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  • Writer's pictureThe Sound Cafe

Ana Egge's Vocal Captures Sweet Sorrow of False True Love On Too Sad For The Public’s 'Old Forty'

By Stevie Connor.

Too Sad For The Public share “Old Forty,” the latest preview from Vol. 2 - Yet and Still, out July 28 on StorySound Records. “Old Forty” features lead vocals from Ana Egge, who poignantly portrays the sorrow that comes from the urge both for loving and leaving. A sparse, harmonic-laden guitar line is undergirded by slow-moving long low unison lines of synthesizers, bowed bass, and trombone. This deep sub-current provides a sense of unease that hints at oblivion.

Directed by Janie Geiser, the video for “Old Forty” is a moving collage of rustic imagery imbued with an almost spectral quality, an apt metaphor for the past lives of the ever-evolving folk compositions Too Sad For The Public tackle. Watch the video for “Old Forty” here.

Says Too Sad For The Public’s Dick Connette of “Old Forty”, “The original for this was by Richard Williams from the late 1970s field recording project Drop on Down in Florida. For years I had admired the guitar part and had been puzzled but ultimately convinced by the lyrics, an oddly eloquent expression of ambivalence. When I handed it over to Ana Egge, she jumped quick and landed hard - the words spoke to her of her own years-ago on-the-road romances, and the guitar part was something she could really dig into.”

Too Sad For The Public is the project helmed by Dick Connette of StorySound Records, the label behind a GRAMMY-winning record by Loudon Wainwright III as well as acclaimed releases by Gabriel Kahane, Margaret Glaspy, Dan Tepfer, yMusic, and so many more. Dick Connette’s fascination with folk songs goes back almost 40 years to when he shifted his focus from NYC’s downtown avant garde scene to researching and performing traditional American music.

Yet and Still — which features yMusic’s Rob Moose (Paul Simon, Phoebe Bridgers), Steve Elson (Gov’t Mule, David Bowie), Steven Bernstein (Levon Helm, Rufus Wainwright), Dan Levine (They Might Be Giants, David Byrne), Rayna Gellert (Uncle Earl, Joachim Cooder), Chaim Tannenbaum (Kate & Anna McGarrigle, Loudon Wainwright III) and Billy Martin (Medeski Martin & Wood) — is a celebration of the inventive permutations and idiosyncratic processes of American musics, as well as Connette’s own imaginative approach to interpretation. Moments of sublime serendipity abound as Connette and his collaborators explore authorial elasticity in American traditional and popular music, reveling in the gradual content shifts that songs undergo as they pass from performer to performer, generation to generation, and audience to audience.

Previous previews from Yet and Still include the singles “Railroad Bill (pt2),”which features vocals from Chaim Tannenbaum and brings to mind a rustic, folklorically-minded version of NEU!, and “G. Burns in the Bottom (pt1),”which weaves a tale about souls in the balance over a jaunty rhythm charged by oom-pah euphonium and ramshackle percussion.



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