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    Friday
    Mar292019

    NEW FRIENDSHIP COMMANDERS VIDEO + SPRING TOUR DATES

    Friends!
    I have so much to share with you today!

    First, I'm so happy to announce the release of FC's brand new video for "WHAT YOU RAVAGE"! We collaborated with director/editor Matthew Sterling for this project and love what he brought to it. We invite you to check it out over at the Nashville Scene where it premieres today! This song and video are about grief and what we each hide beneath the surface. We hope you like it.

    Second, we have a bunch of tour dates this Spring! We've been dying to get back out on the road and see all of you. Check the dates at the bottom of this post to see if we're coming to your neighborhood! If not, we'll be touring for a lot of this year. We'll do our best to come to you.

    Last, local friends can see us headline the High Watt next Thursday night, April 4th. We can't wait.

    Thank you! We appreciate you all more than you know.


    Rock,

    BA

     FRIENDSHIP COMMANDERS TOUR DATES

    4.04.19 // High Watt // Nashville TN

    4.18.19 // Caledonia Lounge // Athens GA

    4.19.19 // Burger Bar // Asheville NC

    4.25.19 // Northside Yacht Club // Cincinnati OH

    4.26.19 // Sauna Venue // Muncie IN

    5.14.19 // P&H // Memphis TN

    5.15.19 // Circle Bar // New Orleans LA

    5.16.19 // Rudyard's // Houston TX

    5.17.19 // LOUD!Fest // Bryan TX

    5.18.19 // Division Brewing // Arlington TX

    5.19.19 // Whitty Books // Tulsa OK

    5.20.19 // Backspace // Fayetteville AR

    6.09.19 // 529 // Atlanta GA

    6.29.19 // Mag Bar // Louisville KY

     

    Friday
    Feb012019

    FACING THE MUSIC, LITERALLY

    Here goes nothing!

    I’m going to do something this year; something outside of my band, Friendship Commanders. I’m not quite ready to talk about what it is yet, but I can tell you it’s already on the calendar—and not just my calendar. A few other people are involved. Something is going down.

    I’ve committed the last five-plus years to FC; the choice to do so was mine. Time was, I’d do a bunch of projects at the same time. I had solo output, other collaborations and bands, and was always writing for other outlets. And I was a clothing designer for big chunk of years, too. I made a lot of work, sometimes through very complicated periods of my life. I’ve said many times that the creative outlets likely kept me alive and sane through those times. However, it was hard to do the work justice. Touring was difficult, and I scarcely had label or PR support of any kind for the work I was putting out into the world. At a certain point, I had to simplify. I put all other projects and personas on the shelf, literally and figuratively. I paused. And when we started Friendship Commanders, I went all in. While I have had the occasional outside collaboration in that time, all participation has been brief and limited. In the six years we’ve been a band, we’ve released two full-length albums, four EPs, four Halloween singles, and seven videos. It’s been an intense focus. The band is my favorite thing I’ve ever been a part of.

    But I can’t pretend it’s the only thing I’ve been a part of. I’ve made a lot of work. And I just looked at a bunch of it because I was reorganizing the storage of all past releases to make room for new work. There isn’t any room. I’m maxed out, living among the work I don’t talk about for various reasons. Well, I’m going to talk about it. And I’m going to do something radical, in this age of crowdfunding and patreon and all that, I’m going to ask you to buy my previous work. This will help me pay for and make room for new work, both within my physical space, and also within myself. I’m treating it as a reclamation. My previous work has been wrapped up in difficult stories and realities relating to family, dysfuctional collaborative dynamics, loss, and grief. I set it aside to recover. But, I’m upright these days, and I’m going to claim it for what it was: mine. Regardless of who else was involved, these records are my writing and my concepts, outside of the few outside writers on Family Album. (More on that in a minute.) This work belongs to me, and I’d like to share it with you. I’d like to be known. And when/if there is something else to share, I hope you’ll check that out, too. But for now, I don’t want donations or to knit you a scarf or write out lyrics by hand. I want to share my previous work with you. And I’m making it as easy as humanly possible. All options and descriptions below.

    Also, I send terrific mail. I can guarantee you’ll like getting the packages. Bonus materials will be involved. 

    I’m not going to strap a bunch of empty genre descriptors to the work below. It’s music. Some is electric, some is not.

    * * *

    33 SLADE

    The Way To Win: A True Story

    First album by my first band! We made it with J. Robbins at the legendary Inner Ear studio in Arlington VA! 33 Slade was Boey Russell on drums, Levi Fuller on bass, and me on guitar and vocals. I started my record label, Trimming The Shield Records, with my brother to release this album. It came out in December of 2002. This is the true beginning.

