When composing the title track for my album Indian Summer, I wanted the song to be underpinned by Ragtime honky-tonk piano but I also wanted to feature Old Timey clawhammer banjo. After deluging my keyboard player, Michael Laffan, with Randy Newman CDs and Scott Joplin scores, we came up with a workable piano part but, being a laid-back kind of guy, his performance tempo was a little on the leisurely side.
When I sent the demo recording to Rhiannon Giddens, to work out the banjo part at home in North Carolina, she felt that it needed to be much faster for the clawhammer rhythm to work. So . . . I made the decision to bring them together in the studio in France for them to battle it out. A musical compromise was reached and, the following year, they got married.
They are currently on honeymoon, but you can hear them making beautiful music together by going to MySpace.
Indian Summer features Rhiannon on vocals, fiddle & banjo and Mike on honky-tonk piano
Land of the Setting Sun features Rhiannon and Mike on vocals and Rhi on Native-American frame drum
Unelanvhi Uwetsi features Rhiannon and Mike on vocals
Wind Chases the Sun features Rhiannon on vocals and Mike on keyboard
Go So Far features Rhiannon and Mike on vocals
Photo courtesy of Abigail Seymour Photography