Are You Listening is a collection of songs written and recorded by Minneapolis based singer/songwriter/guitarist Ian Thomas Alexy over the past 3 years. Due to the frequent releases from Alexys’ other project, Hobo Nephews Of Uncle Frank, some of these songs were recorded and temporarily set aside.
In the winter of 2008 Alexy was bed ridden with a cold that lasted almost two weeks. In that time he Alexy’s mother sent him a box of his old stuff that had been sitting in her attic for years. That box included a Led Zeppelin songbook, plus videotapes of old rock and metal videos. “During my middle school years, I used to videotape any rock performances or videos I could find on Saturday night TV. Between SNL and The Headbanger’s Ball, there was quite a bit. That is pretty much how I learned to play.” During that two week spell Ian wrote 5 songs that he considered to all be in the vein of one of his favorite records from his teenage years Led Zeppelin III. "Although Zeppelin has been imitated many times over, there are aspects of their sound, particularly the layered harmonies that Jimmy Page created with his guitar, that have been absent from Rock N Roll since their disbanding. Three of those five songs made it to this EP. I think it is pretty obvious which ones."
Rather than trying to follow the popular trends that, in the current music industry, change faster than overnight, Alexy is set on getting to the source of his musical inspiration. "I have played in many bands and have done many styles of music over the years, including jazz, roc n roll and bluegrass. Now I find people are most responsive when I'm just writing and performing from my gut instincts and from my heart. This usually leads me back to musicians like Neil Young and Led Zep that have been heroes since I first picked up the guitar when I was twelve."
Alexy, spent his freshman year at Berklee College of Music, spent a season in West Africa studying highlife guitar, and graduated from Goddard College with a degree in jazz composition, but still sights early influences like Bob Dylan and Neil Young as his greatest inspirations. “Like Jeff Tweedy said, ‘I still love Rock N Roll."
Written produced and performed by Ian Thomas Alexy with Jimmie Rodgers, Paul Grill, Carrie Deans and Nate Sipe.
Recorded and mixed by Jim Bartell Jeff Engholm
Mastered by Dave Gardner
Drawing by Nate Vincent Szklarski
Art Direction Joshua Priestley
Are You Listening is available at www.ianthomasalexy.com.