Friday, February 27, 2009

Range Records Album Covers

Music has a huge effect on how I draw my cartoons.  Music is always playing when I am at the drawing table or on my Ipod when I draw at diners and pubs. 

Here are a few album covers I did over the past year or two for Range Records.  Both albums were produced by Grammy Winner Aaron Luis Levinson.  He makes amazing concept albums (Spanish Harlem Orchestra, The Philadelphia Experiment, The Harlem Experiment).  Aaron has amazing taste in music and is a great friend of mine.

The first was filled with all Lonnie Johnson songs.  Lonnie lived in Philly for most of the latter part of his life.  He was an amazing blues guitar ground breaker who also played jazz with Eddie Lang and Louis Armstrong.  At the release party, I had the honor of meeting Lonnie's family and the amazing guitarist Jef Lee Johnson, who seemed to channel Lonnie in his performance.

This album cover was not used, as the concept for the album was changed.  Harmonious Wail is a great Gypsy style jazz band who uses Django-esque intricate guitar work combined with very sweet vocals.  The working title was "Who Loves the Sun" after the Velvet Underground song that is on the album.  Aaron being a great conceptualist, had Harmonious Wail play some rock gems like this in their own style.  They also cover Tom Waits' "You Can Never Hold Back Spring", which I love.

The band overhauled their entire website and marketing materials with a hipper, more quirky and old-tymie sensibility.  I like this one much better and feel that it more aptly fits the mood of the album.  A very generous friend of mine modeled for the front cover for me. 

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