— Joe Hagan, author of “Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine”
-- Greg Vandy, Roadhouse Radio, KEXP
-- Sean Jewell, American Standard Time
-- Live Performance Review from Music News 360
This is the record I’ve been dreaming of making for years, a mix between Mississippi Fred McDowell and The Staple Singers, recorded the way only real records are — everyone in the same room at the same time, recording straight to tape. No headphones, no computers, no digital editing, no piecing-songs together, no digital nudge or re-tuning. What you hear is what we played. What you feel is what we felt.
“Just a Little More Faith” is full of music I love, made with people I love, a family band. Wallace Lester, my fellow Hill Country refugee and now neighbor playing drums the way only someone who spent the last 12 years in Holly Springs could, Lee McAlilly bringing his Tupelo-groove to the bass, Heather Moulder in keyboard heaven with a Wurlitzer and Steinway upright, and to bring it all home, the one and only Kathleen Sharpe Turchi singing across from me, leading the charge on our group harmonies.
We played together, we sang together, and you will feel the love and joy that was in the room. As Jim Dickinson said, “misery sticks on tape!,” and this is the polar opposite of that.
We live in a strange age, where the majority of us eat food that defies decomposition, and listens to music that no human could possibly make or perform. We struggle to talk to people because we’re busy scrolling through their pictures. We struggle to think optimistically about the future, because the present is a quick-sand of screens beneath our feet and thumbs. We wake up, wonder why everything feels unreal, and then another wave of swiping numbs us back to a dulled state again.
“Just a Little More Faith” is a testament to the universal power of time and place, of people together, of the resonance of live performance, of opening yourself up to the vulnerability of imperfection that proves your humanity, and thus inspires the person next to you to open up as well. If we share our experiences, we can all learn from each other.
Andrija Tokic did an amazing job capturing this sound seamlessly, and sweetening it just in the right places. We recorded 16 songs on Saturday, and mixed 16 songs on Sunday. How’s THAT for cruising? Alysse Gafkjen Photography took all of these photos, and like every piece of this album, brought just the right energy into the room — which, anyone who has worked in studios with photography knows — can be very tricky.
This album is yours now. Sound waves are standing waves, and we are sending these vibrations out into the ether, seeking ears to resonate within, seeking sympathetic harmonies to uncover.
Enjoy, and thank you for listening.