Tuesday, March 5, 2013

I Finished RPM 2013!!

Album art by Eric Bird
It happened!! Weirds and Beards was mailed off on February 28th to the RPM headquarters. It was challenging and really fun. Although I feel every song needs some redoing or final touches, it's in enough of a finished state to complete the challenge. Big sigh of relief. Done and dusted. Listen to the whole thing here! A small army of people helped me get this done, and I owe them tons!

Most importantly, the biggest thanks goes to Tom Roper. He recorded every painstaking note with me, played all the guitar solos, then mixed and mastered each song down to the last damn minute. And he told me how good all my songs are, but lets face it, he kinda had to cuz he's a good boyfriend. Couldn't have done it without you, T! Thanks!

The mega-talented artist and graphic designer Eric Bird offered some of his art for my album cover. With very short notice he personalized it, and I think it looks kick ass!

Let me take a minute to describe the songs on this album and give all the proper thanks and credit to everyone involved:

 1: Walls
This song is about traveling. It was inspired particularly by a trip to Israel that was so fun and so sad.

Track info:
Katelyn - vocals, guitar, cello
Tom - guitar solo

2: Dandelion Wine
This amazing song was written by Josh "Rooster" Kanuch of our old band Machinegun Mojo. This is probably one of my most favorite songs ever, so sweet and sad. Josh is a massively talented songwriter, that bastard. Even when I had to leave Mojo and move to Dublin, Dandelion remained a regular song to play. I was always pretty bummed we never got the chance to record it as a band. And the added harmonies from Brynn Mawr really finished off this recording perfectly.

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, mandolin, cello
Tom: guitar
Brynn Mawr: harmony vocals

3: Upon Her Return
This song was created using the entirety of a poem by my former teacher and current friend Moira Egan. She is in a special tier of friend I like to call "friendtor". It's a friend who's also a mentor, get it? I highly recommend you check out her sexy-smart poetry. You can read To My Muse, upon Her Return here!

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, guitar, cello
Tom: guitar solo

4: Disappearing Ink
Another poem-song! I borrowed lines from my second favorite poet Jeffrey McDaniel to glue this song together. Read his original poem The Benjamin Franklin of Monogamy here. He's a seriously bad ass poet. We started recording this song how I usually play it solo, and I wasn't happy. It was a total snooze fest with me just chugging away on acoustic guitar. Tom asked me what I wanted it to sound like and I was like, "Two words: Pulp Fiction." I went away to Limerick for a night and when I came back, Tom had completely reworked the song. And he freakin' nailed it. This new version has a real Tarantino feel: a little surfy, a little slinky. Dang, yo. Tom is good.

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, guitar
Tom: guitar, bass

5: LaSalle 
I wrote this song for Tom after we had been dating for a few months. I played it for him as a Valentine's gift because I'm sensitive (read: broke). He was gearing up to move to Dublin and neither of us really knew where the relationship would go. Luckily, we're still here!

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, guitar

6: Empty Harbor 
This song is about what I feel when I watch the news. Don't watch the news.

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, mandolin
Tom: guitar, bass

7: You're Welcome (I Got Jimmy Laid)
Not much to say about this song except it was inspired by the classic country outlaws like David Allan Coe. And, yeah, it is based on a true story. I'm really just the best friend anyone could ask for.

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, guitar

8: Baby Attack
I wrote this song as a freshman in college. My roommate Amanda and I went to a luxurious dinner at IHOP one night. A rowdy toddler was wreaking havoc on the place and I exclaimed "Watch out, baby attack!" Amanda was like, that's a song right there. We got back and found Mike, a friend upstairs and got him in on it. He wrote the music for it and we recorded it in our dorm room on a crappy computer mic. I always wanted to redo it and this was the best excuse. Mike recorded all his parts in Chicago, and we pieced it all together in Dublin. This was my first time trying a global music collaboration! Please note the outrageously ridiculous drums Tom put on this song too.

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals
Mike Gryka: guitar, bass
Tom: drum sequencing

 9: Drink
This one is written by former Machinegun Mojo member Shawn Habich! We played this at the end of every show, and I really wanted it to conclude the album. Like Dandelion, it's another song we never got to record as a band, and that sucks. But I did what I could. This song took the longest time to record out of all of them, quite an effort. Thanks to Brynn for adding some harmony and also providing much needed vocal coaching!

Track info:
Katelyn: vocals, guitar
Tom: electric guitar, bass, drum sequencing
Brynn Mawr: harmony vocals

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