Eighteen years after their first album together, Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey — the heart of ’80 jangle-pop outfit The dB’s — have just issued a follow-up, Here and Now, and will go out on tour later this month.
Backed by a full band, the duo played gigs in New York and Washington, D.C., last week to mark the album’s release, and will hit the road beginning June 27 in Chapel Hill, N.C.
So far, seven dates have been announced (see below), but the duo’s label, Bar/None Records, promises “stops scheduled for Raleigh/Durham, Los Angeles, Nashville, Asheville and other cities to be announced shortly.”
The 14-track album features guest turns from saxophonist Branford Marsalis and drummers Jon Wurster (Superchunk) and Logan Matheny (The Rosebuds), and the dB’s rhythm section — Gene Holder (bass) and Will Rigby (drums) — pitches in on the song “Santa Monica.”
Holsapple, according to Bar/None, said the process was quite different than 1991’s Mavericks:
“The first duo record we did … was recorded and mixed in one fell swoop; this one took a couple years and a hurricane (Katrina) to complete. We had a few days to get some rhythm tracks completed and then spent the rest of the studio time getting the vocals and overdubs to sit correctly with the songs.”
Stamey likened the recording process to “just friends playing in a room together”:
“Peter and I think of this as a band without a name but still with its own distinct style and sensibility. We tried to pick songs that would not seem out of place with the vibe of Mavericks, that could sit alongside the uncynical exuberance and unblinkered romanticism of the Lovin’ Spoonful, the Beach Boys, and the Everly Brothers.”
However, the duo’s decision to record an album together doesn’t mean the dB’s — who reunited and began playing live again a few years back — aren’t still in the picture. Bar/None reports that Holsapple, Stamey, Holder and Rigby are continuing work on an eventual dB’s album.
Tracklist: Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey, Here and Now (click to stream)
1. “My Friend The Sun”
2. “Santa Monica”
3. “Here And Now”
4. “Early In The Morning”
5. “Widescreen World”
6. “Broken Record”
8. “Begin Again”
9. “Bird on the Wing”
10. “Some of the Parts”
11. “Song for Johnny Cash”
12. “Long Time Coming”
13. “To Be Loved”
14. “Tape Op Blues”
Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey tour dates:
June 27: Cat’s Cradle, Chapel Hill, NC
July 4: Enofest, Durham, NC
July 10: Grey Eagle, Asheville, NC
July 11: The Basement, Nashville, TN
July 17: McCabe’s, Santa Monica, CA
July 18: Cafe du Nord. San Francisco, CA
July 29: Duke Gardens, Durham, NC
Is there any indication of whether they will play db’s material on this tour?
Sounds like there will be. Should have mentioned in the post that, according to Bar/None, “the iTunes and Amazon digital versions will come with three bonus tracks — acoustic versions of some of the dB’s tunes they might be playing on the tour: ‘From a Window to a Screen,’ ‘Today Could Be the Day’ and ‘Happenstance.'”