MP3 The Lonesome High - ROCK: Adult Alternative Pop/Rock
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12 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, COUNTRY: Alt-Country
Show all album songs: The Lonesome High Songs
With a band comprised of topnotch New York musicians, singer-songwriter Michael Stumm delivers an album of character sketches and urban tales as unique as his own life experiences and perspective.
The album THE LONESOME HIGH, features 12 songs--all titled after real people.
The roots-country lead track âDanny Thomasâ sets the tone with Stummâs Dylanesque, Lou Reedy vocal recounting a surreal visit to the legendary TV starâs imaginary office during a total eclipse of the sun. âChristopher Leeâ is dreamy, tooâbut in a different way: A lullaby worthy of Simon & Garfunkel, in being named after one of the cinemaâs great horror players it delivers utmost irony.
Also highly ironic is âKaren Black,â thanks to itâs âI hate rock ân rollâ chorusâwithin the musical context of a New York Dolls-styled hard rocker. Sure âIâd rather read a book [or] write a poem,â sings Stumm in the song named for the esteemed Oscar-nominated (âFive Easy Piecesâ) actress, but thankfully, the music belies it.
Meanwhile, the comparatively obscure actress Mimsy Farmer (star of such classic â60s teen-oriented B-movies as âHot Rods to Hellâ and âRiot on Sunset Stripâ) inspired Stummâs acoustic, Byrds-like look at an Arizona landscape. Likewise, âCookie Mueller,â a folk-rock song a la Jefferson Airplane, is motivated by another lesser known actress (and former girlfriend of Stummâs), who starred in the John Waters classics âPink Flamingosâ and âPolyesterâ; it and the stark, album-closing âBuster Keatonâ both deal with the desolation of hardcore drug addiction.
Two songs also merit special mention: the appropriately mournful, solo acoustic guitar tune âSpalding Gray,â and the beautifully arranged rocker âWillem Dafoe.â Both the late actor/playwright Gray and Dafoeâand Stumm-- were part of New Yorkâs celebrated Wooster Group theater ensemble. Dafoe, in fact, has been friends with fellow Midwestern Stumm for over 15 years, and is the executive producer of THE LONESOME HIGH.
The albumâs producer is Scott Sherratt, an engineer on Grammy-nominated recordings, an album producer for acclaimed playwright Richard Maxwellâs songs, and a longtime New York musician and friend of Stumm. Sherratt put together the backing band that is THE LONESOME HIGH: Besides Sherratt on guitars, bass and vocals, they are drummer Frankie Lombardi, who has played for Lucky Peterson and the Dickey Betts Band, and Eric Lichter, who plays lap steel, dobro and harmonica--and is a marvelous vocalist in his own right who has performed with the likes of Carly Simon, Evan Dando and Valerie Carter while releasing his solo album âChorduroyâ. Like Sherratt, Lombardi and Lichter are big fans of Stumm, and bring their own special talents to the project.
Sherratt wisely kept the production simple, letting the songs speak for themselves with minimal but sure-handed assistance. The result is a solid album of deeply personal but accessible songs that flow together from start to finish, seamlessly progressing in music and lyrics in depicting the grittier side of city life.
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