Wednesday, September 17 | 7:00 p.m.
Fall 2014 Concert Series
sponsored in part by:
“One of those rare musicians who come along only once in a generation.”—Don Was
As a guitarist, Blake Mills is in a league of his own; as a songwriter, he’s downright intimidating. Since quietly releasing his debut album, Break Mirrors, which critics hailed as one of the best albums of 2010, Mills has been consistently busy. He has produced recordings for the Alabama Shakes, Sara Watkins, Conor Oberst, and Fiona Apple, with whom he toured extensively in 2013 and 2014. His services as a guitarist have been frequently called upon by both Rick Rubin and Don Was, and he has played with Lucinda Williams, Neil Diamond, Julian Casablancas, Band of Horses, and Norah Jones. However, perhaps his most significant endeavor has been creating his highly anticipated second solo album, Heigh Ho. Mills asked several of his musical heroes—Jim Keltner, Tony Berg, Don Was, Jon Brion, Benmont Tench, Rob Moose, Gabe Kahane, Mike Elizondo, Griffin Goldsmith, and Fiona Apple (who duets on the slow-burning “Seven” and timeless-sounding “Don’t Tell Our Friends about Me”)—to collaborate on the album, which is set to be released in September.
“Blake arranged the music the way that Cézanne would’ve filled a canvas,” Don Was notes of his experience playing in Blake’s band. “He’s a mind-blowingly great artist with the type of deep vision that is the hallmark of true genius. It’s so inspiring for musicians to play with a cat like that! If he asked us to play in orange, we wanted to give him a shade that burned so brightly as to blind the unsuspecting.”
Recorded at the legendary Ocean Way Recording studios in a room built for Frank Sinatra and used by everyone from Bob Dylan to the Rolling Stones, Mills created an album that references a range of genres without really belonging to any. “I think it’s truly necessary to make music that is without genre,” he says. “Fiona Apple once said that there are only two types of music: honest and dishonest. That honesty is the quality that I first respond to in other people’s art, and what I aspire to achieve in my own work as well.”
“One of the cool things about playing with Blake is he brings something out in you.”—Jackson Browne
“A major talent, an actual artist, a musician without an upper limit. . .the immediate future of intelligent music.”—Huffington PostBack to Concerts