Meir Levine at The Woods

Singer-songwriter Meir Levine was recently at The Woods with Gillian Pelkonen engineering and Producer Andrew Freedman.

Raised in the Hudson Valley and currently based in Brooklyn, Meir Levine blends his folk rock nostalgia for the 1970’s with a modern indie sensibility. He recorded his upcoming EP with acclaimed engineer D. James Goodwin (The Hold Steady, Bonny Light Horseman, Bob Weir, Kevin Morby, Watchhouse), with producer Andrew Freedman (Henry Jamison, Michael Mayo), and acclaimed players including Josh Kaufman, (Bonny Light Horseman, Bon Iver, The National, Anais Mitchell), Jordan Rose (Theo Katzman, Charlie Hunter), Mike Robinson (Sarah Jarosz, Railroad Earth), and Jeremy McDonald (Mason Jar Music, Louis Cato) among others; more details to be announced. With past projects, Meir has played stages from the iconic Brooklyn Bowl, Music Hall of Williamsburg, and Bowery Ballroom to the renowned
Carnegie Hall.

Gillian has worked with artists like Shawn Mendes, Norah Jones, Laufey, Amos Lee, Goose, Bonny Light Horseman, Jenny Owen Youngs, Charlotte Cornfield, Sammy Rae & The Friends and Amy Helm + has assisted for engineers such as Elliot Scheiner, D. James Goodwin, Ariel Shafir and more.

Andrew Freedman is a pianist, multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer traversing the realms of improvised music, pop, indie rock and electronic music. He has toured worldwide on keys with jazz/r&b vocalist Michael Mayo, Ground UP artist Sirintip, indie/folk songwriters Henry Jamison and Haux, hasidic folk/soul band Zusha and others.

Jazz guitarist Ryan Blotnick was recently in the studio with a quartet making a live recording of original compositions.

The sessions were produced by Tyler Wood, and featured Tyler on keys as well as bassist Adam Chilenski and drummer Otto Hauser.

Todd Adelman’s seventh album “Western Soul”, recorded at The Woods, will be released in January of 2024.

From Todd’s website:

Todd Adelman’s forthcoming 2024 release Western Soul, is a fourteen-song prescription for what ails The American Dream. It’s as if Adelman has checked the vitals, extracted a little blood & scrutinized our diet of political chaos, rampant illness & overwhelming violence & recommended something honest & straight from the gut. Western Soul is a batch of songs borne right out of the American Songwriting Tradition. An homage & a tribute to all those great records we know & love & feel like have been with us from the start. Like the mythical country singer Bad Blake says, “that’s the way it is with the good ones, you’re sure you’ve heard ‘em before”. &, like his predecessors, Petty & Kristofferson & Prine, Adelman is a Keeper of the Keys. An honest Rock ‘n’ Roller. A Country Gentleman. A Storyteller. Straight to the heart. Without pretension or meanness, just an interest in writing a song. A good one. & that’s what Adelman does over & over again.

The record was produced by Woodstock Producer/Musician Danny Blume with production assistance given to bassist Taras Prodaniuk and guitarist Doug Pettibone. Veteran Jim Christie joins them on the drums. Both Christie & Prodaniuk have played with: Dwight Yoakum, Lucinda Williams & Merle Haggard. Pettibone has played with Lucinda Williams, Zucchero, Marianne Faithful and Vic Chestnut to name a few. Throw in some Woodstock locals such as Larry Campbell, John Medeski, Pete Rubens, Tony Garnier, and Brian Mitchell & you have quite a stew.

Listen to preview tracks and learn more here.

Western Soul Release Party: January 21 at The Colony

Todd is doing a CD Release show at the Colony in Woodstock on January 21st.  The show will be from 7PM to 10PM.  Todd and The Woodsmen will be joined by Justin Tracy who will be performing an opening set.

This past summer, Iris Clementine was at The Woods to record her debut EP. From the Vfib Recordings website:

Outsider is the debut EP from Iris Clementine, a 17 year old singer-songwriter from Woodstock, NY. Her rich voice centers these 6 explorations of the ups and downs of romance, family, friends, and finding your spot. Rich, melancholic, beautiful , hopeful , with a bit of dark undertow. For fans of Mazzy Star, Phoebe Bridgers, Fleetwood Mac.

The session was engineered by Todd Adelman and features Justin Tracy on drums, Mark Lerner on bass, and Steve Koester on guitars. The songs were mixed by Alan Weatherhead and Kevin Salem.

Check out the new video from Singer-Songrwiter Kevin DeForrest for “All I Got To Give.” The song was recorded at The Woods and the video features the Studio prominently.

