Singer-songwriter cellist Ben Sollee is a frequent visitor to Asheville, playing regularly at The Orange Peel and LEAF. According to a press release, he “spent a few days this past summer trying to capture the songs and sounds that have influenced his life and music” — songs by Arthur Russell, Otis Redding, Paul Simon, Harry Belafonte, The Zombies, Howard Finster, Bill Monroe, Fiona Apple, Tom Waits and Gillian Welch. Sollee recorded a house-turned-into-makeshift-studio near Prospect, Ky.
“Screened porches, hallways, decks, and living rooms lend their own particular character to the recordings, and the hollow’s voice can be heard throughout: bugs chirp, birds whistle, water flows, and the wind blows,” says the press release. “More collaborator than background, the house and hollow provide the listener with a rich audial scenery and shape Sollee’s voice and cello as he seeks to capture his own versions of the songs that have shaped his development as a musician and songwriter.”
The album, “The Hollow Sessions,” is available today (Tuesday, Oct. 1) for free download through Noisetrade.com. A limited-edition 180-gram vinyl is also available through Institute 193′s SHOP.