Co-produced by Manuel Quintana at Beet Recording Studio and performed by Jay and members of the Northern Resistance Band, Peter Dougan, Kyle Esposito and Manuel Quintana. Mixed by Manuel and Danny Blume. Mastered by Danny Blume at Hidden Quarry Studio, Woodstock, NY.
Release date: June 17, 2022
Jay Collins: vocals, keys, flute, and saxophones
Peter Dougan: guitars
Kyle Esposito: bass and backing vocals
Manuel Quintana: drums and production
“The John Brown EP”, came out in the fall of 2016 and was recorded direct to tape at Waterfront Studios in Hudson, NY. For this recording, Jay called on his band-mate from the Gregg Allman years, NYC guitarist Scott Sharrard, as well as the youthful sensation from Woodstock, guitarist and vocalist Connor Kennedy, along with the rest of the Northern Resistance.
“In the winter of 2010, I brought the members of my ace New York City group, the Kings County Band, up north to record some music in a barn where I have had the pleasure of performing nearly every Saturday night for the last 5 years: Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, NY.
We were joined by the cream of Woodstock’s crop of players which includes Larry Campbell, Donald Fagen, Bruce Katz, Jim Weider, and Levon Helm. I feel fortunate to live here, and to know and play with these people, a few of whom are giants of American music.
In addition, guitarist Scott Sharrard, my band-mate and colleague from the Gregg Allman Band, contributed some blazing guitar work.
The resulting CD, entitled “Rivers, Blues, and Other People”, is mostly a collection of my songs that we have been playing live during the last 5 to 6 years, plus a few good “covers” done in our own, soulful way. It is the best recording I have ever had the privilege of putting my name on.”
The Songbird and the Pigeon emphasizes diversity- an equal measure of roots music as well as Latin percussion – and a growing confidence in his singing an songwriting abilities.
Recorded in Brooklyn at the Bunker Studios, the album.- once again features Dred Scott and Diego Voglino along with Tim Luntzel on bass and Moses Patrou on vocals. Guitarists Ed Cherry and Chris Bergson sit-in as does guitarist Scott Sharrad who came in for the recording and ended up staying with the band. Amy Helm is also on board for a vocal appearance on the gospel-tinted “Waltz for a Boy.” “We pared things down… it’s a stronger, more unified record,” says Collins. The Nawlins-grooved title song takes on spirituality versus religion while Collins also included what he calls sorne of his “stranger” pieces, like the beat-inspired “Financial Consultation, a poem set to an Afro-Cuban percussion section. “Shotgun Past” is a “murky, strange, John Lee Hooker kind of thing, with humor interjected.” And there’s the playful fur. of “The Money Hole:” “That’s the one where we really open it up,” he says. The album closes with the old time saloon sound of “My Dreams Came Back Last Night,” delivered just by Collins on vocals and Scott on piano.
“On the first record I wouldn’t have attempted anything like that. I wasn’t confident enough to pull that off before, but my powers as a singer have started to equal where I am instrumentally,” he says. “It wasn’t easy to suddenly shoot off in another direction and it’s been a process of finding the courage,” he says. “I think I’ve come a long way as a singer and songwriter and this is the first recording I’ve made which fulfills the impulse I had to expand when I turned 30. I’ve finally made the record I was capable of making.’