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The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb Share “Gentle On My Mind” Single + Video Via Flaunt Sep 01, 2021

PRE-ORDER/PRE-SAVE: The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb – Not On The Map

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LISTEN/WATCH & SHARE: The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb – “Gentle On My Mind”

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Today, The Colorist Orchestra and Howe Gelb share their new single and video “Gentle On My Mind” via Flaunt. The Colorist Orchestra is an avant classical music collective led by Aarich Jespers and Kobe Proesmans that uses traditional and bespoke instruments in unorthodox ways to remix the repertoire of an invited artist. Their new single “Gentle On My Mind” is a stunning preview of Not On The Map, their latest collaboration with maverick songwriter Howe Gelb, coming this fall from Dangerbird Records. The band gives their thoughts on the track below:

“Thanks to Howe, we rediscovered this fantastic song. The words paint pictures that keep coming like a river. Finding the right pallet to give that river enough drive and also melodically maintain enough space for the content of the lyrics was a fine challenge. The melodic extra information we added gives just that space for the images to sink in. We really like the way howe tells and sings this song, while playing, you embrace his story so intensely that there is nothing left but the here and now.” – Kobe Proesmans

“Working on the arrangement, I had the mood of midnight cowboy in my head. I also listen a lot to Nina Simone’s Suzanne and this you can hear in the parts of the bass and the piano…” – Aarich Jespers

“Harkens back to the early 70s. Before it all turned decadent in the counterculture. The last remnants of the beat era. The hipster as hobo. Riding the rails. Cuppin the hot tin cup of crappy coffee.” – Howe Gelb

Over a 30+ year career beginning with his trailblazing indie collective Giant Sand, Howe Gelbhas proven himself no stranger to experimentation and reinvention. When Jespers and Proesmans first approached Gelb, the intent was to apply The Colorist Orchestra’s interpretive approach to Gelb’s expansive and diverse catalog, but they quickly discovered that there is little about Gelb’s creative method that involves sticking to a rigid plan.

“Inspired by an old Giant Sand song, we prepared and recorded almost all the parts for ‘More Exes’ before we had a vocal take,” Jespers said. “So, we basically worked on the arrangement as an instrumental track, which explains the many layers in melodies and textures. We wanted to impress Howe with our full color sound to get him on board.”

Once Gelb was on board, the scope of the project expanded with the addition of folk singer and songwriter Pieta Brown at Gelb’s behest, and soon there were new lyrics for “More Exes” and new melodies to explore. It became abundantly clear to all involved that looking back would not be nearly as exhilarating as creating something entirely new.

“That first song was just kinda begging for something to make it more new, more vital, and not something from so many years ago. I wasn’t so stubborn as to try to hold it down to what I thought it used to be,” Gelb said.

“Howe told me he loved the sound of the track they sent, sparked by an old song of his called ‘Vortexas,’ but that he really wanted to find a new song in it all somehow,” Brown recalled. “I said, ‘How about More Exes?’ and the next thing we all knew Howe had written and recorded that lyric, and asked me to sing on it.”

Based in Antwerp with eight members including Jespers and Proesmans, who are percussionists, TCO likes making sounds at different tones and frequencies with things that are not actually instruments as well as instruments they’ve made or altered. Once they find the sounds they want, it all gets written down and rehearsed: every groove, string, chord and chime.

“I really had to stop for a minute and digest the fact that all those pieces were written out,” says Gelb. “That they didn’t just get together and jam out.”

Best-known for their 2016 collaboration, The Colorist and Emiliana Torrini, The Colorist Orchestra has also toured and recorded with Sumie, Cibelle, Gabriel Rios, and Lisa Hannigan.

Until now, all of The Colorist Orchestra’s previous releases were built around meticulously rehearsed and arranged live performances of songs from their collaborator’s catalog. But Not On The Map is entirely new material. Perhaps the perfect summation of the project came from Proesmans’ 11 year-old daughter, after first hearing the latter tracks. “You have Howe, and he’s creating a world,” she said. “And then you guys create the ocean around it.”

Sat 11/6 – Netherlands, Groningen – Take Root Festival
Mon 11/8 – Belgium, Gent – NT Gent (40 jaar Democrazy)
Tue 11/9 – Netherlands, Amsterdam –  Paradiso
Fri 11/12 – Belgium, Kortrijk – Sonic City (TBC)
Sat 11/13 – Belgium, Antwerp –  De Roma
Sun 11/14 –  France, Lyon – Opera
Tue 11/16 – Belgium, Brussels – AB

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Upcoming Tour Dates

View more dates
The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Gold Shining (feat. Pieta Brown) Nov 17, 2021

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Gentle On My Mind – Single Sep 1, 2021

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Sweet Pretender (feat. Pieta Brown) – Single Jul 28, 2021

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Counting On – Single May 28, 2021

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

Not On The Map Oct 1, 2021

The Colorist Orchestra & Howe Gelb

More Exes – Single Apr 14, 2021

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