There are times where our wacky and/or witty and/or world-weary and/or just plain sarcastic viewpoint, does not do a situation justice. So first things first, we'll let Buke & Gase speak plain here:
We used to call Red Hook, Brooklyn home, a neighborhood that's been greatly damaged by Hurricane Sandy. To help support the recovery process, we are donating a song from our upcoming album. All proceeds from the purchase of this song over the next week will go directly to http://www.rhicenter.org
We wish the best to all who have been affected by the storm, and sending gratitude to those who are helping in any way they can.
- Arone and Aron of Buke and Gase
Here it is:
We also got the Aron(e)s to give a bit more background on their relationship to the neighborhood.
The song we've donated, "Hard Times," isn't meant to lyrically depict or relay anything of the reality happening in NYC other than be a vehicle for donations to the support system growing there and maintain awareness of the need for help. We'd lived for over 12 years in Red Hook, both of us worked on the piers, shared libations at Sonny's, made friends with the bunny on Barge 79, sang karaoke and ate delicious meals at the many restaurants old and new, rode bikes on the cobblestones. It's home, and its terrifying to know that home is so fragile.
While we're able, we want to help out in some way, as do many others in our community, and donating money or supplies is the quickest way to help from a distance. Humans in Red Hook need our help, by hand and foot, by strength and support, and this is our most immediate ability. We've donated warm clothes, blankets, tarps, and non-perishable food, but there are also people who are WORKING day after day to DELIVER these items to those who need them. We want to support everyone involved in this effort as best we can.
Arone and Aron
We here at Brassland are proud localists so maybe it's worth describing for a moment the way our own relationship with Buke & Gase has been tied up so closely to the more out-of-the-way parts of Brooklyn? As the band said, they and their studio used to be housed in Red Hook. Alec first met them one chilly between-season kind of evening in a lovely backyard. That backyard may be gone now.
The relationship of Aaron & Bryce Dessner and The National to the Ditmas Park section of Brooklyn has been written about before. Well, Aaron & Bryce "discovered" the band when their sister saw them play at a small bar called Sycamore, a name inspired, we gather, by the tree-lined streets of the neighborhood. It's a venue that nurtures the kind of adventurous and not-obviously-commerical art that Buke & Gase make. It's the kind of venue that can only afford to exist on the margins of New York City, the very margins that Hurricane Sandy has attacked so viciously.
Anecdotal evidence underlines tragedy. Well, those tree-lined streets turned deadly last week, when a falling tree killed a pair of 20somethings. The female casualty was the daughter of the executive director of a non-profit called New York Communities for Change.
At the risk of getting preachy, community stories are rarely given attention in the short-attention-span theater of internet-driven popular music. Community stories are rarely this dramatic. But without small, slowly-developing, long-attention-span physical communities, one wonders if a lot of great art & culture & people would ever get a chance to thrive on a larger stage.
We realize whatever money we raise here will be a modest contribution at best. We want to point out that giving money directly to http://rhicenter.org is an even more efficient way to help Red Hook. But, hey, sometimes it helps to get a musical nudge!
Ironically, if there's one thing the internet is good for, it's connecting us to the communities around us. More hands-on ways to help these and other affected communities can be resourced from:
“It always bothers me to see people writing ‘RIP‘ when a person dies. It just feels so insincere and like a cop-out. To me, ‘RIP‘ is the microwave dinner of posthumous honors.” — Lou Reed There's this moment at the end of Lou Reed's Berlin concert film when his face changes from a sphinx-like scowl into a gracious glow. It's after Antony sings a cover version of the Velvets' "Candy Says." Transformed in the hands of his protege, Lou rewards Antony with a warm smile — all the more precious for its rarity. I'm not big ....continue....Tweet
The National’s Bryce Dessner is a man of a million projects, constantly generating material for his various musical identities, the latest of which is a new record, entitled Aheym for the Anti- label. Here, we actually see him sidestepping the guitar in favor of a string quartet and when we say STRING QUARTET we mean for it to be in all caps. Bryce has "gone big" and composed these pieces for one of the most widely-acclaimed contemporary classical ensembles out there, Kronos Quartet. Also a Brassland co-founder and member of Clogs, Bryce has been an indie rock ....continue....
[ More about Bryce & Aaron Dessner ]Tweet
While you may be staring into the last dregs of 2013 and trying to distract yourself from impending seasonal depression, other people are looking forward to an amazing 2014. What kind of people you ask... Wait, before we get to that: Are you okay? We mean, really, what's wrong with you? Oh, wait a sec, our therapist recently reminded us not to judge. We apologize for being so snappy. And let us get around to a few announcements that might just lift your spirits. For starters: People Get Ready (those people!) have just announced a bunch of new tour dates including ....continue....
[ More about People Get Ready ]Tweet
You may have noticed Paris- and Bristol-based band This is the Kit palling around with the Brassland roster for a few years now. They first opened for The National during their storied run of Beacon Theater shows in December 2011. They were invited to The National's All Tomorrow's Parties fest in December 2012, split some UK dates with Buke and Gase just after that, and participated in Brassland events in Adelaide, Australia and Haldern, Germany in 2013. Their 2010 album Wriggle Out the Restless has been available sporadically on Bandcamp throughout this time and we at the label have logged a few ....continue....
[ More about This is the Kit ]Tweet