2014 Wrap Up!

December 3, 2014

Hey all!

Hope you are doing well. We are coming up on our final Bay Area show of 2014. What a year it’s been too! Sometimes it’s hard to appreciate what you’ve accomplished in a music career. We do this thing that on paper seems crazy but sometimes feels like the most real endeavor we are a part of. We get paid in hugs, smiles, hands crashing together, respect, inspiration, and love. We get paid in new songs that we write, and the beautiful landscapes that inspire them. Here are some of the highlights we are especially proud of in 2014! We played The Independent, The Chapel, Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Slim’s and Ashkenaz, performed The Strawberry Music Festival, and the Grass Valley Fathers Day Bluegrass Festival, got interviewed by Dave Iverson from KQED Forum, sang on KPFA Radio, got interviewed by the San Francisco Chronicle, got into American Songwriter Magazine and Acoustic Guitar, was featured on Folk Alley, got Honorable Mention at Folks Fest Song competition, guest lectured a songwriting class at UC Berkeley, released a 13 song album called Country Mile, worked along side our amazing producer/mentor Laurie Lewis, toured though Alaska, the Northwest, Colorado, and LA, made lots of new friends, and wrote lots of new music. Feeling blessed right now for all the love and support from our friends, family, and fans. We couldn’t have done it without you.

Hey folks! Check out this Q/A session on American Nomad in the San Francisco Chronicle. Thanks Tony DuShane for the great questions.

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Here’s an excerpt:

After a road trip across the country from Boston, Hassan El-Tayyab relocated to the Bay Area in 2009. He met Shiloh Parkerson, who ended up as his music partner in American Nomad. If you’re into Americana, the San Francisco band will not disappoint. It’s foot-stompin’ fun.
Lineup: Hassan El-Tayyab, vocals, guitar; Shiloh Parkerson, vocals, guitar; Adam Lowdermilk, upright bass, vocals; Brian Judd, mandolin, vocals; Aurora Bowers, fiddle, vocals.

Was there a band you heard when you were young that inspired you to become a musician?

HE: I found a collection of Robert Johnson recordings sitting on a display case. I listened to the CD multiple times and checked out a few books on his life and legacy. … I became fascinated with the folklore and his music. The experience left me with a huge appreciation for the blues, which became the backbone of my taste in music, eventually leading me to listen to rock, folk, bluegrass, country and even pop.

How does living in the Bay Area affect your music?
HE: Living here forces artists to think about how tech and art are merging together. There are so many new tools becoming available every day that we are constantly trying to keep up to date in order to stay connected with our fan base. The Bay Area is also a musical melting pot, which has a growing appreciation for contemporary Americana and bluegrass music fusing with other genres.

How did you come up with your band name and what does it mean to you?

HE: The name originally stemmed from a long road trip I took in 2009. … I’m also half Bedouin and half European immigrant, which makes me a certifiable American Nomad. In a nutshell, American Nomad is a metaphor for an internal and external journey humanity is on to fuel art, which essentially is our interpretation of reality.

Next gig: 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 22. With Misner and Smith, Freddy and Francine. $10-$20. Viracocha, 998 Valencia St., S.F. (415) 374-7048. www.viracochasf.com.
— Tony DuShane, bandwidth@sfchronicle.com

Link to article:

http://www.sfgate.com/music/bandwidth/article/American-Nomad-Foot-stompin-fun-5904288.php

To LA and back again

October 31, 2014

Shiloh here. The other day I was looking back through the pictures of all we’ve been up to and I saw some of my faves of the beautiful nature we’ve encountered along this journey. I’d been searching for the theme to base my blog posts, and Hassan reminded me of the earth that we get to see as we walk our Country Mile. It is undoubtedly one of my favorite parts about starting this adventure of being full time musicians.

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Road trips are one of my favorite pastimes, and my amazement for the great outdoors never wanes. Landscape leaves me speechless and fills me with inspiration, as it did on our quick trip to LA for a songwriting competition last week. Though we didn’t advance to the next round, we met some great peeps, heard important feedback from the Grammy winning judges, and logged some more practice time in the world of music competition.

