I came across this email from Harris in my email archives:
Date: Fri, 09 Jul 2004 18:11:20 -0400
Subject: astrograss session
From: “harris wulfson”
To: “Javier Garcia”, “Juliana Trivers”, “Matt Donahue”, “Ben Herzog”, “Emily Gardiner”, “David M Sollors”, “Mark Yokoyama”, “Michelle Wulfson”
this actually came out all right. just for fun i went into the studio with astrograss (not really a traditional recording studio, but rather a special reverberant room designed for practice and recitals). it’s the five tracks at the bottom. i’m only really on 1,2, and 5.
astrograss plays straight up “newgrass” music (sam bush is their hero).
I forwarded it to Jordan who sent me back the mp3 tracks as they are no longer on the Astrograss website. The following note is snipped from his email:
So, we had those files on our website for maybe a year or so, but they were taken down a while ago. Anyhow, I just found them on my computer and yes, that’s Harris’ amazing fiddle all over it. So the tracks are:
“Jerusalem Ridge” (Bill Monroe)
“Cherokee Shuffle” (trad.)
“Dirtiest Man in the World” (w: Shel Silverstein, m: Jordan Shapiro)
The musicians are myself on guitar/vocals, Dennis Lichtman on mandolin, Tim Kiah and bass/vocals and Harris on fiddle.
From the looks of Harris’ email it was July 2004, which seems accurate in my mind. We went into that weird recording/per space a couple times, although I don’t remember it ever being in the summer, but I know we did a festival gig in upstate NY with Harris on June 19, 2004, so it seems like we were doing some playing with Harris in summer 2004.
Update: I found the full CD the other day and asked Jordan, again, to fill in the blanks. Here is his response and 7 additional tracks:
So the deal with this room was this: It was a ‘demo’/showroom for this Concertinio product in midtown NYC.
The product was a complete installation of a high-end music performance system installed into wealthy people’s homes. The walls of the room get completely covered in speakers and there are small microphones all over the ceiling. When you play music with the system on, it suddenly sounds like you’re playing in a huge auditorium, rather than a small room. It was pretty amazing. There were different settings to use with the system, hence the ‘introductions’ by the technician at the beginning of each track. I think Dennis went to college with the guy who was working for the inventor. They hired us to demo the room throughout the day while interested people checked it out. It was very interesting to play there.
Projects With Astrograss 2004