Three years ago at SXSW in Austin I finally got the chance to meet one of my heroes from across the pond, Mr. Shawn Lee. We were both artists on Ubiquity Records at the time and the idea was quickly kicked around for a collaboration record. We flirted with the idea for a couple of years but having our schedules line up was close to impossible, prolific doesn’t even begin to describe he of the Tiger Mask. Fall of 2012 the planets aligned and we began trading ideas via email. About a month later we had a record in the can. It was to be “soft psych”, “folky” but as funky and psychedelic as ever….it was made in the true spirit of modern collaboration, by emailing parts back and forth in “real time”….so we present to you our debut album TRANS-ATLANTIC PSYCH CLASSICS VOL. 1, out Tuesday Oct. 29th on Ubiquity! Shawn and I played every instrument on this and Shawn handled the vocal duties. Stream the entire record here:
AQ + Shawn Lee = Electric Peanut Butter Co. October 10, 2013 Adrian
End of Summer Jams September 23, 2013 Adrian
Feeling the first cool breeze in Austin this morning while gearing up for the Fall. In between a busy month as guitarist for hire and Brownout’s wildly ambitious residency at Frank in Austin, TX, been hammering away at some really cool music.
In what could be a dream collaboration, we recorded a few new Ocote Soul Sounds songs with mutli-instrumentalist/producer Quantic (Will Holland) at LOS and a few more are on the way soon. Expect a 7″ single by year’s end if not a whole EP as well…..sheeeit, we might mess around a crank out a full length.
I’m 75% done mixing a record for legendary Dallas, TX soul singer/radio DJ Bobby Patterson featuring Austin’s The Disciples, produced by Zach Ernst. Great timeless soul music featuring some good friends and a living legend – yes, seguro que hell yes.
Also wrapping up co-producing/mixing for DC transplants Bone, Fur and Feathers. Some of my favorite stuff I’ve worked on in a minute. An EP should be done this month and ready to hit your eardrums this fall. Random LOS tidbits: recorded the Grupo Fantasma horns for John McCauley and the awesome Deer Tick for their new record “Negativity” (out 9/24/13) produced by Steve Berlin.
Introducing Spanish Gold August 24, 2013 Adrian
A little over a year ago, old Laredo homie Dante Schwebel (ex-Hacienda, City and Colour) and I cut some demos at my studio for some songs he was writing. Fast forward to fall 2012 and Dante, myself and Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket) bring the songs to life at Easy Eye Studios in Nashville. Three cities and four studios later (Lalaland Louisville, Public Hi Fi and Big Orange in Austin), we have a full length record and a killer band. Introducing SPANISH GOLD…..stay tuned….
David Garza – Human Tattoo July 29, 2013 Adrian
My man David Garza’s “Human Tattoo” is out NOW…you can grab it on Itunes or Amazon or preferrably directly from him on his site, at a show or at your local independent record store. David was one of the first people I saw play in Austin when I moved here from Laredo, TX in 1995. DG was a true individual- an amazing songwriter, performer and all around musician who was not afraid to embrace his South Texas roots yet not be boxed in by them, at a time when the latino music presence was limited at bets. He kicked down doors for myself and many of my contemporaries and continues now as well-respected and relevant as ever. Fast forward 18 years and DG and I are holed up in my studio sorting through demos and what felt like just days later, he’s rockin every instrument Prince style and we’re laying down his new record. Our palette was simply what was within my four walls (we bent the rules here and there, but not much) and I think this is a more than worthy addition to his already overwhelming discography if I might say so myself. It was a daunting task to “produce” David but I’m honored I had the opportunity and am blown away at the end result…p.s. one recent rainy afternoon we sat around and talked about this being the first of a musical trilogy, it’s some Lord of the Rings shit to try and tell his musical story!
Check out this free download from David’s record, featuring Nina Diaz from Girl in a Coma…
Recently started working with a band of Washington, DC transplants called Bone, Fur and Feathers. I’m co-producing their debut EP and am also handling mix duties. Stay tuned for more on this as it is in the early stages but as you can always expect from my articulate self, the stuff is SOOO dope – psyched out 50 bpm desert rock, can’t go wrong.
Tons of other stuff in the works – Shawn Lee and I’s record (called Electric Peanut Butter Co.) out in a couple of months, Money Chicha mixing progress, an EP with Jazz Mills and songs with Gemini Pisces (Cowboy and Indian, Leopold and his Fiction), new Echocentrics demos coming together, dusting off the MPC 2000 for some hip hop (!) with Texas OG Bavu Blakes, tracking some songs for Echocentrics guitarist and homie John Branch, etc etc etc. Stay tuned!
