It’s 2005 and the time for healing has begun. Who better to unite a divided nation than the Mayor of the East Bay, Bart Davenport, one of the truest troubadours of our times. To those who know that the time for love is now, Bart presents Maroon Cocoon, a home recorded masterpiece in the tradition of Emmit Rhodes, Shuggie Otis, and Paul McCartney’s solo debut.
Recorded in strict adherance to 8-Track Analog by housemate Sam Flax Keener (a mean woodwinds conributor and singer/songwriter in his own right) and mixed by longtime Collaborator/Producer Jon Erickson (Greyboy, Preston School of Industry, Les Sans Cullottes) Maroon Cocoon takes a pretty radically different approach than Bart’s previous albums. Recording at home gave BD the oppportunity to try some things he had wanted to do for quite some time: for starters, he has dropped the drum kit altogether for a balance of lush acoustic numbers and a few heavier cuts featuring Tony Sevener (of Quannum artists Honeycut and General Electrics) rocking the beats on a classic MPC drum machine. The result is Bart’s most stripped-down and personal record to date.
For a singer/songwriter to get all introverted and drum-machine oriented is certainly nothing new, people like Phil Collins and Shuggie Otis immediately spring to mind. But this is Bart Davenport, still able to soulfully tell a story worth hearing, all the while proudly wearing his wide range of influences without ever getting derivative. Whether it’s the plaintive tributes to British Folk of Welcome to the Show and Paper Friend, the lyrically beguiling shout-out to Catano Veloso’s Tropicalia/Political Exile period of Clara, or his totally faithful, totally poignant cover of the Hard Place’s LA Girls, Maroon Cocoon covers a lot of stylistic ground without ever moving an inch; Bart’s still right there, humbly strumming and singing as though you’re the only one in the audience.