10 Nov The Latest from KW
It was an exciting October for Kevin Welch! Kevin and his Aussie wife Sarah welcomed a new son, Henry David Sharktooth Welch on October 17th, Kevin’s song Millionaire was the most downloaded song on iTunes in late October and he also did a run of concerts through the US with the Backroad Boys, KW, son Dustin Welch, John Fullbright and Michael Fraccasso. We caught up with him for a quick catch up between power naps.
So Kevin, congratulations on the new addition to the family, is he keeping you busy?
He’s blessedly calm and sweet, and he’s providing me the rare opportunity to brush up on my diaper changing chops. We sit and watch his face like the aurora borealis, and everything is magic and celestial, and then he suddenly poops. Then he sleeps, then he nurses, poops and sleeps etc. He’s totally got it down. I’m writing this from Nowra, spending as much time as possible with Sarah and the kids. Sharktooth is snuggled up with me in bed singing in his sleep.
How was the tour with the Backroad boys, it must be great to play with family and old friends?
We were something in between 4 songwriters and a real band. I think another week on the road we could have qualified. I’d like to be able to get deeper into each of our catalogs, because we only scratched the surface. It was big fun, I hope we can do it again.
You played the Bluebird in Nashville. I understand it’s changed quite a bit, what was the experience like for you?
Over the years, as the Bluebird became more and more famous, the ratio of songwriter fans vs. tourists gradually shifted, till you had to realize that the audience wasn’t necessarily there to see you, they were there because it was a Nashville thing you were supposed to do. Like kissing the Blarney Stone. But the staff are all about it, still welcoming and kind and deep into it, and the place feels just the same otherwise. Obviously, it means a lot to my family and me to find ourselves back there.
It was such great news to hear that your song Millionaire is track #1 on the new Chris Stapleton record. Can you tell us a bit about how that came to be and what it means to you to have Chris record it?
I haven’t spoken to Chris about what prompted him to record Millionaire, but I sure am glad he did. The first time I heard him and Morgane singing it I got a little choked up. After Solomon Burke cut it, I thought no one could ever bring anything new to it, I thought it was done, but I was wrong. I’m very proud actually. They completely knocked me out.
So it’s busy times, what else have you got in the pipeline?
We’re in the manufacturing stage of a thing I’ve had in mind for several years now. It’s a collection of some of my favorites from my own records between 1995-2005, called The Dead Reckoning Years. I’ve always considered our label, those people, those years, to be intensely special, and I feel we’ve been overlooking it all. Those were fearless days. Alex McCollough remastered 18 cuts for vinyl and did a beautiful job. It will be a double LP on 180 gram vinyl. Olivia Hellman did the cover and interior design.
I think the thing that finally motivated me to get off my ass and get this done was a live show last December at Skyville Live, put together by Wally Wilson, Emmylou Harris and a group of our very close friends, to raise money for our family, after Savannah’s near-death accident. It turned out to be the first reunion in 18 years, I think, of the Reckoners, and it was a powerful reminder of just how good that group was, and still is, and also of the deep and abiding love within that community for Savannah, and for each other.
Also, we went back to Nashville this summer and recorded a brand new record, with Fats Kaplin, Harry Stinson and Glenn Worf from the Reckoners, Kenny Vaughan, Matt Rollings, my son Dustin Welch, and Jim Hoke, with Mills Logan engineering. It’s a different sound for me I think, and I also think it’s one of the best things I’ve ever been part of. Generally a quiet record, lush as opposed to spare, with some exquisite playing masking my own clumsiness.
Finishing touches this month, hoping to get Vanny to sing on at least one of the tunes. Mixing in December, releasing early April 2018.
Yep. Grandchild number two is arriving, my daughter Ada’s first, and I’m hoping to get back in time for the birth, sometime just after Thanksgiving, in Nashville, and after that I’m hanging with them for the month, showing off my diaper changing expertise. While there I’m producing a new record for my buddy Jason Eady and doing some Christmas shopping.
Finally, Dustin is finishing tracks we cut in Copenhagen a couple of years ago, and we are planning on a sort of dual release, so we can hit the road together and roam the globe. Its a big old world.