Natalia Clavier – LUMEN May 21, 2013 Adrian
Natalia Clavier’s LUMEN is out digitally today Tuesday May 21st! Check it out on Itunes now, where it debuted at #1 on Alternative and Rock Latino chart! You can download the free single “Adios”(featuring The Echocentrics), a jammin reintrepretation of Turkish singer Selda’s “Yaylalar”, you can stream the record at KCRW’s site, but most importantly you can buy the damn thing and support good music. It will be in stores next Tuesday May 28th and you can get it there as well.
This record was a freakin blast to make, somewhat overwhelming in the scope of work but just an amazing musical experience, especially working with a talent like Nat. This record has quite the history, with a year or two of false starts and a few minor bumps in the road, but the fact that it sounds as fresh now as it did when we started a couple of years ago means it’s the real deal. Despite the obvious that this is a special record musically, it means a lot to me because Nat was the first artist (a few years back now) to ask me to produce their record, so it goes down in my books as a sentimental one. I was honored to be a part of it.
Before I pontificate any further I have a long list of folks who “took their talents to South Austin” to make this the special record it is. The usual LOS suspects came through as always, my main man John Speice held down the drumseat for the majority of tracks, the rest of the Echocentrics crew rounded out “Adios” – Eddie Torres, John Branch (Juanillo also lent his slide guitar talents to “This Love” and Gerardo Larios, my brother from another mother Shawn Lee hooked up the mucho macho drums on “Trouble”, fellow Echocentric Mike Longoria killed the drums on unreleased (future b-side!) track “A Sign”, Nat’s husband and Argentinian renaissance man Federico Aubele was sending me lovely synth freak out tracks with 5 minutes notice, neighbor and frequent collaborator Peter Stopschinski rocked an amazing string arrangement on “Ready Now”, longtime homie from the Antibalas camp Ticklah helped me with co-production when I hit a wall on “Nada” with keys and general loveliness, piano on “This Love” was laid down in DC by the awesome Will Rast, super longtime homie Jeremy Bruch did his half man/half amazing bit on “Lumen” drums, Dj/producer extraordinaire Urusala 1000 got “Cantata” started in a direction beyond my ears, Mark “Speedy” Gonzales killed the horn arrangement and trombone on “Trouble” along with Brownout/GF brosef Josh Levy on baritone sax, Nat’s brother Pablo Anglade lent his ears and perfect constructive criticism, Mike Dillon came through with ultra last minute vibraphone on “Into the Day”, Tomas Cookman and all Nacional Records let her vision shine through and Jeff Antebi and Waxploitation Records believed in Nat on little more than some demos we made. I filled in the blanks and produced, engineered and mixed over the course of two years while all the vocal tracking were left to the big dogs at Public Hi-Fi Studio – Jim Eno and Brad Bell. Erik Wofford at Cacophony Recorders mastered it to perfection and was oh so patient with my last minute freakouts. Hope I didn’t leave anyone out..gonna keep thinking on this..
As you can see it took quite the team and it’s quite the record. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did making it. And thanks for the opportunity Natalia, let’s start the next one already….
UPDATE:…still remembering folks who were left out: Utah Hamrick on upright bass on “Trouble”!
Spring sessions March 20, 2013 Adrian
Been doing a lot of cool ass recording work at LOS lately – some of it producing, some just engineering. As if I don’t see these dudes enough, been recording a lot of sessions featuring the Grupo Fantasma/Brownout horns. Just finished up some recording over SXSW with producer and super-friend Steve Berlin of Los Lobos for the new Deer Tick record he’s producing, along with Rob Cowell of Deer Tick. Other projects with the horns include sessions for White Denim, hip hop producer Reggie Coby, and Camera Obscura, also via Steve Berlin. Keepin the engineering chops working and taking part in good music in the process is always a good thing.
Money Chicha getting ready to record our first EP this next week, really looking forward to that. Been working on a record with old Laredo homie Dante Schwebel (City and Colour, ex-Hacienda) and Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket) with a little Jesse Ebaugh (Heartless Bastards) love and a few other guests, really killer stuff…stay tuned for more info on that. I’m also producing and mixing 3 songs for a new band called Como Las Movies (former members of Maneja Beto), really cool stuff, somewhere between analog synth madness and cumbia.
What else….David Garza record mastered and in the can for a June release date, Natalia Clavier (full post coming soon) record in the can out for May 28th, Dan Dyer’s record almost there. I’ve heard Daniel Johnston’s Space Ducks will finally see a physical release soon so I’ll update on that when details are locked down. There you go – I’m busy, sorry for the two month gap between updates. AQ doin’ work.
January 2013 January 23, 2013 Adrian
As 2012 is now so “2012″, 2013 will see many LOS productions. Natalia Clavier’s album (produced and mostly engineered by yours truly-with contributions from the usual suspects-detailed post to come with full credits) will finally be seeing the light of day via Nacional Records in late May. David Garza‘s album will also be out next summer on Cosmica Records. Both are some of my proudest moments, amazing pieces of music I was honored to be part of. A few other release dates are in the works for other albums and projects but at the moment not in stone.
