Shirley Temple’s recent passing reminded me that our time is limited. We are losing iconic talents many of us grew up with. By recording these songs I hope not only to honor my father’s memory and his love of jazz, but to create a musical statement that is truly my own, connecting his past to my present in a way that will no doubt leave me forever changed.
My father, Christian (Buddy) Ebsen passed away in 2003 at 95 years old, after a nearly 70-year career as a dancer, actor, singer and musician. He particularly loved jazz and encouraged me as a young singer and pianist to learn songs from what we now call “The Great American Songbook.” But I was a rocker (and a bit rebellious) and much to his disappointment, I found his kind of music “old.”
I have always had a genuine desire to perform and know this inspiration comes both from Dad and my mother, a multi-talented performer in her own right. I pursued my own songwriting and performance dreams, created five solo albums and toured the world with artists such as Tracy Chapman, Al Jarreau, Boz Scaggs and Christopher Cross.
A few years ago I discovered buried in my mother’s attic a box of original scripts and music from my father’s career. Among them were Born To Dance, Yokel Boy and even a songbook from The Wizard of Oz with his handwritten notes in it. I also found a tune my father had written called “Missing You," a song so beautiful and poignant it felt like a gift just for me. I began to include it in my shows and got chills before performing it, as if my dad was there with me.
I decided to honor my father's long-standing request and record the music he would have most enjoyed. The songs included come from movies he worked on as well as a selection of his favorites. I look forward to sharing this journey with all of you, culminating with the album's release this summer on Father's Day.
Below is a rough track from our basic sessions at Barbershop Studios in Hopotcong, NJ
about the project...
Working album title:
"Scarecrow" (Dad was first cast as the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz then was switched to the Tin Man.)
Preliminary song list: (more songs TBA)
"Missing You" (written by Buddy Ebsen/Zeke Manners)
"Moon River" (Breakfast At Tiffany’s)
"Somewhere Over The Rainbow" (The Wizard of Oz)
"Codfish Ball" (Captain January)
"Easy To Love" (Broadway Melody 1938)
"St Louis Blues" (Banjo On My Knee, also the first tune my dad taught me on piano )
"Laura" (his favorite song)
"Tea for Two" (his signature dance routine)
"Comes Love" (Yokel Boy)
Musicians (more TBA)
David Mann- producer, saxophone, flute
John Patitucci- acoustic bass
Henry Hey- piano
Clint de Ganon- drums
We estimate the total cost of the project to be in excess of $22,000. This Kickstarter campaign is only set for $12,000 because we'd love to have a successful campaign. Any contributions over our goal will be applied to the overall budget. Below is a rough breakdown of expenses:
$5800 Musicians (2 tracking days)
PHASE 2- NOT FUNDED
$1700 Studio (4 days total)
$2500 Arrangements-band and strings
$1500 Musicians (overdubs)
PHASE 3- NOT FUNDED
PHASE 4 - NOT FUNDED
$3000 CD duplication initial run (full color digi-paks with booklet)
$1200 Music Licensing
$500 Misc expense
are offering a wide variety of awards, including song dedications, photos, house
concerts, and of course, the finished project!
Thank you for your support!
Risks and challenges
As a professional musician with numerous recording and touring credits, including five solo albums, I understand what it takes to see a project through from concept to completion. There are always minor set-backs (and sometime even bonuses!) along the way, and I have tremendous confidence in the creative team I have assembled to deal with whatever comes up.
This project is especially close to my heart and I feel absolutely confident that we'll succeed in completing the album in time to ship before Father's Day in June.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)