My Brightest Diamond
iTunes Exclusive EP
My Brightest Diamond is a band that sounds unlike any other, a magical tour de force that casts a potent spell over all who hear her songs. From Shara Worden’s incredible, powerful pipes, to her edgy guitar, to her luminous arrangements of strings and bells, My Brightest Diamond is an artist whose songs overwhelm with grandeur. Her debut, Bring Me the Workhorse, out now on Asthmatic Kitty, won dazzling accolades; her live show has won her even more. In the midst of heavy touring, My Brightest Diamond and Asthmatic Kitty are releasing an iTunes-only exclusive EP for the very fans who have been heralding her astounding music for the past few months. The EP, which will be available through iTunes on December 5th, 2006 and will feature album track “Disappear,” in addition a previously unheard b-side called “The Lace Handkerchief,” an alternate recording of “Disappear,” and remixes of the song by Stakka and James McAlister.
Shara first met James McAlister in San Diego, California in the summer of 2004. Both had been shipped in to rehearse for Sufjan Stevens’ Michigan Militia band. Shara and James hit it off instantly, since one of the many places that Shara lived, was in Oklahoma, near James’ hometown. She understood all his Okie jokes and they shared a love for actress Madeline Kahn, drummer James Gatson and double lattes. James also played drums as part of My Brightest Diamond in tours both in Europe and the US, so it seemed only natural that James should try his rhythm section hand at a remix when the opportunity arose!
That same summer of 2004, on a hot New York City August day, the My Brightest Diamond string quartet met in violist, Marla Hansen’s upper west side apartment to record. With no air condition, sidewalk noise from a taping of Law and Order six flights down, and traffic sounds from the George Washington Bridge, windows were blanketed up, living room armchairs were moved and My Brightest Diamond began recording. If you listen really hard, you will probably hear a city bus hidden in the track! Violinist Rob Moose and Julie Carney played tag while improvising the verse sound affects and everyone struck up a chord for the chorus to create a much more intimate version of “Disappear” than is heard on the album full length version. This recording was made for what was then thought to be a double album with “Bring Me The Workhorse” entitled “A Thousand Shark’s Teeth”, but the string quartet version lost it’s home when it got kicked off of “Shark’s”. It finally found it’s home here on the single and we think it’s much happier now.
Shara’s friend/poet/musician/actor Sage seems to be the match that lights many a fire. Sage set up Shara’s first New York show at the Pink Pony, introduced her to Sufjan Stevens at his variety show, The Medicine Show and now sparked her collaboration with English DJ/Producer Stakka. As evidence of the modern age, Shara and Stakka have never met though they both live in Brooklyn. Like a secret mission, Shara dropped off a cd of the split tracks through Stakka’s mail slot and via the internet Stakka’s amazing 16 bit version showed up on her proverbial email doorstep a week later. Will they ever meet face to face? That is the real post modern question.
The Lace Handkerchief was recorded in August 2006 in Joel Shearer’s LA rehearsal studio. Shara was recording some of the vocals for an upcoming project and found Joel’s calimba and wrote the song quickly as a smoke break.