    My favorite track: "Mourning Rush"

     

    Harmonies For One

    This was our second album, produced in part with Grant Hart, and also with Matt Squire. Matt engineered it as well. Paul Kolderie mixed it. All of the above happened at Camp Street in Cambridge MA, a wonderful studio that is now gone, sadly. I loved working there and did so a few different times. I released this album after the band had already parted ways (geographically, primarily; Levi moved to Seattle). The record came out in 2007. I’m super proud of it. Oh, and this is the first record on which I ever acted as producer. 

    My favorite track: "Paved In Teeth"

     

    BUICK AUDRA

    Rose Ink

    I tracked this record right after 33 Slade wound down. I had just moved to Brooklyn (like, the week before), and did this project at SOMD in College Park MD. I worked with Matt Squire again; he was briefly working at this studio before moving out West. This EP was tough. It was the first solo effort I ever made and it felt lonely and pretty revealing. It’s an eight song body of work that features just me playing a 1960 Fender Duo-Sonic and singing. Mixed by Alex Hartman. Came out in the Summer of 2006. Also, Stumptown printed these CD cases, and they’re really lovely. Cover logo and lettering by acclaimed tattoo and visual artist, Scott Campbell.

    My favorite track: "The Worst Of Me"

     

    Singer

    I could write a book about making this record and the one after it, no joke. But for now, I’ll just say that this work took a lot to get together for some reason. Singer was my first full solo album, and I made it over the course of two very long years. I made it in four studios between Boston, New York, and San Diego—with at least as many engineers! You’d never know it to look at the CD. It looks like a cool breeze. It wasn’t. BUT: I did make the trip to Ojai CA to master the record with the late great Doug Sax at the Mastering Lab, and man, was that a treat. If you don’t know about Doug, look him up. If you do know about him, you know that his contributions pulled the whole thing together with whatever wizardry he possessed. Not to downplay the work itself; I’m proud of it, But it was very cool to watch Doug change it for the better. This record came out in February of 2008. (I only have eighteen copies of this album left in the wide world; that feels crazy.) Cover logo and lettering by tattoo artist Ram Hannan.

    My favorite track: "Happy Loser"

     

    Family Album

    This record also took around two years to track, and here’s why: I made it with twenty-three members of my families of choice and origin, in homes all over the country. Field recordings! I finally have enough distance from the experiences to say that I love this work, and I’m glad I did it when I did. I certainly don’t have the stomach for it now. Along with songs written by me, the album features work by Boey Russell (my brother), Catherine Huebsch (my mother), Randy Prentice (my biological father), and Fred Neil. Fred was a close friend and collaborator to my mother, and I grew up knowing him as a sort of uncle. I recorded “Little Bit of Rain” by Fred for this collection. I mixed the record with Eric McConnell, here in Nashville, which worked on a couple levels. I had recorded the music in homes, and Eric’s studio is also in his home (you’ve maybe seen his home on the cover of Loretta Lynn’s Van Lear Rose; that record was made at his house, too). And, Eric was terrific to work with, letting me lead the mixing sessions and see the vision through. I valued that experience very much. I returned to Ojai once more to master this body of work with Doug. Again, he applied magic; again, I was grateful. And that was the last time I saw Doug. He passed a couple of years later. This record was released in February of 2011. Cover logo and lettering by tattoo artist Ram Hannan.

    My favorite track: "Brand New Lie"

    * * *

    Those are the greatest hits! There are other records with other people, but I’m focusing on these right now. This is the major work of my life, pre-Friendship Commanders. I’m proud of it. I hope you like it. Thanks in advance for your support, and of course to the people who have been paying attention all along! All sales of these previous albums will contribute to Something New. Feels like a good system. Physical media bundles below! Oh—and I’m making a few ties for this project. I have a necktie line called B. Arson Neckwear, and to honor this new reclamation of my work, I’m making a limited edition tie called AUDRA. The fabric is the very silk I made the Singer cover dress from. It’s stunning. Photos and description below! Enjoy.


    ALL FIVE RECORDS - $33 (+shipping) 

    ALL BUICK AUDRA RECORDS - $23 (+shipping)

    BOTH 33 SLADE RECORDS - $13 (+shipping)

    AUDRA NECKTIE + ALL BUICK AUDRA RECORDS - $86 (+shipping) - only 3 available

    If you absolutely can’t have physical media in your life, and have no use for the lyrics and liner notes (that we labor over as artists), you can buy the digital media on my bandcamp profile, on iTunes, or on Amazon.

    Thank you for honoring my work. Art is not charity; it is art.

    And I want to say this for myself, and for as well as for anyone else who needs to hear it: we are not our wounds. We are not extensions of our families. We are not what others think or say of us. We are our own. What a beautiful, powerful thing to be.

