I've been on a sabbatical of sorts since the beginning of June, several serious family medical issues and the untimely passing of my 31 year old nephew absolutely drained me.
All else is well, spending a quiet summer here on Cape Cod before getting back to recording. I have no time schedule for that release so I will keep you posted. It will be a mix of new songs as well as earlier works that I haven't recorded yet. Also hoping to get back to some collaborations that were in the works so should be a busy fall.
I will be returning to playing in September so I'm looking forward to seeing you at a show. Enjoy the rest of the summer!!
I have just started to record my next CD with the working title "Blue Waters". We have just gotten underway and plan to do 10-14 songs. This means I will not have as much time for my various web sites but will do my best to stay in touch with all throughout the process. I will be taking several breaks for some live shows and expect I will find time to listen to my friends on Reverbnation, Facebook and MySpace whenever possible.
I have been out playing since the end of July and it is nice to see the season wind down. I'm looking forward to doing some recording over the winter and posting some new songs. It will be nice to have some time to listen to all the great music from my friends here on Reverbnation too. Happy Holidays!
Frankie O’Rourke and Rick Millward met through REVERBNATION, the musician social networking site, where Rick is #1 on the Nashville Americana chart and Frankie #1 on the Falmouth, Massachusetts Folk chart. Rick, a recording engineer and songwriter, was looking for projects he could produce and Frankie got in touch with him.
Over the course of a couple of conversations they began to explore the possibility of trying a long distance collaboration on one of Frankie’s songs. He’s a touring and performing songwriter who's recorded several albums, the latest being “Postcards From The Road”, a collection of songs recorded while traveling over the last few years. The song they chose was “America”, which is a staple of Frankie’s live show but has never been recorded.
The song was written in the mid 1970’s and addresses many of the events that took place in this country during and before that period in American history. It is ironic that this country still faces many of the same tough issues; financial hardship, unemployment and political struggles that we did back then. The song simply states “I just want to make an honest living, in America there’s supposed to be a way” something every American citizen wants. The song strikes a deep chord with Frankie’s audiences, something they can relate too.
“America”, started out as a folk song, but Rick’s arrangement of the track is hard to categorize, which puts it solidly in the Americana camp. One of the goals was to create what he calls a “musical event”, which is something like a single with a strong emphasis on giving the artist an opportunity to step a little outside his comfort zone, and be supported by a track with more production than they’ve typically done. Both men are veteran musicians, with decades of experience and appreciation for the genre. The result is a powerful track that frames the core lyric, “America, where are you now”, and in a masterful way combines sounds and styles from rock to jazz.
Collaborations are always experiments, and in Rick’s case the process was fully intuitive. “I really had no preconceptions about the song, I just started working with it and let it go where it wanted to. That caused a little bit of anxiety, because with my own music I do a lot of experimenting and revising, having the luxury of a home studio, so imposing my process on another artist added a layer of communication I wasn’t used to. Frankie was great and receptive all the way from the beginning when I sent him a demo that I knew was completely different from the way he’d performed the song for years.
Frankie provided a rhythm acoustic guitar and vocal while Rick performed everything else except for drums (Andrew Allen), mandolin (Terry Kinakin) and backup vocals (Lindsay Millward)
I have a new single "America" coming out shortly!! It is a project I have been working on for the past several months with a producer from Nashville. I will keep you posted in the upcoming days.
Due to some ongoing health issues I am going to have to re-schedule my Spring shows until I am well enough to travel pain free. No need for alarm, it is just ongoing issues with osteoarthritis that need further treatment. For those who remember I have had both of my knees replaced and at some point (not this year) I will need new hips and back surgery as well. If all goes well I will see you on the road late summer/early fall.
Postcards From The Road, my new CD is now available and I wanted to share some of the back story. The title comes from the fact that I recorded it in different studios around the country during my travels playing shows. The songs were written from real life situations such as my divorce, the loss of my father and the devastating loss of my childhood friend for whom the CD was dedicated.
I want to give some credit to the musicians who took part in this project starting with Tom Romanowski, Terry Strasser, Brad Schulze, Tim Shaw, Jeffrey Horton, Fred Wilkes, and Paul Mellyn,
There were several different producers working on the project and it was interesting to see how they worked, I sure learned a lot. One of the producers, Bernie Larsen, recorded and played on 2 tracks for me at his studio in Houghton, Michigan. Bernie has worked with Lucinda Williams, Mellisa Ethridge, Jackson Browne, Ry Cooder and David Lindley and many others.
My good friend and producer Jamie Bridges from San Francisco worked on my first CD and was back to produce some of the songs on the new CD. He has worked with Jesse Colin Young, Steve Smith of Journey, Van Morrison and many others.
Some of the songs I produced myself as I would be working in a studio with out a producer or engineer I knew. The rest of the songs were produced by my piano player, Tim Shaw, who so generously gave of his time and his studio.
I wanted to address my relationship with CD BABY. I have been with them for close to 8 years now and I support their effort to get my music out into the mainstream. They have placed my music with iTunes, Amazon MP3, eMusic and a host of others and for this I am grateful. But I still owe my loyalties to CD BABY and that is why I have their link on my profile page. They have always paid me a fair price and they make their payments in a timely manner, a most important aspect for a working musician.But no matter where you make a purchase the point is to enjoy it!!
That is the scoop for now.......
New CD "Postcards From The Road" Available at CD Baby, Apple iTunes, Amazon, eMusic and other online retail locations. The CD contains 15 songs and covers a wide range of styles and emotions. Links to stores at bottom of page
Here is my first music video for the song "Keep On Rolling" from my new CD "Postcards From The Road". It was filmed in Wisconsin this past spring during my last travels doing shows in the mid west. All video credits to Tom Romanowski of Green Bay, WI and to his company I Witness Photography. We were just having some fun so please enjoy.
My new CD "Postcards From The Road" is almost complete, the last touches are almost finished and should be ready to head to press soon. I have put up I'll Be Leaving as a single mp3 for sale as it will be the opening track, more info to come soon.