city longer to do more, smaller gigs, take time.