Yesterday, I was hanging out with my friend Ryan in his studio while he showed me all of the new, huge paintings and installations he was working on. He was talking a million miles an hour, so excited to be working on art and learning everything he can about art history and theory. He's getting ready to ship everything out to Minneapolis, where he has a show coming up in November. An old friend, Forrest is helping to build some structures in the gallery, since he has a background in carpentry. Their friend, Naomi bought a house that has a storefront built into the first floor and she's going to host part of his art show there. It was inspiring to see him so wide-eyed and full of life, still figuring out his dreams while flying way under the radar.
Another thing I found inspiring is that all three of those people have stuck together since they started playing in COUNTY Z almost 15 years ago. COUNTY Z is one of my favorite bands of all time, but that's beside the point, Naomi took me on my first freight train ride. Forrest told me he didn't like the sustain of cymbals so he used brake parts instead. Sometimes I couldn't tell if Ryan was playing with or against the band, but it usually worked.
Most of this tape was recorded live at the Seward Cafe, which has been collectively ran since 1974 and is one of the best places on this entire earth. If you aren't familiar with COUNTY Z, I would suggest starting with their tape or LP first, Both are brilliant.
If you're in Minneapolis in November, be sure to check out Ryan's art show. He'll be there daily with tea for you to drink. I might be there too. If you show up, don't talk about this band. Let's talk about his art, the new dreams and all the crackpot visions we hope to see to fruition before this world implodes in the next few years.
This tape is from the collection of Caroline Paquita