The Sound Cafe
Tedeschi Trucks Band Release Third Album From Monumental Four-Album Project
Photo Credit: David McClister.
Tedeschi Trucks Band, the GRAMMY-winning 12-piece rock and soul group headed by Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi, release I Am The Moon: Episode III. The Fall, the third record in their monumental four-album project, I Am The Moon. The album-length companion film from director Alix Lambert is on the band's YouTube Channel.
Following a groundswell of excitement surrounding the twelve I Am The Moon songs released so far, there’s palatable anticipation for The Fall at TTB concerts and around the world this summer as fans await the next chapter.
Inspired by the 12th century poem about lovers Layla and Majnun, The Fall continues I Am The Moon's portrait of passion and despair, with band members Susan Tedeschi, Mike Mattison and Gabe Dixon taking the lead on songwriting. It opens with "the vivid hurt and explicit challenge of "Somehow," an easy-rolling groove that soon turns into full-blown soul power," explains noted music journalist David Fricke in his bio notes - with Tedeschi demanding "How many times will you walk away?/How many times is the price I pay too high?"
From there, the next chapter in this love-and madness story unfolds in American-music technicolor – from the hymn-like “None Above,” (written by Mattison and Tedeschi) to Tedeschi’s bluesy, determined “Yes We Will,” and Dixon’s “Gravity,” a New-Orleans/R&B-flavored appraisal of love’s grip and pull (co-written with Oliver Wood). Mattison’s waltz-time ballad “Emmaline” offers a beautiful reflection on departed friends and loved ones (inspired in part by the loss of long-time keyboardist Kofi Burbridge, who passed away in 2019), before the slow-dance poignant plea of “Take Me As I Am,” the album’s closer.
Few groups are capable of the uniquely nuanced amalgamation of American music — jazz, blues, rock, soul, funk, roots, and psych that TTB integrate on a nightly basis and, on I Am The Moon, they take those studied forms and construct their own language out of it.
Excitement and anticipation around this project continues to build as each film and LP is released and the band unveil fresh performances of this new music on the road. Recognizing I Am the Moon’s unusual scope and depth, fans have validated the band’s ambitious strategy absorbing the new material with rapturous approval, giving each release a ‘can’t miss’ atmosphere. Live Music Daily recently noted: “Why do we love live music? For me, it is the journey that a band can take you on and the feeling that the audience is on that ride with the band, hand-in-hand. Riding the waves, hitting the peaks, enjoying the journey. To me, there is no better band to take the universal trip with than Tedeschi Trucks Band.” See full dates below.
I Am The Moon: I. Crescent — the highly-anticipated project’s first release — has been called “one of the strongest pieces of music they’ve ever done” by Rolling Stone, who go on to marvel at the album’s ambitious scope by asking, “Who even dares to do anything like this anymore?” A 4-star MOJO review praises Derek’s guitar playing on “Pasaquan,” Crescent’s instrumental climax, as “stinging, dexterous, raga-blues brilliance,” while AllMusic deems it “dazzling in concept and execution.”
On I Am The Moon: II. Ascension, “We hear TTB capturing in the studio what it does so well on stage, namely engaging every member of the 12-piece band in a beautifully conversational way," says Glide. The Arts Fuse adds: “As it slowly pulls back the curtain on the full reveal of, I Am The Moon, TTB is dispensing an astonishing amount of detail and design to consider and appreciate. The band is cultivating anticipation in a way that feels more genuine than gimmicky."
In this thrilling new and creative chapter for TTB, the four albums that comprise I Am The Moon — I. Crescent, II. Ascension, III. The Fall, and IV. Farewell — feature staggered release dates over four successive months. In addition, each installment of I Am The Moon is accompanied
by its own album-length companion film that will debut three days prior to each audio release. The immersive films offer fans the chance to experience the music as the band intended, in an unbroken, communal setting.
Last week, Derek Trucks sat down for a fascinating, far-reaching interview with Rick Beato for his highly popular YouTube show that delves into Derek’s one-of-kind guitar/audio technique, his deep-rooted jazz influences, and so much more. Watch here.
All vinyl configurations, including individual LPs and the 4-LP I Am The Moon Deluxe Box will be available on September 9th, 2022. (The TTB store has sold-out, order EXCLUSIVELY through the Fantasy Records store.)
Tedeschi Trucks Band - I Am The Moon: Album + Film Release Dates
I Am The Moon: I. Crescent
Film Premiere: May 31st
Album Release: June 3rd
I Am The Moon: II. Ascension
Film Premiere: June 28th
Album Release: July 1st
I Am The Moon: III. The Fall
Film Premiere: July 26th
Album Release: July 29th
I Am The Moon: IV. Farewell
Film Premiere: August 23rd
Album Release: August 26th
I Am The Moon vinyl configurations: individual LPs + the 4-LP Deluxe Box
Available September 9th, 2022.
