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Forfolks

Track Listing

News & Reviews

  • WNYC's New Sounds dedicates its latest episode to "some of the exciting new music coming out of Chicago," including three albums released through partnership between the Chicago-born label International Anthem and Nonesuch Records: Jeff Parker's Suite for Max Brown and Forfolks and Ben LaMar Gay's Open Arms to Open Us. You can hear the episode here. Both artists will perform at the Big Ears Festival in Knoxville in March. Parker then tours the West Coast with Steve Gunn and will perform on the East Coast with Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo in May.

  • Congratulations to guitarist/composer Jeff Parker, who has been named a recipient of the United States Artists' 2022 USA Fellowship. Parker is one of sixty-three artists across ten creative disciplines, including eight in the field of music, who will receive unrestricted $50,000 cash awards this year. The award honors their creative accomplishments and supports their ongoing artistic and professional development. The 2022 USA Fellows class is the largest in the organization’s sixteen-year history. USA Fellowships are awarded to artists at all stages of their careers and from all areas of the country through a rigorous nomination and panel selection process. Fellowships are given in the following disciplines: Architecture & Design, Craft, Dance, Film, Media, Music, Theater & Performance, Traditional Arts, Visual Art, and Writing.

  • About This Album

    Jeff Parker’s Forfolks—a new album of solo guitar works—was released on vinyl and digitally December 10, 2021, with CD following on December 17, via International Anthem and Nonesuch Records. The album includes interpretations of Thelonious Monk’s “Ugly Beauty” and the standard “My Ideal,” plus six original compositions including "Four Folks" (a tune first written by Parker and recorded in 1995) and "La Jetée" (a tune he recorded with Isotope 217 in 1997 and with Tortoise in 1998). The four totally new original compositions are loop-driven, stratiform works that marry melodic improvisation with electronic textures. As Parker says: “I am trying to create a sonic world for me to wander around in.” The album was recorded by Graeme Gibson at Sholo Studio in Altadena, California (aka Jeff’s house) over two days in June 2021. Here is the video for the album track “Suffolk,” directed by filmmaker Cauleen Smith:

    “It's a particular thing to hear Jeff play solo,” writes veteran Chicago musician and longtime Parker collaborator Matthew Lux in his liner note for Forfolks. “He is an unusually selfless improviser, often times laying out and highlighting the contributions of his band mates. He's never been one to play three notes where none would suffice. On this recording, however, he is by himself, joined only by his own ideas, looped or frozen, to flesh out the music he's creating in his mind. Hearing him craft entire sound worlds on these eight selections gives us an opportunity to really see how Parker orders sound … He eschews genre playing and chooses a painterly approach to coloring the music, maintaining a deeply personal voice without weighing down the music with obvious stylistic maneuverings.”

    The album follow’s Parker’s critically acclaimed 2020 record, Suite for Max Brown, which Pitchfork called an “effortlessly detailed album, full of tradition and experimentation that spans generations … It lives at the vanguard of new jazz music.” The album went on to debut at No. 1 on Billboard's Current Contemporary Jazz Chart and No. 2 on the Contemporary Jazz Chart in the United States, with the Los Angeles Times calling it “a transcendent set of pieces that occupy a vague terrain lit by jazz, experimental electronic music, instrumental hip-hop and genre-jumping avant-rock ... Parker’s album ascends track by track with the majesty of a new-build high-rise transforming a skyline.”

    Parker is known to many fans as the longtime guitarist for the Chicago–based quintet Tortoise, one of the most critically revered, sonically adventurous groups to emerge from the American indie scene of the early 1990s. The band’s often hypnotic, largely instrumental sound draws freely from rock, jazz, electronic, and avant-garde music, and it has garnered a large following over the course of nearly thirty years. Aside from recording and touring with Tortoise, Parker has worked as a side man with many jazz greats, including Nonesuch labelmate Joshua Redman on his 2005 Momentum album; as a studio collaborator with other composer-musicians, including Brian Blade, Meshell Ndegeocello, and fellow International Anthem artists Makaya McCraven and Rob Mazurek; and as a solo artist.

    Credits

    MUSICIANS
    Jeff Parker, electric guitar

    PRODUCTION CREDITS
    Engineered by Graeme Gibson at Sholo Studio in Altadena, California on June 28 & 29, 2021
    Mixed by Graeme Gibson in Cypress Park, Los Angeles, California on July 15 & 16, 2021
    Sequenced by Scott McNiece
    Mastered by David Allen

    Photography by Lee Anne Schmitt
    Liner Notes by Matthew Lux
    Design by Jeremiah Chiu

    Produced by Scott McNiece

Format Availability

  • Available from Nonesuch Records in North and South America only.

nonesuch's picture
on October 27, 2021 - 5:17pm
genre: 
Release Date: 
Friday, December 10, 2021 (All day)
DescriptionExcerpt: 

Jeff Parker’s solo guitar album Forfolks includes interpretations of Thelonious Monk's “Ugly Beauty” and the standard “My Ideal,” plus six original compositions: two earlier tunes, “Four Folks" and “La Jetée,” and four new loop-driven, stratiform works that marry melodic improvisation with electronic textures. "A beautifully freewheeling, guitar-driven expression of joy and musical exploration," says Guitar World, "a masterpiece of improvisation." "Beautiful, resonant, and focused," says the Quietus. "This matches anything he’s produced during his career so far." 

