måndag 5 maj 2014

Deadstring Brothers, in english #1

The text below was posted on this blog in swedish on the 13th of July, 2013. Due to various reasons I will publish the texts I write about the Deadstring Brothers in english as well as in swedish. The translations will be filed under the tag 'Deadstring Brothers in english'. This will be the first one and the others will follow in time.

On the 13th of march this year, N and I went out to Pustervik in Gothenburg. We were going out to listen to Deadman. There was especially one song I wanted to hear, If i lay down in the river. I noted, briefly, that he (Steven Collins) was touring with a band called the Deadstring Brothers and that the act was called the Double Dead Tour.

I had never heard of  the Deadstring Brothers before (DSB from now in this text), and the strange thing is that I didn't even bother to look them up on Spotify or anything before the show. There wasn't enough time I guess.

This would be the time to mention that there will be nothing more in this text about Deadman. I apoligize for that, and I will defenately listen more to their music later on.

I was in a terrible mood when we came to Pustervik. Now I can't remember why, but if we hadn't already bought the tickets I'm quite sure that we (horrible thought!) would have stayed in.

I've allways listened to music, but It's been a while since I really listened. There's never enough time, always other things to do. I always end up listening to stuff I already know that I like. Or uptil that night that is, cause something happened to my way of listening to music right there and then.

I went straight home after the show and listened through all of DSB:s albums. I felt a bit nervous when I read that their latest release, Cannery Row, that was due to come out just about that time, were supposed to a bit more country-influenced than the earlier ones. But I didn't have to worry at all. I like Cannery Row just as mush as I like their earlier albums.

The first thing that kept me listening was the singers (frontman and founder), Kurt Marschkes voice. The lyrics facsinated me aswell. Unfortunately I can't find them anywhere online. It's like when you think you understand everything but You wan't to be completely certain? I defenately want to be able to read the lyrics when there's something I really like. Maybe It's a workthing??

On the Cannery Row cd the lyrics are not attached, and I have to admit that I have the rest of the DSB albums on Spotify only. I do have Life of crime's Demos for the choirbook on cd though, where the texts did follow. This is a very early cd though, from 2002, and sounds different from de DSB ones.

Anyway, I found this band so fascinting that I looked them up on the Internet. I didn't find a lot, but enough to make me want to know more. I read interviews, reviews, checked out their fb page, twitter etc and it was all very interesting reading. It seemed that already from the begining the reviews were really good, and You got the feeling that they were on their way to a huge breakthrough. Kurtis Marschke was reffered to as a ”studio magician” and everybody seemed to simply love these guys. These guys and this girl is more correct though, since Masha Marijeh was in the band on vocals from the begining (or at least very early?). She's not a member any longer though.

Unfortunately it also seemes like they were having trouble with bandmembers leaving due to workpermits etc, and in several interviews Marschke describes how he in the end of 2010 due to administration-problems ended the band and instead went on as a one man act. In 2012, however, Marschke and bassplayer JD Mack recounstructed DSB and ever since that things seem to be right on track again.

They have been touring this whole year and they will continue to do so the whole year through. I do hope they will return to Sweden really soon. By reading interviews and (almost a bit manic actually) check out fb and Twitter I've found so much new (to me) music that I'm having trouble finding the time to listen properly to everything. I've made very hasty and a bit sloppy playlists on Spotify and named them ”unsorted”, ”related Deadstring” etc, so that I won't forget about something I found and liked.

But, the reason why I'm writing this piece of text is really that I've found so many things that intrigues me while reading about DSB and other bands. When it comes to DSB, their journey, geographically and musically, from Detroit to Nashville is fascinating in itself. And the whole thing with bands that basically spend the whole year on the road. They tour almost constantly and I want to know more about that. How do they cope? Makes me curious. In fact I find it so interesting that I, in short periods of hybris, feel that this is something I would like to spend time writing more about. How about a biography of a few bands living like this? With lots of nice photos, and maybe a documentary movie to go with it? All from a total outsiders (mine of course!) perspective. Someone without any knowledge of the subject really, only her curiosity and longing to understand and learn more. I know it sounds crazy, but it would be such a great and creative project to dig into.
Another thing that is interesting in all this is the Nashville aspect. It feels almost a bit holy. Like that you really should have spent at least a year at university just to be able to figure out what you should start listening to. A lot of traditions, rules etc. I feel like I need a guided tour through American music history.

(...And to admit that You have stored Your vinyls away and often listen to music on Spotify...I wonder if you will be allowed to cross the city border at all...)
I've never cared about analyzing my own taste in music. I'm pretty clear of what I like and I don't really have any problems with that (or hardly ever, I wouldn't like for everybody to see my ”running 2013-list” on spotify for instance). This being said, I've always had a huge interest in traditions and coherent within literature. Now I've sort of started to think more in those terms when it comes to music as well, and it makes me a bit nervous. I'm thinking more of the reasons why I like something and what it is about it I like, or dislike for that matter, than I did before.

I also got a bit paranoid over the fact that I don't know how conservative Nashville really is, and I started to google different things, like for instance abortion clinics. To my relief I found several in Nashville, which feels good. After that I began to wonder about laws concerning guns, and felt that I had to stop before it all got too complicated.

To be continued. I think. About the music that is, not about laws about abortions and guns.

You can find Deadstring Brothers on Facebook and on Twitter @DeadstringAlert

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