Episode 1: The Posse
The record is well underway and i've got lots of exciting news and developments! New songs, great players, neat shows, all great stuff!
This week i'm starting my series on introducing the amazing crew i've assembled for the album, every week for the next few weeks, i'll give the history of one of these incredible people. So, first up is...
Jayme Stone ~ The Producer
I met Jayme on craigslist...and no it wasn't in "casual encounters". It was summer of 2007, i had just graduated from Berklee and was thinking about moving to colorado, but really wanted to find a teacher i could study with. Jayme's ad was the first i found, and after checking out his website, i realized i should probably for sure study with this guy. A few months later we were in full study swing and Jayme had, in short order, completely blown apart my playing, i was discovering new tone, style and technique that i had never seen before, and it was good.
About a year later i was trying to decide what was to come next for me, my living situation in Colorado was coming to a close and i was thinking of heading out to one of "the big 3" music cities. It was around this time that Jayme casually mentioned that he might like to produce my first solo record. Naturally I accepted and a few hours later had found a place to live in Boulder, where i currently live.
I'm extremely honored and excited to have jayme produce my record, he brings a wealth of wisdom, technique, experience and passionate hard work to the project that would be hard to match. Over the past two years he has become a monumental influence, a source of inspiration, a mentor and a friend.
Looking forward to it Jayme!
Jayme Stone keeps an ear to the ground. His curiosity and unlikely set of reference points started early with the quirky physics of the banjo, led to a mysterious librarian who stocked his local public library with a vast trove of banjo recordings, and landed him long-lasting lessons with a series of maestros, from Béla Fleck to Bill Frisell. Influenced by Japanese poetry and Brazilian literature and featuring what he calls a “tiny symphony that takes place inside an imaginary light bulb”, Stone’s album, The Utmost, won the 2008 Juno Award for Instrumental Album of the Year.
The most recent chapter in Stone’s musical travelogue takes place in Africa. He went knowing what’s still news to most: that the hide-covered instrument with an “extra” drone string we call the banjo actually comes from West Africa. He became particularly curious about the music that may not have made it across the ocean on slave ships headed west from Senegal and Mali in the 1700-1800’s. An eight-week trip to Mali was supported by a prestigious Chalmers Arts Fellowship and found Stone sitting in with Toumani Diabate and the Symmetric Orchestra in downtown Bamako, lost in circles of Wassoulou polyrhythms and in a rural Dogon village with no electricity where he inadvertently discovered a banjo predecessor unheard of in the West. The resulting album, Africa to Appalachia, is a boundary-crossing musical collaboration with singer and kora maestro Mansa Sissoko. Produced by David Travers-Smith and featuring celebrated ngoni master Bassekou Kouyate, the recording won the 2009 Juno Award for World Music Album of the Year.
Stone is at work on new album that explores music based on folk dances from around the world: hornpipes, mazurkas, straphspeys and sambas from Sweden, Scotland, Brazil, North America and more. The album will feature fiddle pioneer Casey Driessen, gravity-defying guitarist Grant Gordy, Gaelic songbird Julie Fowlis, nyckelharpa craftsman Olov Johansson, trumpet great Kevin Turcotte and others. Recording is set for spring 2010 with an album release in fall 2010 (Canada) and spring 2011 (US and Europe).