We spent the last year working on our first full-length album since 2006. The album is called "Lumos" and it's our first time writing substantively about Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. There are 16 songs on the album.
This album means a lot to us. It's political. It's funny and weird. It's dramatic and emotional. We tried to build on all the things we put into our live show and, for maybe the first time, it feels like we really nailed it on these recordings. We are so proud of this album and cannot wait to share it with you.
One of our good friends listened to it and said to us: For years and years I’ve struggled with how to introduce your band to new people. I saw you live before hearing any of your recordings and while they do hold a place in my heart now, they do not do your live shows justice. This album changes all of that.
If we're being honest, we weren't sure if we'd ever make another full-length album. For the past 12 years, we've been living in different states and really only saw each other when we were on tour or doing family stuff. That schedule didn't leave a lot of time or energy for this type of focused creative work. But then the systems started to break down, authoritarians came to power, and it seemed like it might be a nice time to reconnect with a world where good can triumph over evil through collective action. Maybe there's a few things left for us to learn.
We started writing songs in February 2018 and then spent the next five months making demos and working on arrangements. We recorded the album over the course of a week in July 2018 at Bang-a-Song Studios in Gloucester, MA. Warren Babson and Tony Goddess were the engineers on the record and also did the mixing. They were so great to work with and really brought out the best in these songs. You'll understand once you hear it. We loved working with them so much that we partially entertained dreams of moving to Gloucester so we could work music continuously with this crew.
Brad Mehlenbacher (Draco and the Malfoys) plays drums on the record. Brad has drummed for us off-and-on since 2006 (including some major touring stints), but has only appeared on a few of our recordings. We're glad to finally correct this. Brad's musical sensibility has always been the perfect match for us and you will hear it on this record. His performance is EPIC. We're so grateful to everything Brad brought to this record (which also includes some great harmonies and a sick banjo performance). After Brad heard the rough mixes he wrote to us: Pretty sure this is the thing I’ve made that I’m most proud of (besides my son and that one time I nailed lemon custard).
Late one night in the studio, we wrote a song with Brad called "Where's Ron." The song is basically a platonic friendship power ballad duet between Harry and Hermione. We recorded it the next morning. But then we needed a Hermione, so we asked Kimya Dawson if she'd sing the part and she said yes. So this album – and we can't believe this is real – features a duet with Kimya Dawson performing as Hermione Granger. Fun fact: we recorded Kimya's vocal in the recording studio at Paul's local library in Lawrence, KS. Yay libraries!
The album is all mastered and moving into production right now. We commissioned our long-time friend Dan McCarthy to put together the album art and he really delivered. Look at that thing!
Check out the first single from the album here:
We're using a Kickstarter to help fund this because we've done everything ourselves and, boy howdy, did that get expensive. Once this album is released, we'll have spent nearly $30,000 on recording, mastering, artwork, packaging, and music pressings. So now we'd love to sell some of this music to you. Supporting artists is awesome. OK, now on to the fun part.
We are so excited to present you with Lumos as a double LP vinyl album. We sequenced the album specifically for this format (you'll hear the entire Hallows suite as the final side of the second LP). We went all out. Peerless Mastering did a vinyl-optimized master, which we sent to National Record Productions to be mastered to vinyl. From there it went to Quality Record Pressings in Salina, Kansas where it was plated and perfectly pressed onto black vinyl. All this comes packaged in a classic gatefold LP with a special spot-gloss varnish so you can revel in the fullness of Dan McCarthy's glorious album art.
We will also release the album in the classic compact disc format. It will come in a gatefold album sleeve accompanied by a booklet with the album art and lyrics. Great for your car or your Discman™️.
The Harry Potter Boogie
Have you heard about The Harry Potter Boogie?
After we played this for someone – maybe it was Matt Maggiacomo – they said it was the greatest thing we had ever recorded.
FACTS: this is a full-on, one minute and nineteen seconds blast of authentic boogie, all mixed in mono. We are pressing it on a 45RPM juke box single that comes in a plain white sleeve with one of those lil jukebox labels.
Don't have a record player? You should buy one! Make sure you have that 45 insert because this sucker has the big hole. Pop it on the turntable and play it at FULL VOLUME. Now is your time to boogie.
Mostly Camping - The Companion Disc
During the year we sent working on Lumos, we wrote over 30 new songs. Some of them never made it past the demo stage. Some of them aren't that great. But some of them are really good and probably even could have found a place on the final album. We've compiled our favorite 11 tracks from all those demo and home recording sessions into a companion disc, which follows the events of Book 7 in a fashion similar to our new record. These are 11 entirely different songs from the 16 new songs on Lumos. Overall, they sound a little more raw and a few are on the goofier side – kind of like a classic HATP album.
We won't promise that these tracks or this disc will necessarily remain exclusive to this Kickstarter, but it was really important to us that we find a way to share these extra recordings with all the folks who have supported us so much, both here in this campaign, and for the past 15 years.
