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New Music Video: “Stars Fall on Alabama” by Tara Nevins

Filmed and produced by Jim Torres

From the Album “Wood And Stone” on Sugar Hill Records

American roots traditionalist Tara Nevins’ new release ‘Wood and Stone’ showcases Nevins’ ever-evolving repertoire and was produced by Larry Campbell at the Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock, NY. Featured guests on the album include Levon Helm, Jim Lauderdale, Allison Moorer, Teresa Williams, The Heartbeats, along with the core band of Larry Campbell, Justin Guip, and Byron Isaacs.

CMT writes, “With the wonderful fiddle groove and vividly written lyrics, Nevins gives a glimpse into her roots. Stepping out for a rare solo record (beyond her beloved band, Donna the Buffalo), she meshes her Cajun influences, unique voice, drums and steel guitars for an intriguing look at her heritage.”

One of the songs that stands out is Nevins’s version of the Jazz standard “Stars Fell on Alabama.”

A few years ago, living in Huntsville, Alabama, Nevins was approached by director Jim Torres and was asked to adapt “Stars Fell On Alabama” for the movie he was then directing – “20 Years After” (an MTI Video). Torres states, “I was looking for a song that had romantic lyrics and a geographical reference to Alabama which is where the movie took place. I’ve always loved Ella Fitzgerald and Louie Armstrong’s version of the song, and the lyrics were perfect for the movie, but I needed something a little darker, almost melancholy to match the tone of the film. I met Tara through mutual friends on the film project and we talked. I loved her music, and the thought of adapting a Jazz standard intrigued her.”

Nevins used the original lyrics and rewrote the music in an Old Time Mountain Music style. She created the new melody for the lyrics and wrote a fiddle tune as the centerpiece of the instrumental sections. She then went up to Nashville and recorded the song with Gary Paczosa.

Nevins states, “when the movie came out I put the song up on MySpace. It was also put, with just an abstract picture, up on YouTube. Between the two, the song has had nearly 60,000 views and comments. I continually receive messages from folks who’ve seen “20 Years After” saying it was their favorite thing in the movie and where can they get a copy of my version of the song? I decided to put “Stars Fell On Alabama” on my new record because of that, and because I think it is beautiful and it fit perfectly with the rest of the record.”

Here it is, yet another version of this great Jazz standard – different from all the others with an Old Time Country sound. This version is of interest to anyone who knows the song, and has had a great response from those who have heard it. It’s reference to Alabama has alot of meaning for Nevins personally and this version has seemed to touch the hearts of many listeners living in Alabama.

It seemed like the perfect song from “Wood and Stone” to do a video of. Like Jim Torres says “We wanted the video to stand on its own, and let it support the music – just Tara and her fiddle and a beautiful song.”

Here is what the press is saying about “Stars Fell on Alabama”
“…….. even though I am familiar with at least two dozen other renditions of the song, it’s as though I heard it for the first time. It is stunning in its quietness.” – Amos Perrine, No Depression

“Stars Fell on Alabama” sounds like it fell from her heart and pen too, but Nevins has the capacity to take a well-known standard like this, change the melody, and perform it so ingenuously that it fits in seamlessly to the whole groove of the record.” – Acousticana Journal

“ … it’s a track sounds like it was from the O’Brother Where Art Thou? sessions…. the haunting “Stars Fell On Alabama,” where once again Nevins shows her prowess on the fiddle” – Chuck Dauphin, Music News Nashville:

“Three deftly picked covers include the standard “Stars Fell on Alabama” (from the film 20 Years After),….Nevins works some real magic here” – Hyperbolium

“……… a dynamite reading of “Stars Fell on Alabama,” – The Daily News

The music video for “Stars Fell on Alabama” was created by Director/Editor Jim Torres, Assistant Director Keith Sims, and Cinematographer Daniel Beard in July of 2011 in Huntsville, Alabama.

Visit www.TaraNevins.com for more information about the album, a gallery of images, videos, music, and lyrics.

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Tara Nevins is sharing the song “Stars Fell on Alabama” from the new album Wood and Stone. This is Nevins’ version of the jazz classic. She was commissioned to rewrite this song for the soundtrack to “20 Years After” a post-apocalyptic movie directed by Jim Torres in Huntsville, Alabama.

