We first came across Hunter Ellis a few years back when he submitted his excellent debut album The Healing Power of Laughter to us. So when he got in touch a few weeks back to say that he was releasing a couple of new tracks to raise money for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) we wanted to see what we could do to give it a bit of a signal boost.
We asked Hunter for a few words on how these track came about and he said “I wrote these songs an embarrassingly long time ago while I was traveling and working in the American West, mostly Alaska, Yellowstone, Utah, and the Tetons. I liked them but had no way to record or release them, until Chris Tsagakis advertised that he was offering studio drum sessions and would learn whatever you sent him and record it. The summer I wrote these, RX Bandits’ Gemini, Her Majesty had just come out and I was listening to it on repeat, so it seemed like a good fit. Plus, it would be crazy to get one of my favorite drummers of all time to record some songs for me, right?
Chris finished the drums in early 2016 and I spent the year moving across the country, getting married, finding a new job., moving again, and recording these two tracks. I spent a long time on them, and was lucky enough to get a fantastic singer (Alex Nelson of Oracle Room, my very first choice of vocalist) as well as an amazing saw player (Jenny Hansen) to play on the tracks. Brian Kincaid and Asher Katz, who I’ve been playing music with for over half my life, recorded bass and keys, and my cousin Patrick Moss did a fantastic job (I think) mastering them.
The songs are just a labor of love, and it was so great to get so much help from so many people in my life. I chose to donate all the money I make from the digital sales because I haven’t been as available as I would have liked to protest the Donald Trump regime, and I saw this as a way I could make a tiny contribution.”
The tracks are available to stream and buy from his Bandcamp now