Jesse Harris and Star Rover – “Catch the Ash” (audio) (Premiere)

Spare and simple, the latest number by Jesse Harris and Star Rover, is a melancholy lament to the ephemeral nature of life.

Time Out New York once said about the singer/songwriter Jesse Harris, “[His] gift lies in his deft rendering of fleeting moods and passing moments.” This holds particularly true for “Catch the Ash”, a track off of Harris’ new album with Star Rover, No Wrong No Right. The spartan tune uses delicately played minor chords to slow down time as Harris reminds us to “catch the ash before it falls”. Harris rose to fame after writing Norah Jones’ Grammy-winning song “Don’t Know Why”, but since then he’s remained a prolific and unique recording artist, a streak continued by No Wrong No Right.

Harris says to PopMatters regarding the track, “After we finished recording No Wrong No Right, I realized that every song on the album was either in the first or second person. A couple days later, I wrote ‘Catch The Ash’ with a single rule: I couldn’t use the words ‘you’ or ‘I’ anywhere in the lyrics. I really loved the way the song turned out, and I knew I’d be sad if I didn’t include it on the album. Plus, I felt that, lyrically, it was needed. So I used a day in the studio that was originally meant only for overdubs, and we cut ‘Catch the Ash.’ Will [Graefe] and Jeremy [Gustin] from Star Rover had worked out an arrangement at home based on a guitar & vocal demo I sent them, and we put it down rather quickly — the basic tracks of guitars, drums and voice came first, live, and then I overdubbed the piano and Sofia Rei (whom Harris also performs with in the John Zorn-led Song Project) sang those gorgeous whispered backing vocals on the chorus to finish it off.”

No Wrong No Right is out on 10 February on Dangerbird. You can pre-order the album here.

Splash image taken by Juan Patino.