Sir Richard Bishop has announced the new album Tangier Sessions, and has shared some of the details with us. The album comes out on February 17th via Drag City.
Tangier Sessions tells the oft-told tale: while traveling abroad, nobleman meets guitar. Guitar is too expensive for nobleman and, outraged, he departs. Nobleman quietly returns several days later for guitar but still can’t bring himself to pay the price. Yet nobleman can’t get guitar out of mind (he’s never heard anything like it) – so nobleman buys guitar, then travels the world with it, enchanted, and makes an album while in Tangier.
On the lookout for something playable- yet portable- last year while living in Geneva, Sir Richard Bishop stumbled into an obscure luthier’s shop in a shadowy lane off the high road. He was unable to find what he was looking for, but as he was leaving, the old shopkeep reached behind an ancient, dusty cabin and produced a model identified only by a tiny sticker inside– “C. Bruno” it read. With no other recognizable attributions, it was clearly an old piece– likely made in the mad, final days of the 19th century. And the sound! Just to touch it was to hear an instrument of unusual depth. The experience of playing it was equally exquisite. But the price forced Sir Rick to put it down and walk out, empty-handed. A couple days later, he was back, to play it again… and back again a couple days after that, his wallet stuffed fat with Swiss Francs. It was as if he’d been enchanted! Or cursed….
Later in the summer, in the company of said guitar, Bishop holed up for a week in a rooftop apartment in Tangier, Morocco. He spent his time feverishly playing; at night, the pieces on this record were improvised and recorded. An incredible story, we know! But then, all compositions were improvisations once, weren’t they?
From its opening moments, Tangier Sessions unfolds and elongates, chills out and cuts loose in familiar, yet newly unique ways for Sir Richard Bishop. Arriving in the moment that was imagined for them, its songs stretch out, finding themselves in vast, open spaces. Once there, Sir Richard relaxes, yet remains totally focused and present.
2. Bound In Morocco
3. Safe House
6. International Zone
7. Let It Come Down