Tedeschi Trucks Band Tour Dates:
July 26 / Aurora, IL / RiverEdge Park
July 27 / St. Louis, MO / Fabulous Fox Theatre
July 29-30 / Morrison, CO / Red Rocks Amphitheatre
August 18 / San Diego, CA / Cal Coast Credit Union Amphitheater
August 19 / Los Angeles, CA / The Greek Theatre
August 20 / Berkeley, CA / The Greek Theatre
August 23 / Sacramento, CA / Sacramento Memorial Auditorium
August 24 / Eugene, OR / Cuthbert Amphitheater
August 26 / Auburn, WA / White River Amphitheater
August 27 / Bend, OR / Hayden Homes Amphitheater
August 28 / Reno, NV / Grand Sierra Resort & Casino
August 31 / Boise, ID / Outlaw Field at the Idaho Botanical Garden
September 1 / Bonner, MT / Kettlehouse Amphitheater
September 3 / Moorhead, MN / Bluestem Center for the Arts Amphitheater
September 29 – Oct 8 / New York, NY / Beacon Theatre
October 17 / Copenhagen, DK / Amager Bio
October 18 / Copenhagen, DK / Amager Bio
October 20 / Randers, DK / Vaerket
October 21 / Oslo, NO / Sentrum Scene
October 22 / Stockholm, SE / Annexet
October 25 / Berlin, DE / Verti Music Hall
October 26 / Hamburg, DE / Edel-optics.de Arena
October 27 / Prague, CZ / Forum Karlin
October 30 / Rotterdam, NL / RTM Stage
November 2 / Dublin, IE / The Helix
November 4 / London, UK / The London Palladium
November 5 / London, UK / The London Palladium
November 6 / London, UK / The London Palladium
November 9 / Manchester, UK / Manchester Academy
November 10 / Glasgow, UK / O2 Academy Glasgow
November 12 / Paris, FR / Le Trianon
November 13 / Paris, FR / Le Trianon
November 15 / Paris, FR / Bataclan
Photo Credit: David McClister.
Go back to December 31, 2008 when guitarist Derek Trucks and his wife, singer/guitarist Susan Tedeschi, were preparing to ring in the New Year. Married since 1999, these two soulmates, equally steeped in the musical roots of blues, jazz, and gospel, had finally decided the time was right to set aside their successful solo careers and commit to a new band melding their vision and talent. It wasn’t the first time they had collaborated; they had shared a stage countless times and traded album guest appearances, all while starting a family together. But on that night, hitting the stage together with members of the Derek Trucks Band and a guest horn section they heard the future.
Two years later, the couple debuted Tedeschi Trucks Band. The nation’s economy was heading into recession. The popular music landscape was filled with technological theatrics and auto-tuned singers. And here were Tedeschi and Trucks along with their (then) 8-member band, loading up two tour buses and hitting the road with a sound that defied conventional genre boundaries or traditional labels; a gypsy caravan on the rock-and-roll highway. To call it ambitious was an understatement.
In pursuit of their ideal sound driven by world class musicianship, Tedeschi and Trucks put together a musical collaborative like no other, flying in the face of any practical or economic considerations. There have been evolutionary changes to the band along the way, but the current line up includes the freight-train force of drummers Tyler Greenwell and Isaac Eady, long-time Derek Trucks Band member Mike Mattison, with his dynamic vocals and songwriting skills, Brandon Boone (bass guitar), Gabe Dixon (keyboards), the three-piece horn section of Kebbi Williams (saxophone), Ephraim Owens (trumpet), and Elizabeth Lea (trombone), and Mark Rivers and Alecia Chakour on vocal duties with Mattison. In February 2019, original band member and brilliant multi-instrumentalist Kofi Burbridge passed away, leaving an indelible mark on TTB’s spirit and sound.
On the road for upwards of 200 days a year, the TTB family has grown strong, bonding over backyard BBQs and long bus rides, all the while developing a growing repertoire of original material and paying homage to an extensive canon of influences ranging from Sly & the Family Stone, Miles Davis and George Jones to Joe Cocker, Nina Simone, and even Indian sarod master Ali Akbar Khan. Embracing improvisation over convention, and with set lists that change nightly, the collective is adept at exploring almost any musical territory. The genuine respect within its ranks is evident on stage. Trucks’ masterful guitar skills and Tedeschi’s soaring vocals and bluesy guitar shine but don’t overpower the breadth of talent, happily yielding the spotlight as needed in service of what the song deserves.
Trucks and Tedeschi’s uncompromising vision has paid off. Now 12-members strong and over a decade of steady touring in the U.S. and abroad, Tedeschi Trucks Band carries a distinguished reputation earned from both audiences and critics as one of the premier live bands in the world. Sold-out multi-night runs at venerable venues like the Beacon Theatre, Ryman Auditorium and Red Rocks Amphitheater are a testament to the can’t-miss concert experience fans have come to anticipate. The band’s own “Wheels of Soul” tour has become a sought-after summer experience across the country, bringing TTB’s unique stew of upbeat rock and soul together on stage with a slew of guests, sit ins, and supporting bands that have included the late Sharon Jones, Los Lobos The Wood Brothers, Hot Tuna and most recently Blackberry Smoke, The Marcus King Band and Drive-By Truckers.
TTB’s studio project will be their fifth and most ambitious to date: I Am The Moon, an epic undertaking in four albums with four corresponding films and 24 original songs released in successive months. Inspired by a mythic Persian tale of star-crossed lovers, and emotionally driven by the isolation and disconnection of the pandemic era, the thematic I Am The Moon totals more than two hours of music, unfolding a robust tapestry of genre-defying explorations that propel the treasured American ensemble into new and thrilling creative territory.
I Am The Moon joins an impressive and growing discography that includes Signs (2019), Let Me Get By (2016), Made Up Mind (2013), and the Grammy-winning debut, Revelator (2011) in addition to their live releases, Layla Revisited (Live At LOCKN') featuring Trey Anastasio (2021), the Grammy-nominated film/audio, Live From The Fox Oakland (2017), and 2012’s Everybody’s Talkin’. It’s clear that Trucks and Tedeschi have no intention of slowing down. As Trucks remarked to Mark Maron on his WTF podcast “I haven’t found this band’s ceiling yet.” For Tedeschi Trucks Band, there may not be one.