Thank you to the many, many people that we rely on to help make this music career happen! Chief among them being our tireless manager, Amie Therrien. Thanks to Howard Bilerman for the sublime guidance and endless patience, and to Shae Brossard for throwing up mics as fast as we could think of ridiculous ideas. And thank you to the very talented musicians who played those ideas and added their own to the mix.
There are not enough words to thank the venues and promoters and hosts that book us for shows and help us do what we love: play music for fantastic folks. And great, heartfelt thanks to those who come to the shows and make it such a worthwhile job.
Thanks to you who is reading this, for being the type of person who reads liner notes. Thanks to our families, your support means so much and really we would not be able to travel and play shows without it! Finally, thanks to our son, Simon, who has to come along for this crazy ride. He’s the only thing that gives us more joy than making music.
I was born in a small Canadian town called Verona – fair Verona town! as Shakespeare would say. I moved away as soon as I was able, in part because I didn't necessarily appreciate what I had when I had it. Or, maybe, it's easier to look back through the dim haze of nostalgia and realize it was a pretty good way to grow up. In any case, I do love small towns. But I live in Toronto, and I also love living in a big city. Maybe I just love living anywhere; I'm easy that way.
The songs on this album were all written about, or inspired by, or influenced by, specific small towns in Ontario. In late 2015 and early 2016 I picked a bunch of towns where I had some history or some connection, and I travelled to each of them and I did some research on their history and then we sat down and we wrote a collection of songs. Thirty or so. From those songs we picked ten that seemed to go together, or maybe that we thought people would like to hear, and we decided to record them. It sounds easy when I write it like that, but there were long discussions about which songs to include and which to exclude. Such is the nature of album-making.
In late March 2017 I had an opportunity to go to the Banff Centre for the Arts for a songwriting residency. There I met a producer from Montreal named Howard Bilerman and had a great time working on songs and doing some recording with him while I was there. When it came time for us to find a producer for this album, it seemed a natural fit. We travelled to Montreal to record the album, which was a new experience for us – our previous albums were all recorded in Toronto. It was magical to be in a beautiful city, spending our time and creative energy in a phenomenal studio, working with fun and fantastic people who were equal parts talented and devoted to the project.
The result is this album. A few years of writing and rehearsing, creating and compromising, honing and harmonizing; just doing the work to make a few songs sound decent to our ears. It may (or may not) be shocking to know how some songs come together whole cloth and others take months to find the nuanced moment that makes them work, at least for us. Hopefully they sound decent to you, as well. Thanks for listening.
releases May 4, 2018
THE YOUNG NOVELISTS:
Graydon James – vocals, acoustic guitar, additional keys
Laura Spink – vocals, vibraphone, percussion
Derrick Brady – bass
Rory Calexico – drums, additional percussion
John Law – electric guitar
Howard Bilerman -- space lasers (9)
Jeffrey Louch – keyboards (1, 6, 8 10)
Lana Tomlin – viola, violin (2, 6, 8, 10)
Justin Wright – cello (2, 6, 8)
Produced & mixed by Howard Bilerman
Recorded at Hotel 2 Tango
Additional Recording at Typewriter Studio
Engineered by Howard Bilerman & Shae Brossard
Mastered by Philip Shaw Bova
All songs written & arranged by The Young Novelists
Management: Amie Therrien (balsampiermusic.com
Artwork/Design: Roberta Landreth (designbyroberta.com
This project is funded in part by FACTOR, the Government of Canada and Canada’s private radio broadcasters. Ce projet est finance en partie par FACTOR, le gouvernement du Canada et les radiodiffuseurs privé du Canada.
We would like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.
We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $153 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country. Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil a investi 153 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.