Right in the middle of Route 1 in California lies Big Sur. It's a place to hike, meditate, surf, and it's generally just one of the most inspirational places on the planet. In 2006 Paul Blackman and I (Andrew Sherbrooke) met there to hang out, and to play some music.
We've been improvising, writing, and performing music together since 1979. From heavy metal and classic rock in junior high school to progressive and art rock in high school, then jam bands like the Grateful Dead and modal jazz like Miles Davis we've covered a lot of territory. We've been critically acclaimed, featured on local radio, and have played countless live shows. In 1995, however, we moved to different areas of the country. Paul became a forest ranger, and I'm doing software development for various clients in the music industry. Big Sur was a long overdue reunion.
This disc features two acoustic guitars on all tracks. Just two people conversing with music. Everything arose spontaneously, to reflect our moods of the moment, and our environment.
We recorded ourselves using two (fairly nice) microphones duct taped to a wine bottle, running into a portable preamp, digital converter, and digital recorder. It's pretty amazing to be able to bring a CD-quality digital recording rig in your carry-on bag :). The results were brought back to my home studio; mixed and mastered digitally. Photos on and in the album were taken in Big Sur by Alexis St. John, who also designed the album.
Improvisation is an important element of what moves us musically. As we grow in our ability to express our ideas, this work becomes increasingly coherent. In the words of Thich Nhat Hanh, “Life can be found only in the present moment. The past is gone, the future is not yet here, and if we do not go back to ourselves in the present moment, we cannot be in touch with life.”
We hope you enjoy this music, and that it draws you into the present moment. We particularly want to thank our families for their support and love, including (but not limited to) our parents, Holly, Alexis, Karis, and Joshua.