Joe Peters has recently wrapped up recording of a new 15-track CD, The Edge of Disaster by the joedai warriors, a musical collaboration between Joe and Lafayette guitar wizard Michael Kelsey. The two have collaborated previously as the joedai warriors on 1998’s Given Birth, and 2004’s follow up release, Rebirth.
Half of the 15 songs on the new album were written while Joe was in Nairobi, Kenya this past winter, but don’t expect African rhythms necessarily. “I took my mandolin with me to Africa, since I could carry it on the airline, so this represents my first writing on the mandolin. Of course Kelsey put his own spin on all the tracks, but my mandolin remains on two of the songs.”
Unlike the past two joedai warriors albums, Joe brought in a number of musical collaborators on this record. Joe’s long-time musical partner, Linda Hicks, sings on most of the songs on The Edge. “Their melodies are like a bicycle-built-for-two,” says Kelsey, who recorded, engineered and mixed the entire production.
Also singing harmonies on the album is 2008 Shirley Martin Scholarship for Young Songwriters winner Amanda Fletcher. Larry Vesely, of Bloomington bands Snakedoctor and Impasse, plays keyboards on half the tracks. “Larry has a keen musicality of which even Michael Kelsey was in awe, and his Hammond B-3 with Leslie rotating speakers sound adds an incredible new dimension to my music,” says Peters.
Kevin Anderson, percussionist with Dayton, Ohio-based Rhythm in Shoes, set up the drum kit in Kelsey’s kitchen to record on many of the tracks.
Rounding out the guest musicians on the album is the team of Allison Edberg on violin and viola on two tracks, and her ex-husband, Eric Edberg, on cello on one. “I have always wanted to record with cello, because of the range of emotion inherent in the instrument, so this was a dream come true,” says Peters.
The Edge of Disaster contains something for everyone, with a healthy dose of rock and folk, some pop, a little blues, a dab of reggae, a hint of hip-hop, a smattering of strings, a touch of banjo, and a lot of vocal harmonies!