In January I headed north to Fairbanks, AK to make a record. My good friends Tim and Karen Foote had graciously offered their vibe-filled Roundhouse for the recording and production of the new Super Saturated Sugar Strings album. I’m not gonna lie: I was super stoked!
We departed Anchorage on January 16 (as the temperatures rose to 40+ degrees, turning the streets into ice skating rinks). After an eventful 8 hour drive, we arrived at The Roundhouse just in time for Carlyle to whip up an amazing meal. The band slept in rooms. I slept on the fireplace mantle. No internet. No distractions. Just the birch trees and northern lights. Perfect conditions to make magic.
We started the morning of the 17th and didn’t stop for 10 days. We worked 12+ hours a day…everyday. The songs were emotional and carried weight. Kat cried while she sang her heart out for friends lost. I cried too. Carlyle kept us going with the amazing meals he cooked every morning and evening. He also played some mean guitar solos. Theresa told silly jokes and made me laugh. She also played her cello thru a tube amp with an overdrive and delay pedal. Miriah made the fiddle sing, and sing, and sing. Did I mention sweet vocal harmonies happened? Basically, magic was made.
Let me tell you folks, this album is amazing, and I can’t wait for you all to hear it. We are in the process of doing some overdubs, and putting the final touches on before James Glaves mixes it. Stay tuned and stay excited. It will be worth the wait.
The Whipsaws are going to bring the New Year in with a raging party at Taproot this year. You can purchase tickets in advance at Northbound Productions.
Get them quick before they sell out.
Photo Credit: Courtney Andrews
Really excited to be recording and co-producing a new album with Emma Hill. This is a collaborative effort between myself, Emma, and her longtime producer/ bandmate Bryan Daste. Looking forward to getting down to the business on this project over the holidays.
Christmas came early for me this year after I stumbled on this box of my first solo album Chickaloon (2004). This is pretty cool for two reasons: A) This album has been sold out and out of print for over 5 years, and B) I rarely play any of these songs today. It’s definitely a trip down the memory lane of my songwriting career.
The album was co-produced and recorded by Don Morrell, and features the talents of great Alaskan musicians Stu Schulman, Aaron Benolkin, and James Dommek Jr. to name a few.
I have 20 copies of Chickaloon and I’d love to sell them over the Holidays. These will make great stocking stuffers.
Photo Credit: Brian Adams
I just finished recording and producing the new Jonathan J. Bower album. Jonathan (or J-Bow as we like to call him) wanted to push himself artistically on this record, and I was happy to oblige. His new collection of songs, tentatively titled Hope, Alaska, pays tribute to the alt-country sauntering of his 2012 release But So Beautiful, but strikes out into new musical territory as well.
A great cast of musicians contributed to the album including: Kat Moore, Andy Tholberg, Bryan Daste, James Glaves, Greg Geddes, Martin Severin, and Aaron Benolkin. The album is currently being mixed by James Glaves (Anchorage, AK) and will be mastered by Patrick Damphier (Nashville, TN).
Hope, Alaska is scheduled to be released in spring 2014.
Last month I started working with Portland-based boutique music licensing agency, Marmoset Music. They seem like a bunch of great cats and they seem stoked to work with me so I’m pretty happy about it.
Photo courtesy of Alex Lewis @ Oregon Public Broadcasting
Other than that things have been busy with Monolith Agency and I’ve worked with some great Northwest bands including: Terrible Buttons, Alameda, and Ezza Rose Band. We were also recently excited to see Monolith Agency get a nod from NPR’s ‘Marketplace’ courtesy of freelance reporter Alex Lewis. You can listen to the segment here.
This fall I’ll be playing a few shows solo and with Molly Mcdermott, as well as working on a new record with my good friend Jonathan Bower. Lots of great things happening. Let’s all keep working hard and moving forward.
Talk to you soon.
Last year I heard whisperings around town about a young songwriter who had just moved to town from the Kenai Peninsula. All I knew was that her name was Sophia, she just turned 21, and apparently her voice was “amazing”. A week later I found myself at The Taproot open mic hoping I’d stumble into her. Sure enough, an adorable, punky looking kid graced the stage and started playing her guitar and singing. As soon as I heard the chorus, “come on, come on it’s a life shift…” I was hooked, and the rest is history. Sophia’s new EP, Life + Shift is being released in May, 2013. Click HERE to buy or stream the album.
Sophia is one of the those rare talents that comes along every so often and you say to yourself, ‘this is the real deal’. Her penchant for hooks and catchy melodies is effortless, and her voice is exactly what i heard thru the grapevine a year ago: amazing.
I feel honored to have co-produced this collection of songs (with Andy Tholberg), and I am so excited to see the direction Sophia will take her music and art career. A true blossoming talent that Alaska is lucky to have.
Sophia is celebrating her EP release alongside Spokane, WA band Terrible Buttons and Clint Samples at Taproot, May 25.
I wanted to give a shout out to Laura Oden and congratulate her on the release of her debut album Alchemy. Laura signed me on as her producer, and we worked our tails off over the course of six months. I have to say I’m very pleased with the results. Lots of great Alaskan musicians were involved including Brandon Cockburn, Miriah May, Marty Severin, and my good friend and bandmate Aaron Benolkin. Join Laura and friends to celebrate the release of Alchemy at The Taproot Public House on Thursday, May 2.