About this project
Welcome to The Japonize Elephants Kickstarter Campaign 2012!
The Japonize Elephants have been hard at work for the past 4 1/2 years laying down tracks for our new album. With cinematic melodies, surf guitar, spy soundtracks, Appalachian fiddling, lush string arrangements, knee-slapping banjo, country ballads, eastern modes, 4-part vocal harmonies, Mariachi flair and a heavy jazz influence, the new Japonize Elephants album is an inimitable take on the modern American experience. Songs about space travel, Publisher’s Clearing House, pirates, buses, whiskey, and dancing in the fast lane intermingle with instrumental numbers showcasing highly developed melodic and harmonic vocabularies. The sound is twisted and ambitious yet instantly recognizable, the result of nearly 20 years of collaborative experimentation.
We are on the verge of completing the project and are turning to you to help us with the final steps. Over the years, we've had well over 20 musicians play with the band, and all of you who've been along with us for the ride, either in the band or a fan of our music, are a part of our family. Whether you've been listening to us since the early days in Bloomington, Indiana, or you're new to the Elephants, we think that you're going to love the music on this CD!
You can even sample snippets of several tunes right here:
THIS JUST IN: WE'VE GOT THE MASTERED ALBUM BACK AND ARE RELEASING A SONG TO OUR KICKSTARTER FANS! CHECK OUT "CALL THE ZAGORSKY"
The artwork for the cd is also complete!!! Here is a preview of the front and back of the cd:
(all original artwork by David Gantz)
When we first started playing together in Bloomington, Indiana back in 1994, the music was so far out there, and smashed so many genres together at lightning speed, that we caught the attention of the then brand new record label, Secretly Canadian. We paired up with them for our first two albums, Bob's Bacon Barn and Le Fête du Cloune-Pirate, and in 2002 we self-released our 3rd album, 40 Years of Our Family.
In 2007 we decided to bring the core band back together (we were spread out all over the country) and record some new songs. Sylvain had just completed a master's degree in composition, Mitch had just been touring with Donovan, Megan had started a career in NY playing Greek and Arabic music, and Evan had been touring with Rogue Wave. Everyone was busy with other great projects, but we all loved playing together so much that we made the pilgrimage to San Francisco to record in Dave's house.
Unfortunately during the initial recording process, longtime member and beloved friend, Evan Farrell died in a house fire in Oakland after an Elephants’ show. Needless to say this project has now taken on new significance for us.
Four and a half years later the project is near completion. The songs are currently being mixed and will soon be ready to be mastered and manufactured. This is where you come in! We need help covering the costs associated with releasing this album. Your contribution will help us with the costs of recording, mixing & mastering the album, artwork and layout, CD duplication, vinyl mastering and duplication, merchandise, and publicity. This Kickstarter campaign will just begin to cover the costs of releasing this album right and although the actual costs of this project are considerably higher than what we're asking, reaching our goal will make it happen!
Also, we had a lot of fun putting together the incentives! Everything from recordings, shirts, personalized songs, and house concerts at your place! We're also really excited to release our first vinyl and produce a bunch of new Elephants artwork.
In case you don't already know, here is a list of The Japonize Elephants on this record:
- Sylvain Carton: guitar, vocals, tenor, bari and alto sax, flute, bass clarinet
- David Gantz: junk percussion, vocals
- Jason Slota: vibraphone, glockenspiel, vocals, Director of The Hill Peopre Choir
- Dina Maccabee: violin, vocals
- Michael Mellender: bass, vocals, mountain dulcimer
- Jeremy Baron: banjo
- Megan Gould: violin
- Mitch Marcus: tenor sax, piano
- Charles Ferris: trumpet
- Marié Abe: accordion, phone call
- Isabel Douglas: accordion
- Chris Hiatt: flute, tin whistle, slide flutes
- George Ban-Weiss: upright bass
- Evan Farrell: bass, vocals
- Michael Abraham: electric guitar
- David Phillips: pedal steel
- Jean-Paul Carton: hurdy-gurdy
- Mouzhan Yousefi-Carton: vocals
- Sarah Marcus: whistles
Following the release of this album, we're going to embark on an East Coast tour in support of the album. We're confident that this release will help us move to the next stage of our journey, and propel us into the future. We really want to get this album out there, both as a tribute to Evan, and because we really believe in this music. Thank you for your support!
Check out our new website:
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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