Produced and engineered by Dale Charlton, Shane Dickinson, and Nile Marr.
Nile Marr is the son of former Smiths guitarist and current solo artist Johnny Marr and his wife Angela. He was named for one of his father’s musical heroes, Chic’s Nile Rodgers.
Of the two new tracks, Marr says, “Both songs were made out of a purely creative for creative’s sake headspace. I’d just finished writing my next album and felt I could do something completely different, written specifically for this physical release. Without the ability to connect with people in person, I wanted to write a pair of songs that complimented each other to exist only ever as a pair and celebrate the physical. I really liked the idea of creating something that would never need to played live. That’s when I got my friend Fences involved. We had this idea that we’d invent a fictional band, as an idea of a lost band that maybe existed in a different time, but no one could be sure. The B side is him laying out our origin story. ‘The Thunderbird Showband.'”
The songs were recorded between Christmas and New Years Day. Both were written and recorded in one shot. Marr explains, “I felt like that was the best way to make this physical release feel like capturing a moment that would only exist in the grooves of this one special edition. Over lockdown I’d built a studio in an abandoned section of an old textile mill in Manchester, with my friend who’s an engineer and producer with me. I’d written the music for the B side and then sent it over to Fences who lives in a cabin in the mountains of California, he wrote and recorded his words and together we made the whole thing happen. As a coming together for a physical moment in a digital age.”
The tracks came about after Marr asked his Instagram followers to send him a bunch of their old cassette tapes. He started making several tape loops with them and an old 4 track he still had from when he first learned to write songs.
“I just went back to the analogue well, started playing piano as a way of breaking old writing habits. Tricking my brain into thinking I was an entirely different person. One of the two brothers in The Thunderbird Showband. I think the whole thing came together over a weekend, for one moment that could never happen again.” He adds, “The artwork went the same way. Dan Wilson is an honorary brother in The Thunderbird Showband.”
Stay Free Recordings founder Jon Halperin says, “On more than one occasion, I’ve turned on UK radio and heard the brilliant Nile Marr being played. It was absolute karma when I realized my good friend Phil Jones managed him. We chatted about doing a single and he was keen. He had some really awesome tracks that he wanted to release.”
About Nile Marr:
Marr started out as a solo artist, then as a duo with American singer-songwriter Meredith Sheldon, and then in the trio Man Made, alongside drummer Scott Griffiths and bassist Callum Rogers, with future tour manager for Blossoms, Dan Woolfie, as their sound engineer. They released their debut album TV ‘Broke My Brain’ in 2016, although its constituent songs were written over a period of eight years.
Marr released a debut solo album in 2020, titled ‘Are You Happy Now?’ “Part Time Girl” was released as its first single in 2019. “Are You Happy Now?” followed in June 2020.
An EP, ‘Still Hearts,’ was released on 24 April, 2020. “Still Hearts” was its first single. Aside from the title track, there are two other tracks: “Hush” and “The Pusher”.
Marr has toured extensively with German film score composer and record producer Hans Zimmer.
His influences include John Martyn, Fugazi and Elliott Smith.
Jon Halperin has been buying music talent for 20+ years. Thousands of shows. Over ten thousand bands. From 2000-2006, he shaped Chain Reaction(Anaheim, CA) by booking such events as The Mars Volta’s first show, Death Cab for Cutie in 2002, Fall Out Boy as an opener, and some of Maroon 5’s first shows ever. Since 2006, Jon has been booking The Glass House (Pomona, CA) with events such as Weezer, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Jesus and Marychain, Snoop Dogg, Refused, 2 Chainz, Mac Miller, etc. Jon books/booked music festivals such as Long Beach, CA’s Music Tastes Good (New Order, Janelle Monae, Ween, Sleater Kinney, The Specials, Lizzo, etc), Miami’s House of Creatives(Alt J, MGMT, MIA, Foster the People, etc), Isle of Light in the Dominican Republic (Gwen Stefani for March 2020 which unfortunately canceled due to the pandemic, Washed Out, Bad Bunny, etc), and Gridlife in three US cities (Killer Mike, Flosstradamus, Soulja Boy, Ghastly, Getter, Slander, etc). In 2017, Jon produced a sold-out live Bob’s Burgers music show in LA (two nights at the Orpheum). Jon also worked for such festivals as the Coachella Music and Arts Festival (2001-2016), First City Festival, All Tomorrow’s Parties(US & UK), Warped Tour, and Hootenanny.
Halperin launched Stay Free Recordings with his wife Julia earlier this month with the announcement of ‘Mexican Candy’ a collaboration with Viva Presents’ Rene Contreras, celebrating indie rock from Mexico.