Drop a few bucks in the hat for a CD: http://seriousbusinessrecords.com/releases/show/35-Off-and-Away
Rocketship Park’s debut album Off and Away. It collects ten dreamy, cinematic pop songs, each distinct in its own right and infused with tinges of country, Dylan, and big hooks. Josh Kaufman is the project’s eloquent yet unassuming auteur, singer and songwriter, arranger, producer and chief instrumentalist.
The musicians in Rocketship Park didn’t answer an ad or apply for the job—instead, Josh gathered together his most talented and trusted old friends. As a result, each performance on the record seems innately dialed-in to the themes of friendship and family, life and loss that shape the lyrics. The warm, communal sound draws upon the musicians’ shared experiences, sitting around, passing afternoons into evenings, switching one great record after another on the turntable, listening intently without saying a word.
THE FAMILY TREE
Rocketship Park is, at its core, made of Josh, Eric Jackson (guitar,) Brian Kantor (drums,) Kevin Fish (bass,) and Mike Phillips (pedal steel.) They have played together in various combinations for more than a decade, part of a vast musical family tree flourishing in and around New York.*
Half the record was recorded live at the Serious Business studio in Manhattan, with percussionist Bryan Devendorf (The National) and pianist Rob Burger (Iron and Wine, Calexico) augmenting the core quintet. Josh pieced the rest together at comfy home sessions with friends violist Karen Waltuch (Wilco, Jim O'Rourke) and cornetist Geoff Mann (Antibalas, Eternal Buzz Brass Band-) as well as his special someone, Annie Nero (Ladystein, El May.)** The album artwork features 11 portraits drawn by Benji Cossa. The layout, frames and text were handled by his wife Rebecca.***
*Josh also plays guitar in Higgins, a 60’s influenced psych-pop band started by Brian Kantor and Kevin Fish. Eric Jackson is also a part of this band. Higgins records for Serious Business too. Family tree indeed.
**Josh and Annie write and record together as part of a separate project called Jack and the Pulpits (again, for Serious Business). In the past, they’ve called themselves Mansfields and have collaborated with drummers Devendorf and Mann. They also play together as part of the group Balthrop, Alabama.
***Benji Cossa is a singer and songwriter as well as a visual artist. He also records for Serious Business. Josh, Annie, Brian K., and Eric play in his backing band, The Tightens.
- Indie, Folk Pop