It was eye opening to travel south through our drought laden land. I’d seen hints of Mother Nature’s dehydration, but as the heat rises on I-5, you can feel the moisture drain from the color. Imagine the colors of water, all the hues of blue that exist out there. They were non-existent this time around, all minus the sky. You know, it’s interesting that when we “talk about the weather” that it means we aren’t talking about what’s real, what’s under the rug. On this little trip I saw the signs, literally. Congress created the dustbowl. Water= Jobs. No Water= No jobs. This well is dry, and it takes the power of Mother Nature to turn this around. Is that in our hands? Is that in our hearts? I hope so.

Save water. Share a shower. Save water, share the power. Cheesy? Perhaps. Either way, pass it on!

Expect more words and pondering about rocks and dirt, leaves and sky. They are, after all, what it’s all about.

Hey folks,

Hassan here. I have some exciting news to share. I just bought a brand new guitar. I’ve been wanting a Martin D-18 for a few years now and it finally happened. I went down to Griffon Stringed Instruments down in Palo Alto and purchased it about 3 weeks ago. Getting a new guitar is a sacred act. This is probably the guitar I’m going to play for most of my career as a professional musician. It’s the guitar I’m going to write new songs on. It’s the guitar that I’ll be dragging around to venues all across the country.I’ve been trying to think of a name for my new pal but nothing is coming to mind. If you think of something, send me an email! A good guitar should have a name I think.

Here’s a couple small details about this guitar that a few of you gear nerds might be interested in. If not, I won’t be offended…. here goes! This Martin D-18 has a lot of unique features. It’s got a slightly wider neck than most guitars which I like. It makes it easier for me to bend strings. The guitar was made with 4 types of wood from all over the world. It’s got a sitka spruce top and a mahogany body. The fingerboard is ebony and the headstock is rosewood. To amplify the sound, I put a trance audio brand pick up in it called an amulet. They are a small company right out of Santa Cruz. This was almost a harder decision than getting the guitar itself. It works off new technology that I wish I could explain better. The result is a very natural guitar tone which I’m loving. Anyway, I digress. Enough guitar nerddom for today! Thanks for reading! Hope I get to play it for you in person soon!

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American Nomad is proud to present our brand new music video of Hallelujah to all of you. We filmed this out in the hills of Sonoma County with a bunch of friends, an old white truck, and a bad ass dog named Sammy. Do we really need we say more? Enjoy!

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Yesterday we had the honor of being interviewed by Dave Iverson on KQED’s Forum. It was a blast! Checkout the writeup and stream the archived interview on their site.

“Hassan El-Tayyab was a special-ed teacher going through a rough patch in 2009 when he decided to hop in his Chevy Malibu and take a road trip through America. He settled in Berkeley and formed a new Americana music group with singer-songwriter Shiloh Parkerson. The band, American Nomad, describes itself as ‘modern-day troubadours tramping the dark and dangerous highways of the human soul,’ from heartbreak to broken dreams, with a traditional folk sound. The group just released its new CD, ‘Country Mile.’ They join us for a conversation and live performance.”

Hey folks,

Today is May Day! That means American Nomad’s new album Country Mile is officially out in stores near you! Online stores that is. We are truly SO excited to finally share it with you after over a year of some of the hardest and most rewarding work we’ve ever done. Click on this link for a free stream of the entire album on American Songwriter Magazine’s website. Yes, you heard that right. American Songwriter Magazine liked our sound so much they are doing a feature article on Country Mile! How cool is that!

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To get your own copy of Country Mile go to our music page or directly on CD Baby. You can either download the album or buy physical copies.

We have already sent our album to almost 200 radio stations around the country so there is a good chance your favorite folk DJ may be playing our tunes soon. Keep an ear out for that. We could still use your help sharing our music and spreading the word. If you like what you hear, please pass around the album and play it for the people you love. It would mean the world to us and help take our musical project to the next level.

Thanks again from the bottom of our musical hearts for your love and support. This album would not have been the same without your amazing generosity.

Keep on keeping on!

- American Nomad

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Hey folks! Exciting news. The Bluegrass Situation just made the title track off our new record Country Mile, their song of the week. Take a second to read the review and have an exclusive listen to the track by clicking this link.

