Traveling is the inspiration behind most of Neufeld’s musings. The descriptions of love found in the texture of our simplicity and complexity as human beings. The feelings are intense, but can only be described in terms of mountain, lake, sound, stars. The potential is great and ambitious, but created out of lonely basements or quiet and alone along a ridge top. The arena anticipated is filled with screaming thousands, but the most honest telling of the tales is communicated in the trust and stillness of two lovers. Because the instruments are poetry, melody, acoustic guitar, there is a bridge between young and old listeners that Ari crosses by incorporating the foundational elements of traditional folk music while blending in the fun and relevance of modern alternative rock.
“Old Man Songs By A Boy (For A Girl), The Duct Tapes, Vol I” was compiled before heading to Ireland where Ari anticipated his music would finally become something bigger than his personal distribution. It was thrown together quickly (in several hours) as a skeleton of sketches that other band members could draw from to create their own instrumentation. Following return to Canada, Ari got tired of copying the disc for friends that all wanted a piece of the sketches. It was getting tiring, inconsistent and expensive. On a whim, and desperate for cash, Ari printed off a thousand copies of the disc and threw together a duct taped cover and began selling copies at shows. Amazingly, the discs sold out within a year (garnering nearly as much cash as Ari’s full-time job!!). Since, 4 more prints of 1,000 have been made of this disc, and though other projects have emerged with far more concerted energy, time and financial backing, “Old Man Songs” remains Ari’s most acclaimed work.
There is something that listeners describe as “disarming”, “raw”, “real”, “passionate” and “haunting” about it’s trueness to life. It has also been described as “perfect background music”, “mood music”, “get naked and start making love” music, and “the best lullaby for deep sleep”. Most people find that they can reach out and touch exactly what Ari’s singing about. And it’s contents have serenaded numerous weddings.