Here’s the story.
I grew up in New York City in the 1970s. I was born to a German-Jewish mother and a Black American father from upstate NY. We lived in a big apartment on the Upper West Side, a mixed, middle class family in a progressive household and neighborhood.
musicians needing a place to crash or just wanting to say hi. And there was always music playing. And not just in the background – we would sit as a family and listen to a whole record. Music was in every corner of our lives; from the legacy of my grandfather, the cellist Emanuel Feuermann, to the jazz club my parents ran around the corner.
I remember the first records I dared to place the needle on all by myself: Mingus-Changes Two, Emanuel Feuermann – Schubert’s Arpeggione Sonata, and Aretha Franklin – Amazing Grace.
This music was the sound of that moment in our lives, when no one had gotten sick yet, when love and possibility were boundless, when the Civil Rights movement wasn’t in the history books yet. The sound of percussion and drums and hollering and love songs and resistance and horns and strings — these sounds, alone and together, always made me feel safe.
About The Record About The Band
New York Nostalgia is an album about almost-love. Stumbling, loving, sexy, flirty, sad, warm, dirty, loose love — fleeting, and true. These songs are love letters; love letters to old flames, and to a New York that is no more; a broken city of cook-outs, Sesame Street, late-night stoop hangs, bad blocks, 106th Street, bebop, post-bop, playing tag in the hallway.
My band Bottom Heavy has true chemistry. The band is live on this record – it’s warm, it’s crisp. It’s the sound of a band playing in the same room, everyone up close, together and tight. There were lots of rehearsals, lush and intricate arrangements, careful attention was paid to the sound; real, live, warm musicians – breathing life and soul into the room and sound.
Bottom Heavy is: Marika Hughes (cello/voice), Kyle Sanna (guitar), Charlie Burnham (violin), Fred Cash Jr (bass) Tony Mason (drums). With special guests on this album: Marc Cary (piano), Ron McBee (percussion), Doug Wamble (slide gtr),Mike McGinnis (tenor sax), Jordan McLean (trumpet), Imani Uzuri and Morley(additional vocals).
About The Campaign
The record is done – recorded, mixed and mastered. So this campaign is about getting the music out to people I don’t know yet. The fund raising will help me pay for the publicist, the printing of the CDs and the graphic design. It’s the last step to getting the music out into the world.
I need to raise $12,000.
There are lots of options and combinations of thanks for your contribution to New York Nostalgia including a couple of items that are part of the story:
Bring Back White Flight sticker, conceived by Marika & created by Sharif Waits.
[Photo print] of Williamsburg, Bklyn circa ’93, by Marika Hughes
Why Make an Album
Well, putting out this record will allow for a number of things.
Firstly, it is a documentation of a moment in time for this band. It’s the sound we’ve been making and developing over the last few years. We made the record I wanted to make.
In addition, having an album out will give us the chance to get more gigs, so we can keep creating and play together more often and in more places.
And finally, it will allow us to keep telling stories; melodically, lyrically, musically.
I told my story The Drip, for The Moth a few years ago. The impact of storytelling was never clearer to me than after receiving feedback from their radio and podcast listeners. Story-telling shares our histories, it creates a place where we can all relate and find compassion; whether in love or in loss, with humor or with fear. Stories breathe passion into the tales of everyday life, from the mundane to the thrilling. Our stories, our music, keep our cultural DNA alive.