Lets do this 2015!! –Just a quick update this morning and a pic from Chris Poage’s (thats me!) solo Mts. & Tunnels set @ Louie G’s last week. Our 2nd album is done and getting mastered right now! Woo hoo! The plan was to release it in March. But it might be getting pushed back another month or so.. It is always tempting to release the music before all the elements are in place but.. we know better, lots of cleaning up and dialing in to do still.. Even tho i can’t share any tracks with you yet, I can say this is our best songwriting and most meaningful music to date. So, big things are building! Stay tuned more to come soon. Here is a link to a review from Seattle Wave Radio –thanks for the props guys!
The next show will be as a Trio over in Winthrop, Wa at the Old Schoolhouse Brewery Jan 31st.
Hear an interesting interview with Chris Poage as he talks about the band and the forthcoming 2nd album release on this Bellingham based radio show: The New Americana Hour.
Jason Webley, Sarah Schmidt, Eliza Rickman
It appears that the universe has Mts. & Tunnels best interest in mind. What was looking like a sluggish year for the band in terms of producing music turned into an amazingly strange and beautiful colobrative album. We embarked on a songwriting project earlier in 2014 about a strange Scrapbook from a SanFrancisco dumpster. (foud by the infamous Chicken John) There were clippings, newspaper articles and mementos from the life Margaret Rucker of Everett, Wa. We wrote 2 songs inspired from the book and submitted them back to the project curator Jason Webley. Other songwriters included: Led to Sea, Jherek Bischoff, Eliza Rickman, Shenandoah Davis, Lonesome Leash, Zac Pennington. What a fantastic group of musicians! We sold out the first show at the historic theater in Everett, and afterwards led a march by candle light to the cemetery where she was buried. She was one of the founding daughters of the City of Everett. Over the course of the year we made an album, booked a tour and filled in a lot of the questions the book left us with
This was a beautiful project. It was at the Castro theater in SanFrancisco last weekend when Margaret’s grandson Bill heard about this show after randomly scaning through the SanFrancisco weekly. He came to the theater and was suprised to witness an entire mixed media specticle dedicated to his grandmother. He never knew Margaret personally but he shed a lot of light on this twisted story. Like all families there is love and loss but in Margaret’s case there is also a lot of tragedy. I’m not going to give the dark details away quite yet.. I will however encourage you to buy the book. It has all the pages from the found scrapbook as well as a CD with our music from the show.
The “Margaret” album is a full-length CD housed in an 88-page hardcover book and is available for $25 online at jasonwebley.com
What the heck happened this year?! It was a little crazy.. NO, it was A LOT crazy! To say the least, my personal life has been a rollercoster of beautiful and tragic events colliding from all angels. I’ve been experiencing pain, joy, tragedy and love at what seems like an accelerated rate. I am proud to say we have been recording the latest Mts. & Tunnels album through the whole thing. It is certianly my best project to date. Last week Dan Schmidt laid down some tasty piano parts. Today Sarah and I had a great vocal session. We are getting quite close thanks to the endouring energy of producer TJ Berry. . . Really looking forward to releasing this in 2015, I’ll keep you posted. Happy holidays.
A few months ago our drummer Daniel Nash left our 8 pice band with some pretty big shoes to fill. Luckily our keyboard player Kent Halvorsen just so happens to be an incredible drummer! Kent stepped up to the challenge and learned all the songs again on drums! This would be pretty tough for just about anyone, if you haven’t seen the band in a while, you may not realize Kent is totally killing it. After getting over the initial excitement of our new lineup, there was a new set of shoes that needed filling. Keyboards in a large group are funny like that. What I mean to say is they can be subtle and powerful like so many good things in life. Sarah reminded me that her brother Dan Schmidt plays keys so I called him up and he was into it! Now, in a total round-a-bout musical chairs kind-of way we’re back to our original instrumentation. Not to mention we really are a family band– how cool is that!? Heres to the Northwest music scene and family!
Happy 4th of July!
Saturday June 28th @ Darrells Tavern — Mts. & Tunnels w/ Emancipated Heart and Norman Baker and the Backroads. This will be really good!
The LA session was great! Norman and I got all the songs outlined with Jarrod’s help, then Ben our amazing engineer / producer had his friend Adam come to the studio and lay down some really tasty drumming. Sarah and I will be able to record vocals up here in Bothell at TJ’s studio as soon as we get the tracks. I’m really excited about how things are turning out! What was surprising to me was Margaret’s home in Burbank…
I know its hard to tell from the picture but seriously.. this house was 1/4 the size of her childhood home in Everett.. It’s kinda creepy to know what happened here. A little part of me wanted to go knock on the door… do the people living here today have any idea the history of this place?
Heres some more shots from our Trip:
The Margaret Rucker show in Everett was amazing! A one of a kind story was told to a sold out show at the Historic Theater and a good portion of them ended up in a late night candle light procession to the Rucker tomb. Writing the songs for that show was also amazing. We voluntarily became historians in order to make this art. It was one of those “never say never” moments for sure! We visited Margaret’s childhood home in Everett while we were writing the songs to try to wrap our heads around what it must have been like for her as a child growing up there in the teens and 20′s. Well, take a look:
It certainly wasn’t as tough as it was for some people right?! As the story goes Margaret, a UW student and a published Poet married and moved to Burbank, Ca with her husband and 2 children. They lived there for several years when one day, her husband (who we think may have been suffering from ptsd) shot him self to death in the living room after commenting to Margaret about the validity of his work.. yikes.. Heavy stuff..
We focused on the Everett / youthful side of her life.. it was a little brighter and maybe a little easier to relate to being that Sarah lives on Rucker Hill and I grew up here close by as well. What’s really exciting is I found her old Burbank, Ca address in the scrapbook and tomorrow I’m flying to LA with our bassist Norman Baker to see it first hand. Then to complete this crazy project we’ll be meeting up with our drummer Jarrod Keith for a recording session later in the day at the 206 studios! I’m so excited. I’ll keep you posted.
April 11th Sarah and I will be performing a duo set as Mts. & Tunnels! Recently, a mysterious scrapbook was uncovered from a dumpster in California. As it turns out, this scrapbook was all about the life of one of Everett, Washington’s founding daughters Margret Rucker. We have studied the scrapbook and wrote 2 songs about Margaret to perform at the Everett Historic Theater. The event was organized by Jason Webley and features a cast of great local performers. Hope to see you there!