About this project
Focusing on songs collected by folklorist and field recording pioneer Alan Lomax, this "collaboratory" brings together some of North America's most distinctive and creative roots musicians to revive, recycle and re-imagine traditional music. The repertoire includes African-American a cappella singing from the Georgia Sea Islands, Bahamian sea shanties, ancient Appalachian ballads, fiddle tunes and work songs collected from both well-known musicians and everyday folk: muleskinners, roustabouts, sawyers, prisoners, homemakers and schoolchildren.
The Lomax Project is a community of like-minded musicians coming together to rediscover their roots and collaborate. We're multi-generational multi-instrumentalists. We have Grammy-winner songster Tim O'Brien, premier old-time musician Bruce Molsky, infinitely creative fiddler Brittany Haas (of Crooked Still), singer and body-percussionist Moira Smiley, captivating songstress Margaret Glaspy, neo-old-time guitarist and singer Eli West, guitar virtuoso Julian Lage, brilliant bassists Greg Garrison and Joe Phillips and special guests Mollie O'Brien (voice), Ron Miles (trumpet) and Trinidadian singer Drew Gonsalves from the band Kobo Town.
The album will feature many constellations and combinations of all these artists. You'll hear hand-clapping, foot-stomping, twin fiddles, banjo, bouzouki, accordion and a swarm of singers crowded around a single microphone. The source recordings we used come from the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress in Washington, the Association for Cultural Equity's Global Jukebox and (mostly out-of-print) Lomax collections including the Deep River of Song and Southern Journey series.
The album will be recorded over the next eight months in Boulder, Boston and Toronto and will be released in March 2015. We'll be touring throughout the spring and summer to celebrate the release. Check out the tour dates right here.
"A transatlantic session with blood, guts and grit." – THE HERALD on THE LOMAX PROJECT
"The Yo-Yo Ma of the banjo." – GLOBE AND MAIL on JAYME STONE
“This is what the future of the banjo sounds like.” – SONGLINES on JAYME STONE
“I take back what I said about Jayme Stone.” – STEVE MARTIN on JAYME STONE
"A master of American folk music, Irish music, Scottish music – it doesn't matter; a fine songwriter and one of my favorite singers.” – MARK KNOPFLER on TIM O'BRIEN
"There's an incredible power of history and tradition in his vocals." – LINDA RONSTADT on BRUCE MOLSKY
"Genial, springlike virtuosity" – NEW YORK TIMES on JULIAN LAGE
"Some of the most captivating music you’ll hear from some of the sparest ingredients." – PROVIDENCE JOURNAL on MOIRA SMILEY
"An affinity for unpredictable harmonies and syncopated rhythms." – DIRK POWELL on ELI WEST
"A major fiddling talent has emerged." – MARK O'CONNOR on BRITTANY HAAS
Risks and challenges
I have produced and released five albums independently and know the process well. Making an album, especially one as ambitious as this, is the work of many people and the coming to fruition of thousands of hours of focus, persistence and love for the music. We have the most extraordinary team assembled – from musicians to engineers, designers to publicists – and I've worked with all of them extensively. I've never believed so deeply in a project and have the utmost confidence that together (YOU included!) we'll make an extraordinary album.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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