In the process of also wrapping up my first collaboration with one of my heroes, the one and only Shawn Lee. Called the Electric Peanut Butter Co., our collaborative effort lies somewhere between “soft” psych and acoustic dusty soul, with Shawn himself stepping out for the lead vocals. Shawn and I have spoken about this for almost two years and in a matter of one email declaring “It’s Time”, about a month later the bulk of the record was done. Had a blast on this one, every new sound I get from Shawn makes me step my game up and the process of sending ideas over email only to have him turn them around in hours from his London studio is kinda some futuristic shit. Plus, the 6 hour time difference means he’s always working early in my part of the world, in my favorite time of the day-early morning.
In related LOS news, the mighty Grupo Fantasma has a 6th record now officially in the can. Produced by the legendary Steve Berlin (Los Lobos, Diamond Rugs, etc) and engineered by Jim Eno at Public HiFi (with the occasional overdub at LOS), this one is big, bold and bad, check grupofantasma.com for more info very soon, expect a summer release.
Check out the new single “Bad Trip” by psychedelic gospel group The Relatives out of Dallas, TX, featuring your boy on guitar. The group (40 years strong) is releasing their second album in almost 40 years this year, produced by aforementioned wizard Jim Eno.
Latin funk hearthrobs Brownout are getting ready to hit the road for a short run, download a few freebies and check out dates here, including an old unreleased track called “Business at Hand” written by Beto Martinez and a couple of mixes of Brownout jams by Greg Gonzalez.
Tek it EZ… December 5, 2012 Adrian
Sorry for the lack of updates, been redefining the word GRINDING lately. Rest assured, things are cooking on 4 burners as per usual. In the meantime, check out my Tumblr which is easier to update as a microblog and I’ll leave you with some pretty studio pic “teasers”. Detailed update coming ASAP….
New song with Jazz Mills/New Echocentrics Remix EP October 18, 2012 Adrian
Recently had the honor of recording a song for Austin’s SIMS Foundation, which provides mental health services and more for Austin musicians. It is a cover of a song off French/Italian singer Nino Ferrer’s 1974 record “Nino and Radiah” called “Looking for You”. I had the pleasure of working with the amazing singer Jazz Mills (Cowboy and Indian), keyboardist/genius Graham Reynolds and the best all around pound for pound musician David Garza. The song is a promotional song you can buy or stream with all proceeds benefitting the organization. It is a great song (if i might say so myself! I didn’t write it!) and an even better cause, PLEASE support the organization or simply buy the song to enjoy it!
On that note, I am musical director for their upcoming Femmes for SIMS event. It features singers Nina Diaz (Girl in a Coma), Pamela Hart and Jazz Mills, backed by an all star band comprised of some of my favorite musicians-Graham Reynolds on piano, David Garza on guitar, Mike Longoria on drums, Wendy Simmons on bass. Stay tuned for more on this, you can buy tickets and read more about the event here. Also check out this awesome promo video….
In Echocentrics land, Ubiquity Records will be releasing a Remix EP, featuring remixes by Grant Phabao, Max Tannone and Mcpullish. You can stream the EP here….there is ONE brand new song at 2:30, called Pioneira and featuring horns by Todd Simon, drums by John Speice, guitar by Eddie “The Mexican Edge” Torres, and vocals by Tita Lima. Enjoy….
Dan Dyer, Grupo Fantasma/Steve Berlin August 28, 2012 Adrian
Been a busy summer squeezing in work between some Grupo Fantasma and Brownout touring, but I stay on my grind daily. This month had me begin work with Texas treasure Dan Dyer on his new record, handling both producing and engineering duties. As Margaret Moser of the Austin Chronicle said, “in a town full of guitar slingers, Dan’s a SINGER.” The mic don’t lie. This isn’t cosmopolitan retro soul, this is the sound of East Texas, West Texas, Central Texas, where country meets soul over some bourbon. On a short break from it until I get back from touring, but even in the early stages this one is shaping up to be quite the gem.
(finally have some real pics courtesy of Stevan Alacala!)
In LOS related news – At long last, Grupo Fantasma will kickstart the follow up to 2011′s Grammy winning “El Existential.” This will be the band’s first venture working with an outside producer (I won’t be producing it, sniff, sniff) and we’re honored to have the great Steve Berlin from Los Lobos at the helm. Sessions begin in September with Jim Eno from Spoon engineering and we’re diving in head first as soon as our touring wraps up. More info to come….
More quick updates: an album I helped mix for some friends from various projects and produced and led by Felix Pacheco called Cilantro Boombox will be available this month….read about it here. Began some mixing work for homies The Greyhounds. The Echocentrics will be releasing a new song and remix EP this fall on Ubiquity Records….speaking of Ubiquity – flagship artist Shawn Lee? yes, I’m a fan and lucky to be contemporary…collaboration? Very soon…do you like peanut butter? psychedelia? We do.