February 23 roots-based singer/songwriter Patrick Coman will release his new CD, Tree of Life, produced by acclaimed guitarist Peter Parcek and drummer Marco Giovino (Robert Plant, Buddy Miller), who both also play on the new disc.
The artist’s own Tree of Life has branched out. Coman spent a decade behind the scenes as a booking agent, sound engineer, and DJ/producer for Americana station WUMB-FM in Boston, but left that aspect of the music business—and his home—for Charlottesville, Virginia and a life as a daytime stay-at-home father and full-time musician by night.
Nearly all of the material on Tree of Life was written in the months leading up to and directly following the birth of Coman’s first child. In his new life, Coman now opens for Del McCoury, Robbie Fulks, Larry Campbell & Teresa Williams, Joan Osborne and John Fullbright.
In addition to Parcek and Giovino, “Beehive Queen” Christine Ohlman lends her unmistakable grit to the album on the spirited duet, “Don’t Reach,” and Coman talked a little bit about the collaborative process:
“Don’t Reach” was the last song I wrote for this album and it came out very quickly. I was painting my back porch and thought back to time I spent painting houses for a living. One of the first rules they teach you when you’re up on a thirty foot ladder is “don’t reach where you can’t see” and it just struck me as one of those metaphors for life. I left the paintbrush on the ledge ran inside and had the song down about as quick as I could write it.
“I originally wrote the main riff in a slower tempo, but friend and co-producer Peter Parcek suggested playing it in double time, and he gave it a little Hubert Sumlin-style funkiness. Marco Giovino who played drums on the record and also co-produced, had the idea of making the song a duet. We thought long and hard about a vocalist who could deliver the lines with the right attitude and authenticity and eventually chose Christine “the Beehive Queen” Ohlman, of “Saturday Night Live” band fame. She was an absolute blast to sing with, and I think she really gave the song the kick in the ass it needed to take it over the top.”
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