Adam Arcuragi: Adam Arcuragi

 

Adam Arcuragi - s/t
Adam Arcuragi – s/t
  1. All the Bells
  2. 1981 (or 'Waving At You As We Part At Light Speed Will Look Like I'm Standing Still') Download 1981 (or 'Waving At You As We Part At Light Speed Will Look Like I'm Standing Still')
  3. Delicate
  4. Little Yellow Boat
  5. The Song the Sinner Sings
  6. RSMPA
  7. Part of the Sky
  8. Broken Throat
  9. ‘The Dog is Dead, Amen’
  10. The Screen
  11. The Christmas Song

Out: March 2006

Features contributions from Janet Kim, Charlie Hall, Mike Kennedy, Rick Flom, Ryan McLaughlin, Derek Zglenski, Eve Miller, Peter Wonsowski, Robert Spiece, Warren Snyder, and Robin Cole.

Recorded by Robin Cole and Mike Kennedy.
Mixed by Brian McTear and Robin Cole.
Mastered by John Baker at Maja Audio Group.
All songs © 2006 Adam Arcuragi.

By all accounts, it took a longtime for this, my first album, to come to fruition. Many years in the making, I think it was the time and effort to do it right.

“Delicate,” “All the Bells” and “‘The Dog is Dead, Amen'” were part of the first machinations of making a proper album. They were recorded in 2003 by Robin Cole on the third floor of this beautiful house, Grandmother Knight’s estate, in the ritzy Philadelphia suburbs. Low-angled ceilings and hardwood floors made it a dream acoustically and the big backyard made us feel like pros. “All the Bells” was done in one take – a practice take that went so well we decided to keep it. No one had the time to really over think anything and we were still excited to be doing this new thing. “Delicate” was a song I wrote about a night back in 1996 when Robin and I went with a high school friend to swim across the Delaware River so we could camp out on an island. It did not go well – everything got wet except for the beer and it was really cold on the island. The song is beautiful, thanks to Eve Miller (The Rachel’s, Matt Pond PA), Mike Kennedy (Audible, Mazarin, Lefty’s Deceiver) and Peter Wonsowski sprucing it up with cello, guitar, and singing saw.

Chronologically speaking, the first or oldest song is “The Screen (Philadelphia).” We recorded in Robin Cole’s bedroom. It is the only love song I wrote that I actually want anyone to hear. There have been others, but hopefully none of the others will ever surface. My plea in this song didn’t work; she still lives far away and never kissed me or talked to me again.

After a failed attempt to record in a historic church in 2004 the process began again in earnest in the summer of 2005. The remaining tracks were recorded in the studio in Mike Kennedy’s house. We did all seven of these tracks backward. I did all the singing and acoustic guitar playing first. We only paused between songs to tune the guitar and drink water. “Broken Throat” set the tone for the recordings. Instead of going for the ultra-lush sound, we thought we would take it out to the porch for this song…as if we were just sitting on the porch having a good time. It worked, or rather we liked it, so we kept that mindset when we were doing everything else. “Little Yellow Boat” features Charlie Hall (Jet Black Crayon, Windsor for the Derby, The Trouble with Sweeney) playing some skronk’n Wurlitzer. I love Rick Flom’s (The National Eye) bass on this as well. “The Song the Sinner Sings” is the companion piece to “Little Yellow Boat.” They go together thematically and one seems to tell the untold part of the other. At some point I would love to do a gospel version and break it down with a minimum of a sixteen-piece choir and lots of strings.

“RSMPA”, the song, is the shortest song I ever have ever written. “RSMPA”, the idea, is still under construction, but I’m either going to turn it into a fabulous book on theoretical linguistics or an awesome religion. “1981” was done sitting on Kennedy’s studio couch. It was more like an afterthought. I had not originally envisioned it as part of the album, but I thought, “well, we have all this gorgeous equipment, might as well record everything possible”. So we laid it down. I love, love, love how the e-bow guitar sounds like French horns. My voice is a little shot on it, but it gives the track some grit.

We then took the tracks to Brian McTear (Bitter Bitter Weeks, Mazarin) who worked his sweet mixing magic on it (which he did). Everything mastered by John Baker (Sufjan Stevens, Man Man) for the finishing touches that made this album what it is today.

Thanks for listening (and reading),
Adam, December 2005

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