WHEEL OF HEAVEN

The new CD, Wheel of Heaven, a musical collaboration between "Tennessee songwriter Chris Floyd and global musician Nick Kulukundis" (as the promo says), is now on sale from CafePress. You can find it here or via the Merchandise section of the blog, on the left. Various cuts from the album have been featured for months in the "Audio Burlesque" section on the right. Anyway, it's out now, so y'all come and get it if you want it. Below is an excerpt from the excerpt of the liner notes featured at the CafePress site.

... [Floyd's] father was the songleader in a Southern Baptist church in Watertown, Tennesse, a small town in the next county over from Nashville. Floyd grew up steeped in the cadences and melodies of country gospel. "It wasn't a holy-roller type thing," Floyd says, "but it was by no means bland or passionless. My father went at it with an almost rock-and-roll sensibility -- driving the songs forward, his foot pounding time, his voice charged with feeling, making every word come alive. Music was joy, music was fun -- but it was also life-and-death: heaven and hell hung in the balance, eternity and fate were always looming. With that kind of music, you play for keeps."

...He drifted in and out of various jobs -- car-washing, carpet-laying, warehouse work -- while drifting in and out of the university in Knoxville, where he studied  Russian, religion and journalism. "I ended up working for small newspapers in Tennessee and Mississippi, covering everything: murder trials, county fairs, shootings, house fires, car wrecks, politics and dirty pool, police raids....Eventually he ended up up in Russia, working for an English-language paper there, The Moscow Times, during the heyday of the Yeltsin years. This turned out to be, in a convoluted way, the turning point on his path back to music. "I met an English girl there. She went off to Paris, I went back to Tennessee. Eventually we got married and settled in England."

 It was there that Floyd met world traveller Nick Kulukundis. "Nick's a sonic sender, a visionary of sound. He's been making music for decades, every kind of music. He's been on the charts, off-the-wall, underground. He's the one who made this happen. I played him some of the songs I'd been writing for the desk drawer all through the years, and he saw something in them. He's got a roomful of studio gear in his farmhouse in the English countryside, so I went down there and we worked up these songs."

With his arrangements and multi-instrumental work, Kulukundis "took the dry bones and made them dance," Floyd says. "He comes at it from an absolutely unique perspective.  Everything I write comes ultimately out of American traditional music. I'm rooted in it, and that's good, but you can get locked into it too. Nick brings a whole other world -- many worlds -- into the mix, opens it up, keeps it alive."