with Cuddle Magic, MMEADOWS & Alec Spiegelman
Thu April 19th, 2018
Minimum Age: 21+
Doors Open: 7:30PM
Show Time: 8:30PM
Event Ticket: $10
Day of Show: $13
*This is a general admission event at C’mon Everybody: 325 Franklin Ave, Brooklyn, NY, 11238*
Benjamin Lazar Davis
Benjamin Lazar Davis is a gifted multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter, arranger, composer, and producer based in Brooklyn.
His forthcoming full length album Nothing Matters — his very first as a solo artist — came out of an extensive period of touring followed by a difficult break up. To make the record, Davis spent all all of his money on instruments and recording gear, including drums and drum machines, both nylon and steel string acoustic guitars, an electric and an upright bass, a pump organ, a mellotron, a Moog, and an upright piano. He worked on the record every day, for 30 straight days, in his childhood bedroom at his parents’ house in Saratoga Springs, and once finished, he mixed it back in Brooklyn with his high school friend Luke Moellman (GGFO).
Although there are no other performers on the record, many collaborations went into the writing of the album, including cowrites with Kimbra (“Right Direction”), Alex Toth of Rubblebucket and Alexander F (“Love Song Seven Ways,” “Life Is Dangerous,” and “Choosing Sides”), Bridget Kearney of Lake Street Dive (“Somebody’s Speaking For Me”), singer-songwriter Taylor Ashton (“Brass Tacks”), award-winning poet Michael Gizzi (“Acquitted”), and his brother, a brilliant lyricist, Tim Davis.
Benjamin Lazar Davis writes, records, and performs with Cuddle Magic, Joan as Police Woman, and Okkervil River, and he has worked with Anais Mitchell, Kimbra, Luke Temple, Jesse Harris, Henry Jamison, Wild Belle, Delicate Steve, Star Rover, Sam Amidon, Markus Acher (the Notwist), and Margaret Glaspy as a co-writer, side-musician, arranger, producer, studio musician, touring member, and band member in the past. While Nothing Matters grew out of Davis’s desire to make music on his own in a life where he has been a chronic collaborator, the album evokes inspiration from all of these artists, and he considers it a culmination of his life’s work.
As he began work on the album, Davis found a photo of his father lounging beneath a hand- written sign that read “Nothing Matters,” which eventually became the album’s artwork; “It was taken in 1969 in Malawi Africa where he lived at the time. He taught me music growing up, and I think seeing that picture right before recording the record gave me a sense of letting go of all of the baggage that comes with making music and being in a relationship. When in the midst of the meditation of making the album, nothing matters. Just let the tape roll and the ideas flow…”
Nothing Matters will be released on April 20 via 11A Records.
Photo Credit: Shervin Lainez
Cuddle Magic is a band from Brooklyn, NY. They play dance listening music that unfolds in waves of vocal harmony, contrapuntal woodwinds, dense wordplay, and overlapping rhythmic cycles.
When they first met, Kristin Slipp and Cole Kamen-Green were 18 and 19, respectively. One of was from a dead-end street in a small town in rural Maine. The other had spent a childhood splitting time Manhattan and Ossining, NY. The two met in Boston when they joined a band called Cuddle Magic, a chamber pop band that was recently called pop music’s. “best-kept secret.”
Like Cuddle Magic, Slipp and Kamen-Green initially kept their new project a secret to everyone, including their closest friends. They got together at night in a pagoda-style mansion in South Brooklyn where Kristin lived in the attic, and for a year chipped away at a body of work, much of which would eventually become their new release. The quasi-clandestine nature and dark setting of these midnight meetings found its way into the music, resulting in a distinct sound that features undulating low frequencies combined with ecstatic vocal melodies, sizzling analog synthesizers, and a multitude of sounds that feel esoteric yet vaguely familiar.
Together and separately, the two have written and recorded with Beyonce, performed with Cyndi Lauper and Kimbra, soloed with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, run marathons, caught fish, made beats with Yuka C. Honda, crashed weddings, performed Music for 18 Musicians under direction of the composer, gone to raves, sung a concert of unaccompanied music for four voices at Carnegie Hall, been accidentally baptized, swum in the Hudson, toured around the U.S. and Europe, taught underprivileged kids to be producers, and lent their musicianship to a hundred different albums. Today, Kristin and Cole are MMEADOWS.
Alec Spiegelman is a Brooklyn-based musician, producer, and songwriter. He is a member of the band Cuddle Magic. As a sideman, on stage and in studio, he’s worked with numerous creative songwriters including Amanda Palmer, Anais Mitchell, Pokey LaFarge, and Will Sheff. He’s arranged and performed the wind instruments on countless recordings, among them three albums by The David Wax Museum, and Kristin Andreassen’s Gondolier. He’s produced recordings for Jennifer Kimball (formerly of The Story), Anna & Elizabeth, and the conceptual multi-media artist Jack Early. His musical-comedy project (with Kelly Roberge), Ronald Reagan – Boston’s Premier 80s Pop Saxophone Duo, has shared stand-up stages with Eugene Mirman, Kristin Schaal, and Reggie Watts. His early musical education included lots of improvising in the jazz tradition (broadly defined), formal studies with Steve Lacy, Bob Moses, Bob Brookmeyer and Ran Blake, and a thorough (informal) grounding in r&b saxophone best-practices (a la Junior Walker) directed by Doo Wop survivor Little Joe Cook.