Posted on October 26, 2008. Filed under: buck 65 | Tags: , |

Buck 65 has released Dirtbike part 3. He’s also posted his first “love letter” in nearly two months.  In this post, he wrote fairly lengthy notes for the entire Dirtbike project, which I have copied below.

I have completed the task I had set out for myself to put together three huge album’s worth of music in three months – what’s been called the ‘Dirtbike’ project. In these last three months I managed to write and record approximately 70 songs.  The three “albums” are each around an hour in length. I have a bunch of material left over that didn’t make it onto any of these Vertex-like mixes. Someday I’ll do something with those too.

Right now I think of Dirtbike 1-3 as a woodshed demo project. But I’ve wanted to share this work, at this stage, with anyone who was interested in hearing it. So I sent copies to a few friends and to the people who contributed and they’ve floated around a bit from there.

Contributors to this project have included:

– Buddy Peace: DJ/producer extraordinaire from the UK. He put together an intro for each one and we co-produced two or three beats on each of the three Dirtbikes. Buddy is incredible. When you hear the beats with an insane amount of chopping, you’ll know it’s Buddy. He also did some cuts for me.

– Emily Wells: multi-instrument sorcoress from Los Angeles who added her beautiful touch to seven songs altogether.

– John Zytaruk: my friend in Toronto with whom I made Porch. He played a bunch of stuff (mostly things stringed: banjo, guitar, steel) to six songs.

– Moka Only: all-around hip hop renaissance man from Vancouver who rapped on one track and contributed two beats.

– D-Styles: the greatest DJ in the world, from California put cuts on a handful of tracks scattered across the three sets.

– JEL: Anticon beat master of Subtle and Thenselves fame contributed a rediculously heavy beat to Dirtbike2.

– Tunng: one of my favorite bands, from London, UK – with whom I’ve worked and toured on several occasions. There’s a song on number three that tells the story of Joseph which was a co-production between Tunng and myself.

– Norm Adams: he was the other main soloist (besides me) when I did my performance with Symphony Nova Scotia earlier this year. He’s a cellist and played on the Microwave Popcorn song on part 3.

– Electrelane: well, specifically Mia Clarke. Sadly Electrelane broke up. I was a big fan. Mia is an incredible guitar player and was generous enough to lay some downright evil sounds on the Queen of the Shitbags song on Dirtbike3.

– Charles Austin: my long-time partner in crime, with whom I’ve been working since Man Overboard. He wrote and performed the music for the Roadkill song on part three (I chopped it up and added drum parts).

– Rodney Decroo: take-no-prisioners singer from Pittsburg, PA who I’ve never met. I was a fan and reached out to him in cyber-space and he came through immediately and in amazing fashion on the Roadkill song (part 3).

– Serafina Steer:  harpist from London, England who I met during my extended festival collaboration with Tunng in France last year. She played on the song about La Golue that appears on the first enstallment.

– Doseone: weirdo rapper and my fellow North American Adonis from Oakland. He rapped on a heavy/pretty track (one I made with Emily Wells) on Dirtbike1.

– Tom Inhaler: good ole Tom from Providence played on the song about St. Anthony on the first dirtbike. We worked on a handful of stuff and it will all see the light soon…

– Cadence Weapon: my pal from Edmonton, Alberta made the horrifying beat that wraps the whole project up – right at the end of Dirtbike3.

– Jorun: my main man from damn close to day one. Genius. I honestly believe Jo is one of the greatest beat-makers ever. He made the ‘Legs Like Shotguns’ beat that Moka and I rapped on, on Dirtbike1.

– Sage Francis: the legend. One of my few true friends. He rapped with me about the death of music on a beat that Buddy Peace and I made together on part 3.

– Barnes & Barnes: legendary freaks from LA – famous for Fish Heads. They made the music for the Halloween song on Dirtbike2.

– Andrew Glencross: my friend from Halifax who’s been playing on my records and in my touring band for several years. He played and sang on ‘We Are Not The Same’ which is the last song on Dirtbike 1.

– Benjamin Blower: beat-maker/musician/ all-around good person from Birmingham, UK. He made the music for ‘Buddah’ on Dirtbike2.

– Aupheus: the dirty, dark beat murderer from the UK made the beat on Dirtbike2 for the sorta spoken-wordy song about rap music and whatnot.

– Jenn Grant: songbird from Halifax. She sang on the ‘Paper Airplane’ song on Dirtbike2. Check out the video for her song Dreamer. YouTube it. You’ll sigh with delight.

– Old Man Luedecke: folk hero I hooked up with for Indestructible Sam a few years ago. We made the ‘Why So Sad’ song together. We actually recorded a lot of stuff that day and more will come from that session.

– Graematter: another long-time collaborator and former room-mate. Half man, half machine. He helped out with the Shitbags beat and the beat for the song about Paris on number 2.

– Tiny Vipers: Jesy and I didn’t really work directly together on the St. Anthony song, but we talked and she gave me her blessing to sample her song Campfire Resemblance. We are going to make some music together. Soon I hope. Jesy’s just not a big computer person, so it’s harder…

– Gabriel Minnikin: the only person I know with perfect pitch. He’s an absolutely incredible musician and an old friend who lives in Manchester in the UK. He usually plays shows with me when I’m there. He laid a bunch of stuff on the last song on #2, including some backing vocals.

– Skratch Bastid: the red-headed step child did cuts on the ‘here’s buck…’ part near the beginning of Dirtbike1.

– Emily: my lady. You hear her voice on Person to Person on the first dirtbike and we worked together on the lyrics for the songs about St. Anthony, La Golue, Fatty Arbuckle, watching bad acrobats on tv in France, the Rambler and the Free Spirit, Hitchcock’s Judy, the Flying Wallendas and the last song on dirtbike2, which is kinda about our apartment.

I think that covers it. I reached out to several other people – famous, not-so-famous and friends who were unable to come through for one reason or another. I almost got a very famous singer that everyone knows on a track. Hopefully it will still happen one day. I was just super-psyched to talk to this person on the phone… I tried to get Sixtoo down but that’s like pulling teeth. We did have lunch though. The original plan was to do some stuff with Vinnie Gallo, but he’s a busy man. We played together in Buffalo, at least. We’ll make it happen one of these days.

There are also several covers across the three works…

– Enter Governor Bolts by Governor Bolts on Dirtbike1
– Person To Person by Hypothetical Prophets on Dirtbike1
– Buddah by Al Tuck on Dirtbike2
– Men With Broken Hearts by Hank Williams on Dirtbike3
– A combination of Whoa Buck by Leadbelly and Mean Talkin’ Blues by Woody Guthrie on Dirtbike3.

I think that’s all you need to know. These ‘albums’ aren’t for sale and never will be. Never-ever. But what I figure will happen is that one day I will take the best 10 songs from the three and go into a proper studio and make a record that will be sold and toured and everything.

It was just really important for me at this point in my career to act creatively without any consideration for money or press or anything other than art. I refuse to see any of this work as a failure in terms of sales or critical response or whatever. So I guess it could be said that this is just something I had to do for myself.

Finally, these recordings were made at home with crappy gear and were mixed in headphones that are 15 years old and were never very good in the first place. So they are pretty lo-fi. So for the few of you who will hear them, they’re best heard in headphones. On a stereo and especially in a car, they will probably sound awful.


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