June 4th, 2013 , by John Beeler
We have not one, not two, but four shows in just three days for Asthmatic Kitty artists Fol Chen and Denison Witmer in London, starting on June 3.
Denison’s recently released self -titled album has received glowing praise from the likes of Uncut, who gave it an 8/10 and said “it’s a beauty” and featured one of Denison’s tracks on their Best Albums of the Month compilation. Denison will play his first headline UK show at the Angel in Islington on June 3. He follows that and then an invite only show at Black’s, also in London on June 4 (for an invite, please email tom at asthmatickitty dot com. Denison then heads north to Manchester for a show at the Castle on June 5. All ticket details are available on the tour page.
Fol Chen will make their way into the UK for their first London show for 3 years when they play a free gig at the Shacklewell Arms, London on June 5. Tickets can be downloaded here. They’ll be playing songs from their brand new long player The False Alarms described by The Line of Best Fit as “everything is meticulous, deliberately ingenious. It all flows excellently; there’s no disjointed genre-hopping here.”
May 2nd, 2013 , by John Beeler
A decade and a half into his musical career, singer-guitarist Denison Witmer has released a self-titled album, and for Witmer, Denison Witmer comes as an occasion to reflect on the unusual lessons of a life spent as a quiet, underground success.
“Looking over the arc of a career, there are moments when you got it right,” he says, “and moments where you didn’t. For me, music’s always about the process. It’s not always about the final product; it’s more about the journey. You work song by song and album by album in pursuit of something—I really try to trust that approach.”
Building the Honey Jar studio with producer and collaborator Devin Greenwood has made it possible for him to create a recording using the same patient, intuitive processes that have driven his songwriting—and his career. Witmer was able to bring in trusted performers like Greenwood, William Fitzsimmons, Dawn Landes, and Sufjan Stevens, and give them free rein to realize his music.
The result is an organic musical self-portrait, drawing inspiration and consolation from sources as different as Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet and the life of knuckleball pitcher R.A. Dickey, and weaving them into what is arguably Witmer’s most direct and personal album to date.
Denison Witmer is out today on Asthmatic Kitty Records.
Be sure to check out Denison on American Songwriter, where he’s Writer of the Week.
“One source of inspiration for this record was the story of the knuckleball pitcher R.A. Dickey . . . He said that some days you pitch it perfectly, other days you don’t. It’s so erratic that when the ball leaves your hand, you have to immediately accept that it might not be great or go where you want it to. You have to focus on the next pitch and let go of the mistakes behind you.” Denison Witmer, speaking to American Songwriter
November 6th, 2012 , by John Beeler
The Ones Who Wait—Part 2, a six-song EP by Denison Witmer, comes out today. Part 2 is a follow-up to Denison’s March 2012 full-length, The Ones Who Wait. Rather than a cohesive album, Part 2 is a collection of songs that form a concluding chapter to The Ones Who Wait, tying up loose ends in anticipation of the spring 2013 release of Denison’s tenth record. The EP features a handful of reinvented songs from The Ones Who Wait, previously unreleased material, and a spacious, patient cover of label-mate Sufjan Steven’s “Abraham.” The Ones Who Wait—Part 2 is available on Bandcamp, iTunes, Amazon.
October 4th, 2012 , by John Beeler
Denison Witmer is wrapping up work on his tenth record, and he’s decided to ask for your vote on the album cover. He’s provided three choices – and it’s a tough one, although perhaps a little easier than voting for president or local school board official.
Vote by liking the cover of your choice on his Facebook page here.
April 10th, 2012 , by John Beeler
We released Denison Witmer's The Ones Who Wait a few weeks ago, and it's just as good sounding today as it was then. You can listen and buy here.
But Denison has a robust back-catalog, and that includes one of our favorties, Are You a Dreamer? Our own Shara Worden and Sufjan Stevens and the Library Catalog's James McAllistor make appearances on the album, as well as Karen Don Peris (of Innocence Mission).
As of today Are You A Dreamer? is available via Noisetrade and all it takes is your email address and zip code to download the album. You can also leave a support Denison with a "tip" if you like.
Do so below, or visit the page on Noisetrade right here.
April 6th, 2012 , by John Beeler
Illustrations by Johnnie Cluney
We've been listening to Daytrotter for a while, and have loved every moment. Their recording sessions are some of the best in the biz. The sound quality and engineering is incredible. The writing and illustration always capture the essence of an artist.
All that to say: Daytrotter gets it.
So when one of our own artists pops up with a session, we rush like lemmings (do lemmings rush?) to the site to hear and download and read. When two our artists go up in one week? Things get a little crazy.
Of Denison Witmer, Sean Moeller writes, " The one thing that must keep him going is getting to play the songs that he writes every night – these songs that are so filled with deeply personal anecdotes and sentiments. They are the intimate thoughts that he can't bottle up."
And speaking about Ray Raposa of Castanets, Sean wrote that he "never ceases to mystify when he writes. He never seems to give it all up and for that, he's a master of the form."
March 6th, 2012 , by John Beeler
We welcomed Denison Witmer to the AK Family just a couple of months ago. We’ve been listening to his latest record, The Ones Who Wait, for a while now, and we’re honored that we get to release to the wide world – which means you!
This record is really something special. You can read the whole story here, but suffice to say that The Ones Who Wait represents the culmination of several significant life experiences, ones that we all go through at some point. And this is what Denison has always done best: he writes and sings songs that are markedly intimate, yet appeal to all of us. They are human events, captured on tape for all of us to share.
February 7th, 2012 , by John Beeler
As you may know, Denison joined our AK family last month, which is splendid news for everyone. And somewhere between then and there, Denison and his wife birthed a brandnew son (see here for cute proof)!
But now it’s time to get down to the work of releasing music. And so we begin with “Brooklyn With Your Highest Wall,” a sublime and perfectly lovely track from the forthcoming record, The Ones Who Wait.
Listen. Download. Think about walking down the dusky streets of Brooklyn. Enjoy!
January 12th, 2012 , by John Beeler
All of us, staff and artist roster alike have loved Denison Witmer and his music for a long time. Most of our roster has appeared at least once on any number of his eight albums, or hit the road and toured with Denison. He’s basically family around here, so maybe it’s about time we just made it official-like. Well, ok! Let’s!
Please, welcome Denison Witmer to the Asthmatic Kitty family! (You can even tweet your welcome by clicking here.)
Maybe we should have done this sooner, because it feels like he’s come home.
Of course, there’s always business to be done and the first order thereof is to release his latest album, The Ones Who Wait. Label Mono vs. Stereo released it last year on a limited basis, but when we heard the record we wanted a shot too. A big thanks to them for letting us at it.
We’ll be releasing the record in early March. Between now and then expect some more Denison-related announcements, but for now just know that we’re glad he’s around. We hope you are too.
Read the story behind the new album here.