Warren Haynes: Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag
Haynes has already anticipated the years to come, which will see him focus more of his energies at home. He hopes to break ground soon on a long-discussed home studio in the couple’s Westchester, N.Y. house. There, he expects to demo his catalog of compositions going back a few decades, some of which currently exist only in his head. He will also likely revisit the “singer/songwriter type record with a lot of acoustic instruments” that he has long contemplated. He hopes to accomplish all of this while enjoying precious family time.
Perhaps, in anticipation of this era, Haynes has made the most of his non-touring hours recently, joining colleagues and friends on their own studio sessions. The fall and winter months will see him appear on no less than nine releases. (Cue the “Hardest Working Man” theme.)
Haynes appears on new recordings by Peter Frampton, Trombone Shorty, Bill Evans, The Lee Boys, Johnny Winter, Rich Robinson, Edwin McCain and William Shatner. (Haynes added guitar to the actor’s cover of Golden Earring’s “Twilight Zone” but alas he never met Shatner who sent him a lovely thank-you email.)
He also is serving as co-producer on a Tommy Bolin tribute album, recruiting fellow guitarists such as John Scofield, Derek Trucks, Steve Morse, Brad Whitford and Nels Cline to add performances to outtakes and alternate versions of the music from Bolin’s two mid-1970s studio albums. (Bolin, an accomplished guitarist, died of a heroin overdose at the age of 25 in 1976.)
Still, Haynes maintains a focus and passion for the group that he assembled to support Man In Motion. Along with saxophonist Ron Holloway—the lone holdover from the album—he has tapped Hall, Higgins and bassist Ron Johnson with Alecia Chakour on vocals for most of the dates. It’s an animated, agile collective that is capable of riotous funk grooves, soulful statements and stirring improv.
The bandleader raves: “Every day at soundcheck, some members of the band wind up onstage before the entire band does and get into some exploration that’s interesting and cool. I’m looking forward to watching this band explore more new territory because everybody’s interests are so diverse and everybody’s abilities are equally diverse. It’s fun to see something as new as this grow and watch the directions it’s going.”
The Warren Haynes Band will tour into December before Haynes and Abts close out the year with Gov’t Mule at the Beacon Theatre in New York. (Mule will also spend a little time in the Caribbean for the band’s third annual Island Exodus getaway in Jamaica.) While the details are still fluid, it appears that perhaps a new studio album will precede Gov’t Mule’s return to more action in 2012.
As Abts offers, “We dropped ourselves off at the highest point we’ve ever been. You don’t want to bail when you’re down and out—you want to go while you’re on top—if only for a little bit—which is what we did. Nothing will kill the Mule, that’s for sure.”
Meanwhile, Nigel Hall is similarly sanguine about the Warren Haynes Band. And if audience and musician enthusiasm are any indicator, the group looks to endure beyond the Man In Motion album cycle, even if the members focus their energies elsewhere for a while.
“I’m going to ride this motherfucker until the wheels fall off, let’s just put it that way,” Hall says. “If everything is properly maintained and everybody wants to keep going, then I’m in for the long haul.”
There’s no doubt that Warren Haynes will welcome the journey—proud papa through it all.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
Dame shares a song from her new EP Preventions of Heartbreak.
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The Chapin Sisters share an tune from their new album A Date With the Everly Brothers.
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Canadian singer-songwriter Hayden performs a duet with his sister-in-law Lou Canon. The song appears on Us Alone his first record on Broken Social Scene’s Arts & Crafts Productions.
The Milk Carton Kids share the first song from their new album, The Ash & Clay.
Here is the new video from Serbian guitar ace Ana Popovic. “Object Of Obsession” appears on her latest album Can You Stand The Heat.
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