Netherfriends is unlike anything you’ve heard before, in a good way. The Columbia grad, Shawn Rosenblatt, is a touring machine, who recently finished something he calls the 50 States, 50 Songs project. He wrote and recorded 1 song in every state… yes, that’s Alaska and Hawaii included. The project led to the release of an album called “Middle America,” where every song is named after a city and features a narration of his trip across the country. If you haven’t seen his solo performance with loop pedal and sampler yet, you’ll be amazed by his ability to quickly make a song from nothing and get you dancing.
Luckily for you, Netherfriends will be playing the Empty Bottle free Monday, May 28th, on Memorial Day. What better way to finish a weekend of BBQ’n, cold beer, and fireworks, than with a night of psych pop from Chicago’s very own.
Check out after the jump for an interview with Shawn about the 50 states project, his future, and his favorite spot in Chicago.
ACITM: Plans for the summer? I know you’re going to finally be in Chicago…
Netherfriends: A ton! I am touring Alaska in July and playing University of Fairbanks, doing a DJ residency at the Whistler, playing with a full band for the first time in a year at Schubas on August 18th (playing songs from my new album Middle America). Paying for an apartment in Chicago for the first time in 2 years. And always, working on and finishing a lot of recording projects.
A: Why did you decide to score Baraka? Let me say, the music makes the film 20 times better.
N: In college, I used to smoke hookah with my friends and watch Baraka with different records synced up. I never liked the music, but loved the visuals. I have a degree in music composition and I love making ambient drone music.
A: Other than the experience as a whole, what was the best part of the 50 states project?
N: Conditioning myself to be a full-time musician. I can’t stop.
A: Are there any new projects we should be on the look out for?
N: I am finishing up a few records. Sun Belt (from my 50 songs 50 states project) and Netherfriends Let it Bleed (Rolling Stones sample album). I have some collab albums I am working on with the bands Stephen Paul Smoker, Bo and The Locomotive, and I am planning on doing something with rapper Show You Suck and Jason from Ornery Little Darlings
A: And as we ask everyone, what’s your favorite spot in Chicago? (no restrictions, absolutely anything)
N: The bird aviary near the planetarium and the 12th st. beach.