These six innovative albums present the work of 15 must-hear alumni musicians. Here, in their own words, they explore their inspirations and their lives on the road as working musicians.
Moon Deluxe by Andrew Cedermark
Listen to Andrew Cedermark "Hard Livin'"
“I spent a year touring the country and Europe with a rock band from my native New Jersey. People say that touring is a lot of fun, which is only true if you like arguing with concert promoters at 3 a.m. for a $100 check, most of which will go toward paying for gas on your way to the next city, and the rest of which will buy you whatever is cheapest at the McDonalds in Elko, Nevada. The goal is to be like David Berman of the Silver Jews (Col ’89), who, for most of his music career, made records so great that he never had to tour.”—Andrew Cedermark (Col ’08)
Stellar Hoax by Borrowed Beams of Light
Listen to Borrowed Beams "Stellar Hoax"
“Stellar Hoax is a concept album loosely based on an ancient and enigmatic text called the Voynich Manuscript. It’s a 500-year-old vellum manuscript with origins and purpose still very much in debate. Its text is indecipherable, so most conclusions drawn about its purpose and authorship derive from its illuminations. We used the manuscript as a jumping-off point and wrote songs that explore it, more in a poetic sense than a detailed one, and imagining our own purposes and narratives.”—Adam Brock
The Hill and Wood by The Hill and Wood
Listen to The Hill and Wood "The Call"
“Touring gives you the opportunity to connect with people you haven’t seen in years. I suppose not everyone would consider that a good thing, but it’s meant a lot to all of us. After a show in Brooklyn, I met up with a friend who I hadn’t seen for 15 years. Other than weddings and graduations, there’s no other time where everyone you know in a certain city comes together like that.”—Sam Bush
Humanity by Tim Be Told
Listen to Tim Be Told "Humanity"
“After a show in California, a girl told me her friend had passed away. She said that in the last days of his fight with cancer, he listened to our music almost every day and it brought him a lot of comfort in a very uncertain and scary time. I started crying. I didn’t cry out of sadness; I cried because something painful in my life had brought someone hope and comfort in their final moments on earth and that somehow made it all worth it.”—Tim Ouyang (Arch ’07)
Sweetheart by Sarah White
Listen to Sarah White "Sweetheart"
“We’ve [Sarah White & the Pearls] had a lot of fun in the last year, opening for the Dave Matthews Band Caravan in Atlantic City and playing regional festivals like FloydFest in Floyd County and the Festy in Nelson County. I also perform solo or with Charlottesville guitarist Ted Pitney whenever occasions arise. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to support amazing and diverse acts, from Merle Haggard to Justin Townes Earle to Hall & Oates. My songs seem to cross genres, and can fit in traditional country or rock or folk rock. So I just keep writing, and take it as it comes.”—Sarah White (Col ’93, Grad ’01)
Home by Manorlady
Listen to Manorlady "International Boys Club"
“At Pianos in Manhattan, we were performing late in a six-band set. The musician who performed right before us had an especially antics-driven piece, which included shearing the power cord from an amp, shooting sparks all over the stage. All of the 80 people in the audience left during his set, so we performed to each other only. Nobody else was around.”—Aaron Bailey