    -Buick Audra

    NEW! AUDRA NECKTIE 

    Handmade necktie // jacquard silk with charmeuse lining // 60 inches long by 2 inches wide at bottom (can be made shorter if necessary)

     

    Friday
    Dec282018

    THANK YOU FOR 2018 // FC // B. ARSON NECKWEAR

    Hey!

    We made it to the end of this bizarre, three-year-long year! Congrats. I'm tired as hell; you?

    That said, I'm grateful to all who supported my band, Friendship Commanders, this year. We released an album that's very important us called BILL, made a bunch of videos, played a bunch of shows. The complete list of releases is below. Thank you for listening/watching/showing up. Truly. We will be touring quite a lot next year; we look forward to seeing you out there!

    BILLBANDCAMP // ITUNES // AMAZON // SPOTIFY
    "HORRIFY" VIDEO
    "WOMEN TO THE FRONT" VIDEO
    "SAW AND HEARD" LYRIC VIDEO
    "YOUR FEAR IS SHOWING" VIDEO

    * * *

    I also played two solo shows in 2018, the first in over five years! I enjoyed it. There might be more of that sort of thing in the new year. I also started a small necktie line called B. Arson Neckwear! I make ties out of vintage, rare, and/or unusual fabrics, for all people. Check them out. My most recent collection is called FOUNDING WOMEN OF PUNK, and it honors some of the great female punk musicians and artists. So far, the list is: ARI UP, POLY STYRENE, DEBBIE HARRY, ZANDRA RHODES, and PATTY DONAHUE. The ties are all handmade, true bias, narrow straight ties. I've loved designing and making them when we've been home from tour!

    * * *

    If you'd like to read a more in-depth assessment of my year, you can do so here: GETTING CURRENT.

    I thank you for paying attention, for supporting women in the arts, and for listening.

    Happy new year!

    -BA

    Monday
    Oct292018

    "YOUR FEAR IS SHOWING" VIDEO BY FRIENDSHIP COMMANDERS OUT TODAY + NOV. TOUR DATES!

    Hello, friends!

    Thanks so much for all of the support around the release of the BILL album earlier this month! We played a terrific release party on October 16th in our home city of Nashville. Here's a great review of the record by Jen Dan for Rebel Noise. We appreciate all of you for listening!

    To that end, please enjoy this new video for the opening track on the album, "YOUR FEAR IS SHOWING." The song gives shout-outs to some of horror's great characters while also addressing the very real fear that some of us may live with. We hope you enjoy it.

    From today through midnight October 31st, we will donate all proceeds from digital sales of our new album, BILL, to the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We will also donate a percentage of all physical sales of the album on those dates.

    BILL: BANDCAMP // ITUNES // AMAZON // SPOTIFY

    * * *

    Also, we're heading out for some tour dates in just a few days! Please check to see if we're coming to your city; we'd LOVE to see you!

    11.4 // Columbus OH // Cafe Bourbon St.
    11.5 // Philadelphia PA // Kung Fu Necktie
    11.6 // Allston MA // O’Brien’s Pub
    11.8 // Chapel Hill NC // The Cave
    11.9 // Cleveland OH // Maple Grove Tavern
    11.15 // Indianapolis IN // Melody Inn

    Happy Halloween!

    We're on your side. Keep hope alive,

    FC

    Friday
    Oct052018

    BILL BY FRIENDSHIP COMMANDERS IS OUT TODAY!

    IT'S A HAPPY DAY OVER HERE!

    The BILL album is now available everywhere you get your music!


    BILL: BANDCAMP // ITUNES // AMAZON // SPOTIFY

    The vinyl arrived this week and it's absolutely beautiful. 


    There are several merch bundles available on the Bandcamp page!

    Thanks to Steve Albini and everyone at Electrical Audio; thanks to Matthew Barnhart and the good folks at Chicago Mastering Service! Thanks to our team: Mark Vieira, Austin Griswold, and Aaron Gray! Thanks to Zach Barocas, Iris Robert, and Ric Simenson for the stunning imagery and artwork. We are incredibly grateful. And thanks to all who have listened and will listen. 

    * * *

    If you haven't yet, please watch the videos for "SAW AND HEARD," "WOMEN TO THE FRONT" and "HORRIFY"!

    Our official album release show is on October 16th, here in Nashville. We're excited to be part of a crazy night of music with all kinds of people, and the whole event 100% benefits Best Buddies Tennessee! We'll even be donating a portion of our merch sales to the organization, including the BILL album! Additional Fall tour dates to be announced very shortly, so make sure you follow us on Bandsintown for those updates.

    Thank you all so much. Thank you for your continued support. We hope you love the new music.
    We're on your side. Keep hope alive,

     BA