Hagrid's Beard USB Discography
OK, so yeah, we did it. We stuck our entire discography in Hagrid's beard. It's an 8GB USB drive and it has almost all the music we've released over the past 16 years, including our new album and the companion disc. That's the deal. It's all in the beard.
Wizard Camping Gear
Planning to do a 6-month scavenger hunt in the woods? WE HAVE YOUR BACK. We made this very fine enamel camping mug designed especially for us by Kelsey Oseid. You can heat this up directly over your fire. Get that coffee going in the morning. If you didn't bring a pot and you've just snitched some canned food, this 11oz mug will do just fine for heating up some beans of whatever it was that you managed to grab. It's made in Poland by the finest enamelware company in the world and will probably last forever. Just don't put it in your microwave.
We're gonna make 200 of these. That's it. Won't be available online ever. It's a really great product. You will be impressed and will probably show this exceptional mug off to your friends when you are serving them tea. It may even be that mug: you know, the one that everyone instinctively reaches for first? I know it sounds like we're overselling it, but this mug is really gonna deliver. You have our word. There's even a Sword of Gryffindor hiding at the bottom of the mug. We're serious.
Oh dang, and you'll also get a sweet "Lumos" merit badge that we made. You supported our album. Good job! You earned that merit badge!
So in the process of recording this new full-length album (16 new songs) and the companion disc (11 more totally different songs), we must have recorded about 50-75 different demos of these songs – all in varying stages of completion. We're gonna make a cassette tape that has a bunch of those demos. Only available here. We haven't sorted through it yet, but it will probably have 10-20 tracks. Some of those songs even might be tunes that didn't make the album or the companion disc. Some will be phone demos. Some might be full production demos. It will be fun to hear if you're into that sort of thing. If you don't have a tape player, we'll send you a download or something. But even if we do it that way, we're still gonna send you the tape. That way you can carry it around with you for a few years and then, eventually, you'll be in someone's old Honda Civic and they'll have a tape player and you'll be all like, "I have just the thing!" and you'll reach into your backpack and the case will be all cracked and broken, but the tape will be fine, and you'll put it in and then you'll get spend the next 20 minutes explaining to your friend what wizard rock is while you both listen to these embryonic versions of songs that your friend has probably never heard before.
Hermione's Cool Bag
There's a song on the Companion Disc called Hermione's Cool Bag and, during the song, there's a part where we list 8 different things that you could put in Hermione's bag. But that's just the tip of the iceberg. There's so many things that could go in that wonderful bag. So we're ready to do a remix just for you. You'll send us a recording of yourself (or a friend, or yourself and a bunch of friends) listing 8 different things and we'll mix it into the original recording. We'll send you the high-res file and you can make CD copies and give them away as gifts or basically do whatever you want with the song. It's your own guest spot on a Harry and the Potters song. What would you put in Hermione's Bag?
Original CDr Demo Reproduction
In early 2003 we called up someone who worked at a Borders Bookstore in the greater Boston area and told her we had a band that played songs about the Harry Potter books and then asked her if she wanted us to play in the store on June 22nd when Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was getting released. She said "that sounds cool, send me a demo." So then we went and recorded 3 songs, put them on a CD, and mailed it off. We got the gig and we still have a copy of the CD. Now we're going to do our best to faithfully reproduce this CDr. If anyone pledges for this, we'll find some identical dead-stock Memorex Music CDrs on ebay and we'll get these babies burned up good. These three songs (Platform 9 and 3/4, Wizard Chess, and Problem Solving Skills) are substantively the same as the versions on our first album, but were mixed before we added drums to the recordings a couple months later.
Well, with this new album on the way, we figured we should get back on the road and play some of the songs for people. We are so excited to announce our first library tour since 2011. In addition to all those album expenses, we also need to buy a van, so your contribution will help make this tour possible. Almost all of our gigs this summer will be in libraries across the country. Please come see a show!