From Kevin: Scenes from The Woods near Woodstock, NY, recorded and photographed December 8-11, 2022. Photos by Jame Kegley. Music by Jim Christie (drums), Taras Prodaniuk (bass), Doug Pettibone (acoustic, electric and pedal steel guitar), Bran Mitchell (piano, organ, accordion) and John Putnam (acoustic, resonator and electric guitars). Engineered by John Valesio. Produced by Todd Adelman. Great people. I hope this video offers a glimpse into how much fun we had creating music (and many fond memories) together.

Singer-songwriter-guitarist Justin Tracy has been recording his fourth studio album at The Woods over the last couple months, with Todd Adelman recording and co-producing. The album is called Five Fathoms and is slated for a 2024 release.

Justin was recently joined in the studio by jazz legend Don Byron, who added clarinet to the song “Simple Life.” Don has been nominated as a composer for both a Grammy and Pulitzer, has released a dozen albums as a band leader, and has performed with the likes of Bang A Can, Bill Frisell, Reggie Workman, Living Colour, Joe Henry, Allen Toussaint, Susan Vega, and more.

A bit more about Justin: Singer-songwriter Justin Tracy was born and raised in London and currently lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.  He is a multi-instrumentalist with a focus on acoustic guitar and voice.  He is also a record producer, composer for television and film, arranger, and vocal coach who recently hand-built his recording studio, Hurley Sound Studio. Justin began his career as a jazz drummer performing with acts including Earth, Wind & Fire at the Nice And North Sea Jazz Festivals. Justin is a self-taught guitarist and recently worked with acclaimed tabla player, Nilesh Jhadav on his albums Bangla Motor (2011) and Mumbai Night (2017).

Suzy Thompson is a fiddle player who has have devoted her life to the pursuit of weird and obscure old-time American music – warped fiddle tunes in odd tunings, cinematic ballads, country blues songs that contain mysterious metaphors, early Cajun music with incomprehensible French lyrics and backwards chords. In addition to her rhythm-driven fiddling, she is a powerful blues singer, influenced by Memphis Minnie and Bessie Smith, and a highly respected blues guitarist.

Suzy swang by the studio recently to record with a group of Woodstock legends — John Sebastian, Cindy Cashdollar, and Molly Mason.

John Valesio was the engineer.

Suzy Thompson with John Sebastian, Cindy Cashdollar, and Molly Mason.

We were super stoked to have Leif Vollebekk in the studio recently. Lief was recording some tunes with engineer John Valesio. Woodstock legend Cindy Cashdollar joined for some magical lap steel and dobro playing.

Leif is a Canadian indie folk singer-songwriter, whose 2017 album Twin Solitude was a shortlisted finalist for the 2017 Polaris Music Prize and the 2018 Juno Award for Adult Alternative Album of the Year. His fourth album, New Ways, was released in 2019 on Secret City Records

Cindy Cashdollar received five Grammy awards while playing for eight years with Asleep at the Wheel, and has also backed such noted performers as Bob Dylan, Leon Redbone, Redd Volkaert, Carla Olson and Ryan Adams as a member of his band The Cardinals.

Leif Vollebekk and Cindy Cashdollar with John Valesio and Todd Adelman

We were lucky to have Kevin DeForrest at the studio recently, working on his new album, tentatively titled “One More Time Today.” Kevin seemlessly blends elements of blugrass, country, and folk into his timeless compositions.

Check out Kevin’s Kickstarter campaign and related blog post about the sessions here.

For these sessions, produced by Todd Adelman and engineered by John Valesio, Kevin was joined by a fantastic band:

Kevin DeForrest – Vocals
Jim Christie – Drums
Taras Prodaniuk – Bass
Doug Pettibone – Electric Guitars, Pedal Steel Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Dobro
John Putnam – Acoustic and Resophonic Guitar
Brian Mitchell – Piano, B3, Accordion and Wurlitzer Electric Piano

From Kevin: “The Band. That’s a whole lot of musical experience and expertise in one snapshot. The skill and creative insight they brought into the studio is evident on the recording – 4 days, 14 songs. Better yet, the kindness and friendship they shared with me is a gift I’ll keep with me forever.

All the photos here were taken by James Kegley.

One of the many great things about the location of our studio is its proximity to Woodstock, NY, a town with a rich musical history. The area attracts some incredible talent. You can’t shake a stick without hitting a world class musician.

To wit, we’ve recently had the honor of hosting Larry Campbell, John Medeski, and Jefferson Hamer, who all tracked on Todd Adelman’s upcoming album.

Here’s keyboard maestro John Medeski (of Medesiki, Martin & Wood) wrecking our Farfisa.

And here’s Jefferson Hamer singing some sweet harmonies.