Paul Burch's new album Light Sensitive is out now on Plowboy Records and features a dozen original compositions recorded live in the studio with the legendary WPA Ballclub and produced with GRAMMY winning bassist Dennis Crouch.
Featuring multi-instrumentalist Fats Kaplin along with guests Robyn Hitchcock, Amy Rigby, Luther Dickinson, and Aaron Lee Tasjan. Photography and design by Sheila Sachs with Catie Baumer Schwalb. Read the reviews in No Depression, American Songwriter, and World Cafe.
LOVE CAME BACK
Check out the video for "Love Came Back" (above) shot during the COVID-19 pandemic featuring special guest Robyn Hitchcock with footage by Liz Tormes, Camille Brinson, Carey Kotsionis, and the WPA Ballclub family. Also, check out NPR's Our Daily Breather series for the Burch family recipe for Hot Chicken Quarantine. And read the story behind the video shot in Nashville, New York, and California.
LIGHT SENSITIVE IS A GAS
Thanks to the Nashville Scene for premiering the new album with a terrific review. "It’s hard to listen to Light Sensitive — whose sound draws from folk, blues, postwar R&B and lots more — without admiring the quality of Burch’s songcraft. The album’s dozen tracks aren’t biographical, but they’re inspired by the lives and times of some extraordinarily colorful characters of the South.
The lyrics are at once playful and dense with allusion, rendering his subjects with the depth and boldness of an oil painting. Light Sensitive is a gas....and is further proof that he’s one of our finest wordsmiths and interpreters of the world around us."
UP ON THACKER MOUNTAIN, Oxford, MS. Visit the Thacker Mountain website to hear PB's live performance from October 2019 and stream PB's 2016 visit to the Lyric Theater. Included are live performances of "Fool About Me," "The Tell," "Gunter Hotel Blues," and "Meridian."
American Songwriter awarded Light Sensitive a 4.5 star review calling it "a stunning series of soundscapes...it blurs the boundaries between rock, blues, balladry and sounds that take their inspiration and origins from any number of geographic locales spread across the American south.
A master of crafting songs specific to whatever scenario is called for, Burch and company have fashioned a series of songs that ought to bring them the increased attention that’s so decidedly their due. Light Sensitive is nothing less than illuminating indeed."
Also check out American Songwriter's preview for "The Tell" ace photographer Jim Herrington's premier video. Jim's debut book The Climbers chronicled the first generation of modern mountain climbers and won the Grand Prize at the 2017 Banff Book Awards as well as the Mountaineering History Award. Learn more at Jim's website.
PB TALKS TO THE STRING & BLUEGRASS SITUATION
Listen to Craig Havighurst's interview with The String and read PB's essay on songwriting in Bluegrass Situation's 5+5 series
WXNA WORK PROGRESS RADIO HOUR
Tune in to PB's Works Progress Radio Hour Wednesdays from 12-1pm (CST) streaming live on wxnafm.org and in Nashville at 101.5 FM. Featuring undiscovered music from around the world plus interviews like film director Amir Bar-Lev (Long Strange Trip), photographer Jim Herrington, Billy Bragg, and bassist and E Street Band co-founder, Garry Tallent. Check out the playlists.
LOVING JIM RIDLEY Don't miss People Only Die of Love in Movies, the collected film writing of Jim Ridley. Jim's passing in 2016 left the Nashville community he championed heartbroken. Jim's essay on Jacques Demy's The Umbrellas of Cherbourg sums up our feelings of gratitude to have known his friendship."When I watch it now, it reminds me of the doorjamb in my grandmother’s house with my height marked in pencil over the years, or the dresser with my own children’s measurements notched along the edge. In it I see the person I was and the person I turned out to be, but the object itself will always be the same. It will wait, forever."
MISS THE MISSISSIPPI AND YOU Ken Burns' Country Music documentary is showing on NPT Passport. If you've missed it, put down the phone, get some chicken & dumplings, and gander at Episode 1 featuring the Carter Family and the Blue Yodeler, Jimmie Rodgers. Until a major JR documentary comes along, this will serve as the best introduction to the strange and miraculous tale of the vagabond turned proto rock star who set a new course for American music.
Don't miss PB & WPAs Meridian Rising which imagines the life of Jimmie Rodgers and features a galaxy of legends from Nashville and beyond including Billy Bragg, Jon Langford, Richard Bennett, Fats Kaplin, Tim O'Brien, William Tyler, and Garry Tallent of the E Street Band. Stream it at Rolling Stone, read the NPR feature, and visit our tent shows below where all is revealed.