Description: 

Jeff Parker’s Forfolks—a new album of solo guitar works—was released on vinyl and digitally December 10, 2021, with CD following on December 17, via International Anthem and Nonesuch Records. The album includes interpretations of Thelonious Monk’s “Ugly Beauty” and the standard “My Ideal,” plus six original compositions including "Four Folks" (a tune first written by Parker and recorded in 1995) and "La Jetée" (a tune he recorded with Isotope 217 in 1997 and with Tortoise in 1998). The four totally new original compositions are loop-driven, stratiform works that marry melodic improvisation with electronic textures. As Parker says: “I am trying to create a sonic world for me to wander around in.” The album was recorded by Graeme Gibson at Sholo Studio in Altadena, California (aka Jeff’s house) over two days in June 2021. Here is the video for the album track “Suffolk,” directed by filmmaker Cauleen Smith:

“It's a particular thing to hear Jeff play solo,” writes veteran Chicago musician and longtime Parker collaborator Matthew Lux in his liner note for Forfolks. “He is an unusually selfless improviser, often times laying out and highlighting the contributions of his band mates. He's never been one to play three notes where none would suffice. On this recording, however, he is by himself, joined only by his own ideas, looped or frozen, to flesh out the music he's creating in his mind. Hearing him craft entire sound worlds on these eight selections gives us an opportunity to really see how Parker orders sound … He eschews genre playing and chooses a painterly approach to coloring the music, maintaining a deeply personal voice without weighing down the music with obvious stylistic maneuverings.”

The album follow’s Parker’s critically acclaimed 2020 record, Suite for Max Brown, which Pitchfork called an “effortlessly detailed album, full of tradition and experimentation that spans generations … It lives at the vanguard of new jazz music.” The album went on to debut at No. 1 on Billboard's Current Contemporary Jazz Chart and No. 2 on the Contemporary Jazz Chart in the United States, with the Los Angeles Times calling it “a transcendent set of pieces that occupy a vague terrain lit by jazz, experimental electronic music, instrumental hip-hop and genre-jumping avant-rock ... Parker’s album ascends track by track with the majesty of a new-build high-rise transforming a skyline.”

Parker is known to many fans as the longtime guitarist for the Chicago–based quintet Tortoise, one of the most critically revered, sonically adventurous groups to emerge from the American indie scene of the early 1990s. The band’s often hypnotic, largely instrumental sound draws freely from rock, jazz, electronic, and avant-garde music, and it has garnered a large following over the course of nearly thirty years. Aside from recording and touring with Tortoise, Parker has worked as a side man with many jazz greats, including Nonesuch labelmate Joshua Redman on his 2005 Momentum album; as a studio collaborator with other composer-musicians, including Brian Blade, Meshell Ndegeocello, and fellow International Anthem artists Makaya McCraven and Rob Mazurek; and as a solo artist.

ProductionCredits: 

PRODUCTION CREDITS
Engineered by Graeme Gibson at Sholo Studio in Altadena, California on June 28 & 29, 2021
Mixed by Graeme Gibson in Cypress Park, Los Angeles, California on July 15 & 16, 2021
Sequenced by Scott McNiece
Mastered by David Allen

Photography by Lee Anne Schmitt
Liner Notes by Matthew Lux
Design by Jeremiah Chiu

Produced by Scott McNiece

Cover Art: 
FormatRestrictions: 

Available from Nonesuch Records in North and South America only.

ns_album_releasedate: 
Wednesday, October 27, 2021 - 16:45
Album Status: 
UPC/Price: 
Label: 
"Cookies & Creme" Color LP+MP3
UPC: 
075597911961
Label: 
LP+MP3
UPC: 
075597912036
Price: 
21.00
Label: 
CD+MP3
UPC: 
075597912050
Price: 
13.00
Label: 
44/24 HD FLAC
UPC: 
075597912067
Price: 
10.00
Label: 
MP3
UPC: 
075597912159
Price: 
9.00
Artist Name: 
Jeff Parker
MusicianDetails: 

MUSICIANS
Jeff Parker, electric guitar

reissues?: 
new-release
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