How to be an heir to millions — and a lowly troubadour
Published: September 12, 2012
"Don Quixote de Suburbia album — there's some good stuff on there but it was certainly planned out and maybe in some ways lacks spontaneity," he says of his 2003 release. "I've learned a lot about music, songwriting and performing since then so I hope that comes into this. I think the songs have gotten better."
Davidson's last album was Free the Ethan Daniel Davidson Five in 2005, released on his own, now defunct, Times Beach Records label (which also had Gold Cash Gold, the Deadstring Brothers and Man Inc. on the roster, among others). That album was preceded by Don Quixote de Suburbia. His debut, Alaska 11 North, was released in 1999.
So why now for the new album? After all, he's facing a constant struggle at the moment, with numerous parties desperate to get their paws on his father's money. It seems an odd time to drop an album.
"It just sort of happened," he says. "I talked to Warren Defever [of His Name is Alive] about five years ago. We drove to New York. He said he wanted to do something, and my wife, Gretchen, wanted to put the two of us together. He was busy with things, as was I, and it just never happened. A year and a half ago, Gretchen said that I have a recording session booked for that night. I had the attitude that at some point it would happen, but I was thinking about so many other things, so Gretchen really made this all happen. It happened by itself, almost. It's the easiest record I ever made. It goes to show what happens when you're not trying."
Indeed. And it's a great record too — a bit of Tom Waits darkness has been injected into the old Ethan poetic folk rock sound. Davidson sounds smoother, more confident and less desperate to prove his chops.
Ethan Daniel Davidson finally sounds happy to be Ethan Daniel Davidson.
Brett Callwood writes City Slang for Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
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