It’s all coming together now! (New album update)

Debut Show with New Band

We formally debuted the band last Thursday at Tempe Tavern in Tempe, Arizona and I think it went over extremely well. We had a great turnout and the crowd seemed to be digging it. To be honest, this band was set up with the express purpose of recording the album; playing shows wasn’t really in the cards. However, after just a few rehearsals, things were coming together so well and we were all having so much fun that Jim, our drummer, piped up and said “man, we should play a few shows”. I told our friend Carol Pacey (Carol Pacey and the Honeyshakers) about our plan and the next thing I knew we were booked for a show with local Americana extraordinaire D.L Marble. We all had a blast and I am certain that more full band shows will happen in the future. In the meantime each rehearsal finds us one step closer to getting in the studio. A few more rehearsals and I think we’ll be ready.

So Who’s in the Band?

Honestly, the guys in this band have taken these folky little songs of mine to places I would never dare go by myself (and couldn’t go if I tried). We’ve toyed with the idea of coming up with an actual band name; these guys certainly deserve to be referred to as more than just “The Mikael Lewis Band”. The trouble is, who knows when I’ll be able to afford to take a band on the road? Would these guys be dumb enough to quit their jobs and hit the road with me anyway? I doubt that. I don’t think the idea of living in a van with me would be too appealing? Maybe Steve would do it- he’s young and might not know any better. Steve actually came up with the idea of a rotating cast of band names such as “Mikael Lewis and the Irreplaceables” and “Mikael Lewis and the Programmers of Doom” (what-too progressive?). At least I wouldn’t have to try and build another freakn’ website (Phew!). We’ll see what happens.  Anywho, this amazing band includes (in the order that they joined): the ambidextrous James Thorpe (Instant Hobo) on drums, the irreplaceable Jeff Goeslin (Funk n Chaos) on bass, Steven “the atmosphere master” Duncan (Programming Hiro) on guitar, and little ol’ me on vocals and acoustic guitar (and maybe dad’s lapsteel-once I figure out how to control the damned thing!) If these guys aren’t tired of me once the recording is through, maybe they’ll play local shows with me whenever I’m in town? I certainly hope so.

So What’s in a Name?

While compiling a list of the songs I wanted to include on the album, I’d noticed a common theme. Apparently there are lots of thoughts in my little head that deal with acquiring knowledge and seeking enlightenment or looking at things in a different light (There were a lot of camping songs too, which is fitting because how much closer can you get to divinity than when you’re out in the woods?). Coincidentally, my wonderful photographer sister, Marilyn Budge, had sent me some of her artwork that, unbeknownst to her, fit perfectly with the “Different Light” theme. She has graciously agreed to donate her artwork for this project. (I really can’t wait for you folks to see it-it’s sooo cool!). The album/songs theme will probably be mistaken for religiosity, but I think it has more to do with the search for our lost humanity (which, incidentally, can probably only be found in the woods). Anyhow, based on the ideas of this recurring theme, the album will be entitled “A Different Light”. The songs picked for inclusion are ones I’d written years ago, alongside ones I’ve just recently written. This album will cover the gamut of sounds that have influenced the band and myself. These sounds include everything from folksy tribal drones to progressive rock inflections to funky sing-alongs, with a few stops in between. Hopefully it will inspire us all to see things in a different light? (You see what I did there, right? nyuk, nyuk.)

Enough already! 😉

This post has ended up being twice as long as I’d intended (Oops), thank you for indulging me. Hopefully this album will be finished in just a little more than a month from now. I may post a few teaser sound clips as things progress (But then again I might just make you wait). Watch the website and Facebook page for updates.

In the meantime come catch Steve and I as as we warm up the stage for the amazing Cory Mon up in Big Water, UT next Saturday (July 26th). (Great music, great friends and the great outdoors…what else could you possible ask for?) See the calendar for details.

See ya’ll down the road…




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