Through hell & high water…
While many of you know me as the fun & lovable “Nater” with a wild side, some of you may not know that I have Muscular Dystrophy or maybe it’s common knowledge, I don’t know, maybe you don’t even know me at all. If you watch me walk or get up from sitting down, you can see there’s a hitch in my giddy up. It’s not something I usually like to share or talk about, but, it would be hard to talk about Phoenix of Tragedy without speaking about how hard it was for me to make it.
With Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy comes a boatload of pain, fatigue, weakness, & headaches/migraines. It forced me to stop playing live gigs, altered the style, aggressiveness and the way I play guitar, as well as the amount of time I can play. Not being able to play live anymore and beating cancer in 2016 was a huge driving forces behind me opening Bailey Park Studio & writing Phoenix Of Tragedy.
By the time I get the mics set up, I’m already feeling the pain and fatigue, playing a riff or a chord is already getting difficult for my hands and arms. And when you listen to this album and ask why the songs are so “dark” – this is your answer. Every session for this album involved some level of pain. Some more than others…
Even without physical ailments, making an album by yourself is difficult, to say the least. As the artist, producer & engineer I lose objectivity and after a working on it for so long. I start to second guess if the changes I’m making are improving the song or not. In the end I just sit back and follow where the song takes me and hope that it is sonically the best I can make it. At some point you just have to stop fucking tinkering. “Art is never finished, only abandoned.” – Leonardo da Vinci
Rise, you’re the Phoenix of Tragedy…
While this album wasn’t easy and it was painful, it sure as hell was fun to make, and I’m enjoying listening to the final mixes and sharing them with my friends and family. And, I realize as I type this from my desk at Bailey Park Studio, that I’m living the dream. I beat cancer, started a recording studio, and now I’ve finished my album… It’s kind of the theme of this album, rising up through tragedy and pain to become a fucking bird of fire.
I feel like I’m finally finding my true singing voice and my songs are developing into more complex and textured creatures than I could have imagined writing two years ago. And, even though the songs on this album are generally of the melancholy nature, you should know that I’m happier than I’ve ever been. I’ve got the love and support of an incredible woman, I still have this burning drive to create music & I have the studio to create the music in.
Special thanks to Paul Hill, Sophia Charpenteir and Blake Theese for their musical contributions on this album. I was lucky enough to have Paul play drums on several tracks, his playing really help bring these songs to life. Sophia Charpentier contributed her silky vocals to the song “On The Run.” This song also features my son Blake Theese, who wrote that sick beat, killer piano and fat synth bass. First, I funked out with my beat up Strat and the lyrics & melody just kind of poured out of me.
“Phoenix of Tragedy” is available now on natermusic.com digital downloads and Compact Disc. Also available for purchase on iTunes, Google Play Music, Apple Music, and Amazon. Streaming available on Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, TIDAL, iHeartRadio, Napster, and many other streaming services.
Album Release & Listening Party 6pm Saturday, June 2nd at Bailey Park Studio.
- Nathaniel Roland – Vocals, electric & acoustic guitar, bass guitar, keyboard, percussion & beats, jaw harp, ukulele, kids Mickey Mouse guitar,
- Paul Hill – Drums – tracks 1-3, 5-7 & 11
- Sophia Charpentier – Vocals – track 4
- Blake Theese – Beats/production, Piano/synths – track 4
Recorded, Produced, Mixed & Mastered by Nater at Bailey Park Studio
© 2018 Nater Music
All songs written by Nater except tracks 6 & 11
Dedicated to Sanden Voorhees
Phoenix of Tragedy Track Listing
- Phoenix of Tragedy
- Downward Spiral to Happy Hour
- Good Evening
- On The Run
- Just A Kiss
- Ain’t No Sunshine (Bill Withers)
- Fake It
- Eyes Like The Desert
- Mr. Jack Hammer
- You Are My Sunshine (Davis & Mitchell)
- Time Traveling Nater