Today, Guitar World Acoustic Nation premieres “Easy On Me,” a “trippy and laid back testament to a simpler time and place.”
“‘Easy on Me’ best represents the vibe we were going for on this record, a sound I like to call ‘countrygaze,'” Beaudoing tells Guitar World. “Think of a thousand-yard stare that accompanies boozy recollections of perfect northern lakes and some girl you used to know.”
Last month, The Bluegrass Situation premiered “Eastern Time,” the first track to be released from the album.
2014 was spent in the shadow of a serious family illness for Beaudoing. His mother was in a coma in his hometown of Dallas, Texas, and her condition was dire enough to require him to leave his wife and child behind for weeks at a time. Between visits to Texas, he would return to Nashville and stay busy in the studio, where he occupied his mind with the writing and recording of Thirsty Valley.
Due to his mother’s illness, completing Thirsty Valley meant recording at night, after first working at his day job and then checking in with his family. This cycle was punctuated with periodic trips back to Dallas to care for his mother, whose condition only gradually began to improve. Just when it seemed that his schedule couldn’t get any more hectic, he received the welcome news that he and his wife would be expecting another baby.
“The past year was trying, but in a few short months the difficulties gave way to good things: my mother made a near-full recovery. I had another son. And now I have a record with a new band that I’m really proud of. It turns out I was right to be hopeful.”
The album was recorded at the Toy Box Studio in Nashville, TN and Russell Street Recording where he enlisted guitar slinger Josh Kaufman (Josh Ritter, Dawn Landes) to give the songs a spaced out, dreamy quality. He also recruited pedal steel guitarist Jonathan Gregg (the Doc Marshalls), whose ferocity on the instrument has become a key component Runner of the Woods’ sound.
Beaudoing previously led NYC’s Cajun honky-tonkers the Doc Marshalls. Over the course of three releases, the band evolved from Bakersfield-style shuffles and Acadian barnburners to jagged, glimmering folk. Thirsty Valley actually began as the band’s fourth record. This new musical direction, combined with his relocation to Nashville a few years earlier, lead Beaudoing away from the Doc Marshalls and start Runner of the Woods.
Runner of the Woods will support Thirsty Valley with a summer tour.
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