- June 21 - Gloucester, MA - Sawyer Free Library - 7pm - FREE
- June 22 - Buffalo, NY - Buffalo and Erie County Public Library - 4pm - FREE
- June 23 - London, ON - The Rec Room - 7pm doors - Tickets
- June 24 - Toronto, ON - The Rec Room - 7pm doors - Tickets
- June 25 - Millvale, PA - Millvale Community Library - 7:30pm - $10 adults - youth pay what you can
- June 26 - Ann Arbor, MI - Ann Arbor District Downtown Library - 7pm - FREE
- June 27 - TBA
- June 28 - Athens, OH - Athens Public Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- June 29 - Louisville, KY - Louisville Free Public Library - 7pm - FREE
- June 30 - Chicago, IL - Beat Kitchen - 6pm doors - $14 adv or $16 dos - w/ Richard Album and the Singles
- July 1 - DeForest, WI - DeForest Area Public Library - 6:30 - FREE
- July 2 - Dubuque, IA - Eagle Point Park (rain location: Carnegie-Stout Public Library)- 7pm - FREE
- July 3 - Minneapolis, MN - Cedar Cultural Center - 7:30pm doors - $13 adv / $17 dos
- July 4 - Rapid City, SD - Memorial Park Bandshell - 7pm - FREE
- July 5 - Steamboat Springs, CO - Strings Music Festival - 7pm
- July 6 - Boulder, CO - Band Shell in Central Park - 5pm - FREE
- July 7 - Denver, CO - Mercury Cafe - 1pm doors - $12adv /$15 dos
- July 8 - Provo, UT - Provo Library at Academy Square - 7pm - FREE
- July 9 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court - 6pm doors - $14 adv / $16 dos / under 12 half price
- July 10 - TBD
- July 12 - Missoula, MT - Missoula Public Library - 7pm - FREE
- July 13 - Calgary, AB - The Rec Room - Tickets
- July 14 - Edmonton, AB - The Rec Room - Tickets
- July 15 - Kamloops, BC - Kamloops Library - Thompson-Nicola Regional Library - 7pm FREE
- July 16 - Vancouver, BC - Vancouver Public Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- July 17 - Anacortes, WA - Causland Park- 6:30pm - FREE
- July 18 - Olympia, WA - Olympia Timberland Library - 7:30pm - FREE
- July 19 - Seattle, WA - Seattle Public Library - 6:30 - FREE
- July 20 - Portland, OR - St. Johns Community Center - 12pm - FREE
- July 20 - Portland, OR - Gresham Library - 4:30pm - FREE
- July 21 - Eugene, OR - Downtown Eugene Public Library - 6pm - FREE
- July 22 - Redding, CA - Shasta Public Library - Redding Library - 6pm - FREE
- July 23 - Santa Clara, CA - Northside Branch Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- July 24 - San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill - 7pm doors - $15 with - SOAR -Tickets
- July 25 - Oakland, CA - Oakland Public Library Main Branch - 6:30pm - FREE
- July 26 - San Luis Obispo - San Luis Obispo Library - 6:00pm - FREE
- July 27 - Santa Barbara, CA - Santa Barbara Public Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- July 28 - TBD
- July 29 - Bakersfield, CA - Beale Memorial Library - 7:30pm - Free
- July 30 - Los Angeles, CA - Troubadour - 7pm doors - $15 adv / $17 dos - Tickets
- July 31 - Huntington Beach, CA - Huntington Beach Public Library - 6pm - FREE
- August 1 - Las Vegas, NV - Clark County Library - 6pm - FREE
- August 2 - Phoenix, AZ - Burton Barr Central Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- August 3 - Tucson, AZ - Flowing Wells Branch Library - 6pm- FREE
- August 4 - El Paso, TX - El Paso Public Library Main Branch - 4pm - FREE
- August 5 - San Antonio, TX - The Magik Theater - 6pm - Tickets
- August 6 - Houston, TX - Houston Public Library - Barbara Bush Literacy Plaza - 6pm - FREE
- August 7 - New Orleans, LA - New Orleans Public Library - Main Library- 6pm - FREE
- August 8 - Ridgeland, MS - Ridgeland Public Library - 5:30pm
- August 9 - Dallas, TX - LeakyCon
- August 12 - Austin, TX - Mohawk
- August 13 - TBD
- August 14 - Shawnee, KS - Monticello Library - 6pm - FREE
- August 15 - Tulsa, OK - Tulsa City County Library - Hardesty Regional Library - 7pm
- August 16 - Springfield, MO - The Library Center - 7pm - FREE
- August 17 - Nashville, TN - Basement East - 2:30pm - Tickets
- August 18 - Greensboro, NC - Greensboro Public Library - 4pm - FREE
- August 19 - Raleigh, NC - Cameron Village Regional Library - 6pm - FREE
- August 20 - Washington, DC - Woodridge Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- August 21 - Lewes, DE - Lewes Public Library - 6:30pm - FREE
- August 22 - Brooklyn, NY - Knitting Factory - 7:30pm doors - Tickets
- August 23 - TBD
- August 24 - Boston, MA - Boston Public Library (Dartmouth Street Steps) - 2:30pm
This album was a long time coming and we're really glad to have people who are interested in listening to it. So thanks for listening. Hopefully we'll see you on the road this summer.
-Paul and Joe DeGeorge
Risks and challenges
We're dead set on getting this album out before we hit the road for 2 months of touring libraries this summer. We might have some tight turnaround times when it comes to vinyl production, but we'll really do our best to get this into your hands before we show up to rock yr local library down.
We've set our fundraising goal at $10,000 just to be on the safe side, but we'd really love to blow that out of the water because we're spending close to $30,000 to put this out AND we have to buy a van for that epic summer tour we just mentioned. So it's all adding up. Thanks for your support. We really appreciate it!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)