Key/ Balm songs is a collection of stuff I made from 2009-2011. It's donation based. I promise that I'll use whatever money you donate to make more music. Quite simply, the more money I can raise from releases like this, the sooner I can put out the next project, and the better it will sound. It's up to you.
If you can't spare the money, please, take a moment to share a link to this site on your Facebook, twitter, or recommend it to a friend. Every little bit helps. Even a minor piece of positive feedback from you gives my fragile artist ego a huge boost, real talk.
At the time Key got together I was 23, I was living in Pittsburgh, I had just watched my jam band implode and I was feeling directionless when it came to my own music. Key was Dave’s idea, he was already in two pretty successful bands that had 6-8 members each and he wanted a smaller group that could travel light. The group was formed as a three piece with Dave, myself and Denny and we had a few rehearsals, recorded these tracks, and played one or maybe two shows.
After the recordings were made I recruited Matt Booth to come in and play some bass on them (originally Denny had done it all with his left hand) and I recorded most of the vocals and extra guitar stuff at home in the following months.
Unfortunately at this point the band fell apart because everyone was just too busy with other things and I was too disorganized to hold it all together. Discouraged that there wasn’t enough here for a full album, I put the songs in the archives and they never saw the light of day.
About "Balm Songs"
After Key fell apart I moved to the South Side and was feeling pretty tired of the whole ‘band’ thing. Luckily I had just started getting heavy into folk musicians like Leadbelly, Woodie Guthrie, and Big Bill Broonzy and I was starting to think that maybe I didn’t need a band to get my point across anyway. I was mostly concerned at this time with writing songs that my roommate would think were cool.
The title “balm songs” was chosen for two reasons. The first was that I was in a pretty dark place in my life and I wanted to write music that would heal me, like a balm. The second reason was that it sounds like “bomb songs” which is hilarious to me. I got those balm songs yo.
The last few songs I wrote in this phase of my life were "The Song Of Leaving" and "Ready Or Not" which can be found on The King Of Ideas And The Weirdo Kid.
And that’s it! Thanks so much for taking the time to read this, and listen to the music. It’s fun taking this stroll down memory lane with you. Now it’s back to work on whatever the future holds in store!
released June 19, 2014
All Songs by Jasper Lewis
David Jamison: Drums/ Recording Engineer
Denny Karl: Keys & harmony vocals on "The Shanghai Rule"
Matt Booth: Bass
Jasper Lewis: Vocals & Guitar
The "Key" sessions were recorded at Dave Jamison's home studio and mixed by Jasper Lewis.
The "Balm Songs" stuff was recorded around the house in the South Side of Pittsburgh, PA in between trips to St. James Tavern.