David Stephenson:

They say you can never really go home again.

In March of 2011, David Stephenson loaded up his car with his "girls" (as David likes to call his six string companions) and travelled down to Mesa, Arizona to record his third full-length record. Waiting at the studio door was the strange, yet familiar face of Gerald Schoenherr. Through the modern miracle of Facebook, David and Gerald reconnected after some 30 years since gallivanting around the hallowed halls of Port Huron Northern High School in Michigan. Back in the day they were Punks; patrons of the now legendary defunct Full Moon Record Store and held captive by the nearby auditory assault of 70's Detroit Rock City radio.

For nine straight days, the two men hammered out tune after tune, operating with an unspoken trust that can only be forged from a shared musical heritage or prison. The songs on "High Lonesome" are offered to you, the casual listener, in much the same way that they unfolded in the Reposa Room at Flying Blanket Recording. There was no time for second guessing, buzz-killing multiple takes, or over wrought production techniques. The mission mantra, declared by David at the beginning of the session was, "blood on the microphone, blood on the console". These are songs cut close from the bone and bristling with real super-human energy. Whether it's the hovering ghost of Waylon Jennings (Big Heart Attack, Missing Arizona) or the resurrection of Port Huron's own Industrial pioneers, Hunting Lodge (8 Ball), the focus is on the vitality of live performance and intuition. Not enough Port Huron reference for you? The song “Bess McCullough” was inspired by the cowbell ringing matron of the late 70’s Port Huron Flags. Listen and you will hear a fight song to be played during one of the occasional rink clearing brawls that made the International Hockey League famous.

The seeds of "High Lonesome" began to take serious sprout in December of 2010. Amidst ample personal turmoil, David bought a round trip Amtrak ticket back to Port Huron from his home on the Southern Oregon Coast. After a few delightful weeks of visiting family and friends, David jumped back on the train with his spiral-bound song journal and realized that he had more than plenty of material with which to record a new album. In a strange twist of fate, the train stopped in Chicago and a young artist by the name of Jessamyn Patterson plopped down in the adjoining seat. While sharing a bottle of fine quality bourbon (Maker’s Mark), Jess pulled out her sketchbook of intricately detailed graphite pencil drawings and David was smitten. With a hung-over handshake, Jess agreed to produce the cover art for David's as yet to be titled record. No specific subject matter was dictated. Track number 1 is named after the drawing name, penciled onto the face of the reptile stripper woman, "Aminal".

Bob Hoag (Pollen, The Ataris, and The Go Reflex) played dynamite drums on the ode to rural discontent 'Better Days" and the Buzzcockesque "Inside Out". He also lent his ears on innumerable occasions and displayed heapin' helpings of generosity as the Captain of the Good Ship Flying Blanket.

Gerald Schoenherr (El Sonida De Reposa, Sound of Singles, Old Overholt) co-produced, engineered, mixed, and mastered the album at Flying Blanket Recording. As if that not enough, G-Bone unleashed his baritone backing vocals on more than a few tunes (Missing Arizona, 8 Ball, Better Days) and flexed his sinewy guitar and Moog muscles all over "High Lonesome". Without his jovial, back-slapping sense of humor it is doubtful whether some of the more melancholy songs on this album could have been fully articulated. The John North Wrightian styled number "Lansing's Burning" showcases both his guitar style and his studio acumen. Multiple dub/remix versions by DJ G Bone of "Lansing's Burning" can be obtained when purchasing the digital download version of the album. So as the song says, when in doubt……..“Take the Amtrak, take the Amtrak back to Port Huron”.

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All Material © Copyright 2011 David Stephenson