“‘Wood and Stone’ is strangely hypnotic at times, with its mesmerizing rhythms and Nevins’ relaxed but commanding delivery. The beautifully dark “Tennessee River” and her cover of the jazz standard, ‘Stars Fell On Alabama,’ are entrancing and highlight Nevins’ beautiful voice” – Boone Mountain Times

Listen to “Stars Fall on Alabama”

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“Opening with a mournful fiddle and Rose Sinclair’s poignant banjo and even though I am familiar with at least two dozen other renditions of the song, it’s as though I heard it for the first time. It is stunning in its quietness.” – Amos Perrine, No Depression

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TaraNevins.com

You can also find Tara on facebook  facebook.com/TaraNevins

and DonnaTheBuffalo.com


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Wood and Stone is available at:
iTunes: http://www.itunes.com/taranevins
Amazon: http://amzn.to/lcEglg

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“Larry has taken Tara’s music to an entirely higher level, if this doesn’t turn into an award winner they’ll have been cheated!” – Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association “as invigorating as it is mesmerizing.” – Amos Perrine, No Depression

“Campbell and Nevins work some real magic here”  – Hyperbolium

“The sound is both loose and tight at the same time; the band knows how to walk that line and let Nevins be herself. To put it simply, it just plain works.”  – Brian Robbins, Jambands.com

“As much as I have listened to “Mule to Ride” during the past twelve years, I, like many other Donna fans,  have also yearned to hear Tara in her own voice, on her own terms. The new album is just that — and more.” – Amos Perrine, No Depression

“‘Stars Fell On Alabama’ is Tara’s version of an old standard, while ‘Tennessee River’ sounds like she’s written a new standard.” – Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association

“The pedigree of the album is staggering.  Start with Nevins, who has been an integral member of DTB since its formation in 1987, and add producer Larry Campell along with guest performers Levon Helm, Jim Lauderdale, Allison Moorer, and Teresa Williams, and you get a record that is as solid as the building materials mentioned in the title.” – Fifty Cent Lighter Blog

“‘What Money Cannot Buy’ and ‘The Wrong Side’ are two different versions on ‘I’ve been wronged”’ songs, the latter being one of the most upbeat sounding takes on breaking up that I’ve ever heard.” – Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association

“But even that great track [The Wrong Side] did not prepare me for what comes next, the only song Tara did not write, the jazz vocal standard, “Stars Fell on Alabama.” Opening with a mournful fiddle and Rose Sinclair’s poignant banjo and even though I am familiar with at least two dozen other renditions of the song, it’s as though I heard it for the first time. It is stunning in its quietness.” – Amos Perrine, No Depression

“If you like the fiddle, in almost all it’s various forms, and want to wade into something with country, old time, zydeco, cajun, and maybe even some bluegrass touches, you couldn’t do better than to start with this CD.” – Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association

“her songs stretch out across all her influences, including fiddle- and steel-lined country, second line rhythms and the Cajun sounds of her earlier band, the Heartbeats.”  – Hyperbolium

“… her music takes on the spirit of the [Levon Helm] Barn like a well-worn and cozy Gypsy jacket that was tailored to her shoulders.” – Brian Robbins, Jambands.com

“Producer Larry Campbell fits each song with a unique groove and adds superb electric and pedal steel guitar. The girlishness in Nevins’ voice and the layering of double-tracked vocals add a hint of the Brill Building, which is a terrific twist on the rustic arrangements.”  – Hyperbolium

“… Riding high from producing two Grammy Award winners for Helm, Campbell keeps things bright and tight without giving up intimacy.  And, that’s the charm of this album, the sense of getting a peek into Nevins’ splendid soul and her vast woodsy song repertoire.” –Billing Gazette

“soulful country groove” – Hyperbolium


“‘Wood and Stone’ is strangely hypnotic at times, with its mesmerizing rhythms and Nevins’ relaxed but commanding delivery. The beautifully dark “Tennessee River” and her cover of the jazz standard, ‘Stars Fell On Alabama,’ are entrancing and highlight Nevins’ beautiful voice” – Boone Mountain Times

“The lyrics cast an eye on relationships that refuse to live up to their potential, with music that underlines the certainty of a woman who will no longer suffer others’ indecision, inaction or infidelity.”  – Hyperbolium

“‘Wood and Stone’ is not emotionally-wrenching, rather it is a wise retrospective of the joys and sorrows of love. Nevins’ writing isn’t that of an angry divorcee, so don’t expect the album to be a diatribe on men. Her writing is a reflection of experiences to which anyone can relate.”  – Boone Mountain Times

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