I hope that your summer is coming to a decently pleasant end. It's been good to be back in Texas & off the road for a little bit. In case you haven't seen yet, I have a new LP coming out next week from my group Andrew Weathers Ensemble. These albums are particularly meaningful to me, I'm usually able to get most of my friends involved and concepts that I work on in the rest of my music-making get crystallized, implemented in a context that I don't get to work in very often.
This particular record, Build A Mountain Where Our Bodies Fall, is mostly derived from old IWW union songs. When I was on tour, I'd explain that & talk about Joe Hill, who was framed and murdered by the state of Utah in 1915 for his status as a Wobbly. Over a century after his death we want to believe that we don't murder those who work towards a better future, but the fact is that we do, and we do regularly.
The last day of the tour happened to fall on the date of the protests in Charlottesville, VA in which an activist was murdered by a white supremacist. Several states, including North Carolina and Texas, have put forth and passed bills to protect drivers who hit protestors. It hurt to acknowledge to dark irony in singing the words of Joe Hill on that particular day.
I have a lot of daydreams about a union for musicians that fall outside of the classical and session work zone that 'real' musician's unions are intended for. The world we exist in works very hard to keep us from expressing solidarity and showing up for each other with concrete, real action. At least in my small corner of underground music, there are a few steps that would improve the environment for everyone, but we all have to be on board in order for that to happen. There is an irony in talking solidarity within a scene that prides itself as being individualistic and outsider.
I'm sure that I sound like a broken record through all of these emails, thanks for bearing with me. Build A Mountain is up for pre-order now, it'll be out on September 19th, a gatefold LP version through Full Spectrum and a cassette version through Obsolete Media Objects. You may have seen on my twitter, but for the next week I'll be donating any digital sales I get to regional aid efforts in Houston. The rest of the year will most likely be quiet. There a few shows in the southwest, and some collaborative releases planned. I'll be available for mixing and mastering, so get in touch.
- September 15 The 806, Amarillo, TX Solo w/ Hayden Pedigo
- September 17 ATA Festival, Santa Fe, NM Solo
- September 18 Tortuga Gallery, Albuquerque, NM Solo w/ Luke Gullickson
- November 10 House Show, Lubbock, TX Duo with Blaine Todd w/ Roughhousing, Everything is Sad