New Beginnings/Old Friends, Album Update, & The Book Report

New freestyle. We filmed this off to the side on the set of the Fingerprints music video (that song and video are coming up next). I’ve thought a lot about this concept, new beginnings old friends. It’ll surely be making an appearance on the new album in some form. I find myself still trying to start things over with people in my life who are long gone. I find myself waiting around, hoping to extract more than there is out of relationships that have fossilized years ago. But maybe it’s never too late to search for new beginnings with old friends.

Much love and hope you dig this.

New beginnings, old friends.
Directed by Brian Petchers.
Album on the way.
Andres Vahos on percussion
Gabe Valle on mandolin
Me on vocals and guitar

I’ve been at my desk lately, tying up the remainder of the album which has been my lifeblood project since 2015. At this point it is truthfully right around the corner. Sometimes I actively take time away from listening to these tracks and then I let them hit me again, from start to finish, and I get fresh perspective on the whole story and on what I originally set out to document. It’s always important to remember that and to reflect on how far you’ve come since your past. We’ve been in the mastering phase the last couple weeks and things are pretty much wrapped up. I guess at this point I’m just still getting organized in my head. I posted a short teaser clip of a song on my instagram. That’s going to be called The Only Torn-Up Boy in New York. I’m really excited about that one.

I’ve also been working on the physical copies — the design, the packaging, lots of little things that end up taking a whole day or two or three that I would never expect and could never predict. Like scanning photos, playing with them on the computer, creating the album art, getting help from Tom Flynn who can apply his sick design skills to it all. Locking down the last few videos that will capture what these songs mean to me, both literally and in a more emotional sense. Going through edits and exports.

To mark the (just about) end of the album creation phase, I wanted to share some behind the scenes snapshots from the last couple of years. Me when I first moved into my apartment, stumbling to find myself while living on my own. Me the day before shooting Break Some Ice exploring filming locations in the lower east side along the river. Me discovering a new studio I love for recording vocals in NYC. Me traveling, going to shows with my friends, visiting Ithaca NY, sending off another birthday. Me chipping away at the mountain that is about to be finalized into its adult form of 13 songs very dear to my heart…

So, scroll through these pictures of days spent in and out of the studio. This is a little invite into what my life has been the last few years and what my memories will be looking back on this time:

Goes without saying that I’m dying to officially announce this album, tell you all about it, and then get this in your hands!!!!

Lastly, The Book Report hit 1 million plays on Spotify. That’s a pretty big milestone for me. I think of The Book Report largely as my first song ever…so I find that completely wild. Until the day I die I will never forget writing that song in the bedroom at my mom’s house and finally letting that piano riff become something. I’ve heard from a lot of strangers about The Book Report and how they relate. Maybe we all relate to growing up in that way, on some level. Standing on top of our own respective suicide hills and looking out over a world filled with sorrow, confusion, very wrinkled paper towns, but still being able to see a future to come out there, a future I still believe can be endlessly forgiving of all of us.

We’ve all got higher hills to climb, regardless of our depths.

Thanks for playing this song through the years and giving its meaning a life outside of my small bedroom in that tiny upstate New York town.

Much love and I’ll be back with some good news…

photo by Tom Flynn: