Music made from the rambling wide-open of restlessness.
Nursing a hangover that only a three year stint in New York City could provide, Ryan Holzer recorded tapes in his parents basement in South Dakota (and still does). He was tickled to find the great Billy Talbot, bassist of the legendary band, Crazy Horse, had a MySpace page. Within 24 hours, the two had planned to meet in their shared, adopted home of western South Dakota. An ice-breaking visit to the Talbot ranch in the summer of 2008 birthed the cooperative effort "Big Rain", a track that would later appear on Talbot's sophomore release, On the Road to Spearfish.
Gathering and creating as an extended family.
Six years later. Billy is recovering from a mild stroke. Ryan is returning from a 5 year vacation in Oakland. The two reconnect through song, and sculpt their innermost demons into partridges flying over a golden field with their new release, Dakota. Talbot and Holzer's alternating live, lead vocals backed by Billy Talbot Band rhythm regulars Jeff Chase (bass) and Stephan Junca (drums) give Dakota a barren feeling of earnest timelessness. Oh, and the neighborhood chipped in. The three eldest siblings of a neighboring ranch family (the Jerdes) and a music instructor/columnist/rancher/new mother/songwriter from a nearby town (Liza Blue) joined in, contributing texture and color true to the open prairie as only locals could do. The record was captured in a week's time. The band played live.
It is the spirit of the music that inspires.
Another year gone. Billy Talbot and Ryan Holzer continue to paint musical landscapes as friends and neighbors in South Dakota's cattle country.
And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a Country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
- Francis Scott Key, Star Spangled Banner
The physical CD package of DAKOTA features two original works on paper created by the band's bassist Jeffrey Chase expressly for this release. It comes with a three-ink disc and an eight page booklet with credits and creative photographic treatments from the recording site.