SPACES Volume 1: Ballard Homestead

by Tomo Nakayama

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about

For the first volume in this series of one-take field recordings, the good folks at Ballard Homestead allowed me to have their space to myself one rainy afternoon. Built in 1928, this former church in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood was recently renovated and reopened by Abbey Arts as a non-profit community arts space. I used a single microphone to capture the clean, natural acoustics of this room, with its hardwood floors and simple, austere walls.

About the songs:

"Roscoe (What A Gift)", "Winter Creatures" are older songs I wrote for Grand Hallway, while "In A Sailboat Painted Blue" is an even older song from my first band, Asahi. It was my first transition into the finger-picked style of guitar playing which I often use now, so it seems to fit pretty well here.

"I Can See Clearly Now" is a Jimmy Cliff song which I learned for a wedding I played in Sweden a couple years ago. "I Found A Reason" is a Velvet Underground song, and it was also the song my wife and I danced to at our own wedding. "If I Needed You" is a Townes Van Zandt song which has no connections to weddings but I love it nonetheless.

The rest of the songs are from my solo catalog. I usually play "Cold Clear Moon" and "Magnolias (for Philip)" on piano, but I rearranged it for guitar when Yuuki Matthews and I played our marathon of 14 shows in 1 day.

Recorded live in one take at Ballard Homestead, 3/20/15

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released March 23, 2015

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