Industrial Grey - Ernie Banks - 2012
As per Ernie Banks:
Winter White. Industrial Grey. Train rides to Milwaukee and on to Waukesha. Camaraderie and late nights: "We'll sing like the Everly's!" Late nights and shaky mornings. Blind Luck. Sparks at the end of the line.
Personnel: Jake Boyd & Heath Hendon
All songs written and produced by Ernie Banks. *Album closes with "Send Me The Pillow That You Dream On," written by Hank Locklin in 1949
Cover Image -- Bedroom, 2009, Peter Ha. Cover Design -- Mary Elizabeth Hendon
Thank you: The Last of the True Believers
Corners Of My Heart/Works Both Ways - Matt Campbell - 2012
The second in a series of "single" recordings from The CTMCo., "Corners Of My Heart" is a honky-tonk ballad about the double-life of a man always on the move. Inspired by long drives and country crooners, COMH confronts the challenges of trying to maintain some semblance of home while continuing to push into the uncertainty that lies on the road ahead. "The "B" side, "Works Both Ways," tells the story of a forbidden romance and the desire to break free from the secrecy that binds it. In a twist fellow songwriter Trevor McSpadden trades off verses to create a triangle with both singers professing their love until the bitter end.
Recorded in one session at Strobe Recording in Chicago the songs feature members of The Hoyle Brothers, a mainstay in the Chicago honky-tonk scene. Trevor McSpadden plays co-producer while providing rhythm guitars and vocals, Brian Wilkie plays bass and electric guitar, Steve Doyle plays dobro, and Lance Helgeson provides the drums. Steve Stokes engineered and mixed. Peter Andreadis provided the mastering.
Miles Apart - Matt Campbell - 2011
Recorded in two sessions at Strobe Recording in Chicago, Miles Apart is
a five song suite about the challenge of new beginnings and the faith
to forge ahead.
Matt Campbell's affinity for rich imagery and melody are on full
display, as the stripped down sound highlights his distinct voice and
lyrics. Though brief the recording presents a complete narrative. A
musical short story.
It represents Campbell's first effort solely produced
and the second release from The Chicago Talking Machine Co. Joining
Campbell are Kevin Corcoran(Piano), Bailey Doyle(Cello), and Mark
Lavengood(Dobro). Steve Stokes engineered/mixed and Peter Andreadis
mastered. Angela Mobley took the cover photo. Kim Lyle did the design.
How Can I Love You/The Gunfighter's Lament - Matt Campbell - 2010
Recorded over the course of
two days in Colorado, "How Can I Love You/The Gunfighter's Lament" is a
single release in the true tradition of the troubadour. It is also the first release from The Chicago Talking Machine Co. It was recorded at SeldomFed Studios by pedal-steel pro/engineer Chris Kennison, along with co-production from Mike Wolf.
"How Can I Love You" is a tribute to
the sound of 60's country and a challenge to the newer sound of
pop/rock country that has flooded the airwaves and watered down the
sensitivity and earnest once essential in this genre. The central
question, "How can I love you if you can't love yourself," punctuates
the tale of a man trying to stay true to himself in a time when fitting
in means losing your identity. "The Gunfighter's Lament" is not your
father's Marty Robbins. It tells the tale of a gunfighter trying to go
straight while visions of an untethered life flash through his mind. A
wife, a child, a failing farm and mounting debt begin to turn
redemption to regret, and he is forced to confront his former self.
Wolf leads the exceptional group of musicians: bassist Dennis Bigelow (longtime BLB, Vee Device), Kennison (Doug Kershaw, Book 'em Dano) and studio pro Ben Brown on drums.
Available here, at CD Baby
Great Divide - Mike Wolf and the High Country Band - 2007
Released in the Fall of 2007, "Great Divide" marks the solo debut of Mike Wolf, longtime leader of the band Planetary Nebula. The recording unfolds like a short story, one man's observations of the constant evolution of Western ideals.
A truly remarkable feat, Wolf recorded the album during the winter and spring of 2007, employing old-fashioned ingenuity and collaboration. Every sound hear you was recorded with one microphone at the now defunct studios of KCUV radio in Denver, CO. All hours of the day and night found a steady stream of musicians making their way to the LoDo location to add their own unique talents. Held together by Wolf's vision, the album features Nebula mates Paul Leonard and Jason Campbell, longtime collaborator Matt Campbell, the operatic Oaklea Rowe, and many others.
The songs include the honky-tonking "Can't Go Back", testimonial "As the Mountain Burned", enlightening "Sunshine in the Parlor", and more.
Available here at iTunes
In the Town/The Other Side of Town - Matt Campbell and His Bottom Line Band - 2007
2 EP's released in 2007, "In The Town" and "The Other Side of Town" highlight the reconciliation of choices made while wandering in and out of one man's American dream.
INT boasts a honky-tonk gloss, recorded in the front room of long-time Western engineer Butch Hause's Ranger Station. It features Mike Wolf on electric guitar and the rotating BLB includes Hause, bassist Ben Prytherch, and return contributor, the venerable John Magnie. The 4 songs run from country-blues to Broadway.
TOSOT is 3 songs recorded by jack-of-all trades Jon Howe at the studios of KRFC 88.9FM in Fort Collins, CO. A stripped down sound accompanies the stories of faith and fortune. Neal Babcock finished off production.
Out Amongst the Shadows - Matt Campbell and His Bottom Line Band - 2006
Originally released on the fledgling Wayward Recordings, "Out Amongst the Shadows" is the first recording to feature His Bottom Line Band, a rotating cast of musicians that accompanied Campbell for live shows, some appearing on recordings.
The songs embrace old-country, folk ballads, gospel and protest. The "Salvation Army" band feel is courtesy of John Magnie of The Subdudes, here serving as producer. Featuring longtime collaborator Mike Wolf, bassist Derek Ray, and recognized percussionist Steve Amedee (also of the 'dudes), OATS helped to solidify Campbell's reputation as a thoughtful and progressive songwriter with a familiar amount of classic style. It was named a "Best of" among local releases by the Rocky Mountain Chronicle.
the east 3rd street waltz - Matt Campbell - 2005
Setting off a string of independent releases, "the east 3rd street waltz" signals the arrival of Matt Campbell as a burgeoning songwriter. The collection of 11 songs was culled from two separate sittings.
The first session took place in spring of '04 at Jambetta Studios, located on the aforementioned street on New York's Lower East Side. The session was set-up by Dave Harrington, a local guitar shop owner, and originally marked "5 Songs and a Lullaby." The second session took place outside of Austin, TX at Pedernales Studios and was subsequently marked "Pedernales Sessions." It came courtesy of Lisa and Freddie Fletcher.
The songs cover considerable ground. Moving from folk to pop to gospel Campbell shows an early affinity for rich imagery and poetic wordplay. He also displays a distinct voice and "common man" sensibility that manifests itself throughout Campbell's recordings.
There is good news for the audiophiles. Several live recordings exist courtesy of numerous sources, including KRFC 88.9fm, former BLB member John Frank, and various others. These include early shows in NYC at The Bitter End, CBGB's and The Orange Bear, and several festival shows with early incarnations of His Bottom Line Band. Also, copies of early sessions contain unreleased tracks, including "On The Road Again," a tribute to Pedernales and it's operator. Happy Hunting!