Bart Budwig: 'Sock Song' [Video Premiere]

Vortex Music Magazine

Full of goofy nostalgia—and in honor of National Sock Day, natch—the tender-hearted Eastern Oregon singer-songwriter welcomes us into his musical family for a sock fight! Don't miss Bart Budwig warming up your dancing toes with John Craigie at the Aladdin Theater on December 13, plus celebrate the release of his new record at Bunk Bar on January 25.

Photo by Matt KennellyPhoto by Matt KennellyAfter night one of last winter’s Portland's Folk Festival, I walked up to Bart Budwig to congratulate him on his stellar set. It had immediately followed a great showing from The Hackles, the project of husband-and-wife duo Luke Ydstie and Kati Claborn (also of Blind Pilot), and seeing as all three are frequent collaborators, The Hackles just stayed on stage to offer accompaniment for Budwig’s set.

This was nothing new for Budwig, something of gravitational force with a rotating cast of characters orbiting around his own musical efforts as well as the ones he records out of Eastern Oregon’s historic OK Theatre in Enterprise (including recent efforts from TK & The Holy Know-Nothings, MAITA, Erisy Watt, Five Letter Word and Caitlin Jemma). On that cold February night, he was holding a burned CD wrapped in a sheet of printer paper, a receipt from a storage facility on Joseph Highway. With “Working Title: Another Burn on the AstroTurf” jotted on the front in Sharpie, it was intended for someone else but that person had already left the venue so Budwig offered it to me.

Bart Budwig's 'Another Burn on the AstroTurf' is out January 24 via Fluff & Gravy Records—celebrate its release at Bunk Bar the following eveningBart Budwig's 'Another Burn on the AstroTurf' is out January 24 via Fluff & Gravy Records—celebrate its release at Bunk Bar the following eveningA year later, that CD I blasted on the way home is now set for release on January 24 via Fluff & Gravy Records, and once again features Budwig’s musical brood with the record's second single, the poignant and silly "Sock Song," including contributions from Claborn (banjo), Ydstie (upright bass), Forrest VanTuyl (electric guitar), Ben Walden (electric guitar), Seth Kinzie (piano), Cooper Trail (drums), and a chorus of John Craigie, Rainbow Girls and Nevada Sowle.

Always drawing inspiration from the myriad music makers who come in and out of his life, "Sock Song" was inspired by an Austrian friend who “once said dropping a musician off at the airport is like ‘socks in the washer, they never come back.’ That's where this song started,” Budwig tells.

Another Burn on the AstroTurf “was made with over seven musicians on every song in a five-day period,” Budwig says. “This is the first record where I got my Astoria musician friends and Moscow, Idaho, musician friends all together to record a Bart Budwig record live in the OK Theatre. I would say this is the most dynamic and interesting Bart Budwig record to date because of their additions to the songs. During the week-long session, I also had a group of friends around taking care of photography, cooking, video, art and sound engineering. You get to see most of these folks in the 'Sock Song' music video. Luke Zwanziger wrote and directed the 'Sock Song' music video while we were recording the track. The next day we went to the laundromat behind the OK Theatre and got all the filming done. He is an improv comedian in Portland. Catch a show of his sometime.”

Budwig tidying up the famous AstroTurf behind the OK Theatre: Photo by Matt KennellyBudwig tidying up the famous AstroTurf behind the OK Theatre: Photo by Matt KennellyAnd a laundromat is not the only thing that’s behind the OK Theatre, Budwig also lives in a small apartment back there. “There is a small patch of oddly shaped AstroTurf outside my door. The phrase [Another Burn on the AstroTurf] became a joke we'd say when someone dropped a smoke on the AstroTurf.”

And it’s true: Today is (apparently) National Sock Day! So in addition to enjoying the sock fight video below, you can also find Fluff & Gravy offering limited-edition Bart Budwig socks to keep your toes toasty until he returns to Portland on Friday, December 13 joining John Craigie at the Aladdin Theater for his Keep It Warm 2019 Tour. And celebrate the release of his new record with The Hackles at Bunk Bar on Saturday, January 25.

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