people get ready

We have a few things in our demo recording pipeline, but none of them feel right at the moment.

Instead, we want to share this older demo recording, what was really just a soundcheck in the studio and a completely different take from our live performances of this song. People Get Ready implores us to get on board, no ticket or baggage required.

People Get Ready, studio soundcheck

The music we’re privileged to play is built from jazz and blues traditions that were crafted in slavery and servitude, as well as the civil rights movements that are unfinished. We’re grateful to have the music; and we’re responsible to hold true to its message.

all is not lost

We’re fans of The Proper Way for many reasons. We’ve gotten to record in their studio and we love getting a chance to see them on a stage. They’re fantastic musicians and good people, an asset to the Ogden music scene.

And, they have an album out today. Ian plays drums on the record, so we like it that much more. You should give it a listen. Better yet, buy it.

virtual & physical

There’s not a lot of news to report these days. We keep to ourselves in our 4 separate units, keeping in touch in all the ways that people do, emailing and texting and Zooming to connect with each other and figure out how to share and play music when we’re only connected by long wires and radio waves.

This gives us a little bit of a chance to experiment with new ideas. We talk a lot about how to remove hiss from a microphone recording and how to synchronize tracks we’re all working on individually. So, there’s new music we each get to work on and some potential new ways to share stuff and connect with the world virtually.

Along those lines, Spotify just gave us a way to setup our profile and establish more of a presence on that platform, which is fun to see, in addition to our place on Apple Music. Take a look and add us to playlists to share with friends.

In the more real, physical world, we have 500 really great, holdable and present new business cards. For the time being, one of them is making a great bookmark until these have a chance to come along with us to gigs in person.

Business card as bookmark.
S&S custom bookmark in Adam’s reading on science teaching. Best of all worlds.

Until then, stay tuned for side projects and other updates. Be well and take care!

at home

Like you, we’re at home. It’s ironic that we have brand new business cards. All 500 of them sit here in a box with their fancy rounded corners not finding their way into anyone’s fingers, at least for now.

This pandemic promoted change is tough, both because it means we can’t play in public — our slate of gigs uniformly canceled through April and May — and because we can’t work on stuff together. I think it’s safe to say that we’re all better musicians when we’re working together, and we’re probably all better people when we’ve had a chance to mesh our musical gears. Plus, in a time of crisis, music is a great cushion to soften things. Being socially distant makes the spread of disease more controlled, but it removes one of our usual ways of coping, too.

Still, we’re working on things. We all have other stuff we’re tied up in, working and child-raising and home-schooling and breathing, so it’s tough to be particularly creative. Yet, when we each have moments we have projects we’re trying to tie together, like a 4-track mixtape where we each contribute bits and pieces and learn new things. Hopefully we’ll have stuff to share, sooner or later. It will make our own days a little brighter, at least.

As we’re experimenting with different ways of recording, I just demoed this piece that I sit down and play for my own solace. It’s what I test pianos with, just to see if how they feel, and it’s what I play to myself just to settle into my own breath. For a long time, just to myself, I’ve called it “Home.” That seems fitting now.

home (Adam, alone on the piano)

Maybe someday we’ll have to write a song we can call “out” or “not at home” or “hugs for everybody.” We’ll look forward to that day, with more to come before that, too.

Quick update: We sold a couple of downloaded albums last month, and we’re donating those proceeds to Lavender Vinyl. While Lavender doesn’t have their physical doors open, they’ll bring stuff out or deliver to you directly from their store. (I’d bet they’d even deliver our CD right off their own rack.) Or, you can order from their warehouse. I ordered from them directly, and I’m pretty tickled that I have a used copy of Ella Fitzgerald and Oscar Peterson on its way to me now.

Lavender support

In these days of pandemic and physical distancing, we’re all figuring out how to cope. For us as a band this is hard, since playing together and with live audiences opens the valve on good juices in our veins that make things better. We’re making the best of it — and we’ll share anything we come up with to try to add to the common good.

Until those better days yet to come, we want to promote the greater good and taking care of one another on local levels. Here’s our own first attempt:

We’re donating all proceeds from purchased downloads in March to support Lavender Vinyl here in Ogden. They’re a community centered small business that supports local music, including by carrying our own CDs on their rack. (If you happen to buy our CD directly from them, we’ll donate our own portion back to them as well.)

So now’s a time to buy our music and feel especially good about it. The best way to do this is here on BandCamp where you can get files in multiple formats. BandCamp reports our proceeds much sooner than other outlets and you can tip whatever you’d like on their site, which we’ll also pass on to Lavender. In addition, BandCamp is waiving all of their own profits and passing them along to us on this Friday, March 20. So all of the money you put into BandCamp on Friday will go directly to musicians, and S&S will pass this all on to Lavender Vinyl. (But other days are good, too. Don’t hold back.)

We’d encourage you to poke around BandCamp and find other bands you’d like to support right now. You get music, and independent musicians get support at a time when they aren’t getting gigs and not getting paid.*

Besides getting our stuff on BandCamp, you can also buy downloads on:

If you’re so inclined, you should also visit Lavender Vinyl online or in person if you can. They’ve got great stuff all around, from brand new t-shirts to vintage vinyl records.

Take care of yourselves and one another. We’re looking for more ways to connect with one another, with you, and the local community, especially right now. We’ll reach out with more.

*Quick note about music buying: If you regularly stream music (and who doesn’t?) these days, you should know that the artist is getting a very small amount of money for those streams, something like one penny for every ten streams. The best way to support an independent artist is by going to shows (when you can) and buying their stuff directly. An artist will likely pocket 100x more from your purchased download than from your streaming of their stuff.