Two-song single is prelude to band’s seventh album “All The Good Times,” out November 11th.
Starlings, TN (L-R): Steven Stubblefield, Mitchell Vandenburg, Bryan Robison, Tim Bryan. Photo credit: Jason Flowers.
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“The Cumberland” is taken from “Converse Rubber Tracks Sessions” by Starlings, TN
Austin-based country-roots artist, Starlings, TN (pronounced “Starlings, Tennessee”), has re-recorded “Forbidden Fruit Makes a Sticky Jam” and “The Cumberland,” two songs from the band’s masterful 2004 album Between Hell and Baton Rouge. In a review of that album broadcast by NPR’s “All Things Considered” program in January of that year, journalist Meredith Ochs stated that “This unique approach to roots music requires a certain disregard for convention, so it’s not surprising to discover that the members of Starlings, TN used to be in a punk rock band.”
Besides Doc Martins, the footwear of punks is certainly Converse All-Stars, and perhaps this fact was an unconscious factor in band leader Steve Stubblefield’s decision-making when the shoe company approached him just before South By Southwest earlier this year. Offering to pay for recording time at Austin’s Shine Studios in exchange for promotional use of the resulting tracks in the company’s South By Southwest advertising campaign, Converse left the commercial rights to the tapes with Stubblefield, who has released them as a two-song digital single entitled “Converse Rubber Tracks Sessions,” available for purchase via iTunes here. A stream of the updated version of “The Cumberland” can be heard here.
“We wanted to give these two songs a new breath of life,” says Stubblefield, who chose the songs because the updated arrangements incorporate current Starlings, TN band members Bryan Robison and Mitch Vandenberg in ways that resulted in vastly different versions than those recorded a decade ago. The sessions also yielded a new relationship for Starlings, TN with engineer, Justin Douglas.
“We knew before the day ended that we wanted to work with Justin again,” says Stubblefield. Indeed, Starlings, TN and Douglas convened earlier this summer to record the band’s next album All The Good Times, which is scheduled for release on Austin’s Chicken Ranch Records this November 11th. “His attitude about music was exactly what we had been searching for, and if I was going to give up the reigns as engineer, I knew there was no one else that I would rather turn it over to,” Stubblefield explains. In a recent interview with local Austin NBC television affiliate KXAN about the sessions, he Stubblefield elaborated further saying, “This is the first time in 20 years where I’ve been in a studio where I haven’t also been the engineer. I get to relax and have a fun day today.”
The Starlings, TN two-song single “Converse Rubber Tracks Sessions” is out now. The new Starlings, TN full-length album All The Good Times will be released on November 11th. Steve Stubblefield is available for interviews. Contact Josh Bloom at Fanatic for more information.
“Converse Rubber Tracks Sessions”
(Chicken Ranch, Out Now)
01. Forbidden Fruit Makes A Sticky Jam
02. The Cumberland (STREAM)
Starlings, TN Links
Contact Josh Bloom at Fanatic Promotion