Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Cave Museum”?
Yes! This a song about a dream I had, where I was wading through this giant cave full of art… hence, the very literal title Cave Museum!
Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
The aforementioned dream for one – also, I was taking an elective songwriting course while getting my Master’s (in violin performance) and I think the assignment was something like “write the melody before the chords,” and this is what I came up with. I also had the distinct privilege of having the song workshopped with Rosanne Cash, which was pretty humbling!
Any plans to release a video for the single?
Not at the moment – we do have a video coming up the pipeline for our other single, Spilled Milk, but no current plans for Cave Museum yet.
The single comes off your new album Patchwork Quilt – what’s the story behind the title?
Patchwork Quilt is the title of another song off the album. That song is about the hodgepodge way I navigate my life (Maybe I’m a patchwork quilt/that blankets all these weathered dreams/these squares confine my doubt and guilt/I thread my heart along the seams), contrasted with someone else’s more direct and focused path (Maybe you’re a wooden arrow/who never wavers in the wind/your steady course is straight and narrow/for your momentum is within). I felt that Patchwork Quilt would be a fitting album title because the record is a collection of very different songs sewn together into a composite whole.
How was the recording and writing process?
As I mentioned this song was for a class, but I worked with several iterations of my band to really bring it new life. I was always set on the banjo being the driving force behind the song, but a good deal of the other orchestration developed over time with the help of the other players, including the background vocals and even the form – we decided to add the last chorus right before we went into the studio! And I threw a violin solo in there because technically that’s my main instrument and I felt kind of guilty how little I was incorporating it into my music.
What was it like to work with Nick Tipp and how did that relationship develop?
I love Nick Tipp! I met him in LA while he was working on a production of Christopher Cerrone and the Industry’s “Invisible Cities” at Union Station. Chris suggested I get in touch with Nick about recording Goldfeather’s record, and to my delight he was on board! He was incredibly dedicated, hardworking, and did a phenomenal job. After we recorded I was on a tour as a violinist in LA, and during that time he and I spent a week mixing together. After I was back in New York we had regular communication about the mixes. I’m totally honored to have worked with him!
How much did he get to influence the album?
A good bit – it was his idea to add that last chorus to Cave Museum, and I think he was right. He had control of miking etc as we recorded – I trusted him on that. He has a hugely extensive knowledge of production and mixing, so he would generally make a mix and send it to me for my thoughts and comments (we have a huge google doc with notes on all the mixes at various stages). As I said, we had ongoing conversations about the songs, but he was definitely the main magician behind the post-production of the album.
What quilts get to inspire the songs on this record?
There weren’t any specific quilts that inspired songs, but the cover art for the album features an amazing quilt made by Janine Holzman in Sitka, Alaska, which is proudly hanging on the wall in the apartment of my friends Ryan McAdams and Laura Careless.
Any plans to hit the road?
We did a Midwest tour last month and will be doing some East Coast touring in the fall – dates TBA!
What else is happening next in Goldfeather’s world?
Mostly just preparing for the album release and everything surrounding that – we are playing at Barbes at 10pm on August 11, and our release show will be at Rockwood Stage III on September 19th. Between now and then we have some singles and videos coming out, so stay tuned!