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July/August 2018 Relix Magazine Sampler: Courtney Barnett "City Looks Pretty"
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Video Premiere: Tom Freund feat. Ben Harper “Let My Love Open The Door”

August 18, 2017

Tom Freund enlisted Ben Harper for this cover of Pete Townshend’s "Let My Love Open The Door," which is particularly poignant at this moment. Freund notes, “Ben and I go way back to 1991 when I first came to Pitzer College in Claremont where Ben's family owned a legendary music store in town called Folk Music Center. A mutual friend introduced us and we immediately started jamming and playing long nights together, in front of collegiate crowds and even with Taj Mahal, when he visited my school. We made a duo record called Pleasure and Pain on Cardas Records in 1992. We continue to be in each other’s lives as best friends, through the ages, and with our families. He did a wonderful job producing my album Collapsible Plans in 2008, where we also invited Jackson Browne to participate on a few songs. This video is a culmination of our adventures on the road, from a show in a 12th century Italian castle to a basement club in New York, to me and my daughter on a ferry boat and playing handball on Long Island. Ben and I love this Pete Towshend song and have been doing it for several years on the road, duet style with me on ukulele and him on lap steel guitar. It seems to really hit home, the lyrics and groove, resonating with the fans, so we felt It was time to take it into the studio."

Harper adds, “Tom and I are lifelong collaborators. As much brothers as friends. We have known one another longer than we haven't. I hold him and his artistry dear. Anytime Tom calls for a session it's an honor. Even considering our camaraderie, he has his pick of 'first call' players who all love playing with him, so I jump at the chance. Tom had been doing 'Let My Love Open The Door' in his live show. When we'd tour together, he would invite me to sit in on the song during his set, and we'd do it as a duo: ukulele and lap steel, and of course those two instruments of Hawaiian origin were born to be played together. Each time we'd play it live was more fun than the last, and that carried over into the studio recording. I feel the recorded version captures the essence of those live versions we did. And to get to play with one of the greatest living drummers: Matt Johnson, that's the crowning jewel.”