Here is an excerpt:

For today’s “Song of the Week” we travel to San Francisco to check in with American Nomad, a roots duo fronted by multi-instrumentalists Hassan El-Tayyab and Shiloh Parkerson. The band are firmly entrenched in modern Americana, bridging the gap between swinging country jazz and mystic mountain music, which is quite evident on their newest record Country Mile.

Produced by fiddle and folk stalwart, Laurie Lewis, the pair’s latest effort is a perfect example of the benefits of live recording.

“Working with our producer Laurie Lewis on Country Mile has been a blessing. If you’ve ever met Laurie you know that she is never afraid to speak her mind and is usually right when she does. That is exactly the kind of person we wanted as the producer for our first full length record,” the band tells The Sitch.

Title track “Country Mile,” begins with lush shivers of a dobro, before El-Tayyab and Parkerson embark on a grueling trek across a remote Southern landscape.

“With her quick decision making and strong direction, we tracked all the basics for 12 songs on our album in just two 10-hour days at Bird and Egg Studio. Laurie got every member of the band to focus on getting the best performances we all had in us. That is how it should be in the studio. Every musician walked away from those two days of live tracking agreeing that was one of the best recording sessions any of us had been a part of, and that Laurie was a key ingredient. We are all lucky to have her sharing her heartfelt music and guiding the next generation of bluegrass and Americana musicians.”

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Well folks, our album is DONE, DONE, DONE. It’s been tracked, edited, mixed, mastered, and is back from the printers. We want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Honestly and truly. It took a community of folks to make this record happen and every contribution made a big difference. We are grateful to everyone right now. Hassan even hugged a complete stranger yesterday on the subway… that’s another story. Rest assured, he’s getting help.

So I guess you want to know when you can hear it huh? This blog is the place to find out that info. Our album will drop on May day. Yep… Thursday May 1st 2014. It’ll be available right here on this website for streaming and downloads if the Tech gods are smiling upon us. They can be unpredictable sometimes, but we are hoping for the best.

The following day on May 2nd, we will be on the Bay Area’s favorite talkshow Forum chatting about the release and doing a live performance. So exciting… 50,000 people will hear this broadcast. We hope you will be one of them. Turn your radio dials to 88.5 FM from 10:30am – 11:00am. You can also stream that interview at kqed.org.

Later that day we will be doing an Unofficial CD release party with the T Sisters at Sam’s Log Cabin in Albany. This will be a really unique outdoor event, hosted by Laurie Lewis nonetheless. Check out shows page for more info on that. The event will sell out, so get tickets TODAY!

That’s all for now people. Much love to you and yours for the amazing support along American Nomad’s musical journey! See ya soon!

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…my house is alive with the sounds of springtime… and it’s got me out and about, smelling the flowers, warmed by solar rays, back again after a brief vacation. On my adventures, I’ve been keenly aware of all the new growth, baby buds on trees, multicolored blossoms just peeking out. It’s almost as if they’re in hiding. Where dead leaves and dried seed pods lay strewn about, passersby may not yet take notice, but they’re there. Both slight and deep purples of lavender, the golden-sunshine of the California Poppy, and the myriad greens of fresh born leaves.

Look up! Look down and around. It’s this beauty that inspires song.

It’s springtime, I’m happy to say. I’ve been waiting for it. Haven’t you? We’ve had the distinct pleasure of spending several hours together in the fresh air at the Marin Farmer’s Market, in San Rafael, and while sharing a few brews at Café Jupiter in Berkeley. I tell you what, playing in the shade with loads of shiny happy people, dancing, singing along, and sharing sweet kudos is one of the best ways we can think to begin a Sunday morning. We’re all completely stoked for next time around, and we get to return on Sunday, May 11th. YES!

In a stir, we headed south from the market to Berkeley for a radio session with Mary Tilson on KPFA’s America’s Back 40. What fun! Mary was very warm, welcoming, and just plain cool. We loved every moment. Can’t wait to do that again.

Well little lovelies, that’s all for now. Stay tuned for updated details on our May CD release for Country Mile, and other ramblings. We know you’re at the edges of your seats!

Much love and music filled days for you all…