Solo Debut From Jeff Miller of New Monsoon, The Contribution


“Intimate and expansive, the solo debut of New Monsoon’s Jeff Miller is both highly personal and a deeply felt song cycle with universal appeal, a step ahead in the ground broken by the likes of Leo Kottke and Michael Hedges.” - Dennis Cook (JamBase, Relix, Dirty Impound)

Ancient Wisdom (pick it up here) is the first project I’ve done where I have written, recorded, and engineered all the music myself” says Jeff Miller (New Monsoon, The Contribution). “I produced it at home in my small cottage, deep in the Northern California forest, with bare-bones recording equipment and a cheap mic. By doing it at home like this I definitely captured a unique vibe unlike any “studio” recording I’ve done. The environs of the woods crept into the songs for sure.”

Instead of going into an expensive studio, with tight timelines and budget constraints, Miller decided to do it himself this time. “I’ve always written in the band context and gone into a studio to record. When you’re working with other people, you work a certain way. When you are all alone at home, your inner Jack Torrance (The Shining) comes out. Spending all day trying to get just one good take can make you go insane!”

Miller goes on to say, “I was going for a more acoustic, stripped-down approach compared to my other projects. I used whatever I could find for percussion: a big ceramic dumbek, shakers, tambourine… I even dusted off my old Roland Guitar Synth to create an entire drum kit on one tune. I couldn’t believe it worked!”

Miller played and recorded every instrument on Ancient Wisdom, including bass guitar, mandolin, and organ. “Some of my favorite artists are do-it-yourselfers: Jeff Buckley, Beck, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Peter Gabriel… there’s a very distinct quality that comes out in an artist’s solo work. I wanted to let this quality come out in my work too. I’m glad I didn’t rush the process. I think I found a unique sound here.”


Fri Jan 27 - The Sleeping Lady - Fairfax, CA (Ancient Wisdom Album Release Show)

Sat Dec 31 - Palm Ballroom - San Rafael, CA
Sat Jan 14 - Crystal Bay Club Casino - Crystal Bay, NV
Fri Feb 3 - The New Parish - Oakland, CA

Fri Feb 17 + Sat Feb 18 - Historic Blairstown Theatre - Blairstown, NJ

[Published on: 12/20/11]

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