Eliot Bronson Says New Record ‘Finally Hit the Mark’
When Eliot Bronson started working on his new self-titled album, he tried something pretty gutsy.
Hoping to work with Dave Cobb, who recently produced Sturgill Simpson‘s critically acclaimed ‘Metamodern Sounds in Country Music’ and Jason Isbell‘s Americana Music Award-winning ‘Southeastern,’ Bronson sent Cobb an unsolicited sample track. And it worked.
“I was stunned when I got a response," Bronson says. "It was really validating for me because I sort of had him on a pedestal."
After that, things kept going well with the album. The 10-song disc, Bronson's third as a solo artist, was recorded in just one week.
"I kind of felt like we were just a bunch of kids in a band, playing together and making it up as we went along and figuring it out together," he tells The Boot. "[Cobb] definitely has a lot of opinions ... but he also is not super-controlling either, so it was just a very natural process to me; it just came out very easy."
Bronson chose to record the album analog, a decision he says Cobb supported. Recording in the old-school format has become somewhat of a trend lately, but Bronson says he did it to capture the "timeless, organic and real" vibe of albums from the '60s and '70s.
"What I really wanted to do was make a record that sounded like my favorite records, which are older records, and that's just how they were made," he says. "I don't know if it was to be analog just to be analog, but as a tool to produce the sound that we were both hearing in the songs themselves."
The final selections for 'Eliot Bronson' "are the batch [of songs from the past year] that sort of felt like they're intended to go together," Bronson says. The singer-songwriter has won praise and awards for his writing, including first place at MerleFest's Chris Austin Songwriting Contest.
Even though the tunes weren't all written with the intent of going on an album together, the Baltimore, Md., native says the end result feels "very focused," which he partially attributes to Cobb's production.
"In the past, the people who have produced my records have also been people I knew really well," Bronson says. "[This time], I was walking into a studio with a guy I'd only met once before and I held in high regard ... and so that whole dynamic of working with a person like that, and then trusting their instincts sometimes in a way that maybe I wouldn't have with somebody who was a buddy, that changed, I think, a great deal, the end result."
It also helped Bronson make "the record I've been trying to make for a long, long time," he says. "I finally hit the mark of what I've been trying to do for a really long time. I won't be able to do this record again; there won't be a part two to this record.
"[When you realize that's the type of record you've made], there's a very short window of extreme satisfaction followed by just an overwhelming terror," Bronson adds with a laugh.
Eliot Bronson, 'Eliot Bronson' Track Listing:
1. 'River Runs Dry'
2. 'Nothing Like Me'
3. 'Comin' for Ya North Georgia Blues'
4. 'You Wouldn't Want Me If You Had Me'
5. 'New Pain'
6. 'Time Ain't Nothin''
7. 'Just Came Back to Tell You I'm Leaving'
8. 'Never Been a Friend of Mine'
9. 'Sleep on It'