This new record from Andrew Bird out in the UK on November 6th, is the product of a pair of recording sessions prompted by the overwhelming response to his "old-time" sets on recent tours. Reinterpreting songs from Break It Yourself and featuring covers of classic country tunes, these "old-time" performances find Bird and his full band playing to a single microphone with an entirely acoustic setup. Drawing inspiration from these sets, Hands of Glory features two brand new original tracks, a new interpretation of "Orpheo Looks Back" from Break It Yourself and covers of Townes Van Zandt, the Handsome Family, Alpha Consumer and others.
"The past three summers now we've had these band get-togethers at my barn in western Illinois," Bird recalls. "They begin with little more pretense than to capture the way we make music together. After a few days sleeping, eating and jamming under one roof we get increasingly inspired and ambitious about what we're doing."
Of recording the new record, he notes that, "Hands of Glory begins with two songs we actually recorded in a church in Louisville on a day off on our July tour. The rest was recorded around a single microphone at the barn in August. We ended up putting the drums on the back porch. I hated to exile Martin like that but it just sounded better. 'Something Biblical' I started writing in July well into the severe drought that hit the Midwest this summer. I kept having dreams of a great flood. Nothing biblical-just a local deluge. The day we left the barn it rained pretty hard."Since its Billboard Top 10 debut, Break It Yourself has continued to receive rave reviews. In celebration of the record's release Bird appeared on "The Colbert Report", "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (stream - http://bit.ly/He1rUR) and "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" as well as NPR's "Weekend Edition."
Chicago-based film score composer, multi-instrumentalist and lyricist Andrew Bird picked up his first violin at the age of four and spent his formative years soaking up classical repertoire completely by ear. As a teen Bird became interested in a variety of styles including early jazz, country blues and gypsy music, synthesizing them into his unique brand of pop. Since beginning his recording career in 1997 he has released 11 albums, his first solo record Weather Systems coming in 2003. Bird has gone on to record with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and perform at New York's Carnegie Hall. Most recently Bird composed his first ever film score for the movie Norman (hailed as "a probing, thoughtful score" by The New York Times; available now on Mom + Pop), contributed to the soundtrack of The Muppets and collaborated with inventor Ian Schneller on Sonic Arboretum, an installation at New York's Guggenheim Museum and Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art.